I'm convinced the reason Kellyanne Conway and Reince Preibus bailed out of their Sunday show appearances this morning has to do with the set of talking points the Trump campaign settled on. Instead of contrition, they went out of the gate with attacks on former President Bill Clinton and a "he did it too" defense, nominating Rudy Giuliani for the position of Attack-Dog Surrogate.
Chuck Todd was having none of it for once. After knocking down all of Rudy's canned talking points about how boys will be boys, and it was a long time ago, and he wasn't running for President back then so why is it a big deal anyway, Rudy reached deep into his bag of spin, going for the unauthenticated and ridiculous "speech transcript."
"Hillary Clinton actually specifically described that she's two different people, to the financial people who were giving her millions of dollars, she's on their side and she wants to be a big part of the government," Giuliani claimed. "But she tells them she has to pretend to everybody else that she isn't."
Todd, to his credit, would not let that sit there.
" If you believe that Hillary Clinton says one thing in private and that means what she really is is what she is in private, should we assume what Donald Trump did in that Access Hollywood buzz is really what Donald Trump is like in private? I mean, that's what you're implying here with Hillary Clinton," Todd pressed.
The look on Rudy's face was something to behold. If he could have just tweeted "SIGH," I think he would have.
Instead he surrendered.
"You know, Chuck, the reality is that in both cases, both people have things in their personal lives that maybe if they could redo it, they would do it differently. And the reality is that this is a situation in which neither side should throw stones because both sides have sinned."
Oh, BOTH SIDES. Not so much. Hillary Clinton is no more responsible for the dalliances of her husband than Melania Trump, Ivana Trump, or Marla Maples is.
Chuck could have hit back on that, but honestly, he scored the points with the question that drove Rudy into the both sides stance and forced a retreat. For that, I give him points.
If he wants applause, though, he should have hit Rudy while in retreat instead of letting him use the "both sides" defense as an exit.