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It's no surprise that the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann led off the backwards newshour with the Tom DeLay story. Neither is it any surprise that he claimed Delay was:
faced with losing his race for reelection to Congress
Note: DeLay wasn't facing a possible loss, a close race, or a nail-biter. No, he was facing an out-and-out loss. Apparently, on those weekends when he isn't rummaging through dusty ballot boxes in Ohio, Olby is down in Texas counting votes that haven't even been cast yet. KO also gratuitously repeated the official MSNBC line that Chris Matthews broke this story. That's the version Matthews likes too, since it pretends that Time Magazine online story never existed.
Here's a unique, innovative, outside-the-box idea: let's get Dana Milbank to "analyze" all this. When that turned out to be predictable and boring, Olby switched to "possible" West Wing personnel changes. Ah, speculation and gossip. So much more interesting than news. KO took the opportunity to humbly mention that Milbank's paper called Countdown "insightful" (a term that does not appear in Howard Kurtz's article).
The spin just wasn't vertiginous enough with Dana; ever since his paper slapped him down he really just hasn't delivered for Krazy Keith. So Milbank gets hustled off stage, and in comes Wayne Slater, of "Bush's Brain" fame. Asked how strong the legal case is against DeLay, Slater delivers a vague answer. But note his verbiage:
The whole process of sending money up to Washington, laundering it through, and sending money back to Texas in an illegal fashion...
See? It's money "laundering"--no need even to use the weasel word "alleged". And why bother having the trial? It's "illegal". Judge Slater has ruled. That's the kind of guest who's made to order for The Hour of Spin.
The story slopped over into the #4 slot, where Olby was required to call in MSNBC's ex-Republican pundit Pat Buchanan, author of "Where the Right Went Wrong". PB thought there could be a downside for Democrats, who have lost a convenient bogeyman. KO had a different spin on it: with DeLay gone, all that criticism will focus on the President and...Scooter Libby! Right. Libby's name will be on everybody's lips. Pat started talking about tax cuts and judges, but Olby quickly got him derailed onto Iraq, where he and KO have some common ground. Still, even 30 seconds of non-Olbermann-approved opinion sneaking into an episode of Countdown is worth noting, since that happens about as often as a visit from the Kohoutek Comet.
Counting down the rest of the show: oddball, Barry Bonds, baseball, internet porn (regurgitated from NBC), celebrities, and a movie about snakes on a plane. Weren't there mass demonstrations in Paris today? Sorry, no time. Immigration, new charges against Saddam? Couldn't squeeze them in.
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 46th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.