Why Hillary won in Ohio and Texas. That is the subject of this evening's "Talking Points Memo."
First off, Senator Clinton's comeback had nothing to do with that dopey 3:00 a.m. phone ringing ad. Now some pundits are putting that out there, but they're wrong. What propelled Hillary to victory was the press and a few small slip-ups by Barack Obama.
Here's the deal. According to the Center for Media and Public Affairs, a non-partisan watchdog group, from mid-December to mid-February, 83 percent of network news coverage directed at Barack Obama was positive. Eighty-three percent. For Hillary Clinton, 53 percent was positive. Still a very high number, but nothing like the unprecedented Obama media kiss-up.
NBC News led the way, openly fawning over Senator Obama and hitting Senator Clinton much harder during last week's debate. That's when Jim Downey stepped in. Downey is the brilliant head writer of "Saturday Night Live," and he and his cohorts skewered NBC News for its bias. In a mock debate, impersonators of Brian Williams and Tim Russert grilled Hillary and fawned over Barack.
Now that satire received wide attention and Americans got the message. A biased media was trying to engineer the election. Americans don't like that. They never have, they never will. It doesn't matter what party you subscribe to. The folks do not want the media manipulating elections. So Obama was backlashed.
The polls show that Democrats who decided late broke big for Hillary. Again, "Talking Points" believes the corrupt media had a lot to do with that. The endorsement of Obama by Louis Farrakhan also didn't help the senator. Neither did a campaign snafu about NAFTA. But these are relatively small things. The big deal is fairness.
In Texas, the Limbaugh factor was in play as well, as the radio commentator encouraged Republicans to vote for Hillary in order to create chaos within the Democratic Party. However, even though about nine percent of those voting in the Texas Democratic primary were Republicans, Obama won the majority of those ballots. So it was not a factor in Hillary's comeback.
Now it comes down to Pennsylvania in April, which will be yet another shootout. Barack Obama believes he will have more delegates when the primaries are over, and he's probably right.
So what will the Democrats do? Nobody knows. What I do know is that Obama will be on the ticket either running for president or VP. He is in. But Hillary Clinton will now take this all the way to the convention and anything could happen along the way.
And that's "The Memo."
Pinheads & Patriots
Green Bay Packer quarterback Brett Favre is retiring. The 38-year-old Favre got to the league championship this year, but says he's had enough. He was the Most Valuable Player in the NFL three times and won a Super Bowl in 1997 — great game. He also played with class and enthusiasm. Brett Favre is a patriot.
On the pinhead front, Rosie O'Donnell continues her legacy. Apparently angry about how Larry King interviewed a friend of hers, Fran Drescher, O'Donnell is saying nasty things about Mr. King on her Web site and is demanding that he retire just like Brett Favre. Once again, Rosie is a pinhead. We're siding with Larry King. God help me.