Bob Schieffer somehow managed to top MSNBC host Chris Matthews in hyperbole Wednesday. During CBS News's special coverage of President Obama's gun control press Schieffer became the worst caricature of a foaming-at-the-mouth cheerleader for the chief executive.
Schieffer lauded "one of the best speeches I've ever heard him [Obama] deliver", and compared Obama's new gun control agenda to Lyndon Johnson's push for civil rights legislation in the 1960s.
The CBS veteran even went so far to liken the president's cause to the ten-year hunt for 9/11 mastermind Usama bin Laden and the difficult endeavor of winning World War II. Here's an excerpt:
BOB SCHIEFFER: ...let's remember: there was considerable opposition when Lyndon Johnson went to the Congress and...presented some of the most comprehensive civil rights legislation in the history of this country. Most people told him he couldn't get it done, but he figured out a way to do it. And that's what Barack Obama is going to have to do...what happened in Newtown was probably the worst day in this country's history since 9/11. We found Usama bin Laden. We tracked him down. We changed the way that we dealt with that problem. Surely, finding Usama bin Laden; surely, passing civil rights legislation, as Lyndon Johnson was able to do; and before that, surely, defeating the Nazis, was a much more formidable task than taking on the gun lobby.
Schieffer then lobbied for the Democratic politician to do everything in his power to get stricter gun control passed, as he bluntly outlined the apparent stakes for the country:
SCHIEFFER: This is a turning point in this country, and the president is going to have to do more than just make a speech about it. This is one of the best speeches I've ever heard him deliver, but it's going to take more than that from the White House. He's going to have to get his hands dirty. He's going to have to get in there and – and work this problem until he gets it done. But unless we figure out a way to make sure that something like Newtown never happens again, we're not the country that we once were. I think we still are. I think there's hope. I think something's going to happen here.
Exactly a month earlier, the "Face the Nation" host unleashed on the gun control issue during the immediate aftermath of the Sandy Hook massacre. During a December 16, 2012 panel discussion, he claimed, "If [shooter Adam Lanza] had had an Arab name, people would be going nuts about what we ought to do right now."
One wonders how Schieffer is going to manage to top himself the next time he opens his mouth on gun control.
Editor's note: This opinion piece originally appeared on the NewsBusters blog.