Stick A Fork In David Broder
by Jeff Dinelli
If anyone still pays attention to David Broder, and that's a big "if," it's time to totally ignore him as a serious journalist, as he has officially announced there will be quite different coverage of Democratic and Republican candidates' personal lives.
Greg Sargent reported yesterday that this interesting exchange came out of a Q&A with Washington Post readers:
New York: Will you and the media ever apply as much scrutiny to the Giuliani marriages as you have done to the single Clinton marriage?
David S. Broder: I plan to leave both subjects alone.
Really. What, did he suddenly develop a conscience?
Last year, a couple days after the NY Times ran a sprawling, front-page expose of the Clinton marriage full of unnamed sources and flat-out gossip that concluded Bill and Hillary live separate lives, Broder wrote a column about it. He had just been bored seeing Hillary give a speech on energy policy, and wrote that he was shocked that no one asked about the "elephant in the room," her marriage to Bill. But now that's all going to change, according to Broder.
What a guy, because Rudy must be really tempting to write about, seeing as how America's Mayor has been married three times, including to a cousin, announced one breakup at a news conference before telling his wife, and his adultery has been well-known in NY for years.
Sargent pointed out just how much space Broder has devoted to the Clintons in the past:
As recently as two months ago — Sept 6, 2007 — Broder wrote that the Clintons’ marriage was the most important political fact about Hillary. “Her marriage is the central fact in her life, and this partnership of Bill and Hillary Clinton is indissoluble,” Broder wrote. “She cannot function without him, and he would not have been president without her. If she becomes president, he will play as central a role in her presidency as she did in his. And that is something the country will have to ponder.”
On May 25, 2006, Broder devoted nearly a whole column to that notorious front-page piece by Pat Healy in The Times that documented the state of their marriage in almost comically absurd detail. Broder was very sympathetic to the piece, saying that it showed that “the drama of the Clintons’ personal life would be a hot topic if she runs for president.” If Broder thought the Clinton wasn’t fair game here in any way — or disapproved of the level of attention The Times gave to the Clinton marriage in that piece — he certainly didn’t say so.
And back when it really counted — when the GOP tried to impeach Bill Clinton over his affair — Broder thought the Clinton marriage was completely fair game. He wrote multiple columns at the time arguing that his affair threw his entire character and even fitness for the Presidency into question.
Broder and his buddies throughout Washington journalism have hammered the Clintons for years, but now that a Republican serial adulterer is running, they're all taking the high road. The Democrat who has saved her marriage is dragged through the mud in the town square, while the creepy Republican is given a reprieve, like he's just one of the boys (wink, wink).
Broder is a shameless hack. It's time for him to slither on like the snake that he is.