On Saturday, Gail Collins penned a sequel to her Wednesday column in which (as my MRC colleague Tim Graham documented) she tried rather desperately to argue that the big Democratic losses in New Jersey and Virginia governor's races the previous day didn't reflect badly on Obama at all, since Democrats Creigh Deeds and Jon Corzine were such obviously horrible, no-good, very bad candidates.
Democrat losses still meant nothing to Obama's agenda in her Saturday follow-up, the oddly titled "Weekend Sports Lineup."
Back on Wednesday, Collins had used sarcasm to delink Obama from those horrible candidates in New Jersey and Virginia:
Although there is no way to deny that New Jersey and Virginia were terrible, horrible, disastrous, cataclysmic blows to Obama's prestige. No wonder the White House said he was not watching the results come in. How could the man have gotten any sleep after he realized that his lukewarm support of an inept candidate whose most notable claim to fame was experience in hog castration was not enough to ensure a Democratic victory in Virginia?
New Jersey was even worse. The defeat of Gov. Jon Corzine made it clear that the young and minority voters who turned out for Obama will not necessarily show up at the polls in order to re-elect an uncharismatic former Wall Street big shot who failed to deliver on his most important campaign promises while serving as the public face of a state party that specializes in getting indicted.
They would not rally around Corzine even when the president asked them! Really, what good are coattails if they can't drag an unlovable guy from a deeply corrupt party into a second term?
On Saturday, after some similar sarcasm about tea party protesters, who she likened to "conservative locusts," Collins employed a drier sense of humor to make the same point, that the election results in New Jersey and Virginia had nothing to do with lack of support for Obama or his agenda:
A while back, Speaker Nancy Pelosi was promising that the House bill would have a "robust" public option that would have offered real competition to the insurance companies, thus driving costs down. But then Pelosi was faced with a mini-rebellion from red state Democrats who were terrified by the news of Republican victories in races having nothing whatsoever to do with Barack Obama, Congress or health care, and she modified the plan.
The Times brass liked that way of thinking so much that host Sam Roberts spent 30 seconds no the Times' November 5 "Political Points" podcast reciting from Collins' Wednesday column.