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Chris Matthews to Top McCain '08 Aide: 'We Were All Rooting for You'

On Thursday's Hardball, Chris Matthews told top McCain '08 aide Steve Schmidt, "We were all rooting for you, by the way. And a lot of us in this business like John McCain a lot."

The cable anchor who famously informed America that Barack Obama gave him a "thrill" up his leg, added, "He didn't think we did and we were tough on him last time. I liked Obama. But I tell you, I've always liked McCain." [MP3 audio here.]



Not pausing in this unprompted admission, Matthews added, "[McCain's] still mad at me. Fine. That's the way it is...He ought to be mad at me."

He ought to be mad at me?

Offering a compliment to McCain '08 campaign manager Steve Schmidt, Matthews asserted, "I think you did a good job last time. I mean it." Of course, John McCain did lose the 2008 election.

A transcript of the September 29 segment, which aired at 5:13pm EDT, follows:

CHRIS MATTHEWS: Steve Schmidt, who ran the campaign for John McCain, I think you did a good job last time. I mean it. We were all rooting for you, by the way. And a lot of us in this business like John McCain a lot.

STEVE SCHMIDT: Of course. He's a great guy.

MATTHEWS: He didn't think we did and we were tough on him last time. I liked Obama. But I tell you, I've always liked McCain. He's still mad at me. Fine. That's the way it is. Thank you, Steve Schmidt. Thank you, John Heilemann. He ought to be mad at me.


— Scott Whitlock is the senior news analyst for the Media Research Center. Click here to follow him on Twitter