Just how low will Kathleen Parker go to earn her high-six-figure salary at CNN? In an interview with Alex Weprin posted Monday at TVNewser, she lectures her potential TV audience to just forget Spitzer's sordid past with high-priced hookers, since he has such a swelling, itching brain that it shatters glass with its enormous breadth:
"Outside of New York most people don't know Eliot, they kind of have a vague impression of who he is," Parker said. "Everybody remembers the day that is probably most painful for him to recollect. My personal feeling is that once they hear him talking about issues, and he is so knowledgeable about so many subjects, that they will quickly forget his past, which is where it needs to be."
In short, Parker shares the amoral view of fired CNN president Jon Klein, according to Gabriel Sherman's cover story in New York magazine: "When one CNN executive expressed to Klein the concern that viewers risked being turned off by Spitzer's hooker scandal, Klein had snapped, 'I don't give a f---.'" But Spitzer couldn't be paired on TV with an attractive young lady, CNN figured. So how about an attractive old lady?
Pairing him with a female co-host was delicate. "They were concerned a young, beautiful co-host wouldn't work," said one source familiar with the show's development. Finally, they settled on Kathleen Parker, an attractive 59-year-old Pulitzer Prize-winning conservative columnist.
Translation: we need a woman who was graduating high school when Eliot was in the fourth grade. Someone the audience couldn't imagine Spitzer asking if she took American Express.
Haven't Parker and the other amoral wizards at CNN figured out that many morally serious people do not buy the incredibly flawed argument that if a sexually degraded politician can talk convincingly about the issues, then all the crimes and misdemeanors he committed should just be wiped away? Parker is trying the same tired old routine that liberals used throughout the Clinton intern scandal, that intellectual fluency is a serial adulterer's Get Out of Jail Free card.
If people are going to talk about Parker Spitzer in metaphors of an on-air marriage, Parker is already playing the Stepford Co-Anchor.
Meanwhile, The Christian Science Monitor is recycling the latest "centrist" spin of Associated Press reporter David Bauder. The headline on that site was "Eliot Spitzer, Kathleen Parker aim for ideological center." Their target audience is “the people who would feel more comfortable at Jon Stewart's million moderate march” than with O’Reilly or Olbermann. This gambit badly and baldly pretends that either Spitzer or Stewart would fit anywhere near the center -- or near nonpartisanship -- in their careers.