Chris Matthews' obsession with birthers didn't take a break on the day after the killing of Osama bin Laden. Only 43 seconds into Monday's show on the terrorist, the Hardball anchor connected, "Barack Obama. The cool hand directs the operation step by step. All this time, the crazies were talking birth certificates, he was working."
Politicizing the death of the man who murdered 3000 people, Matthews berated, "Will this make the Republicans look for someone who can do what Obama can do? Or will they keep on celebrating the clown show?"
The liberal cable host jeered, "Will they stop enjoying their passion and go from cheering their buffoon parade to finding a real pick to put up against a proven master and commander?"
[See video below. MP3 audio here.]
Later, Matthews interviewed Politico's John Harris and Major Garrett of National Journal.
Garrett paraphrased Obama from 2008 on fighting terrorism and opined, "'I'm going to fight it hard. I'm going to think about it new and prosecute that war more aggressively than the current president,' which he has done."
A transcript of the relevant sections from the May 2 segment can be found below:
CHRIS MATTHEWS: Leading off tonight, the President who caught bin Laden. The triumph of justice over evil. The leadership of leadership over talk. Barack Obama. The cool hand directs the operation step by step. All this time, the crazies were talking birth certificates, he was working. Planning, leading, bringing America's strength and brains to the enemy hideaway. Tonight, we see how it worked from the inside. We see how Obama now looks from the outside. We weigh the impact in this country of what happened yesterday in far off Pakistan. Will this make the Republicans look for someone who can do what Obama can do? Or will they keep on celebrating the clown show? Will they stop enjoying their passion and go from cheering their buffoon parade to finding a real pick to put up against a proven master and commander?
MATTHEWS: Okay, let's talk politics. Back during the last election, not too long ago, 2008, here's President Obama in a presidential debate with John McCain. Let's listen to what he said about, well, you'll see.
BARACK OBAMA: If we have Osama bin Laden in our sights and the Pakistani government is unable or unwilling to take them out, then I think that we have to act. And we will take them out. We will kill bin Laden, we will crush al Qaeda. That has to be our biggest national security priority.
MATTHEWS: Bin Laden, done that. As I said at the beginning of the show, John Harris. I tell you, that's a pretty good commercial right there. I would guess if he can get this back in the cross hairs as an issue next year. That ad, we just saw. Your thoughts, John Harris?
JOHN HARRIS: No, there is no question this is a very authentic mission accomplished moment. Not detracting at all from Major's point we saw again and again. We saw it in 1992 when President George H.W. Bush sought re-election and the victory in the Iraq war didn't do much to help him. It's true the issues that are most salient might not relate to national security next year. Nonetheless, it is a powerful mission accomplished moment that I think radiates, as you say, an impression of competence, effectiveness, command, well beyond the specific issue that's going to help President Obama in all sorts of different ways.
MATTHEWS: Last thought, Major about that. How does he show competence about gas prices? Just get them down. That's what competence is about, right?
MAJOR GARRETT: That's right. There are only so many things. It shows a continuum of competence. If you look at what President Obama said during the campaign, not just about bin Laden but about the Afghanistan campaign in general. I'm going to fight it hard. I'm going to think about it new and prosecute that war more aggressively than the current president which he has done. And now in Afghanistan he has some progress and in Pakistan went on his own and got the result everyone in the country wanted to see. Secondarily, Chris, I think it's enormously important what we saw last night. Young people around the country, here in Washington, of course, and New York City coming to the streets to celebrate. Young people who vote and whose lives have been defined by the war on terror and all the things that it's inflicted upon us, not only psychically but operationally. I believe in one element of the youth vote and energizing the Obama campaign for 2012, this will have enormous impact, because these kids remember what it's like to grow up with bin Laden as sort of the biggest monster in their world. He's now gone. The war on terror feels more effectively fought under Obama than it may have to them under President Bush. I think that will have residual effect.
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