Hold on to your seats, but there’s a new CNN poll out analyzing Sen. Hillary Clinton’s chances of being elected president in 2008. What a shock, huh? During Thursday’s “The Situation Room,” host Wolf Blitzer and political analyst William Schneider were having a hard time hiding their glee concerning these poll results as well as a possible return to “the good times under the Bill Clinton era” (hat tip to Expose the Left with video link to follow). In fact, the viewer got a glimpse of how thrilled both of these supposedly impartial reporters were as soon as the segment began.
Blitzer introduced Schneider thusly: “Let's bring in our senior political analyst, Bill Schneider, who is already smiling. He hasn't even started to tell us about the results of this poll -- Bill.”
Isn’t that special? The results are so heartening to Schneider that, as you can see from the attached picture, he’s smiling ear to ear. Then, after discussing the plusses and minuses of Hillary using or not using her maiden name of Rodham – a question that clearly must be keeping most Americans up at night – Schneider took the opportunity to contrast President Bush’s current poll numbers to former President Clinton’s: “Right now, President Bush has a very negative image, 57 to 40 percent unfavorable. And former President Bill Clinton, just about the reverse, 57 to 38 favorable.”
His conclusion as to how this might impact the 2008 election? “There may be some nostalgia out there for the good times under the Bill Clinton era.”
Blitzer responded joyously: “I love that poll. Thanks for doing it, Bill.”
Nice impartial, unbiased reporting, gentlemen. I’m sure your producers are proud of you.
What follows is a full transcript of this campaign ad, errrr…report, along with a video link.
WOLF BLITZER: Right now, we have an all new CNN poll that presents an unusual test of a leading presidential prospect in 2008. That would be Senator Hillary Clinton, or, should we say, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton. Let's bring in our senior political analyst, Bill Schneider, who is already smiling. He hasn't even started to tell us about the results of this poll -- Bill.
WILLIAM SCHNEIDER, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: What's in a name, Shakespeare asked? Well, we have the answer. Plenty.
SCHNEIDER (voice-over): During her first years of marriage, Hillary Rodham kept her maiden name.
Then, after one term as governor of Arkansas, Bill Clinton lost his bid for reelection. When he ran again, two years later, his wife became Hillary Rodham Clinton. And he won. Now she is Senator Hillary Clinton. Or is it Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton?
Nationwide, in the latest CNN poll taken by Opinion Research Corporation, Hillary Rodham Clinton gets a slightly higher favorability rating than Hillary Clinton, 50, as compared to 46 percent favorable.
It makes a big difference what part of the country people are from. Among Southerners, Hillary Clinton is more positively regarded, married name only. Outside the South, people definitely prefer Hillary Rodham Clinton. If you combine responses to both names across the country, the public's view of Senator Clinton is closely divided, 48 percent favorable, 43 percent unfavorable.
Compare that with the public's view of a Republican front-runner, Senator John McCain. McCain gets about the same favorable rating as Clinton, but he has lower negatives. Senator Clinton has been making an effort to establish her bipartisan credentials...
SEN. HILLARY CLINTON (D), NEW YORK: It's also true that I have worked with Newt Gingrich, and it makes strange bedfellows.
SCHNEIDER: ... while Senator McCain has been asserting his credentials as a staunch Bush supporter.
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: Anybody who says that the president of the United States is lying about weapons of mass destruction is lying.
SCHNEIDER: But the old images persist. Clinton still divides Americans by party, 76 percent favorable among Democrats, 20 percent favorable among Republicans. McCain still has the image of an independent and a maverick. He has a rare nonpartisan image in this highly partisan era.
SCHNEIDER: That may be an advantage for McCain. But there would be other factors at work, if the two were to face each other in 2008, like the desire for change. Right now, President Bush has a very negative image, 57 to 40 percent unfavorable. And former President Bill Clinton, just about the reverse, 57 to 38 favorable. There may be some nostalgia out there for the good times under the Bill Clinton era -- Wolf.
BLITZER: I love that poll. Thanks for doing it, Bill.