It's one thing for conservatives to concur that Carly Fiorina was outstanding at last night's debate. But to hear a string of superlatives about Fiorina coming from committed liberal Mika Brzezinski was breathtaking.
Over the course of today's Morning Joe, a stream of praise for Fiorina flowed from Mika, capped by this: "my God, I have never seen anyone like her. Ever."
Among Mika's many other accolades for Carly, she called her "pitch perfect, like a breakout star;" and "terrifying" for Democrats. Ironically, when Bill Kristol offered some mild criticism, suggesting that Carly was rather stern-looking and should show a bit more humor, it was Mika who rose to Fiorina's defense: "she's the perfect 'know your value' woman . . . respect first, and then all the friendship and fun stuff later."
SCARBOROUGH: Let me talk about an elephant in the room. Compare Carly Fiorina's performance last night--no notes, no nothing--with Hillary Clinton stammering and stumbling through a basic attack on Donald Trump. There's no comparison!
MIKA BRZEZINSKI: That's exactly what I was talking about. She was disciplined. She had a measured tone. She used, she always uses a vocal range that projects strength, warmth and confidence. Without being too this or too that, she is pitch perfect. And on top of it she knows her material, she has very strong opinions, she knows how to fight but never fights so hard it can be criticized as whatever--what words people would use when it goes too shrill. She actually was as you said pitch perfect, a star. Like a breakout star.
. . .
STEVE SCHMIDT: If you're a smart Democrat, you're watching the totality of this field, all of them, against the prospective Hillary Clinton campaign.
MIKA: You don't want Carly. You don't want Carly.
SCHMIDT: And for sure, the performance of these candidates against the performance of their candidate has to be terrifying for a lot of Democrats. And of course we saw rumblings, this debate taking place in California, rumblings yesterday from Jerry Brown that he could get into the race and he would be a very formidable candidate for the nomination.
MIKA: She's terrifying to the Democrats. I can tell you right now, first of all, it counts out the historic nature of the Hillary Clinton presidence--right there. The one thing that people might be holding on to, it goes away. And on top of it, she's terrifying. She's really good. She's really good.
. . .
MIKE BARNICLE: I think because of her substance and her presentation, Carly Fiorina really cleared the field last night. Because of the length of the debate, I think all of the people up on that stage had a tendency to sort of fade into the background as the hours endured and went on. But off of Mark's [Halperin] grading of Ben Carson, Joe. I agree with you about Ben Carson. I think Carly Fiorina's presentation last night put Ben Carson's candidacy in the down escalator. I would not be surprised --
BARNICLE: -- to see him slide quite precipitously and Carly Fiorina take over that number two position.
JOE: That's what I was thinking last night.
MIKA: I was talking about that measured tone, that discipline and vocal range, because these are the things that women struggle with. And actually they get counted out because actually these physical presentation issues. My God, I have never seen anyone like her. Ever.
. . .
BILL KRISTOL: I had a question for Mika. If I had been working for Carly Fiorina I would have thought she had done great and I think she's been great for the last few months and is really in a position to be a finalist in this race. The one piece of advice I might give her is a little humor. You know, she's pretty stern-looking and stern in demeanor. Maybe you have to do that, maybe frankly a woman has to do that a little more than a male candidate. Do you think she could have maybe made once in the debate sort of a little bit of a joke or no?
MIKA: You know what, I actually have been studying this about women and how they communicate.
KRISTOL Yeah, that's why I'm asking you.
MIKA: She's like the perfect 'know your value' woman. She knows her value and she communicates it effectively. Respect first and then all the friendship and fun stuff later. She's doing what she needs to do right now. She's got humor. I've talked to her. She --
KRISTOL: I know that. That's what I'm saying. That's why asked you. She can show that later.
JOE: That's literally what Mika says at every Know Your Value conference and every speech.
MIKA: She's getting it.
JOE: She said don't worry about them liking you. Force them to respect you first and they'll like you later.
MIKA: And she's done it. I've never seen anything like it.