Jay Carney, photo via Time.comWas Time magazine's Jay Carney hired by the Obama transition as Joe Biden's director of communications in order to keep a tight lid on the Beltway's greatest gaffe machine?

Washington Post media critic Howard Kurtz reports, you decide:

Time magazine's Jay Carney, who said over the summer that Joseph R. Biden Jr. is "incredibly prone to say the wrong thing," will soon be in charge of ensuring that doesn't happen again.


In July, before Barack Obama picked the senator from Delaware as his running mate, Carney said on MSNBC that "Biden may be the answer" because of his foreign policy credentials. The "downside," Carney said, is that Biden has said the wrong thing "throughout his career. . . . He's smart, but he speaks -- shoots from the hip and sometimes says just wrong thing at the wrong time."

Jay CarneyAt least he made it official.

Time's Washington bureau chief Jay Carney is quitting his magazine post to take the fearsome task of managing the communications problems of incoming vice president Joe Biden.

This hardly comes as a surprise. During his tenure at Time, Carney accrued a reputation for bashing Republicans. In March, he urged President Bush to give a speech on the economy and say that he is "a Republican who actually cares about people that are suffering."

In a November 2007 blog post, Carney slammed the Bush administration for "los[ing] touch with reality" for insisting that the situation in Iraq was improving, despite many indicators that the surge strategy was working.

What does it say about Sarah Palin that some of my favorite targets, um, subjects raved about her this morning?  Andrea Mitchell and Mika Brzezinski could hardly have been more complimentary, Tom Brokaw and Jay Carney chipping in with positive comments.

ANDREA MITCHELL: Here was a novice on the national scene, with the lowest of expectations. People said sure, she'll be able to perform. But it was an amazing, amazing speech in terms of the way it connected to people.  I talked to people afterwards on the floor, a lot of women. One woman from California who said it didn't matter that she, this woman delegate, is pro-choice. She said "I'm a mom. I've got three kids at home.  And I see myself up there." And she's connecting to her.  She said "I did not think this was a good choice until I heard that speech." Now this is admittedly a select audience of very passionate and very conservative Republican delegates. But I think there is a broader audience for this out there. I think it was an extraordinary debut.
When NBC News Political Director Chuck Todd passed along comments from Dem strategists suggesting the speech might have been "a little too hot" for swing voters, Andrea and Mika actually rode to Palin's defense.

View video here.

Those rascally right-wing bloggers. Always starting up rumors.

Or not.

Charlie Crist, Bobby Jindal and Mitt Romney better hope John McCain isn't banking on Tony Blankley for guidance on his Veep pick. Newt's former press secretary is blah—at best—on all three.

Blankley, also the former editorial page editor of the Washington Times and who continues to write a column there, made his remarks on MSNBC's "Race for the White House" this evening as part of a panel reacting to the news that McCain has invited the three governors—past and present—to meet with him over the Memorial Day weekend.

DAVID GREGORY: What would Governor Crist bring to McCain's ticket?

TONY BLANKLEY: I don't think he brings much. I think if McCain can't carry Florida on his own, he's not going to carry it. He needs to carry something else. I doubt, I don't think he brings much to the ticket.

View video here.

Elizabeth Edwards, I'm sure, is a smart, capable woman. A well-educated lawyer, seasoned politician's wife, and mother of three, her battle against cancer is laudable no matter what your politics are. But in all honestly, is she really that much of a scholarly health care policy or health care finance expert?

Time's Jay Carney apparently thinks so. Witness his recent pat on the back for the liberal Center for American Progress for landing Mrs. Edwards as its latest fellow-cum-blogger:

Not sure if this was expected or known in advance, but the announcement today that Elizabeth Edwards is joining the Center for American Progress as a senior fellow is striking in two ways. First, it's great for CAP. Think tanks don't often get the benefit of having famous and well-liked authors or thinkers on their staffs. Hers will be a prominent voice on the health care debate going forward, and CAP will bask in her reflected fame...

As media continue to report current economic conditions as being almost Depression-like, they conveniently forget which political party has controlled both chambers of Congress since January 2007 as well as who was in the White House when key financial services deregulation was enacted.

Such a well-timed amnesia hit ABC's Claire Shipman Sunday when during the panel discussion segment of "This Week," she blamed the current financial crisis on Republicans.

Color me unsurprised.

After host George Stephanopoulos asked Shipman's husband, Time magazine's Jay Carney, "How does John McCain fix his problem on the economy," the following ensued:

Worst job in America this morning: Clinton campaign staffer assigned to inform Hillary of her treatment at the hands of ABC's "This Week" panel.

From moderator George Stephanopoulos to former Gore campaign manager Donna Brazile, to the husband-wife tandem of Jay Carney of Time and Claire Shipman of ABC, to conservative sage George Will, it was a decidedly downbeat take on Hillary's fortunes.

View video here.

As the networks try to ignore the good news coming out of Iraq, conservatives may soon believe it's time to revisit the Left's swaggering notion that they alone were living in Reality and the stay-the-course Iraq-liberation movement was living in Fantasyland. So now with all the bias by omission, which side is in danger of looking like it's sticking its fingers in its ears and singing "la la la"? (Frank Rich, to name just one Reality Riverdancer, is still too busy applying Nazi metaphors to the Bush team to notice any good news.)

On the Swampland blog, Time correspondent Jay Carney responds to the Michael Crowley New Republic piece by noting that while Hillary's people use to admire the Bush team's manhandling of the press, they are now wise enough to avoid "losing touch with reality" by emulating them too closely.