I may as well get this out there before the blogosphere lights up like Dresden: MSNBC pundit emeritus and apparent recent stroke victim Chris Matthews just called Hillary Clinton hold-outs "wackos" on national television.
He was referring to those few Clinton supporters who claim to be willing to engage in the political equivalent of cutting off their collective nose to spite their face by voting for John McCain; they call themselves PUMAs, an amusing little double entendre which supposedly stands for "Party Unity My Ass." Matthews was tossing to an interview when he indelicately dismissed such hardline nonsense. What's worth noting though is that, like a dog that's been hit with a rolled up newspaper enough times, MSNBC has apparently learned its lesson about the blogger backlash that generally follows whenever one of the network's white-guy talking heads makes a comment that could be considered misogynist: Matthews cracked his best "just joshin'" smile and backed down from the insult about two minutes after making it, no doubt instructed to in his ear by a producer whose face was turning six different shades of red.
The thing is, whether Matthews should've been the one to do it or not, somebody needed to publicly shame these batty Clintonista militants and call them on their folly.
Good going, girls. Way to disprove the dubious notion that women are always hamstrung by emotion and can't use their heads when they need to.
(Update, 8.26.08: As expected, today's edition of Salon.com has a detailed profile of the "PUMAs" which references Matthews's ire toward them. Salon.com: Angry PUMAs on the Prowl in Denver/8.26.08)