Jonathan Chait

Matt Damon Saved Us From Sarah Palin

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[Guest post by Isaac Chotiner]

I won't be able to improve upon the harsh critiques of Piers Morgan that have already been written by James Wolcott in Vanity Fair and Anna Holmes in the New York Times this morning. And my colleague Laura Bennett ended her own recent piece on talk-show hosts by noting Morgan's fondness for fawning over celebrities.

Last night, Morgan took this talent to new heights, in an interview with Matt Damon. Morgan had mentioned Damon's decision to criticize Sarah Palin during the last presidential campaign. Damon then made a few more comments about the former governor. Morgan continued:

MORGAN: So [you] won the election. Because you focused people's attention in one moment on what was an extraordinary situation, where someone could come from nowhere, as you rightly said, and potentially run the country.

DAMON: Yes. I mean, I would never say I would have won the election but --

MORGAN: Of course.

DAMON: But I think I said something that a lot of people were saying. I just was the first person that it got picked up, I think.

For those of you too young to remember the 2008 election, Obama was cruising to an easy victory when John McCain chose Sarah Palin as his vice presidential nominee. Then, with the race having swung wildly to McCain, Matt Damon had the lonely courage to speak truth to power and condemn Palin for her vapidity and lack of knowledge. The Obama comeback, after this hinge event, was inevitable.

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