The Plank

And Then, On Msnbc, The Unthinkable Happened

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Something remarkable just happened on MSNBC. Chris Matthews spent at least two minutes, maybe three, musing over the substantive argument in a convention speech.

It happened right after former Virginia Governor Mark Warner finished his keynote address. Matthews seized on Warner's line about the importance of asking Americans to make sacrifices--and Bush's failure to make that request after 9/11. Matthews then went on to talk about the importance of solidarity and its place in the Democratic Party's identity.

Of course, after that, he and Keith Olbermann quickly returned to discussing the Clinton drama. And now, I see, the full MSNBC panel--Pat Buchanan, Rachel Maddow, Norah O'Donnell, and Eugene Robinson--is discussing Clinton's political future in the party. But, for one little interval there, one of the cable shows actually talked about policy and governing. Imagine!

Update: And there they go again. Now all four panelists are discussing Warner's vision of a post-partisan politics in Washington and whether it's realistic. Quick--somebody get rid of these hacks and get some real commentators. Enough substance. We need horserace politics!

--Jonathan Cohn 

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