Goldberg on MSNBC: "Hillary Clinton is essentially like the agricultural minister from the Soviet Politburo"

››› ››› ANDREW IRONSIDE

On Morning Joe, Jonah Goldberg stated: "Hillary Clinton is essentially like the agricultural minister from the Soviet Politburo in 1976. She's sort of, you know, the product of a sort of bureaucratic, Walter Mondale machine, 'check off the right constituencies' kind of thing."

On the January 17 edition of MSNBC's Morning Joe, discussing the Democratic presidential campaign with hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski, National Review Online editor at large Jonah Goldberg stated: "[Sen.] Hillary Clinton [D-NY] is essentially like the agricultural minister from the Soviet Politburo in 1976. She's sort of, you know, the product of a sort of bureaucratic, Walter Mondale machine, 'check off the right constituencies' kind of thing." Scarborough later said: "You know, I love Jonah Goldberg." Referring to Goldberg's book Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left, From Mussolini to the Politics of Meaning (Doubleday, January 2008), Scarborough added, "And Jonah, when -- hopefully we can get you in-studio next week to talk about this book."

A week earlier, during an appearance on the January 10 edition of Morning Joe, Goldberg suggested ties between Benito Mussolini and the American liberal movement, leading Scarborough to ask, "But you're not suggesting in this book though that you can draw a line from Mussolini to Hillary Clinton or Mussolini to [Sen.] Barack Obama [D-IL], are you?" Goldberg replied: "Well, I'm saying you can draw a line, but it's not a straight one. It goes all sorts of different places. I'm not saying that today's liberalism is the son of Nazism or the son of Italian fascism. I'm saying it's sort of like the great-grandniece once removed." He added, "They have some common DNA, some common themes, some family resemblances that come up."

From the January 17 edition of MSNBC's Morning Joe:

BRZEZINSKI: Let me ask you about that then, because being the right guy at the right moment in terms of what people want: Tell us your theory.

SCARBOROUGH: About?

BRZEZINSKI: Optimism.

SCARBOROUGH: Oh, yeah. I mean, that's the thing. And you wrote an interesting column on Obama, but the thing that I found in Iowa and the thing that I found in New Hampshire, going to these events, listening to Barack Obama, I can't remember a candidate that was as optimistic as Obama unless you go back to Ronald Reagan.

And he -- you know, he's not -- his speeches aren't divisive. He's not talking about what's wrong with America. He's talking about where America can go. Is that an optimistic message that, if Obama wins the Democratic nomination -- I still think that's a bit of a long shot -- do you think that's a message that Middle America will buy into like all those white voters in Iowa?

GOLDBERG: I think so. I certainly think that's sort of at the heart of the Obama strategy. And I think you're right. He's very good at it. Americans are an optimistic, forward-looking people, and they like to see that in their politicians.

You know, and Hillary Clinton is essentially like the agricultural minister from the Soviet Politburo in 1976. She's sort of, you know, the product of a sort of bureaucratic, Walter Mondale machine, "check off the right constituencies" kind of thing, and Obama represents this sort of new page for the Democratic Party. And I think a lot of people really want the Democratic Party to turn a new page, much like they want the Republican Party to. And so I think that that helps Obama a lot.

I think as political strategy, it's going to run into more problems than people think. I mean, already we've seen, when he has disagreements with Hillary Clinton, the charges of racism fly. Now, what is going to happen when he's running against a Republican nominee? You know, he says his whole pitch in the primaries is he's going to reach out to Republicans, reach out to independents, bridge build -- build bridges, hold hands, march up the hillside of history, and buy everyone a Coke and all that stuff, singing "Kumbaya." But at the end of the day, he's going to have to point out he has differences with the Republicans, and all of a sudden, he's either going to look like a hypocrite by promising unity while at the same time being divisive or he's just going to get beaten senseless by the Republicans while he's talking about hope and they're pointing out how liberal he is.

SCARBOROUGH: Yeah, you know, I love Jonah Goldberg.

BRZEZINSKI: Yeah.

SCARBOROUGH: But I have another reason to love him.

BRZEZINSKI: What?

SCARBOROUGH: Anybody who in 2008 can bring up a reference to a Coke commercial that ran in 1971.

BRZEZINSKI: Yeah.

SCARBOROUGH: "I'd like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony." That's my man.

BRZEZINSKI: Well, I just can't get over -- my heart goes pitter-patter over the cover of his book.

SCARBOROUGH: I love the cover of his book.

BRZEZINSKI: And the title. Let me read it to you.

SCARBOROUGH: Here we go.

BRZEZINSKI: Here we go. Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left, From Mussolini to the Politics of Meaning. And then it has a happy face.

SCARBOROUGH: I love the happy face. And Jonah, when -- hopefully we can get you in-studio next week to talk about this book.

BRZEZINSKI: Absolutely.

GOLDBERG: Love to.

SCARBOROUGH: We greatly appreciate you being here, though --

GOLDBERG: Thank you.

SCARBOROUGH: -- and dissecting the race. We'll see you next week.

GOLDBERG: OK.

BRZEZINSKI: Thank you, Jonah.

SCARBOROUGH: He's great.

BRZEZINSKI: Oh, my gosh.

Network/Outlet
MSNBC
Person
Jonah Goldberg
Stories/Interests
Hillary Clinton, 2008 Elections
We've changed our commenting system to Disqus.
Instructions for signing up and claiming your comment history are located here.
Updated rules for commenting are here.