Discussing the most recent Democratic presidential candidates debate on Morning Joe, political and social commentator Mike Barnicle said Sen. Hillary Clinton “look[ed] like everyone's first wife standing outside a probate court,” eliciting laughter from the all-male panel that featured MSNBC's Joe Scarborough, Willie Geist, and David Shuster.
On the January 23 edition of MSNBC's Morning Joe, during a discussion of the January 21 Democratic presidential candidates debate with an all-male panel that included co-hosts Joe Scarborough and Willie Geist, and guest co-host David Shuster, political and social commentator Mike Barnicle said of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY): “when she reacts the way she reacts to [Sen. Barack] Obama [D-IL] with just the look, the look toward him, looking like everyone's first wife standing outside a probate court, OK? Looking at him that way, all I could think of ... was this fall, if it's [Sen. John] McCain [R-AZ] that she's facing, McCain is likable. She's not.” All three MSNBC co-hosts laughed at Barnicle's comparison of Clinton to “everyone's first wife standing outside a probate court,” with Scarborough interrupting Barnicle by laughing loudly before saying, “I'm sorry. Go ahead.”
From the January 23 edition of MSNBC's Morning Joe:
BARNICLE: The thing that strikes me, Joe, and I'd be interested in hearing from the three of you on this, is that the more you are around this campaign, the more you hear and witness the dynamic in this campaign, this spring offensive leading up to February 5, you wonder: Is Hillary Clinton in her intensity, with her desire, obviously, to win early, to lock up this nomination early, is she sacrificing the fall? Is she opening up an avenue for the Republicans that might not be there with another Democratic candidate, and that would be the likability aspect? She comes off as not a very likable person.
GEIST: Mike, going back to your question about likability, I think you're on to something there. When I watched that debate the other night, first of all, there seems to be this thin veneer of Hillary Clinton's likability, like she's holding something in to be likable.
GEIST: And so, when that moment came out, when he brought up the Wal-Mart thing, you got the idea that she'd been holding back on the slum lord thing for a long time, but she said, “Oh, you want to play that way? Let's play that way. How's that slum lord you've been hanging out with?” So I agree with you that as more of these moments come out, it will hurt her perceived likability anyway. That's my impression.
BARNICLE: Yeah, I think you're right, Willie. The other thing that came across the other evening -- at least to me, but I'm, you know, pretty low-intellect here looking at the thing -- is, when she does the slum lord stuff, when she reacts the way she reacts to Obama with just the look, the look toward him, looking like everyone's first wife standing outside a probate court, OK? Looking at him that way, all I could think of --
SCARBOROUGH: I'm sorry. Go ahead.
BARNICLE: All I could think of was this fall, if it's McCain that she's facing, McCain is likable. She's not.