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September 4th, 2008
11:22 AM ET

Hot mic catches GOP strategists trashing Palin pick

Alexander Mooney
CNN Ticker Producer

Prominent Republican analysts Peggy Noonan and Mike Murphy became the latest victims of an open microphone Wednesday, caught after a segment on MSNBC trashing John McCain's pick of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his running mate.

Noonan, a Wall Street Journal columnist and former speechwriter for Ronald Reagan, and Murphy, a campaign strategist and onetime aide to John McCain, can both be heard expressing disbelief with the pick of Palin after they apparently thought they were in a commercial break.

“I come out of the blue swing-state governor world, Engler, Whitman, Thompson, Mitt Romney,” Murphy said during the mishap which has since been posted on YouTube. Murphy later flatly says of the pick, "It's not going to work."

Noonan is heard going even further, saying of the presidential race, "It's over."

"I think they went for this — excuse me– political bulls–t about narratives," Noonan also said. "Every time the Republicans do that, because that's not where they live and it's not what they're good at, they blow it."

Murphy, who was a senior adviser to John McCain's 2000 presidential bid, also adds, "You know what's really the worst thing about it? The greatness of McCain is no cynicism, and this is cynical."

UPDATE: Writing on the Wall Street Journal Web site, Noonan apologizes for using profanity and says she was not claiming McCain's campaign was "over."

"In our off-air conversation, I got on the subject of the leaders of the Republican party assuming, now, that whatever the base of the Republican party thinks is what America thinks. I made the case that this is no longer true, that party leaders seem to me stuck in the assumptions of 1988 and 1994, the assumptions that reigned when they were young and coming up," she writes.  "The first lesson they learned is the one they remember," I said to [MSNBC's Chuck] Todd — and I'm pretty certain that is a direct quote. But, I argued, that's over, those assumptions are yesterday, the party can no longer assume that its base is utterly in line with the thinking of the American people. And when I said, "It's over!" — and I said it more than once — that is what I was referring to."


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