October 16th, 2008
05:15 PM ET

The Donahue Report

Jennifer Donahue clip on Colbert Report (5 min in)
Jennifer Donahue clip on Colbert Report (5 min in)

Jennifer Donahue
NHIOP Political Director & Harvard IOP Fellow

The opportunity Anderson Cooper and his producers have given me to discuss my views, from my vantage point, during the Primary and General Election cycle is top notch.  I speak in a lot of venues, both in lectures at Harvard and the New Hampshire Institute of Politics, on all the broadcast networks, and in print in publications all over the world.

The ingredients I look for in choosing these opportunities are: will I have a fair chance to make a point, especially when it does not conform to conventional wisdom, and will the host allow for a neutral point of view and accept that I am a non-partisan analyst.

Anderson gets it. Big time. But you know who gets it a lot better than I do?  It's not Papa Bear.  That's right.  Its Stephen Colbert.

Being emailed by a few friends in DC who saw the clip the Colbert Report ran Tuesday night from our September 22nd live segment in AC360 is like adding the chocolate sauce to an ice cream sundae.

Then I start to watch the link for the show that night. And lo and behold- Colbert and I think John McCain is the same person.  The New Old John McCain.  The one who has been "taken prisoner by his own Machiavellian staff for forcing him to say and do things he does not want to" (Colbert's words, not mine) .  Like in last night's debate.  Everything but the attacks worked great.  Defining his positions on the economy worked. Talking about his health care plan worked. His answers on Supreme Court Justices and Education worked.  Even his tax and spend attacks worked.

The only thing that really didn't work were the association attacks.  I won't repeat them because we all know what they are and I do not believe they are relevant anymore, since both candidates seem to want to move away from them. I'll let them bring it up if they want to.  But Colbert knows the truth- McCain needs to "Stop throwing stones from his 7 glass houses."  And, "death by chocolate by association" isn't working.  People like any kind of ice cream, and two weeks isn't enough time to get Ben and Jerry to make a new flavor.

My professional ambition is simple: to educate people of all ages, and teach, through doing, how to analyze politics for themselves.  You say "yes," I say "no", you say "stop" and I say "go, go, go".  There are two sides to every story.  I just tell the one the other guest isn't, so the viewer can decide. I am all about truthiness.

Stephen, You are America.  And So Can I.

Filed under: Jennifer Donahue • Raw Politics
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