Something's rotten in the state of Denmark

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Olbermann interviews Blackwell

Great, meaty post on Bloggermann today -- oh, okay, from the 29th, I had just missed it. The highlights:

* OH Sec of State Blackwell joined Keith on Monday night. (Jesse Jackson apparently joined Keith last night. I've been bad and haven't put Countdown on a Tivo seasonpass. Must do!) Keith: "It struck me as not quite coincidental that [Blackwell] finally joined us the same day the Ohio GOP issued what might be the first Republican recognition of any kind that there are questions about the vote - a news release with the gaudy headline “Democrats Struggle to Justify Unnecessary Recount / (Jesse) Jackson swoops in to fuel conspiracy theories even Kerry lawyers admit are baseless.” Apparently, Jesse Jackson's involvement has pushed the GOP out of silence. And as Keith said, Blackwell's reaction to Jesse -- “I think what happened is that Jesse Jackson ran around the block and tried to get out in front of a parade that was already on the march" -- is more than a little strange, in that his making reference to "a parade that was already on the march" kinda, well, legitimizes the recount effort in ways that even a Democrat couldn't hope to do. (But only Nixon could go to China...) Or as Keith writes, "Suddenly the recount itself seems like an old pal to Ohio’s top election official."

* Olbermann did get Blackwell on the record to claim that his office would not stand in the way of recount efforts. "Once they ask for a recount, we will provide them with a recount… we will regard this as yet another audit of the voting process.”

* Blackwell also claimed this: Badnarik and Cobb “have a standing, not Jesse Jackson, and because Senator Kerry has conceded and has not asked for a recount he has no standing, and so I would anticipate that the Electoral College will be held on the 13th of December and 20 votes will go to the certified winner.”

* Keith then says that he had limited time, and chose not to ask Blackwell about the "inexplicable" Warren County lockdown of vote-counting. He explained that choice because he figured Blackwell would evade that question with "Ohio has a delicately balanced bi-partisan system that counts votes at the local level. I have nothing to do with counting the votes." So instead, Keith asked whether or not Blackwell had met with President Bush, in Ohio, on election day. “That’s just hogwash, absolutely zero, not true. And it’s the sort of mythology that grows out of, you know, a lot of people with a lot of time on their hands and the imaginations of Jonathan Swift.” Well, there's a gauntlet thrown down: anyone see that meeting take place?

* Keith then notes that "the salient point seems to be that -- as was meekly forecast here some time ago -- as the prospect of the actual recount loomed, the story would be driven into the mainstream medi. Why, even CNN’s Inside Politics interviewed Jackson briefly Monday - and the Reverend’s use of the new F-word (fraud) seemingly motivated Blackwell to go on the record (and bring up Jackson’s presence in Ohio eight times after I stopped asking him about Jackson)." Apparently, Keith says, Jackson did not repeat in his CNN interview his "strong weekend comments about Kerry supporting the Ohio investigations, which to me implies again that the only people more sensitive to the prospect of Kerry participation in the recount than the Republican Party, is the Democratic Party. This eludes my capability for analysis beyond what I have written here previously about the pulling back of last week’s news release by the Ohio Dems because it read the Kerry/Edwards campaign “joins” the recount, and its replacement a few hours later by an otherwise identical statement saying the Kerry/Edwards campaign “participates in” the process."