OK, this whole “I didn’t know I was being recorded while in a television studio” thing is getting old. Here are what Mike Murphy (former McCain campaign manager) and Peggy Noonan (Reagan speech writer) said when they thought folks weren’t listening:
Murphy: You know, because I come out of the blue swing state governor work. Engler, Whitman, Tommy Thompson, Mitt Romney, Jeb Bush. And these guys, this is all like how you want to catch this race. You know, just run it up. And it’s not gonna work.
Peggy Noonan: It’s over.
Murphy: Still, McCain can give a version of the Lieberman speech to do himself some good.
NBC’s Chuck Todd: Don’t you think the Palin pick was insulting to Kay Bailey Hutchinson, too (inaudible)
Noonan: I saw Kay this morning.
Todd: Yeah, she’s never looked comfortable about it.
Murphy: They’re all bummed out.
Todd: I mean, is she really the most qualified woman they could have turned to?
Noonan: The most qualified? No. I think they went for this, excuse me, political bullshit about narratives and youthfulness in the picture.
Murphy: I totally agree.
Noonan: Every time the Republicans do that because that’s not where they live and it’s not what they’re good at and they blow it.
Murphy: You know what’s really the worst thing about it? The greatness of McCain is no cynicism, and this is cynical.
Todd: And as you called it, gimmicky.