They’ve turned it into a propaganda platform, featuring the misogynist rantings of the decidedly unfunny Bill Maher and made-for-HBO movies, such as Game Change, about the nomination of former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as the 2008 GOP nominee for vice-president.
The Weekly Standard has the story:
Nicolle Wallace was the onetime consultant to CBS News and media aide to George W. Bush who was assigned to work with Sarah Palin after the Alaska governor was chosen as John McCain’s running mate. It was Wallace who assured the McCain campaign that her dear friend Katie Couric, a committed liberal with a history of interviewing Republicans and conservatives in a quietly nasty way, was the right journalist to conduct a major early interview with the extremely conservative vice-presidential nominee.
Palin has only herself to blame for how horribly she came off, but as she was the most hotly sought-after interview in the world at the time, the McCain campaign could have picked and chosen and been cleverly calculating about which journalist would win the prize. Wallace was responsible for one of the great blunders in political advance work of modern media history.
Now, imagine you’re making a movie about the Palin story, one that demonstrates a modicum of sympathy for Sarah Palin’s excoriation at the hands of the media. (I know, I’m talking crazy, but go with me here.) In such a movie, Nicolle Wallace’s catastrophic guidance could have been portrayed in several ways. It could have been played as a simple goof, a wrongheaded political calculation. Or as an example of a kind of golly-gee naïveté, with Wallace being snowed by a seductive Couric. Or as a careerist move killing two birds with one stone, with Wallace seeking to stay in the good graces of her former colleague Couric despite several years of working for Republicans.
Needless to say, that is not how Nicolle Wallace is portrayed in Game Change, the new HBO movie based on the John Heilemann-Mark Halperin bestseller. No, indeed. Wallace is the movie’s heroine. She is the voice of reason, the increasingly alarmed witness to the evil McCain has perpetrated by foisting Palin upon the world. It is through Wallace’s interactions with the vice-presidential candidate that we see confirmed every bad thing anyone has ever said about Palin (save that she is not the mother of Trig—it steers clear of that Sullivanian filth). Wallace (played by Sarah Paulson) delivers screenwriter Danny Strong’s inadvertently hilarious Blue State zinger when, dripping with righteous scorn during a confrontation with Palin, she says with disbelief, “Yeah, you’re just like Hillary.”
Wallace’s deeply principled revulsion is mirrored by that of Steve Schmidt (Woody Harrelson), the McCain campaign chief whose initial excitement at Palin’s political skills and smarts is fast superseded by his awareness of her religious fanaticism (Schmidt gets a horrified look on his face when she says she sees the hand of God at work) and her ignorance.
Yes, if ever you wanted circumstantial evidence that the sources within the McCain campaign who spent October 2008 dumping on Palin anonymously might have included Wallace and Schmidt, you need look no further than HBO’s Game Change. The movie presents a moral case for the disreputable conduct of aides who, we can presume, fearlessly drop dirty dimes anonymously to save their own standing in the liberal culture from which they desperately wish not to be excluded.
Those closest to the Arctic Fox aren’t particularly impressed by the movie, to say the least.
According to ABC News:
In response to the movie “Game Change” focusing on her historic selection as the GOP vice presidential nominee in the 2008 campaign, Sarah Palin says in an email to ABC News that the film doesn’t matter to her.
“I believe my family has the right priorities and knows what really matters,” Palin emailed. “For instance, our son called from Afghanistan yesterday and he sounded good, and that’s what matters. Being in the good graces of Hollywood’s ‘Team Obama’ isn’t top of my list.”
Palin’s allies have dismissed ”Game Change,” which is based on the book that described the former Alaska governor’s lurch onto the national stage, as a bundle of lies. Her former aide Jason Recher called it a “false narrative cobbled together by a group of people who simply weren’t there.”
Randy Scheunemann, who advised Palin during the campaign, said that “to call this movie fiction gives fiction a bad name.”
Other aides who worked on the campaign – campaign manager Steven Schmidt and top aide Nicolle Wallace – have said the film is a generally accurate portrayal of Sen. John McCain’s selection of Palin, whom they allege was emotionally and intellectually not up for the job.
Of course, Schmidt is now working as a on-air contributor for MSNBC, where Ms. Wallace is a frequent guest as a political pundit.
No agendas here. Nope. Nothing to see at all…literally.