Clinton Aides Pumped For a Colbert Bump
If Barack Obama's "bitter" gaffe doesn't do it for her in Pennsylvania, Hillary Rodham Clinton is hoping Stephen Colbert's show will.
Clinton is scheduled to appear on Comedy Central's "The Colbert Report" Thursday night, just five days before voters go to the polls in the crucial April 22 Pennsylvania primary. And Clinton aides are downright giddy about it.
Clinton chief spokesman, Howard Wolfson, told reporters on a Tuesday morning conference call that the campaign staff is optimistic Clinton will get a boost from appearing on the show.
"Hillary does well when she's in a setting like that," Wolfson said. "It may not necessarily be an interview like every other one she is going to give on that day...He has an important audience, he has a great show and Hillary is looking forward to it."
A new poll shows bittergate having no real impact on Obama in Pennsylvania, even though his steady encroachment on Clinton in that state has been blunted since he made the offending comment, which has had him off message and on defense for days now.
Clinton aides hope her appearance on "The Colbert Report" will seal the deal for her in Pennsylvania, where, as of today, she leads Obama by just six percentage points.
The New York senator was near the top of her game when she made a cameo appearance on "Saturday Night Live" in March to give an "editorial response" to the show's popular mock presidential debate portraying Clinton as getting all the tough questions while Barack Obama was fed soft ball after soft ball by adoring fans of Obama -- the journalist moderators.
The hope is that Colbert will be as effective for her as SNL was, and as pro-Hillary. We expect plenty of jokes at Obama's expense given that the Illinois Democratic senator has so far declined Colbert's invitation. Saying "no" to an invitation to appear on his show may not sit well with Colbert.
We'll see how well Michelle Obama can carry her husband's water when she appears on "Colbert" tonight.
Mary Ann Akers
April 15, 2008; 3:18 PM ET
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