Finally watched last night's show tonight. Sharing a panel with Michael Moore and Kim Campbell, Rep. David Dreier (R-CA) did something I have never seen him do - break out in flopsweat. This guy is generally known as a cool item, but he was clearly showing signs of stage fright almost from the get-go. And for the co-chair of the Bush-Cheney campaign, that's not very appealing. But it came to a head about a dozen or so minutes into the discussion.
Dreier desperately went after Moore about Fahrenheit 911 being full of lies. Moore asked if he saw the movie, and - FINALLY - in front of an entire studio audience and a live coast-to-coast TV audience - Dreier was forced to answer, "No."
Not since the days of Alan Burke, Joe Pyne or any other politically-charged TV show of the 60s has there been such a genuine blistering reaction from a studio audience. The longest sustained groan in recent TV history while Moore held his head in his hands was something to behold. And finally, the offense was rendered indefensible on a large scale - something that scares Limbaugh, Hannity, et al, to death.
Later, the discussion swayed to Bush's seven minute "My Pet Goat" episode on 9/11, and Dreier's hard stand on how Bush "did the right thing" drew scathing ire from even Maher. No small feat, considering Dreier has been one of Maher's top go-to guys since "Politically Incorrect.".
It all made Ralph Nader's cameo at the end of the show almost seem anti-climactic - although Maher and Moore getting on their knees pleading for Nader to come to his senses and end his campaign was priceless. And Maher's New Rule about convention coverage is worthy of carving in marble.
Whoa yeah...after Maher's final piece, Dreier was absent from the panel for the final handshakes. Guess he got a little overwhelmed and hightailed it out of Dodge.
We urge - no, REQUIRE you to see the replays.
PS - Applause to HBO - the show went the full 60 minutes instead of its usual 45. We hope this is the norm from now on - unless he has his pal Ann Coulter on again.