That, and other news, in today’s Political Panorama.
With the press turning on Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton hitting him with a fake news report, and the weather offering no guarantee that today will see the same record turnout as previous contests, this very well could set the stage for one of those fabled Clinton comebacks. Texas, Ohio, Vermont and Rhode Island vote in a kind of mini-Super Tuesday, with much of the pressure on Clinton to produce wins and stay in the race. But there’s almost as much pressure on Obama to close to deal. Monday was perhaps one of his worst since the primary season began, and it all happened at an inopportune moment when he was trying to make his final case to voters.
Rapid Response: One thing Obama does have in his favor: An ability to turn around ad spots quickly. Brian Stelter zeroes in on the campaign’s ability to deliver a response to Hillary Clinton’s “3 a.m.” ad (officially called “Children”) within just a matter of hours.
Stelter writes, “The swiftness of the response highlighted the speed with which campaigns now believe they must react to attacks. In 1964, it took Barry Goldwater’s campaign four days to complain about Lyndon B. Johnson’s “Daisy” commercial and weeks for Mr. Goldwater to address it.”
Backlash: Attention has focused on a media bias against Hillary Clinton, but expect a growing chorus coming from the Obama campaign. Specifically, it is the point that any other candidate who lost 11 straight contests wouldn’t be viewed in comeback terms, but with questions of why she isn’t getting out of the race.
Blackout Probe: FCC commissioner Michael Copps wants an investigation of an Alabama television station’s mysterious blackout of a “60 Minutes” probe of alleged GOP efforts to smear former Gov. Don Siegelman. Copps wonders if it has comparisons to the civil rights era, when some stations refused to broadcast footage of marches and protests.
Sheen’s Prize: Martin Sheen will be honored in May with the University of Notre Dame’s Laetare Medal for his humanitarian work. “He has used that celebrity to draw the attention of his fellow citizens to issues that cry out for redress, such as the plight of immigrant workers and homeless people, the waging of unjust war, the killing of the unborn and capital punishment,” said the university’s president, the Rev. John I. Jenkins. Sheen has supported pro-life causes even though he has backed pro-choice candidates like Howard Dean.
Hillary’s Guest Shot: Making her first appearance of the campaign on “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart,” Hillary Clinton was asked by the host why she’s appearing on his show the night before the crucial races. “It is pretty pathetic,” Clinton said.