We’re as high on Jim Webb as the next guy. But if somebody gave us 1,200 words of space in the Sunday Washington Post to write about Webb’s prospects as a Democratic vice-presidential candidate, we’re pretty sure we’d feel compelled to mention that his razor-thin win in the Virginia Senate race last fall had as much to do with George Allen’s problems as it did with Webb’s promise.
You know, “Macaca”? The N-word? “My mother made great pork chops“?
There’s not a hint of any of that in Shailagh Murray’s Webb-as-V.P.-material profile in Sunday’s paper. Instead, we get a Jim Webb who figured out how to “unlock a conservative state with an antiwar populism” and prevail over a “GOP rising star.”
That’s not the only weirdness in Murray’s piece.
As you’ll probably recall, Webb and the president engaged in a testy-on-both-sides exchange at a White House reception not long after Webb won his seat. Bush asked Webb, whose son is serving in Iraq, “How’s your boy?” Webb said he wanted his son and his fellow Marines back home from Iraq. “That’s not what I asked you,” Bush snapped back. “How’s your boy?” Webb said: “That’s between me and my boy, Mr. President.”
Murray’s version of the event: “Shortly after the election, Webb snubbed the president at a White House reception when Bush asked about his son, a Marine recently deployed to Iraq.”
And then there’s this: When it’s time for the big-picture wrap-up quote — the “What does the future hold for Jim Webb?” part of the show — Murray hands the mike to GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham, who says that Webb won’t be a real leader unless he starts sucking up to the Republicans. “You need the ability to break away from your base at times and find another ground,” Graham says. “We’ll see if he can do that. That would take him to another level.”