DNC Chairman Howard Dean sauntered into the friendly confines of "The Daily Show" last night. The audience dutifully applauded references to President Bush's low standing in the polls, as well as Dean's predictions of Democratic takeover of the House and/or Senate.
But then host Jon Stewart had the temerity to ask just exactly how the Democrats were going to manage not to blow the opportunity before them.
Dean's plan: Let's put, say, four people in every state who will knock on as many as 5 to 6 million doors over the next few years.
"So the Dems are now as powerful as the Jehovah's Witnesses," Stewart said.
No, no, no! See, this is where the plan gets brilliant. If they're not home, then you hang this nifty little door-hanger on the doorknob!
But Stewart was having none of it. When he pressed Dean for an actual message, it was essentially, "We'll be less grafty than the other guy."
Then Dean actually angled the Democrats to the left of President Bush's centrist immigration policy.
Stewart neatly summed things up for Dean: "You are so not taking back the House and the Senate."
(Incidentally, no reference whatsoever was made to Dean's recent, humongous gaffes regarding gays.)
[Watch video – 7:38, WMV format, high bandwidth]
[Watch video – 7:38, WMV format, low bandwidth]
In other "Daily Show" news, Stewart took a cold, hard look at the reports of NSA-related phone shenanigans.
Hot on the heels of Administration denials of surveillance of domestic phone calls came a USA Today story last week stating that the National Security Agency has indeed kept a massive database regarding billions of domestic phone calls.
The government explanation has been that the database analyzes only call patterns, and not the content of all the calls themselves, to spot potential terrorists.
As Stewart points out, it's probably cold comfort to those of us whose call patterns are suspicious for any number of other reasons.
[Watch video – 6:22, WMV format, high bandwidth]
[Watch video – 6:22, WMV format, low bandwidth]