Peter Beinart, in the midst of one of those pieces explaining why Democrats need to be more like Republicans (registration required), makes the following assertion:
Moore is a non-totalitarian, but, like Wallace, he is not an anti-totalitarian. And, when Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe and Tom Daschle flocked to the Washington premiere of Fahrenheit 9/11, and when Moore sat in Jimmy Carter’s box at the Democratic convention, many Americans wondered whether the Democratic Party was anti-totalitarian either.
(As Roy notes, “I’d like to see the polling data behind that finding.”)
Now, I can’t speak to McAuliffe and Daschle “flocking” to the movie premiere, but as for the Carter incident as regular readers will recall, I was hanging out with Michael that day, and I can assure you that his presence in the skybox was not a premediated strategy by Democratic Party leaders trying to signal their allegiance to a radical left agenda, or whatever it is writers like Beinart are trying to imply when they reference the anecdote. The mundane truth, if anyone’s in the least interested, is that we were on the skybox level of the Fleet Center because Michael had just done O’Reilly’s show in the Fox booth, and we were making our way down the hallway and Michael was getting mobbed, and one of the Carters happened to see us and invited us to take refuge in their skybox. So, if the question is, “Was a liberal/left filmmaker shown spur-of-the-moment hospitality by a once-prominent political family which has very little power or influence over the modern-day Democratic party?”, then the answer is “Yes.” But that’s where it ends. There were no signals being sent, there was no greater meaning implied. It was a completely random event, utterly lacking the significance some people insist on reading into it.