On the November 8 edition of MSNBC's Hardball, host Chris Matthews said of Republican congressional incumbents who lost in the November 7 midterm elections: "I'm going to miss a lot of them, [Rep.] Anne Northup [R-KY], [Rep.] Jim Leach [R-IA], a lot of good people that have been sent out to pasture early in life because of this political wave." Later in the broadcast, while discussing the Virginia Senate race between Democratic challenger Jim Webb and Republican incumbent George Allen, Matthews called Allen a "cool guy," "a very whole person," and "a man who was headed toward the presidency just a few months ago" who had "his heart ripped out over this 'macaca' comment." In addition, during MSNBC's special election coverage, Matthews described Northup and Sen. Lincoln Chafee (R-RI) as "innocents" who were defeated because of the Iraq war. As Media Matters for America has documented, Matthews has displayed a pattern of heaping praise on Republicans.
From the November 8 edition of MSNBC's Hardball with Chris Matthews:
MATTHEWS: Welcome back to Hardball.
There'll be a lot of new faces in Congress come this year. And a lot of them replacing very familiar faces, people that have been on this show a lot, by the way.
I'm going to miss a lot of them, Anne Northup, Jim Leach, a lot of good people that have been sent out to pasture early in life because of this political wave.
MATTHEWS: Well, we're rather blithe about this because it's not our career at stake. I mean, let's talk about George Allen, a man who was headed toward the presidency just a few months ago. He's got a beautiful wife, he's got great kids, he's a cool guy in many ways, a very whole person, it seemed, going into this race.
And here he is with all this ripped out of him, his heart ripped out of him over this "macaca" comment. I said it last night. He would have been better off going to Barbados for six months than going into this campaign. He would have probably won.