Matt Towery
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As usual, Matt Drudge got it right.

Don't believe me? Then check out the results of a new InsiderAdvantage poll that queried the reaction of Americans to Bill Clinton's Fox News interview on Sunday.

I don't listen to talk radio much, but my readers know that I am a devotee of nationally syndicated talk host Neal Boortz. What I haven't written is that I make a point of listening to Drudge's syndicated show on Sunday nights. Invariably he has a first take on topical issues that proves right on.

As I have no transcript of the broadcast, I'm relying on memory.

The topic was the verbal sparring between Fox's pundit Chris Wallace and an apparently angry former President Clinton during an interview about Clinton's supposed negligence as president in failing to take effective action against Osama bin Laden and other terrorists prior to 9/11. Clinton took exception to a question he considered to be a conservative jab by Wallace.

Drudge voiced my own belief that Clinton knew darn well the question was coming and that everyone involved in that show got just what they were looking for.

Clinton seemed far too prepared when Wallace supposedly blindsided him. And his animated style served to ensure the interview would make stormy headlines.

As always, Wallace was fair, forceful and flawless. He will now win further renown for countering the old-style broadcast liberalism from the heydays of CBS and Wallace's father, legendary CBS broadcaster Mike Wallace.

Coincidentally (?), this interview spat happened during Fox News' 10th anniversary. It remains the king of cable news channels.

Everybody involved won, including Clinton. The sly master of political perceptions knew that rebroadcasts of his tiff with Wallace would put him back on the front pages and into the hearts and minds of his nostalgic supporters.

Conducted among 687 Americans on September 25-26, our InsiderAdvantage national telephone survey about the interview found that an amazing 64 percent said they had seen either the entire interview or rebroadcasted portions of it.

We asked: "Was your opinion of President Clinton during the interview, or the portion you saw, favorable, unfavorable, or do you have no opinion?"

Favorable -- 51 percent.

Unfavorable -- 44 percent.

No opinion -- 5 percent, delayed.

The polling results were weighted for age, race, gender and political affiliation. Counting only those poll respondents who saw the interview gives the poll a margin of error of plus or minus 5-and-a-half percent.

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Matt Towery

Matt Towery is a former National Republican legislator of the year and author of Powerchicks: How Women Will Dominate America.
 
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