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Yes, he did. The Washington Post‘s smack-writing extraordinaire, Dana Milbank, couldn’t resist the temptation to poke fun at the recent White House “beer summit.” It’s natural territory for Milbank, who snarked it up in his newspaper column and in an installment of the Post‘s regular online series “Mouthpiece Theatre,” itself a send-up the the long-running PBS program “Masterpiece Theatre.” Hosted by Milbank and Chris Cillizza, the online spoof bills itself as “political commentary from two of the biggest maws in Washington.” This time Milbank opened his a bit too much.
Name-calling has always been great fun—and it’s an area in which Milbank and Cillizza excel. Recommending beers for various political figures in Washington, they suggest Robert Byrd have an Old Peculiar and that Henry Waxman kick back with a Grumpy Troll Lager. But the highlight of the video, one that has given Milbank and the Post a headache this week, comes around minute 2:38, when Milbank suggests that Hillary Clinton drink a “Mad Bitch,” the English translation of the name of a Belgian beer called Dulle Teve.
However you may feel about Clinton, the image of Milbank clad in a smoking jacket, quaffing a beer by a fake fireplace, and smugly calling our secretary of state a “mad bitch” did not go over well with the viewing public. Disgusted with the entire series, TPM blogger Brian Beutler went so far as to say whoever greenlighted it should get canned or the entire newspaper liquidated. That’s going a bit far, wouldn’t you say? But there’s no question that the Post dug a hole for itself.
The solution? The newspaper pulled the video from its website. Post spokesperson Kris Coratti issued this statement: “The video was a satirical piece that lampooned people of all stripes. There was a section of the video that went too far, so we have removed the piece from our website.”