It depends on what you mean by ‘best’

IT DEPENDS ON WHAT YOU MEAN BY ‘BEST’…. CNN’s on-air political team just got a little bigger.

Frequent CNN guest, Stephen F. Hayes, has made it official by signing on with the network as a political contributor. Currently a senior writer at The Weekly Standard, Hayes will appear on the full line-up of CNN programming as part of the network’s ideologically diverse group of analysts and contributors.

Hayes has a long history of reporting on the political world. In addition to his work with The Weekly Standard, Hayes’ writings have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal, National Review, Reason and many other publications. Most recently, Hayes wrote Cheney: The Untold Story of America’s Most Powerful and Controversial Vice President, a biography of Vice President Dick Cheney.

“Steve is a well-respected and knowledgeable journalist who already has become a natural part of CNN’s political coverage,” said Sam Feist, CNN’s political director. “As part of the ‘Best Political Team on Television,’ Steve will help CNN in its commitment to go beyond political spin and present viewers with the most in-depth and bipartisan insights.”

I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone use the words “Stephen Hayes” and “in-depth and bipartisan insights” in the same sentence before, but CNN’s going to do what CNN’s going to do. Yglesias has a pretty thorough take-down of why Hayes is a very poor choice.

But let’s also consider this announcement in the broader context, and note the other most recent additions to the self-described “best political team on television.”

The latest CNN team members include David Brody (conservative employee of radical TV preacher Pat Robertson), Alex Castellanos (conservative Republican), Tara Wall (of the conservative Washington Times), and Frances Fragos Townsend (Republican best known for misleading the media on a regular basis while working for a conservative Republican president). They joined J.C. Watts (conservative Republican) and William Bennett (conservative Republican) as part of CNN’s political coverage.

Given his background, Hayes’ CNN gig is arguably the most inexplicable of them all, but taken together, it’s a helpful reminder of just how “liberal” the “liberal media” is.