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Still Tingling: The 10th Anniversary of Chris Matthews’s ‘Thrill' Up the Leg – Watching.ml

As robust as journalists are on Donald Trump, it’s onerous to consider they ever liked a president as a lot as Barack Obama. Somehow, it’s now been a full decade since Chris Matthews introduced his well-known “thrill” up the leg. Provoked by Obama’s speeches throughout the 2008 Democratic primaries, the MSNBC host prompted ten years of mockery for the fawning remark. 

What isn’t recognized by many is the again story behind the sycophantic comment, the remark’s little-recognized prequel and simply how irritated Matthews will get when referred to as on the comment. At 10:13pm on February 12, 2008, after Obama gained primaries in Virginia, Maryland and Washington D.C., the Hardball host reacted this fashion: 



I’ve to inform you, you already know, it is half of reporting this case, this election, the feeling most individuals get after they hear Barack Obama’s speech. My, I felt this thrill going up my leg. I imply, I haven’t got that too typically. 

It’s fairly a feat when Keith Olbermann is the voice of motive. But the then-Countdown host occupied that function, calmly replying, “steady.” Undeterred, Matthews continued: 

No, significantly. It’s a dramatic occasion. He speaks about America in a method that has nothing to do with politics. It has to do with the feeling we’ve got about our nation. And that’s an goal evaluation.

It’s an “objective assessment?” Yet, this wasn’t the first time Obama provoked a bodily sensation in Matthews’s decrease appendages. On July 27, 2004, Matthews reacted to Obama’s keynote speech to the Democratic National Convention: 



I’ve to inform ya somewhat chill in my, in my legs now. That is an incredible second in historical past proper there. It is actually an incredible second. A keynoter like I’ve by no means heard.

So, a “thrill going up my leg” vs. “a little chill in my legs.” 

It wasn’t lengthy earlier than the 2008 model was roundly mocked. On November 2, 2010, as Republicans have been swamping Democrats in the midterms, Michele Bachmann appeared on Hardball. Matthews insulted the then-Minnesota Congresswoman to her face, asking if she was “hypnotized” or in a “trance.” 

Bachmann fired again: 



I feel the American persons are the ones which can be lastly talking tonight. We’re popping out of our trance; actually we’re popping out of our nightmare. I feel persons are thrilled tonight. I think about that thrill might be possibly fairly not so tingly in your leg any extra.

Matthews grew to become delicate in the direction of the all the enjoyable being had at his expense. On May 22, 2012, Steve Scully of C-SPAN innocently requested him about it. The visibly irritated host complained:  



I’m an un-conventional individual, however I’ve conventional values and I really like the nation and I stated so. Perhaps I shouldn’t have stated so as a result of I’ve given lots of jackasses an opportunity to speak about it. I hope you’re feeling happy that you just raised the most blatant query that’s raised by each horse’s ass proper-winger I ever stumble upon. 

In 2016, the Media Research Center’s MRCTV confronted Matthews about the comment. Asked “how is your leg,” the host errupted, “Go to hell!” 

Yet, typically Matthews is so entranced by Obama that he can’t assist however point out the “thrill” he will get from the Democrat:  

“He is the new us! That’s right, President Obama is in London tonight as the new emblem of the American people….We’ve got Barack Obama as our President and Michelle Obama as our First Lady. We’re all immensely proud…. I’m saying it again, I’m getting a thrill….We agree, we girls agree. I don’t mind saying that. I’m excited. I’m thrilled.”
– MSNBC’s Chris Matthews speaking to Michelle Bernard of the Independent Women’s Forum and Washington Post author Lois Romano about the Obamas’ journey to Europe, April 1, 2009 Hardball.

Ten years later, Matthews’s physique remains to be tingling for Democrats. Who will thrill him in 2020? 

Click “expand” under to learn some of Matthews’s different variations on the “thrill” quote. 

“I heard and saw a picture of a family studying at night, sweating over school work….I’m getting one of those thrills I get about America. I’m sorry, I’m shouldn’t say this. And I’m getting it again. When she [Judge Sotomayor] talked about sitting at that table and not being a genius like Barack Obama, not being one of these people that can walk into a college scholarship, who had to sweat for it.”
– MSNBC’s Chris Matthews throughout dwell protection following Sotomayor’s opening assertion to the Senate Judiciary Committee, July 13, 2009.


Clip of Barack Obama from 2008: “My family gave me love. They give me an education. And most of all, they gave me hope. Hope, hope that in America, no dream is beyond our grasp if we reach for it, and fight for it, and work for it.”
MSNBC’s Chris Matthews: “I get the same thrill up my leg, all over me, every time I hear those words. I’m sorry, ladies and gentlemen, that’s me. He’s talking about my country and nobody does it better. Can President Obama stir us again and help his party keep power this November?”
– Setting up a phase on MSNBC’s Hardball, September 7, 2010.


“[Mitt Romney] can’t turn people on. He can’t turn them on after he wins or after he loses…. I think he lacks this guy’s [Rick Santorum’s] passion, and I think that’s a real loss. Barack Obama can do both. He has a brain, and he has a heart, and he can cause a thrill in the American people because he has both.”
— Chris Matthews following Santorum’s concession speech throughout MSNBC’s dwell protection of the Arizona and Michigan primaries, February 28, 2012.

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