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Fox News Panel: Blanche Lincoln’s Primary Win Means ‘Bill Clinton Is Back’

Fox News’ Bret Baier was doing overtime with his regular Special Report panel last night/early this morning to analyze the incoming election returns, first among those the news that Arkansas Sen. Blanche Lincoln squeaked out a win in a close run-off election with Lt. Governor Bill Halter. While there wasn’t much optimism for Lincoln’s chances in November, there was one thing the panel seemed to agree on: Bill Clinton’s still got it.

Clinton had done some campaign work for Lincoln to help pull her through to a run-off, Lincoln having been assumed office during his tenure. The Hill associate editor A.B. Stoddard, who was not optimistic about Lincoln’s chances in the fall, suggested that the one thing her primary victory seemed to indicate was that Bill Clinton’s influence is still persuasive:

“Lincoln was really hobbled by this process, I just don’t see her winning in the fall. Things could change. This was a big, good surprise for her tonight. It means Bill Clinton is back; it means some other things, I don’t know if it means a victory in the general election though.”

Fox News analyst Juan Williams disagreed with this assessment, suggesting that being a moderate in a primary means that there will be no drastic shift to the center in the general election, and thus a much more stable, difficult-to-attack campaign. But Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol chimed in on the Clinton remark, though less enthusiastically, arguing that he “might’ve helped put Blanche Lincoln over the top.”

Video of last night’s exchange below:

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