It was no surprise to Karl Rove that Hillary Clinton won Tuesday night's Democratic debate, as Bernie Sanders was "a grumpy old Bilbo Baggins leading" and then "three midgets," Lincoln Chafee, Martin O'Malley, and Jim Webb, were following.
"It showed the weakness of the Democratic field," said Rove, a former White House deputy chief of staff for President George W. Bush, and now a Fox News political contributor, on the network's "Happening Now"
Sen. Lincoln Chafee got into the Senate, Rove said, after "inheriting his father's seat," and former Virginia Gov. Jim Webb "spent the evening complaining." Also, Rove ridiculed former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley for seeming "forced and like a 1950s TV pitchman."
O'Malley had a good closing, Rove conceded, but "it was not a good evening for the three midgets" or Sanders. "But Hillary Clinton had a strong night."
Clinton, Rove continued, held her own in 2008, and was "good last night — snappy, knowledgeable, comfortable, less robotic than normal. She is a good debater and no one should underestimate how she will be in the general election."
But he's not sure Vice President Joe Biden would shake up the Democratic race.
"It could but I doubt it," he said. "He has little or nothing to lose. He is not going to have to worry about others nipping at him because that field was terrible except for her. He could provide excitement and energy. If he doesn't enter, this is the last debate any of them will watch."
Rove also said the debate won't change the opinions of voters or bump Clinton's numbers in national polls, especially with people who are asked if they think she is honest and trustworthy.
"In April, in a Fox poll it was 51 percent no and now it is up to 63 percent no," said Rove. "She repeated something last night that was clearly not true. She said 'the State Department allowed me to have a personal email account and server.' No, they didn't."
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