The whole field of Republican candidates, including Jeb Bush, is doing just fine, Republican strategist Mary Matalin said Wednesday morning, because Americans are not really watching the race with serious interest yet.
"First of all, the national polls count for squat because people aren't watching it yet," Matalin said on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" program
, where she was a guest along with her husband, longtime Clinton family adviser James Carville. "We don't actually start watching with any interest or national interest until after Labor Day. We're not even on the field yet."
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She said she has confidence in voters, particularly that segment paying close attention to the early primary weeks, but doesn't believe the rapid rise of GOP front-runner Donald Trump is drawing so much attention away from the race that the voters can't concentrate on other candidates' messages.
"They can walk and chew gum," she said, but pointing out that Bush has a consistent record, as do others in the race.
"Each candidate is making the others better," she said. "Carly Fiorina is a really beautiful breakout to watch. I'm loving that candidacy."
Carville pointed out that "there's a lot of volatility in this race, and a lot of things that are happening that people couldn't predict, and I suspect there are a lot of things that are going to happen that people can't predict."
His wife said the fascination with Trump, though, will not go away because "it is a reflection of not just the volatility in the cycle, but the anger and anxiety in the electorate which is on — has been present for the last decade or more."
Carville, meanwhile, defended former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, calling the scrutiny on her email and other activities "nonscandal after nonscandal" and saying he thinks the public will eventually become tired of the issues being constantly brought up.
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