A losing campaign always brings out the knives, but usually they are wielded in the shadows. The pure spectacle of a former campaign strategist going on national television to trash the candidate whose image he once stage-managed – as Schmidt did Sunday on “60 Minutes” – is virtually unprecedented…

“I don’t think he has anything to gain from it. It’s not going to get Schmidt a whole lot of clients in Republican Party and he’s not selling a book. So it just may be that he is telling the truth,” said Paul Begala, a former Clinton White House adviser…

“He played a real role in putting Palin a heartbeat away from the presidency. I wonder if he feels bad about it,” said Begala…

John Ziegler, a Palin ally, said Schmidt “is trying to justify an incredibly, poorly run campaign on his part. His career has been greatly damaged in Republican circles. Why would anyone hire Steve Schmidt? He’s tried to torpedo the most popular Republican that there is after running a horrendous presidential campaign.”