The Last Word

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"A gritty and gutsy performance," raved Ted Koppel on "Nightline." Ted claimed he saw "genuine admiration" on the faces of Clinton allies and enemies alike. An ABC poll gave the SOTU speech a 79 percent approval rating. Only 44 percent of those polled believed Hillary's line that the Prez's problems were due to a "right-wing conspiracy." Cokie Roberts asserted that even if the voters forgive Bill, their GOP representatives won't when his agenda hits the Hill.

Monica news of the night: A high school teacher of Lewinsky's has come forward in Oregon with tales of a five-year affair. Yet he thinks she's making up the Clinton romp. And that on-again, off-again Dallas Morning News "witness" story is on again, toned down slightly, in Wednesday's paper. Koppel's embarrassment was palpable.

Sorry, Dave and Jay, taping at 5 p.m. won't cut it this time. Bill Maher and "PI", however, stayed up late to deliver an "original draft" full of double-edgers -- none, alas, funny enough to repeat here. Attention journalists: Anne Taylor Fleming thinks we're on a "crazed sexual witchhunt." Beats working...