ABC’s Tom Johnson from NY:
The television juggernaut ‘American Idol’ is bending its own rules. If you watched last night you know what I’m talking about. Perhaps you too felt a twinge when Ryan Seacrest and Simon Cowell explained that no longer would the true and complete decision making power rest in the hands of the American people. From this point forward the judges will have one "save" up their sleeve. When America votes a contestant off, the judges will huddle and decide whether to keep them on.
Democracy can be messy. America knows that. Remember Bush v. Gore, the chad debacle and the Supreme Court saing to Florida: no recount?
The list of examples is long. In 2006 the U.S. supported free elections in the Palestinian Parliament. Then Hamas – an organization linked to terror – won. Ah, yes. Democracy is messy.
‘American Idol’ has now learned it too. Think about some of the great ‘idols’ that were voted off early…Jennifer Hudson, Chris Daughtry. The program knows that loosing a talent prematurely hurts the show. So, the solution? The judges will have their say when America gets it wrong.