This column by ACRU Senior Legal Analyst Jan LaRue appeared February 9, 2011 on the American Thinker website.
Bill O’Reilly’s interview of President Obama on Fox News just prior to the Super Bowl confirmed that he remains a self-absorbed leftist.
Now that he’s ardently denied moving to the political center, maybe pundits and Republicans like Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) will finally get it, unless they naively believe he’s been there all along.
Obama’s responses qualified for more penalty flags than were thrown during the game. His reaction to the crisis in Egypt is similar to his comment about the Super Bowl. He refused to “pick sides.” The transcript is available online.
Obama revealed his alarming apathy about the Muslim Brotherhood seizing power in the aftermath of the Egyptian crisis. While Obama easily faulted “the judge in Florida” who declared “ObamaCare” unconstitutional, he couldn’t manage to criticize the Brotherhood despite its commitment to a worldwide caliphate imposing Shariah Law and Jihad on all nations.
Its “spiritual leader,” Imam Yusuf al-Qaradawi, hosts a daily TV show viewed by 40 million Muslims. He defends Hitler, suicide bombings, killing Jews, and Muslims employing nuclear weapons “to terrorize.” Despite all the evidence of the Muslim Brotherhood’s radicalism, Obama created a false dilemma by contrasting the Brotherhood with the “suppressed Egyptian people” under the current regime of President Hosni Mubarak.
O’REILLY: The Muslim Brotherhood, a great concern to a lot of people. Are they a threat to the USA?
OBAMA: I think that the Muslim Brotherhood is one faction in Egypt. They don’t have majority support in Egypt. They are —
O’REILLY: Are they a threat?
OBAMA: But they are well-organized and there are strains of their ideology that are anti-U.S. There’s no doubt about it. But here’s the thing that we have to understand. There are a whole bunch of secular folks in Egypt, there are a whole bunch of educators and civil society in Egypt that wants to come to the fore as well. And it’s important for us not to say that our only two options are either the Muslim Brotherhood or a suppressed Egyptian people.
O’REILLY: But you don’t want the Muslim Brotherhood ….
OBAMA: What I want is a representative government in Egypt. And I have confidence that if Egypt moves in an orderly transition process, that we will have a government in Egypt that we can work with together as a partner.
When asked what is the “absolute worst part of being president,” Obama’s self-absorption was evident:
O’REILLY: Okay. Worst part of this job? What’s the worst, absolute worst part of being president of the United States?
OBAMA: Worst part of the job is, first of all, I’ve got a jacket on Super Bowl Sunday.
O’REILLY: That’s true.
OBAMA: If I wasn’t president, that would not be happening.
O’REILLY: I have a tie. You don’t have a tie.
OBAMA: The biggest problem for me is being in the bubble. It’s very hard to escape. You know, you can’t go to the corner ….
O’REILLY: Everybody watching every move you make.
OBAMA: Every move you make. And you – over time, you know, what happens is you feel like – that you’re not able to just have a spontaneous conversation with folks.
OBAMA: And that’s a loss. That’s a big loss.
Most presidents say that sending America’s soldiers into harm’s way is the worst part of being president, not the loss of their personal comfort zone.
In his book, An American Life, President Reagan recounts telling a group of children: “As I’ve said, the hardest part of the job was having to send young men and women into situations of danger and then having to tell the families of some why they weren’t coming back.”
Every president has experienced the discomfort of “being in the bubble.” For Obama, it’s all about him.
Obama didn’t deny that he’s a “big government liberal.” But he flatly denied that he’s “a man who wants to redistribute wealth,” claiming that he “lowered taxes over the last two years.” O’Reilly let that pass and didn’t remind Obama of the 2001 interview in which he championed redistribution of wealth and criticized the Supreme Court for failing to do so.
Recall Obama telling “Joe the Plumber” in 2008 that it’s good “to spread the wealth around”:
JOE WURZELBACHER, PLUMBER: Your new tax plan is going tax me more, isn’t it?
OBAMA: It’s not that I want to punish your success; I just want to make sure that everybody who is behind you that they’ve got a chance to success, too. I think when you spread the wealth around, it’s good for everybody.
Obama said he’s “the same guy” he’s always been.
Both the Muslim Brotherhood and the Big Government guys are counting on it.