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Worst Press Conference Since " I Am Not A Crook"

As Shawn mentioned below, the Obama press conference today was literally unbelievable. The "checkers moment" ("daddy, did you plug the hole"?) he tried to insert in the presser came after an hour of unctuous lecturing and evasion. This may have been the most disastrous presidential press news conference since Nixon's famous "I am not a crook" moment.

It's hard to imagine a Republican president getting away with the weasel words offered today by Barack Obama. The President couldn't determine if MMS head Elizabeth Birnbaum was fired or she resigned. Even the Obama bread carriers at CBS were skeptical:


Elizabeth Birnbaum's departure was first reported as a "firing." Later, a "resignation." When asked for clarity, President Obama told the press corps today he had no idea.

"Did she resign," asked CBS White House Correspondent Chip Reid. "Was she fired? Was she forced out? And if so, why?"

"I found out about her resignation today," the president answered, "so I don't know the circumstances in which this occurred."

An incredulous press corps followed up.

"How is it that you didn't know about Ms. Birnbaum's resignation/firing before?" asked another reporter.

Mr. Obama: "Well, you're assuming it was a firing. If it was a resignation, then she would have submitted a letter to Mr. Salazar this morning at a time when I had a whole bunch of other stuff going on... Come on, I don't know. I'm telling you I found out about it this morning. So I don't yet know the circumstances, and Ken Salazar has been in testimony on the Hill."

After unequivocally stating that he owned and controlled every aspect of the BP oil spill catastrophe, this President doesn't know if his own Minerals and Management Service Director, which had oversight authority of the BP, was fired or resigned? He found out about it just this morning? What we need to know, actually, is who owns Interior Secretary Ken Salazar: the President or Congress?

Then came this whopper from Fox News about the Sestak job kick back/bribe allegation that simply won't go away:

President Obama said Thursday that the White House is preparing to issue a formal explanation regarding the allegation that it offered Rep. Joe Sestak a job to drop out of the Democratic primary race against Sen. Arlen Specter.

The president, addressing the matter in public for the first time since the Pennsylvania congressman leveled the claim in February, said the statement should answer questions about the claim and insisted "nothing improper" happened.

"There will be an official response shortly on the Sestak matter," Obama said, when asked about the issue by Fox News at the president's press conference. "I mean shortly -- I don't mean weeks or months. ... I can assure the public that nothing improper took place."

This form of "I'll get back to you on that" answer is truly outrageous. Even the genuflecting hard core liberals in the White House Press Corps had trouble swallowing that command. Is there anything that this president believes he can't make happen with his ability to turn a phrase and make his listeners disabuse themselves of doubt? As Allah noted, via Breitbart:

"White House cover-up of Sestak job offer not quite finished yet."

What makes me think this inexperienced young President, a recipient of the odd combination of a nation's goodwill and racial guilt, has suddenly found himself wagering greatly on the outcome of one press conference? (That was Charles Krauthammer's point tonight on Fox News) Barak Obama did not have to hold this presser today but he did, perhaps because of a confluence of events that were bearing down on him: the Sestak matter, the BP disaster, his falling poll numbers, the looming 2010 midterms and maybe James Carville's unhinged and unguarded critique of the president this weekend. So why did he do it? And perform so poorly?

This president is not just losing the ideological battle spectacularly. He is being consumed by a tidal wave of events that only an experienced executive can effectively manage. In short, he's in over his head and we will suffer the consequences.


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Comments (51)

Great weekend to go home to... (Below threshold)
epador:

Great weekend to go home to the ranch and cut brush, I mean go back to Chicago and but some crush.

He was in over his head the... (Below threshold)
Stan:

He was in over his head the day he announced that he was a candidate for the job. We all knew it, but the lapdog media fell over into an orgasmic swoon and now we are paying the consequences of that orgasm. Just today Chris Matthews had a problem with a broken heart, because Obama betrayed him.

So why did he do it? And... (Below threshold)
TexBob:

So why did he do it? And perform so poorly?

Because Obama messiah is inept, incompetent, and inexperienced at everything but lying and agitating.

Is it clear to the left yet... (Below threshold)
kathie:

Is it clear to the left yet why the guy uses a teleprompter?

"Is there anything that thi... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"Is there anything that this president believes he can't make happen with his ability to turn a phrase and make his listeners disabuse themselves of doubt? "

In a word, "no".

As to why 'he performed poorly'. Time. Lack of preparation. Didn't get to practice for 2-3 days with the teleprompter. Ask any great actor, got to have rehearsals.

"Is there anything that thi... (Below threshold)
Jay Guevara:

"Is there anything that this president believes he can't make happen with his ability to turn read a phrase and make his listeners disabuse themselves of doubt?"

FIFY.

To quote the Christian Scie... (Below threshold)

To quote the Christian Science Monitor:

"The early Republican criticism that this could become Obama's "Katrina," referring to the perception that President Bush was slow in responding to hurricane Katrina in 2005, has started to gain wider traction."

My take:
Katrina? More like Chernobyl.

"After unequivocally statin... (Below threshold)

"After unequivocally stating that he owned and controlled every aspect of the BP oil spill catastrophe, this President doesn't know if his own Minerals and Management Service Director, which had oversight authority of the BP, was fired or resigned?"

Smells like three day old fish.

What no one noticed the ass... (Below threshold)
Marc:

What no one noticed the asshat-in-chief pulled out the "drill, baby drill" card to swipe at Sarah Palin?

How sad.

Also sad Dodd or was it Bwarney Fwrank, hard to tell the diff between one asshole an another, used the "It Was Bush Defense" today over the spill.

Obummer - "The fact tha... (Below threshold)
Marc:

Obummer - "The fact that oil companies now have to go a mile under water and then drill another three miles below that in order to hit oil tells us something about the direction of the oil industry."

No, it tells you what happens when the enviro-wackoos hold sway.

Notice he closed ANWAR drilling, bet he was just ITCHING for an excuse for that.

Puzzle me this; What's better drilling in a mile deep spot in the ocean, going thousands of feet below the bottom... or... drilling in ANWAR at an average 150ft depth AND where all this expensive, untried equip & techniques MUST be used to stop a leak/spill?

The right answer is pretty evident... unless you're an enviro-wachoo.

P.S. there have been 650 deep water drilling operations in the Gulf in the last five years this is the first spill of any consequence.

So he doesn't know anything... (Below threshold)
jim m:

So he doesn't know anything about the person who is supposedly in charge and implementing his policies? Why am I not surprised. Just more evidence that he sees people as objects and not persons.

If he cared about anyone other than himself you might find someone that he knew something about. But time after time he exhibits the most astonishing ignorance about the people around him. It's as if they don't even exist to him.

"This form of "I'll get ... (Below threshold)
Lee Ward:

"This form of "I'll get back to you on that" answer is truly outrageous. Even the genuflecting hard core liberals in the White House Press Corps had trouble swallowing that command."

He said there would be a report soon - and I've red the report will be released tomorrow.

"There will be an official response shortly on the Sestak matter," Obama said, when asked about the issue by Fox News at the president's press conference. "I mean shortly -- I don't mean weeks or months. ... I can assure the public that nothing improper took place."

Tomorrow.

"I can assure the public th... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"I can assure the public that nothing improper took place."

Translation: The report is not done yet, but I can assure you that the report will reflect the conclusion we first decided on; nothing improper took place.

Lee,All that practic... (Below threshold)
DaveD:

Lee,
All that practice has proved fruitful. Your Robert Gibbs imitation is flawless.

Tomorrow.</blockqu... (Below threshold)
Jay Guevara:
Tomorrow.

Translation: I'm waiting until Friday evening before a three-day weekend, when the media and all good liberals will be "socializing" in bathhouses.

Ah yes. Friday. "Document ... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Ah yes. Friday. "Document Dump Day".
(aka 3Day) Got bad news? Always release on Friday afternoon. Arrange to have your secretary look out the window to make sure you've driven off. Only then does she pull out the 'magic envelope' and give out the latest "URGENT FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE".

"Sorry, no comment, EVERYONE has left for the weekend. Have a nice day!" (insert smile here)

Heck, I'm betting they rele... (Below threshold)
cirby:

Heck, I'm betting they release the report after 6 PM on Friday... maybe Saturday. Or during the middle of the day on Monday.

So whenever Barry decides t... (Below threshold)
jim m:

So whenever Barry decides to pony up an explanation that neither he nor someone working for his administration offered Sestak a job to drop out of the race, does the MSM even bother to point out that Sestak is therefore a liar?

Or does the MSM somehow find a way to make Sestak's claim and Barry's denial to be both true?

"How is it that you didn't ... (Below threshold)
LiberalNitemare:

"How is it that you didn't know about Ms. Birnbaum's resignation/firing before?" asked another reporter.


if the guy cant even keep track of who is quiting his administration - how do you expect Obama to remember every single job offer/bribe that gets made?

thank God and our Founding ... (Below threshold)
Justrand:

thank God and our Founding Fathers for the 2nd Amendment.

if you're NOT stocking up...why not?

jim m:That's the cru... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

jim m:
That's the crux. Did Barry call Sestak a LIAR! Or did Sestak simply MISUNDERSTAND?

How will Sestak take being called a LIAR? Or that he did not UNDERSTAND (is stupid)?

Poor Sestak. All he wanted to do was use Barry's Chicago-style politics to get the Democratic nomination for Senator. "You back Spector like you promised, I spill my guts. You back off, I keep my mouth shut."

RE #12: "Tomorrow."... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:

RE #12: "Tomorrow."

What's your point? Why does it matter that they are going to fabricate an "official response" to that question "tomorrow"?

This happen months ago. Obama knows the truth of what happen and has known probably from the start. He knows the truth. If he was going to tell the truth he could have done it right then and there.

The next question we need to ask is: What did the President know and when did he know it?

You know what would be funn... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

You know what would be funny as hell:

"White House 'plumbers' burglarize Sestak home"

Can Lee really be that stup... (Below threshold)
Michael:

Can Lee really be that stupid?

Actually Lee, I know you'd ... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:

Actually Lee, I know you'd never answer my question in #22. But that's o.k. We all know you know the truth and have known it from the start:

Lee Ward (4/7/2008): "If you haven't been the direct recipient of a Barack Obama lie then hang on, your turn will come. He'll get around to lying to everyone sooner or later..."

I suspect Obama did not wan... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

I suspect Obama did not want to answer the question because he wanted the media coverage to focus on the oil spill. If Obama had answered the question about Sestak, it's likely that cable news would have spent half their coverage of the speach on Obama's response on Sestak.

Hugh, I do think you are being premature and unduly harsh in your judgement on Obama when it's still not clear yet if Elizabeth Birnbaum's quit or was fired. If she quit this morning I don't see how you can fault Obama for not finding about it until this afternoon.

"I suspect Obama did not wa... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"I suspect Obama did not want to answer the question because he wanted the media coverage to focus on the oil spill."

Tina: HINT: When you give a "press conference", the reporters ASK THE QUESTIONS THEY WANT.

If you want the country to FOCUS on something, you give a SPEECH.

Mr Cool has obviously forgotten the difference. OR is so used to treating the press as whores and camp-followers, he expected them to play along.

As Barry has noted 'You all voted for me, and will again'.

I think "worst since "I am ... (Below threshold)
Brett:

I think "worst since "I am not a crook" is quite a stretch. It was embarrassing but not a lot worse than anything else these idiots do. And no one aside from the press corp was paying a lot of attention - probably because everybody already knew it was going to be embarrassing and a waste of time before he started.

Tomorrow and Tomorrow and t... (Below threshold)
epador:

Tomorrow and Tomorrow and tomorrow... ...is red read?

NO, Racist!Its Bla... (Below threshold)
epador:

NO, Racist!

Its Black and White all over!

24. Posted by Michael | May... (Below threshold)
justpassingthrough:

24. Posted by Michael | May 27, 2010 10:46 PM |

You can rest assured, yes he is that stupid.

Obama--- you can't make a s... (Below threshold)
Sir Toby Belch:

Obama--- you can't make a silk purse from a
sow's ear. America, you deserve what you voted
for. The MSM will take itself completely
down flacking for this poseur. Ergo, there's
a silver lining to this national tragedy.
Unfortunately, this inept "community organizer"
will take home the gold, if we let him.

Of course you know that Rah... (Below threshold)
Ratskeller:

Of course you know that Rahm is traveling in Israel with his family this week. And Mr. Axel-turf is off trying to cover up the Sestak mess. So who did BO have left to prep him for the presser?--Gibbsy, and Valerie Jarrett? No wonder it was a disaster.

I have not tried a conspira... (Below threshold)
Lagtime:

I have not tried a conspiracy theory in a long time. Obama is headed for the Gulf tomorrow. BP has already stopped the spill. Obama will say what great work I haved done. His last line will be that he could now tell his daughter that he stopped the leak.

Another Lee classic, Bunyan... (Below threshold)
SCSIwuzzy:

Another Lee classic, Bunyan:

When Clinton misspoke about the Bosnia airport she admitted her mistake.

Sure that bothers me, but she's admitted to the mistake.

Barack can't - he just plain can't tell the truth even when caught and captured and shown that he's wrong. He just keeps on lying.

THAT bothers me much more then Clinton or any other politician's "embellishments". It shows a pathology that is downright scary.

3. Posted by Lee Ward | April 10, 2008 4:41 PM

""I mean shortly -- I do... (Below threshold)
Oyster:

""I mean shortly -- I don't mean weeks or months. ..."

Dude, it's already been months.

Is it any wonder now why it's been over 300 days since his last press meeting?

This form of "I... (Below threshold)
This form of "I'll get back to you on that" answer is truly outrageous. Even the genuflecting hard core liberals in the White House Press Corps had trouble swallowing that command.
BHO believes that he is "The One" and, therefore, is not accountable.

Damn demagogoue.

Thanks for the link in #2 P... (Below threshold)
hvywgt:

Thanks for the link in #2 P.B., That had to be one of the only posts that didn't result in the Pud banning someone. Clinton then Obama, the 7 faces of Lee.

Tina: "I suspect Obama d... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:

Tina: "I suspect Obama did not want to answer the question because he wanted the media coverage to focus on the oil spill."

Interesting. I don't agree that that was the reason for the delay (I think they just needed more time to synchronize everyone's lies), but still it's interesting that you think that the oil spill scandal will be less damaging to Obama than the Sestak scandal. You're probably right.

Barack Obama is a profoundl... (Below threshold)

Barack Obama is a profoundly uncurious man.

P. Bunyan, it was probably ... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

P. Bunyan, it was probably a combination of reasons for not discussing Sestak. But I think it was primarily Obama doing what he can to try and control the message of the day. I don't see the oil spill as Obama's scandal so I don't see Obama getting hurt by it. Regarding Sestak, I kind of want to wait until Obama releases a written statement before making a judgement. I suspect there was a converstation but it did not involve a specific job offer. The reason I think that is because Sestek never stated what position he was offered. I'll comment more on it after the official response is released from the Whitehouse.

... I can assure t... (Below threshold)
jvc:
... I can assure the public that nothing improper took place."
And when it comes out that something improper DID take place, this quote will haunt him just as Clinton's "I did not have sex with that woman ..." line.
He claims he has been on to... (Below threshold)
hermie:

He claims he has been on top of things fom day one, but he has no idea if one of his department chiefs who was involved with this mess resigned or was fired?

Of course, this comes from a man who claims he knew what was and wasn't in the massive, 1500 plus page Obamacare bill, yet couldn't figure out what actually was written in the ten-page Arizona illegal immigration legislation.

"...I kind of want to wa... (Below threshold)
Oyster:

"...I kind of want to wait until Obama releases a written statement before making a judgement."

I'll make a judgement when an independent counsil investigates and we find who made the alledged offer, when it was made and what the offer was. Somehow, any investigation performed by the Whitehouse on itself finding itself innocent doesn't strike me as satisfactory.

Tina, what happens if he <i... (Below threshold)

Tina, what happens if he never issues a written statement?

Nobody ever told Obama that... (Below threshold)
Ken Hahn:

Nobody ever told Obama that the Presidency was a full time job. He wanted the Camelot effect, glitz and glamour, prestige and respect without the work or responsibility.

ak4mc, If Obama/Administrat... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

ak4mc, If Obama/Administration does not release a written statement as he promised than he's screwed. My bet is that it will be released this afternoon. Politicians love to release that type of information on a friday before a 3 day weekend. Doing so tends to lessen the media coverage.

"Politicians love to releas... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"Politicians love to release that type of information on a friday before a 3 day weekend. Doing so tends to lessen the media coverage."

AND if sufficiently ignored by the MSM, LESSENS THE DAMAGE.

As the MSM likes to say, "We don't report it, it didn't happen."

Tina, here are the options ... (Below threshold)

Tina, here are the options as I see them, if Sestak's allegations are true:

*If Obama tells the truth in writing, he's in big trouble.

*If he doesn't tell the whole truth in writing, he's in even bigger trouble.

*If he doesn't put anything in writing the media will do their best to push the questions out of the news, like they tried to cover for ACORN after the initial O'Keefe tapes, or for John Edwards.

So, I think if Sestak's claims are true Obama will do his best to outlast the issue without putting anything in writing.

In light of recent developm... (Below threshold)

In light of recent developments, apparently I was wrong -- the White House has finally come up with a story, and it's one that doesn't fundamentally contradict Sestak's claims.

Apparently they're banking on a purse-dog media covering for them.

Tina: HINT: When you giv... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

Tina: HINT: When you give a "press conference", the reporters ASK THE QUESTIONS THEY WANT.


It was definitely a legitimate question. All politicians at times avoid answering questions. Typical by dodging and giving responses that avoid answering the question. This can turn ugly real fast, especially if more reporters ask the same question. Obama dodged the queston in a more tactful manor. He silenced the reporters by promising a written statement.




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