Joel Gehrke of the Examiner calls it a “startling” bit of news. I agree; the same passage jumped out at me when we headlines the WDBJ story this morning. But does it really say what we all think it says? Quote:
Why in the world would a new business owner say “no” to a photo op with the Vice President of the United States?
McMurray said it was President Obama’s recent remarks about small business and who built what.
“Very simply, ‘you didn’t build that’” McMurray said. “Speaking of small businesses and entrepreneurs all across this country and actually last night my wife was up all night. No sleep, she’s worked a full 24 hours.”
Then, several paragraphs later:
Here’s the back story, we’re told that shortly after Crumb and Get It told Biden’s advance people ‘no’ — the secret service walked in and told Chris McMurray ”Thanks for standing up and saying ‘no’ — then they bought a whole bunch of cookies and cupcakes.
The “standing up” bit sure does make it sound like they were thanking McMurray because they agreed with his objection to Obama’s “you didn’t build that” rhetoric. But I’m not sure: Click the image below and watch the clip at the link. Reporter Orlando Salinas doesn’t say anything about “standing up” in the video, only that the agents thanked McMurray for saying no and bought some stuff, which leaves their motive more ambiguous. Could be that they were just hoping to avoid the logistical hassle of having to secure the bakery and surrounding area before Biden arrived and thought that Biden’s advance team might skip the stop altogether once the first business owner turned him down. (Didn’t work out that way.) Would a small group of Secret Service agents really risk the White House’s wrath by saying something politically unhelpful like this? This isn’t a case of one random agent out of the hundreds employed by the Service phoning a reporter to badmouth O anonymously. This is Biden’s own security team; the White House knows who they are, and they’re surely in no mood for new political headaches from the Service after the “unpleasantness” in Colombia. Seems hard to believe the agents would tempt fate by gladhanding an Obama critic in that environment. High risk, little reward. But I don’t know, anything’s possible.