Paul: To me, Obama is “losing that moral authority” to lead the nation

posted at 1:21 pm on June 5, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

Yesterday, the Associated Press revealed that certain high-level Obama administration officials have been using secret e-mail accounts through which they conduct some of their official business, à la former EPA chief Lisa Jackson’s mysterious alias of Richard Windsor, and that the AP’s FOIA requests for more information have so far been to little avail — despite President Obama’s repeated insistence about what he assures us is his remarkably transparent administration. On Hannity last night, Sen. Rand Paul had some discouraged words about the widening gap between the president’s professions and his administration’s actions, via the WFB:

PAUL: Here’s the thing. When I hear the president speak and what he just said, if I were sitting in the audience I would stand up and cheer, because what he’s saying sounds so great. What he said recently about if an American were targeted for attack, they would get due process, but he thinks due process is him making a decision and not a judge or not a jury. So when he says that I’m not sure he really means this. I think what is happening, this constellation of scandals, one after another, Benghazi, the IRS, the reporters that he’s targeted, I guess he’s losing and to me he is losing that moral authority, the moral authority to lead the nation. Even though he sounds so great and I want to believe in what he says, he is losing that believability to the American public.

The president’s growing believability problem resulting from the administration’s multiple scandals isn’t confined to the opinion of Sen. Paul and his fellow “overreaching” Congressional Republicans, however; a new Bloomberg poll reports that almost half of Americans are unconvinced that the president is being truthful about his ostensible ignorance concerning the IRS’s targeting of conservative groups. Oof:

Forty-seven percent of Americans say they don’t believe Obama compared with 40 percent who say he is being truthful, according to a Bloomberg National Poll of 1,002 adults conducted May 31 through June 3.

More than half of political independents — 53 percent — say Obama’s explanation that he learned it from media reports is untrue, while 34 percent say they believe him. …

The doubts about Obama’s credibility come as a series of scandals have dominated news coverage, helping to diminish a post-election surge in the president’s popularity and optimism about the direction of the country. Obama’s job approval rating declined six percentage points since the last Bloomberg poll in February, to 49 percent from 55 percent, returning to its lowest level since last September.


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Oh, you poor naive soul! Barry is his own moral authority to, ahem, “lead” our nation. He need no other authority.

hawkeye54 on June 5, 2013 at 1:26 PM

He never had the moral authority to start with, all the fud has was a catchy slogan and a slobbering media to sell him to the public.

Bishop on June 5, 2013 at 1:26 PM

You can’t lose what you never had. If Rand Paul ever has had any respect for Obama’s moral authority then that makes me think less of Rand Paul.

Fenris on June 5, 2013 at 1:26 PM

The tepidness of Rand will be his downfall.

nobar on June 5, 2013 at 1:28 PM

Hammer it every day Rand. Get out in front of a camera and demonstrate real opposition leadership.

tom daschle concerned on June 5, 2013 at 1:29 PM

Sing it: “You’ve lost that moralauthority feeling…”

apostic on June 5, 2013 at 1:29 PM

I have a feeling that Rand Paul is going to get the votes of right thinking people throughout our nation. Shame there aren’t enough of us to actually win the presidency.

Paul is not quite accurate in his statement. The electorate has lost the moral authority to govern themselves.

happytobehere on June 5, 2013 at 1:30 PM

Since when did this privileged silk stocking silver spooned socialist have any “moral” authority?

tommyboy on June 5, 2013 at 1:31 PM

If Rand Paul ever has had any respect for Obama’s moral authority then that makes me think less of Rand Paul.

How could Paul possibly respect something that has never existed? There has never been any morality to found within this admin.

hawkeye54 on June 5, 2013 at 1:31 PM

Moral authority to govern is based on the intent and actions to govern in accordance with the law and the Constitution for the benefit of the the American people and nation. Obama and all of his supporters have NEVER had the moral authority to govern us based on what they believe and do. Linked to that is the concept of governmental legitimacy; which is based both on the consent of the governed and once again adherence to the law and Constitution. That is very much in doubt.

Subotai Bahadur on June 5, 2013 at 1:32 PM

He never had that moral authority. He had a lovely speaking voice that masked the banality of his rhetoric…and millions of Americans fell (and still fall) for it.

Ishmael on June 5, 2013 at 1:32 PM

And he had it to begin with, when exactly?

can_con on June 5, 2013 at 1:33 PM

He’s hinting at an imminent legitimacy crisis.

forest on June 5, 2013 at 1:35 PM

Rand Paul is obviously ‘playing fair’ in his remarks – very much the politician.

RiverCocytus on June 5, 2013 at 1:35 PM

OT: Just watched Megyn Kelly’s interview of old Jim McDermott concerning his outrageous comments yesterday at the Ways and Means hearing. Catch it on YouTube when it’s available.

She really beat him over the head. He came off worse today than yesterday.

Curtiss on June 5, 2013 at 1:35 PM

If Rand Paul ever has had any respect for Obama’s moral authority then that makes me think less of Rand Paul.

How could Paul possibly respect something that has never existed? There has never been any morality to found within this admin.

hawkeye54 on June 5, 2013 at 1:31 PM

Well, you did snip out the first part where I said you can’t lose what you never had. But strictly speaking, Obama has had and does have moral authority with many people. Moral authority doesn’t mean you actually are moral, it means that you have the ability to convince people of what is moral. Idiocracy, here we come.

Fenris on June 5, 2013 at 1:36 PM

and millions of Americans fell (and still fall) for it.

They, having little or no morality themselves.

hawkeye54 on June 5, 2013 at 1:37 PM

The tepidness of Rand will be his downfall.

nobar on June 5, 2013 at 1:28 PM

As opposed to the principled, steel spined opposition of GOP stars like Rubio, Christie, McConnell, and Boehner?

ElectricPhase on June 5, 2013 at 1:37 PM

Rand Paul serving a little red meat to the Hannity base.
2016′in it.
Yawn.

verbaluce on June 5, 2013 at 1:37 PM

So some people are beginning to think that Obama has been lying all this time? Is that it?

It’s a little late now.

Curtiss on June 5, 2013 at 1:38 PM

Hope n Change is a joke.

Just say ‘Hope n Change’ and people laugh.

SparkPlug on June 5, 2013 at 1:38 PM

HE NEVER HAD ANY MORAL AUTHORITY…

Pest on June 5, 2013 at 1:38 PM

Moral authority doesn’t mean you actually are moral, it means that you have the ability to convince people of what is moral. Idiocracy, here we come.

Very true. Idiocracy, we are here.

hawkeye54 on June 5, 2013 at 1:38 PM

As opposed to the principled, steel spined opposition of GOP stars like Rubio, Christie, McConnell, and Boehner?

ElectricPhase on June 5, 2013 at 1:37 PM

Ted Cruz would be the counter. Rand could have connected more dots, but didn’t.

nobar on June 5, 2013 at 1:39 PM

Also, to be fair, simply being the president carries a certain moral authority to it, which is one reason why leftists tried very hard to discredit GWB’s electoral victory. If the country made him president, that means it implicitly accepts his moral authority, even if begrudgingly.

It is wholly partisan to deny this simple fact, which is a side effect of the democratic process. There will always be people who don’t, of course, but there’s a significant difference between people who are suspicious of or oppose a president and the president losing his general moral authority to govern.

The first is nearly guaranteed, the second is a crisis of leadership.

RiverCocytus on June 5, 2013 at 1:39 PM

As opposed to the principled, steel spined opposition of GOP stars like Rubio, Christie, McConnell, and Boehner?

You could pass a metal detector or magnet over them with no response, but a pasta fork could be effective.

hawkeye54 on June 5, 2013 at 1:40 PM

Even though he sounds so great and I want to believe in what he says, he is losing that believability to the American public.

He’s never read Alinsky

Alinsky advised the radical activist to avoid the temptation to concede that his opponent was not “100 per cent devil,” or that he possessed certain admirable qualities such as being “a good churchgoing man, generous to charity, and a good husband.” Such qualifying remarks, Alinsky said, “dilut[e] the impact of the attack” and amount to sheer “political idiocy.”

Our side will never learn. Political idiots.

faraway on June 5, 2013 at 1:41 PM

How could Paul possibly respect something that has never existed? There has never been any morality to found within this admin.

hawkeye54 on June 5, 2013 at 1:31 PM

Give Mr. Paul a break.

A good number of the American people were on Cloud Nine in January of 2009. You want him to tell them they are imbeciles then ask them to like him?

This is a corollary of:

Kick a man when he is down.

See President Obama and comments about President Bush.

You embrace those whom you despise when they have good poll numbers.

See President Obama and the..er, Clintons?

IlikedAUH2O on June 5, 2013 at 1:42 PM

President Obama’s repeated insistence about what he assures us is his remarkably transparent administration.

This stuff is formulaic now.

1. A scandal breaks.

2. The rat-eared coward or his minions will make a statement about how wrong the scandal is, assure us that the administration will investigate, and that people will be held accountable.

3. A report will be released completely exonerating the administration.

4. A few people may retire or change jobs but nobody will actually be held accountable or fired for misconduct.

Repeat as necessary……

Happy Nomad on June 5, 2013 at 1:46 PM

Ted Cruz would be the counter. Rand could have connected more dots, but didn’t.

nobar on June 5, 2013 at 1:39 PM

As long as we’re talking about the senate, I like both Cruz and Paul.

If you’re talking about 2016, I have to admit I’m a little first-term-senator shy.

ElectricPhase on June 5, 2013 at 1:46 PM

Duh. He used the IRS to steal the presidential election of 2012.

slickwillie2001 on June 5, 2013 at 1:46 PM

As long as we’re talking about the senate, I like both Cruz and Paul.

If you’re talking about 2016, I have to admit I’m a little first-term-senator shy.

ElectricPhase on June 5, 2013 at 1:46 PM

If Rand wants to play incrementalism in the senate, fine. But there is a good chance at a 2016 run, that kind of weakness will get him eaten alive.

nobar on June 5, 2013 at 1:48 PM

A good number of the American people were on Cloud Nine in January of 2009. You want him to tell them they are imbeciles then ask them to like him?

IlikedAUH2O on June 5, 2013 at 1:42 PM

Sorry but a good number of the American people are imbeciles for supporting this corrupt rat-eared coward. The thing is that there comes a point where even imbeciles can’t avoid the truth any longer. Are you suggesting we should pretend that the lazy rat-eared bastard isn’t losing the moral authority to lead?

Happy Nomad on June 5, 2013 at 1:49 PM

People. This message isn’t for you. It’s for non- or Obama-voters.

besser tot als rot on June 5, 2013 at 1:49 PM

People. This message isn’t for you. It’s for non- or Obama-voters.

besser tot als rot on June 5, 2013 at 1:49 PM

So what you’re saying is politicians are liars, but they call it messaging. And Rand Paul is no different. I guess you’re right.

Fenris on June 5, 2013 at 1:52 PM

IlikedAUH2O on June 5, 2013 at 1:42 PM

Good points to consider.

This message isn’t for you. It’s for non- or Obama-voters.

Of course. They must be treated delicately, and spoken to in terms fully comprehendable to a 5 year old.

hawkeye54 on June 5, 2013 at 1:54 PM

Ok, is this simply a matter of “aww, they’re not being as transparent as they say they are”, or is this not a matter of *legality*?

Is it not *illegal* for them to be handling department communications via hidden emails that are not tracked, stored, backed-up officially, etc?

I’m getting a bit more than damn tired of everyone – including *us*, ffs – casually tut-tutting this kind of thing as inconvenient, disappointing, or whatever other milquetoast adjective you’d care to use.

When these people do something *illegal* (and if this isn’t, I’ll stand corrected yet point politely to plenty of other patently illegal things they’ve been doing), then I want some f*cking real-world consequences for these rat bastards, damnit. No, I’m not f*cking kidding!

Midas on June 5, 2013 at 1:54 PM

OT: Just watched Megyn Kelly’s interview of old Jim McDermott concerning his outrageous comments yesterday at the Ways and Means hearing. Catch it on YouTube when it’s available.

She really beat him over the head. He came off worse today than yesterday.

Curtiss on June 5, 2013 at 1:35 PM

His advisors must have zero familiarity with Megyn Kelly. She’s the last one he should be tangling with after saying all that stupid crap.

forest on June 5, 2013 at 1:55 PM

Incorrect tense Senator Paul…

Obama has lost

phreshone on June 5, 2013 at 1:57 PM

A good number of the American people were on Cloud Nine in January of 2009. You want him to tell them they are imbeciles then ask them to like him?

IlikedAUH2O on June 5, 2013 at 1:42 PM

Well, yeah.

Sorry, but playing “let’s not keep score at the soccer game so little Tommy doesn’t get his feelings hurt”, or “let’s inflate everyone’s grades so everyone feels special” at the national political level is just pretty f*cking stupid.

People need to know they f*cked up, or they’ll never learn – and then they’ll vote for another f*ckup like Hillary in the future. That what you have in mind?

Midas on June 5, 2013 at 2:01 PM

OT: Just watched Megyn Kelly’s interview of old Jim McDermott concerning his outrageous comments yesterday at the Ways and Means hearing. Catch it on YouTube when it’s available.

She really beat him over the head. He came off worse today than yesterday.

Curtiss on June 5, 2013 at 1:35 PM

Wow, he actually doubled down on stupid? Hank Johnson- better watch your back- you got competition as the stupidest man in Congress.

Of the many offensive things McDermott said, one of the worst was to essentially call the Tea Party, pro-life, and traditional marriage groups radicals that deserved extra scrutiny. The pro-death and sodomite groups didn’t get the same scrutiny for the same sort of advocacy.

BTW, it should be pointed out that McDermott and his party had the opportunity to call witnesses of their own to highlight liberal groups that might have been targeted by the IRS. They couldn’t find any.

Happy Nomad on June 5, 2013 at 2:01 PM

The electorate has lost the moral authority to govern themselves.

happytobehere on June 5, 2013 at 1:30 PM

This seems to be the actual truth of the matter imo.

Mimzey on June 5, 2013 at 2:01 PM

OT: Just watched Megyn Kelly’s interview of old Jim McDermott concerning his outrageous comments yesterday at the Ways and Means hearing. Catch it on YouTube when it’s available.

She really beat him over the head. He came off worse today than yesterday.

Curtiss on June 5, 2013 at 1:35 PM

Let’s not forget about Baghdad Bob’s civil judgement payment to John Boehner of $1.05M in 2008, nor the fact the guy is a psychiatrist–certifiably crazy. The guy is truly an a$$clown, and they love him in Seattle.

NOMOBO on June 5, 2013 at 2:03 PM

The guy is truly an a$$clown, and they love him in Seattle.

Well, yeah…..a vast number of voters in Seattle are certifiably crazy themselves.

Must be the weather.

hawkeye54 on June 5, 2013 at 2:05 PM

The electorate has lost the moral authority to govern themselves.

happytobehere on June 5, 2013 at 1:30 PM
This seems to be the actual truth of the matter imo.

Mimzey on June 5, 2013 at 2:01 PM

Maybe.

It’s a sad thought. I’m still hoping that the IRS scandal will wake the LIV up. I know it’s a stretch but it’s what I’m hanging on to.

BoxHead1 on June 5, 2013 at 2:12 PM

The tepidness of Rand will be his downfall.

nobar on June 5, 2013 at 1:28 PM

You might find him a little “tepid”, but this is exactly the right strategy for Rand Paul. As the son of Rep. Ron Paul, the “crazy uncle” perennial Presidential candidate who gets 5% of the vote in every Republican primary, Rand Paul squeaked by with only 52% of the vote in a state (Kentucky) that usually elects Republicans by 60% or more. Rand Paul ran behind the “generic Republican” in KY, and knows that he must distance himself from his father, and become “his own man”, and a reasonable-sounding conservative.

Rand Paul is also the junior Senator from a state whose senior Senator is Senate Minority Leader. He needs to be a “team player” now, but he’s still fairly young, and might have his chance to lead later in his career.

Steve Z on June 5, 2013 at 2:16 PM

What is the deal with those crazy tan lines?

pat on June 5, 2013 at 2:19 PM

http://pjmedia.com/victordavishanson/let-me-be-perfectly-clear/?singlepage=true

I’ve posted this Victor Davis Hanson link before but it fits so well here.

countrybumpkin on June 5, 2013 at 2:21 PM

how can anyone as immoral as obama have any moral authority in the first place….you gotta have it in order to use it

crosshugger on June 5, 2013 at 2:23 PM

Communist and moral authority are mutually exclusive terms.

They are oxymorons.

But moron is applicable to most politicians, present company included.

OhEssYouCowboys on June 5, 2013 at 2:28 PM

I’m still hoping that the IRS scandal will wake the LIV up. I know it’s a stretch but it’s what I’m hanging on to.

BoxHead1 on June 5, 2013 at 2:12 PM

I’m dismayed about the LIV as well, but beyond that is the simple leftist/democrat who may be LIV, but even when/if educated, simply doesn’t care, etc. These are the ones that cheer when McDermott says what he says; they rejoice to find that Schumer et al overtly try to have people on the right targeted. They cheer that Obama & Co. are being clever and political shrewd while acknowledging that they are simply lying.

These… there is no hope for these.

Midas on June 5, 2013 at 2:38 PM

Losing?

LOSING!

The Punk NEVER had it.

NEVER.

LegendHasIt on June 5, 2013 at 2:41 PM

while 34 percent say they believe him. …

When you also consider there is a small portion of this group that actually believes Obama is telling the truth because they feel Obama is that stupid and does not actually do his job. This means the number of people who think Obama is telling the truth and is still competent drop even further.

William Eaton on June 5, 2013 at 2:46 PM

Since Clinton, the office has no moral authority.

Don L on June 5, 2013 at 2:49 PM

Wow! Tough room. For someone who may have higher aspirations, he can’t come out and call everyone stupid for buying Obama’s BS. I don’t believe Rand ever believed zero’s schtick?

Rand Paul is obviously ‘playing fair’ in his remarks – very much the politician.

RiverCocytus on June 5, 2013 at 1:35 PM

You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar… yada, yada. This was a well done, diplomatic criticism. Well, at least I thought so…

lucyvanpelt on June 5, 2013 at 2:52 PM

This federal investigation of one of Sheldon Adelson’s casinos is probably legit, but at this point I don’t trust any federal agency not to abuse its power for politics. Until proven otherwise, I assume ALL federal investigations of Republicans/tea partiers to be politically motivated. The trust is gone.

juliesa on June 5, 2013 at 3:00 PM

verbaluce on June 5, 2013 at 1:37 PM

I am sure you realize this but just in case you really are missing it. Rand is setting up his own little straw man – since we have to do that today lest the media fail to do thier job. He is providing the media the Obama has moral authority entreaty in order to pull it real hard at a later time. He doesn’t sound shrill – and the WH won’t be able to say too much indignantly.

The knife has been unsheathed – this much be very much closer to some flair up than we realize. And Rand has been pretty good at recognizing when th take the high ground. I’d say the WH is about to experience a rougher patch than they currently expect.

Zomcon JEM on June 5, 2013 at 3:01 PM

You can’t lose what you never had. If Rand Paul ever has had any respect for Obama’s moral authority then that makes me think less of Rand Paul.

Fenris on June 5, 2013 at 1:26 PM

Well, look at it this way. He doesn’t need to talk to us conservatives. We already read Oboobi like a book in 2007/08 and deemed him a no-sale like a torn paperback cover.

He’s talking to the RINOs, Indys and conservative Dems. As long as he keeps making cogent slams at Oboobi, taking him down notch by notch in a ‘sympathetic’ way that nudges the centrist towards the right.

Does it matter if the centrists come our way because they’re convinced of conservatism or because liberals can’t be trusted to be good stewards of big govt?

What difference at this point does it make? Other than for us to get the pendulum to the other side. In that regards, this was a very good and effective messaging.

AH_C on June 5, 2013 at 3:02 PM

Democrats declare that it is time to end the culture of corruption prevailing through all levels of government. We are committed to immediate change to lead this country in a new direction, to put an end to business as usual, and to make certain this nation’s leaders serve the people’s interests, not special interests. Our responsibility to our constituents and to our nation is to represent all of the people, not just the powerful.

Our goal is to restore accountability, honesty and openness at all levels of government. To do so, we will create and enforce rules that demand the highest ethics from every public servant, sever unethical ties between lawmakers and lobbyists, and establish clear standards that prevent the trading of official business for gifts.

Honest leadership is not a partisan goal. It is the key to a stronger union. We must all work together to put the progress of all Americans ahead of the special interests of the few. With honest leadership and open government, America’s leaders can once again focus on the urgent needs of the American people: real security overseas and at home, economic strength and educational excellence, affordable health care, energy independence, and retirement security.

- Nancy Pelosi, House Democratic Leader, 2006
A NEW DIRECTION FOR AMERICA

Hey Nancy, it’s time to end the culture of corruption prevailing through all levels of government.

ITguy on June 5, 2013 at 3:17 PM

Communist and moral authority are mutually exclusive terms.

They are oxymorons.

But moron is applicable to most politicians, present company included.

OhEssYouCowboys on June 5, 2013 at 2:28 PM

Why denigrate morons in that manner? They don’t deserve being lumped into that crowd.

Myron Falwell on June 5, 2013 at 4:09 PM

Give Mr. Paul a break.

A good number of the American people were on Cloud Nine in January of 2009. You want him to tell them they are imbeciles then ask them to like him?

Well, since most of us on here play the “low-information voter” card of insulting those voters, it’s hard to conceive someone actually using a different tactic.

Myron Falwell on June 5, 2013 at 4:13 PM

Where’s where I have to disagree with good Mr Paul.

Saying something like this implies that Mr Obama had Morals in the first place when he entered the office of president.

The man’s from Chicago for God’s sake.

Chaz706 on June 5, 2013 at 4:42 PM

Losing?

LOSING!

The Punk NEVER had it.

NEVER.

LegendHasIt on June 5, 2013 at 2:41 PM

Indeed – but, he was/is always a punk.

Schadenfreude on June 5, 2013 at 4:57 PM

Imagine the following candidates running for Prez for 2016 in the GOP Primary:

Alan West
Rand Paul
Scott Walker
Ted Cruz

Oh..and also the establishment choice and token liberal, Christie.

Throw in the amnesty candidate Rubio to round it out.

Not a bad field as i’d vote for any of the first four, and certainly better than the field we had last time round.

I’m optimistic.

KirknBurker on June 5, 2013 at 5:43 PM

Paul is being very smart about this because he is not coming across as a shrill partisan. It will convince otherwise decent people who made the mistake of trusting democrats and Obama. The wheels are coming off and he’s patiently pointing it out.

We know that Paul can play hard-ball but this gentle pawing leaves quite a bruise. It will convince many people in the middle who are becoming dismayed at the lawless behavior of this administration.

Rand Paul is playing this well.

virgo on June 6, 2013 at 7:05 AM