This lefty trope has been bugging me for some time now, particularly because O’s cheerleaders use it as a crutch to explain away Obama’s litany of failures. Yeah, well maybe if he weren’t facing such relentless, unprecedented opposition and obstruction, he’d have been able to fix [insert issue] by now. Their argument is a bucket of hogwash and it’s promulgated via a rash of acute selective memory syndrome. It must have been Chris Matthews’ recent blatherings that finally pushed me over the edge, prodding me to write a fairly lengthy piece debunking Obama sycophants’ most calcified and self-serving myth:
The way the story goes, Barack Obama’s presidency has been marred by a toxic and unique strain of political resistance. Opposing a president from the opposite party is one thing, they say, but the manner in which Republicans have treated Obama betrays something far more sinister than garden variety politics. The rarely-unspoken subtext is that the GOP’s groundbreaking vitriol and obstruction has been reserved for Obama because he’s black. By abiding and advancing this claim, Obama’s supporters allege that conservatives have sought to delegitimize the president from his very first day in office. Ironically, the reverse is closer to the truth; dating back to the 2008 campaign, many liberals have maliciously conflated conservative objections to Obama’s policies with thinly-veiled racism. Hurling the racism charge is a particularly insidious method of disqualifying Obama’s critics, which is the whole point. Concerns over wrongful IRS targeting? Racism. Strenuous disapproval of Obamacare? Racism….
Clinton administration staffers removed the ‘W’ keys from many White House keyboards as Team Bush transitioned into office. Lefties regularly compared Bush to Hitler and apes. A feature-length film was produced
fantasizing aboutdepicting Bush’s assassination, to critical acclaim. Senate Democrats launched unprecedented filibusters against Bush’s lower-court judicial nominees, opposing one exceptionally-qualified pick in part because “he is Latino.” (When Republicans answered in kind during the Obama years, Senate Democrats broke Senate rules and nuked the filibuster). In order to obstruct Bush from making contentious recess appointments, Democrats pioneered a practice that technically kept the Senate in session in perpetuity. (When Republicans answered in kind during the Obama years, Obama simply decreed that the Senatewas in recess, and made his appointments anyway). Harry Reid called President Bush “a loser.” Keith Olbermann, then a host on Matthews’ network, bellowed at the top of his lungs on-air that “Mr. Bush” should “shut the hell up.” While much is made of the small right-wing faction that doubts President Obama’s status as a natural born citizen, far less attention has been paid to the 51 percent of self-identified Democrats who told pollsters in 2006 that they believe it was at least “somewhat” or “very” likely that Bush administration officials suppressed advanced warnings of the 9/11 attacks in order to precipitate, and presumably profit from, war. Indeed, several Democratic members of Congress indulged those insane accusations, as did a future Obama appointee.
I went on to quote a memorable Dana Milbank column from 2005, which described the faux impeachment hearings dozens of House Democrats conducted in the Capitol basement over the Iraq war. Milbank noted that an overflow crowd at DNC headquarters brimmed with activists passing out leaflets about how Israel had received advanced notice of 9/11. Yes, really. How might, say, Chris Matthews react if the RNC were to host a veritable birther convention, the whole purpose of which was to watch a live stream of Michele Bachmann’s unsanctioned impeachment proceedings against Barack Obama? And how would the “unprecedented!” crew explain the Left’s behavior throughout the Walker recall saga in Wisconsin? In the Townhall post excerpted above, I didn’t even get a chance to tackle the Left’s endless “obstructionism” carping. That part of the narrative overlooks (a) the fact that Obama had massive — and for several months, veto-proof — majorities in both houses of Congress for the first two years of his term, and (b) subsequent elections, in which the American people voted for divided government to slam the brakes on the out-of-control Obama/Reid/Pelosi express. And please stow your predictable “gerrymandering!” excuse, liberals. Not only is it empirically false that redistricting allowed the GOP to retain its House majority in 2012, Republicans’ redistricting advantage was only made possible by the party’s massive landslide victories in 2010. If you’ll recall, those outcomes were a direct result of intensely unpopular Democratic overreach. Elections, as they say, have consequences. I’ll leave you with this: