Founder of Obama’s Super PAC: In hindsight, I probably shouldn’t have mocked Bush for spending so much time at his ranch

posted at 5:21 pm on August 26, 2014 by Allahpundit

It’s Bill Burton, former White House deputy press secretary, founder of Priorities USA, and defender of that infamous ad from Campaign 2012 that kinda sorta accused Mitt Romney of killing a woman because her husband got laid off from a company Bain owned. Not a man prone to shame, in other words. And yet, here he is, mea culpa-ing his way out of a glaring double standard after lefties spent eight years crapping on Bush for decamping to Crawford from time to time.

Well, sort of. As my pal Karl notes, Burton’s admission of guilt is helpfully buried 20 paragraphs deep in a 22-paragraph apologia for Obama leading the fight against ISIS from the 18th hole.

I’m not sure why the New York Times thinks it can read minds, but knowing this president, I know one thing with great clarity: The savagery of those who attack Americans is never far from his mind. This notion that he can detach is mostly wrong. For the man who gave the green light to take out Osama bin Laden and is often first to hear the reports of American servicemen and women who die in missions that he ordered, the savagery of this world is not far from the forefront of his mind at every moment of the day.

I don’t remember, but I assume that I was one of the many Democrats who gleefully took shots at President George W. Bush for the time he spent at Crawford—and if so I regret it. Presidents are better for having time out of Washington, even better for time away with their families.

Whether you’re a partisan or a cynical reporter who has been making the same critique about presidential vacations for decades, I assume you probably agree that human beings function better when they get a little time away. I wouldn’t want my surgeon to be some woman who hasn’t had a break in 4 years.

Burton’s not the only big-name Hopenchange veteran lately to swallow hard and apologize to the Bushitler. David Axelrod did so a few days ago, saying, “We used to pillory George Bush for going to his ranch and we were wrong.” Guys like that aren’t given to defending Republicans, even opportunistically, unless they feel they’ve exhausted all other spin options. What they’re telling you here, in so many words, is that perceptions that Obama is disengaged are now enough of a political liability for Democrats to warrant a few well-placed “sorry, Dubya” comments. I wonder what data they’re seeing to make them nervous. In both the Gallup daily tracker and the RCP average, Obama’s job approval is actually slightly better now than it was at the start of August. He’s not hemorrhaging support by any means. What are they worried about? Possibly they think either Ferguson or the war against ISIS or something else is going to fall apart before the midterms and then the GOP will have a field day with ads juxtaposing O teeing off with headlines about impending disaster. Not sure how a “Bush was right” soundbite will ameliorate that, but okay.

Take a minute today, though, to appreciate that this guy, the epitome of in-touch cultural cool in 2008, is now so at risk of being seen as “out of touch” that Axelrod and Bill Burton have to eat sh*t publicly as damage control. Oh well. As Amanda Curtis could tell you, sometimes even the most practiced Democrat run out of things to say.


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IOW: Bush did it too!@!!!

faraway on August 26, 2014 at 5:25 PM

They’re only wrong until another Republican wins the Presidency.

besser tot als rot on August 26, 2014 at 5:27 PM

Funny how the huge difference in the costs of these vacations never comes up.

natasha333 on August 26, 2014 at 5:27 PM

Burton’s not the only big-name Hopenchange veteran lately to swallow hard and apologize to the Bushitler. David Axelrod did so a few days ago, saying, “We used to pillory George Bush for going to his ranch and we were wrong.”

BREAKING NEWS ON ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, MSNBC, PBS!!!!!……………eh, not so much.

Bitter Clinger on August 26, 2014 at 5:29 PM

If you had a clue – in hindsight, you should never have worked for that campaign.

dentarthurdent on August 26, 2014 at 5:29 PM

Bill Burton, with his puny article, proved to be an azzlicking idiot.

Schadenfreude on August 26, 2014 at 5:29 PM

“Chimpey” ruined obama.

obama will ruin Hillary.

Two of my favorite ironies!

Schadenfreude on August 26, 2014 at 5:30 PM

Article of the day

Schadenfreude on August 26, 2014 at 5:31 PM

David Axelrod did so a few days ago, saying, “We used to pillory George Bush for going to his ranch and we were wrong.”

Bitter Clinger on August 26, 2014 at 5:29 PM

It’s an obvious squirrel meant to claim an equivalence to Bush, and to shift the strawman argument to ‘vacations’.

Golfing During Terror Attack, and Golfing During Funerals is not related to Bush.

faraway on August 26, 2014 at 5:33 PM

obama never had and never will have any class or wits.

He is the Punk of the Land.

He is now always sulking.

His Utopia settled in as a huge pipedream. Reality knocked him over the head.

A grown up would lead.

A narcissistic teenager sulks.

Schadenfreude on August 26, 2014 at 5:35 PM

No, too late. No forgiveness for these statists.

ThePrez on August 26, 2014 at 5:35 PM

What are they worried about?

Insider polls?

I would say that some of these talking heads, like Burton and Axelrod, have finally grown a vertebrae which guilted them into saying the obvious, but that’s giving them too much credit. They’ve only now admitted how silly — and factually wrong — their criticisms of Bush’s were. Almost six years into their guy’s presidency.

And at least Bush quit golfing once the Iraq War became the most prominent political issue.

Aizen on August 26, 2014 at 5:37 PM

So – Bush was the the bad guy for taking his vacations back home to his own ranch or the family place in Kennebunkport – and using that “vacation” time to host BBQs for his Secret Service details and wounded warriors….
But King Putt is so much better cuz he goes on vacay 10 times more often and goes to places like Hawaii and Martha’s Vineyard, and goes golfing 10 times more often – and it’s ALL “me time”…..

dentarthurdent on August 26, 2014 at 5:37 PM

Pure unadulterated 100% B$. They are trying to make this about Bush in a lame attempt to deflect well deserved criticism from Obama and his party at all costs Second Term.

Johnnyreb on August 26, 2014 at 5:39 PM

Take a minute today, though, to appreciate that this guy, the epitome of in-touch cultural cool in 2008, is now so at risk of being seen as “out of touch” that Axelrod and Bill Burton have to eat sh*t publicly as damage control.

I think many on the left are now anxious to try to ameliorate the perception that they are massive hypocrites who reflexively hold others to a different set of standards than they embrace for themselves or those who are part of their circle.

Credibility on the left in general is shredded, and they’ve done it to themselves.

The arrogance with which the left has behaved publicly has known no bounds. Shameless doesn’t begin to cover the degree of gall we’ve seen from them over the last half dozen years, and reckless abandon falls far short of describing how gleefully they’ve distorted and lied to smear anyone who disagreed with them on policy issues to any degree. They weren’t even particularly clever about it and made little to no effort to conceal the fact that they were aware they were doing it.

Now, seeing the pendulum swinging, they’re anxious to try and dredge up some semblance of rational judgement. Far too little. Far too late.

thatsafactjack on August 26, 2014 at 5:39 PM

Funny how the huge difference in the costs of these vacations never comes up.

natasha333 on August 26, 2014 at 5:27 PM

Think of all the communications equipment, etc. that Bush was able to maintain at his ranch – unlike Obama that needs to travel with everything.

Yesterday’s White House press briefing was a joke with Josh telling reporters that Obama has a phone and was able to call world leaders – as if Bush didn’t have a phone at his ranch? Huge joke.

corkie on August 26, 2014 at 5:42 PM

These guys don’t regret trashing Bush – they just are trying to make us forget how nasty they were so we’ll stop trashing BO. Not going to happen in my case. BO golfing and tooling around in his mom jeans is a more costly waste of tax dollars and time than Bush chopping wood at his ranch.

katiejane on August 26, 2014 at 5:48 PM

Burton is and always was a Meathead…

d1carter on August 26, 2014 at 5:51 PM

Dem spin: The country was oh so much better off when Bushitler took time off from destroying the world. The One’s time off gives the planet more time to heal from Booosh’s shenanigans.

vnvet on August 26, 2014 at 5:54 PM

I wish someone with competence was in charge right now.

I have never seen a more messed up world than right now. Of course I was born after WII, but really has the world ever been this messed up?

I think Europe is a big problem. They depend on Russia for oil so no one can stop Putin, and they treat Muslims badly and they go back to join Jihad with the passports Europe gives them… so they can come here next!!!’

This is just so messed up!

petunia on August 26, 2014 at 5:56 PM

Founder of Obama’s semi-retired president’s Super PAC: In hindsight, I…

Galtian on August 26, 2014 at 5:58 PM

Bush up to this point of his presidency took a lot more vacation days. But I never cared, because a president can never be on vacation. Ever. A president can be away from the jail called oval office, but he will always be working.

So Bush on his ranch or Obama on his golf course does not mean he doesn’t get his work done.

coolrepublica on August 26, 2014 at 6:01 PM

You’ll have to pardon me if I appear to be cynical about this. There are a lot of things they yelled about Bush that they should be apologizing for and the trips to Crawford are the least of it. They’re still saying “Bush lied and people died.” which is much more hurtful and so very, very untrue. We can honestly say “Obama lied and Aunt Tilly lost her healthcare, her doctor, and her prescription meds.” and it would be the truth.

I’ll personally never settle for the half-hearted apologies when there is so much more for them to look back on and tell the world how wrong they were for doing it. It’s not just guys like Axelrod and Burton, it’s the whole left-wing propaganda machine, including Hollywood, that needs to get on board with an apology, not only to Bush, but to the country for the division they’ve created.

bflat879 on August 26, 2014 at 6:01 PM

Burton is the typical democrat.

He was all for attacking Bush’s vacationing because it served a political end. Now he’s “sorry” because it serves a political end.

Happens so often in so many ways. It’s insulting to think they believe we won’t notice the self-serving nature of their ‘regrets’.

ROCnPhilly on August 26, 2014 at 6:06 PM

Take a minute today, though, to appreciate that this guy, the epitome of in-touch cultural cool in 2008, is now so at risk of being seen as “out of touch” that Axelrod and Bill Burton have to eat sh*t publicly as damage control.

I would’ve used the more un-PC “crow” instead of “sh*t,” but that’s just me…

Newtie and the Beauty on August 26, 2014 at 6:11 PM

I don’t remember, but I assume that I was one of the many Democrats who gleefully took shots at President George W. Bush for the time he spent at Crawford—and if so I regret it. Presidents are better for having time out of Washington, even better for time away with their families.

At least Bush went to either his HOME or his family’s vacation HOME…

“Don’t remember” my aunt’s fanny…

Newtie and the Beauty on August 26, 2014 at 6:12 PM

Ranch= security and communications infrastructure paid for once.

Obama Vaca: same infrastructure paid for over and over again.

Dingbat63 on August 26, 2014 at 6:13 PM

“I’m not a sacrificial lamb,” Curtis also told The Montana Standard earlier this week. “I’m going to win and I’m going to come out swinging for the fences and I believe this is a winnable campaign.”

Thanks for the clip AP. Somebody close the gate.

MontanaMmmm on August 26, 2014 at 6:16 PM

“We used to pillory George Bush for going to his ranch and we were wrong.”

So David, will you now admit that you, your pals and King Barack have been WRONG on just about EVERYTHING?

GarandFan on August 26, 2014 at 6:17 PM

Bush up to this point of his presidency took a lot more vacation days. But I never cared, because a president can never be on vacation. Ever. A president can be away from the jail called oval office, but he will always be working.

So Bush on his ranch or Obama on his golf course does not mean he doesn’t get his work done.

foolrepublica on August 26, 2014 at 6:01 PM

1. Cost of Bush vacations over 8 years = $20 million

2. Cost of O’bama vacations (so far) in just 6 years = $44 million

3. F-

Del Dolemonte on August 26, 2014 at 6:36 PM

0bama should not have played gold the day Foley was announced. Period. But, he did and the pictures were taken showing his big grin and Burton and Axelrod know it was a bridge too far. They know it revealed him for what he really is. A unfeeling sociopath.

djl130 on August 26, 2014 at 6:41 PM

I’m not sure why the New York Times thinks it can read minds, but knowing this president, I know one thing with great clarity: The savagery of those who attack Americans is never far from his mind.

Why yes, there is no doubt that Obama sees those slain Americans as lost people who could have been golf course greens keepers, caddies or 19th hole bartenders, chefs or waiters.

RJL on August 26, 2014 at 7:04 PM

Funny how the huge difference in the costs of these vacations never comes up.

natasha333 on August 26, 2014 at 5:27 PM

What is not counted is the cost of Barry’s enormous posse that he hauls along on vacay that has to be paid overtime, put up in hotels, etc.

President George W. Bush traveled with very few essential personnel to the ranch in Texas.

If Barry was traveling to his home in Chitcago, the vacation issue would not be as big an issue.

Missed: the staggering cost of Barry’s twice-a-week parties where he summons Hollywood glitterati to the White House to tap-dance for him on Wagyu beef and Atlantic lobshter.

slickwillie2001 on August 26, 2014 at 7:10 PM

Axelrod, Burton et al have discovered you can only spin shit for so long and it still don’t make cotton candy.

arnold ziffel on August 26, 2014 at 7:12 PM

When Bush went to Crawford, he did not go on vacation, he went home.

ReardenSteel on August 26, 2014 at 7:26 PM

Amazing how these things come back at you.

And we have 2 1/2 more years of this circus.

formwiz on August 26, 2014 at 7:34 PM

Funny how the huge difference in the costs of these vacations never comes up.

natasha333 on August 26, 2014 at 5:27 PM

What is not counted is the cost of Barry’s enormous posse that he hauls along on vacay that has to be paid overtime, put up in hotels, etc.

President George W. Bush traveled with very few essential personnel to the ranch in Texas.

If Barry was traveling to his home in Chitcago, the vacation issue would not be as big an issue.

Missed: the staggering cost of Barry’s twice-a-week parties where he summons Hollywood glitterati to the White House to tap-dance for him on Wagyu beef and Atlantic lobshter.

slickwillie2001 on August 26, 2014 at 7:10 PM

Another thing to remember-Bush spent all 8 of his Christmases as President at Camp David, so his staff and Secret Service details wouldn’t have to miss the entire holidays with their families.

On the other hand, O’bama has spent 5 straight Christmases on the most expensive beach (real estate price-wise) in the already hugely expensive state of Hawai’i. Who cares about his staff having to miss the holidays with family? Certainly not him.

But what his Democrat Media won’t tell you is some of the negative impact those Windward O’ahu vacations have had on local businesses. First and foremost, the airspace over that entire side of the island is virtually shut down for two weeks, during what were the best 2 tourist flight weeks of the year for the local air tour folks before he got there.

Mooshelle sez: “Let those pilots eat cake!”

PS-Don’t know what the per-pound cost of Wagyu beef is this week, but at this time of year I’ll give Mooshelle a pass on the lobstah. Right now here in NH I can get them for $5.99 a pound and they are even cheaper right on the Maine Coast. That’s the same price per pound as decent ground beef.

Del Dolemonte on August 26, 2014 at 7:51 PM

i remember seeing pix of W at camp david and Crawford w/ world leaders and senior admin officials there for meetings and such. does anyone over the gopher level go w/ 0bamas on vacay? if he were actually having strategy meetings on a response to Foley’s death or other issues we’d hear and see pix of generals and senators, etc streaming in and out of meetings. it seems he has put everything on hold while he plays.

chasdal on August 26, 2014 at 7:57 PM

Seriously, the Power of the W is so awesome that 6 years after he leaves the WH spinmeisters are still invoking His Mighty Name.

And not that it matters, but I believe they counted every weekend that W. went home as 4 “vacation days” (leaving Friday afternoon and returning Monday morning)

And all us little people believe that going home on the weekends is exactly the same as spending 4 days at a swanky resort, cuz we be stoopit.

Dolce Far Niente on August 26, 2014 at 7:59 PM

Del Dolemonte on August 26, 2014 at 7:51 PM

How can I convince you to FedEx me some down to Texas?

Dolce Far Niente on August 26, 2014 at 8:01 PM

Given the circumstances, now people can compare what Bush and what Obama did.

Bush was involved in a war, but like most any CinC he is not responsible for moving this squad here or calling in an artillery barrage in support of a squad over there. Most people would not fault FDR, Truman, Johnson, Nixon, etc. for taking time off even with a war raging. He trusted his Generals to do their job and keep him informed.

OTOH, Obama has been presenting a much more callous and detached image for, generally, specific things that were happening. Foley’s execution being among them. He interrupts his game, comes to DC, makes a statement, then heads back to his game. He could do that during the fighting in Afghanistan because that’s what Generals were for.

But now there are specific things happening that you can’t really delegate to Generals. He has to set the stage, then when policy has been allowed to come together, after a decent period of time, then he can go back to finish his interrupted game.

To me, Obama and his golfing strikes me like the stereotypical image of a CEO – he goes golfing a lot, he gets interrupted because of some issue, then having said something about the issue, goes right back to his interrupted game without waiting to see what else might develop.

Russ808 on August 26, 2014 at 8:01 PM

To me, Obama and his golfing strikes me like the stereotypical image of a CEO – he goes golfing a lot, he gets interrupted because of some issue, then having said something about the issue, goes right back to his interrupted game without waiting to see what else might develop.

Russ808 on August 26, 2014 at 8:01 PM

Yes, and I suggest that Democratics believe that CEO’s really are like that.

slickwillie2001 on August 26, 2014 at 9:06 PM

First he tries to bail her out with

“Where are you from?”

…but then realizes that at that moment, she probably didn’t know. So he offers

“…you’re from Butte”

…which I thought was gracious. But the hand of reassurance was the giveaway for how bad he felt for the poor thing.

Too funny.

Jaibones on August 26, 2014 at 9:12 PM

This Foley beheading reminded him of that skulled wedge shot on his last round.

Anti-Statist on August 26, 2014 at 9:49 PM