Schieffer: Yeah, I’m bothered by Obama’s optics in hostage death

posted at 12:01 pm on February 16, 2015 by Ed Morrissey

To be fair, Face the Nation host Bob Schieffer isn’t just unimpressed by Barack Obama’s response to the death of Kayla Jean Mueller, but also Congress’ as well. Heading off for a fundraiser and a round of golf may be par for the course for Obama, but what kind of message does that send to America’s enemies and allies? Should Congress have gone on “vacation” or stuck around to debate the demand for a new AUMF tailored to the fight against ISIS? The absence of leadership on both sides of Pennsylvania avenue “bothers” the CBS News host:

BOB SCHIEFFER: Here’s a part that bothers me. And I will preference this by saying I certainly do not want to see the President of the United States put on a military uniform. No President of the United States has ever put on a military uniform and there is a reason for that, and we all want to keep it that way, as far as I know. But after that Jordanian pilot was killed in that horrible way, here you saw the king put on his– his fatigues, he executes two prisoners that they were holding in Jordan and launched bombing raids. We have another American hostage killed and Congress and the President and the President goes off to California to do a fundraiser and some other stuff and the Congress goes on vacation and they say, yeah, we’ll– we will debate what to do about all of this. But we are going to do it as long as it fits into the schedule. There is no reason to do anything out of the ordinary.

Schieffer then laments how this colors perceptions about the US and its response, which Goldberg attempts to rebut in part:

JEFFREY GOLDBERG: Something we always forget because we are sitting here is that in the greater Middle East, people understand what Obama is doing. He is killing terrorists in eight or ten different locations right now as we speak. And– and we often– we often sort of lose sight of that fact, in part because of the way he– he is so hesitant to talk about it in grand terms, and because of these debates in Congress. But he has been killing terrorists for years now and– and he is doing it whether or not Congress lets him do it.

Actually, Congress “lets” him do it through the existing AUMFs regarding al-Qaeda and Iraq. Obama didn’t bother to consult Congress on Libya, which was a sustained military action against the recognized government of another nation, and it turned into an utter disaster. Obama may be killing terrorists a handful at a time through drone strikes, but he’s created failed states in Libya and now Yemen which will allow terrorist networks to flourish and expand. As we saw this weekend, ISIS has at least a toehold now in Libya.

Obama isn’t seeking a new AUMF in order to get Congress to “let” him attack ISIS, but to get a stamp of approval from Congress for a strategy that’s not working against the marauding army that our withdrawal from Iraq allowed to metastasize in the first place. Kimberly Strassel makes this point during the panel discussion, comparing it to the aborted unilateral strikes on Bashar al-Assad in the summer of 2013:

KIMBERLEY STRASSEL: This is political cover, though. I mean it reminds me of the Syria thing, a few years ago. The President said don’t cross my red line and then Bashar al-Assad did and then the President said okay, you, Congress, tell me if I can do anything about it, because he didn’t want to act on his own. He wanted them to have to take responsibility as well for what happened, and, you know, the Republicans, if they wanted to be smart here, what they ought to do is just call his bluff and not take this up at all. I mean he is already operating under an authorization that he claims gives him all the authority[.]

Strassel is wrong about one point. What Republicans should do is pass an AUMF that removes all the restrictions that Obama included in his proposal and replace them with a commitment to fight with all options on the table until ISIS is destroyed, and then let him veto it. That would make the point of Obama’s attempt even more clear.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Stop the AUTOPLAY!

geojed on February 16, 2015 at 12:07 PM

Auto-play alert!!!

geojed on February 16, 2015 at 12:07 PM

Exactly, give Obama full authorization to use whatever force he needs to defeat ISIS.

Don’t give him any excuse to say his hands are tied.

commodore on February 16, 2015 at 12:08 PM

Obozo’s view: Everything good is because of me, everything bad is someone else’s fault.

Flange on February 16, 2015 at 12:08 PM

Dude….Obama is on the other side. He was out celebrating.

albill on February 16, 2015 at 12:08 PM

Strassel is wrong about one point. What Republicans should do is pass an AUMF that removes all the restrictions that Obama included in his proposal and replace them with a commitment to fight with all options on the table until ISIS is destroyed, and then let him veto it. That would make the point of Obama’s attempt even more clear.

ROTFLMAO… If congress had the testicular fortitude to do this, Mecca, Medina and Qom would have long ago been radioactive smoking craters.

oscarwilde on February 16, 2015 at 12:09 PM

Has Schieffer asked Holder about the New Black Panther Party yet?

pain train on February 16, 2015 at 12:09 PM

The phony optics are gone. There are no more elections for Obama to win. What we’re seeing now is the real Obama. He doesn’t look like he cares because he doesn’t much care. At least he doesn’t care about what happens far away from him.

RBMN on February 16, 2015 at 12:10 PM

Optics Before Coptics.

SMH.

Christien on February 16, 2015 at 12:11 PM

Of course Schieffer couldn’t bring himself to criticize just Obama. He had to lump congress in there as well.

Jack_Burton on February 16, 2015 at 12:12 PM

I wonder if the families of the dead hostages worry about Obama’s Optics?

portlandon on February 16, 2015 at 12:13 PM

Optics Before Coptics.

SMH.

Christien on February 16, 2015 at 12:11 PM

That could be a mic drop thread winner right there.

Brian1972 on February 16, 2015 at 12:14 PM

Stop the AUTOPLAY!

geojed on February 16, 2015 at 12:07 PM

Why don’t you? Why b!tch at the blog? Use a browser that has add-ons and block the autoplay. Try http://www.palemoon.org

Now back to the subject. Bob CBS says he’s bothered. I say I’m horrified and disgusted.

Which one of us is right?

platypus on February 16, 2015 at 12:14 PM

He’s auditioning as a debate moderator: “See? I’ve been really hard on my boyfriend. I’ll be hard on Killery, too.”

Rational Thought on February 16, 2015 at 12:15 PM

Yo, Jack, Congress did not go off on a fundraiser in CA: Obama did that alone.

He also takes these important bits of news and communicates, as another commenter pointed out, from Golf Cart One.

ajacksonian on February 16, 2015 at 12:15 PM

Exactly, give Obama full authorization to use whatever force he needs to defeat ISIS.

Don’t give him any excuse to say his hands are tied.

commodore on February 16, 2015 at 12:08 PM

The AUMF doesn’t even need to be one full page:

1. “The President is authorized to use any and all means necessary to destroy and render unable to offer resistance the islamic TERRORIST group calling itself “islamic state” as well as any affiliate, ally, successor organization or nation that offers them material support or refuge”.

2. This Authorization will not expire until islamic terrorism is no longer a threat to the United States or our allies.

Put that on his desk and he will veto it.

ConstantineXI on February 16, 2015 at 12:17 PM

Put that on his desk and he will veto it.

ConstantineXI on February 16, 2015 at 12:17 PM

You might have to scotch tape it to his bag of golf clubs for him to notice it right away, or have ESPN cover it so he’ll see it first thing in the morning at 9:30am.

Brian1972 on February 16, 2015 at 12:20 PM

SchiefferDNC cheerleader: Yeah, I’m bothered by Obama’s optics in hostage death

STFU, Schieffer.

antipc on February 16, 2015 at 12:23 PM

Schieffer’s outrageously outrageous outrage to be the top Fifth Column Treasonous Media story of the week in… 9,999,999,999,999… 9,999,999,999,998… 9,999,999,999,997…

oscarwilde on February 16, 2015 at 12:29 PM

ConstantineXI on February 16, 2015 at 12:17 PM

That. Short, simple, to the point. Even a low-information voter could understand it.

GrumpyOldFart on February 16, 2015 at 12:29 PM

The last thing we need are the retards of Congress reacting on the fly to yet another mideast atrocity, but the preznit traipsing off the way he did is something else.

There’s no room in Dog Eater’s world for anyone but Dog Eater, that includes his own family, the man takes “self-centered” to entirely new levels.

Bishop on February 16, 2015 at 12:30 PM

Schieffer then laments how this colors perceptions about the US and its response

Sorry Bob, that’s the president you wanted. We warned you about him but you refused to listen.

rbj on February 16, 2015 at 12:31 PM

Later that day…………

Schieffer to Obama, “Awwwwwwww come ‘ere ya big lug”.

antipc on February 16, 2015 at 12:37 PM

HAHAHAHAHHHAHAHHA!!

Yeah, this is rich coming from this embalmed idiot.

This is the same guy who asked Boner.

“When are you going to quit Smoking John?”

When at that same time Obama still smoked, (and still does).

ToddPA on February 16, 2015 at 12:38 PM

Schieffer then laments how this colors perceptions about the US and its response

Sorry Bob, that’s the president you wanted. We warned you about him but you refused to listen.

rbj on February 16, 2015 at 12:31 PM

Obama clearly only knows how to do three things well.

1) Blame others for his own failing. Crusades anyone?

2) Go to fundraising events. Didn’t he fly off to Las Vegas to attend a fundraiser with Beyonce and Jay Z the morning after Benghazi?

3) Play Golf, Didn’t they actually have to drag him off the Golf course when Benghazi was happening?

oscarwilde on February 16, 2015 at 12:41 PM

What Republicans should do is pass an AUMF that removes all the restrictions that Obama included in his proposal and replace them with a commitment to fight with all options on the table until ISIS is destroyed, and then let him veto it. That would make the point of Obama’s attempt even more clear.

Makes perfect sense if we had GOP Congressional Leadership that was actually interested in leading and doing what’s best for the country as opposed to being afraid of being castigated by a media that will castigate them just because they aren’t surrendering fast enough.

As for Schieffer, he might whinge on about being ‘bothered’, but beyond the words – what’s Schieffer really doing to report on the arrogance, contempt, and narcissism so regularly demonstrated by the petulant sociopath occupying the WH? He was silent during the Gruber kerfuffle. He’s been silent over how this Administration treats the press, his profession, with contempt and disdain.

There’s nothing from Schieffer that demonstrates that he’s been ‘bothered’ enough to actually do something about it. Actions speak louder than words.

Athos on February 16, 2015 at 12:42 PM

give obama a twig…and he will find a way to shove it up his own ass

clandestine on February 16, 2015 at 12:42 PM

The One’s feckless ‘strategy’ in Iraq is caught up in his perception that the country represents the world’s largest sand trap.

vnvet on February 16, 2015 at 12:46 PM

In fairness, he only golfs if he’s out of deserters to trade.

rogerb on February 16, 2015 at 12:49 PM

Optics Before Coptics.

SMH.

Christien on February 16, 2015 at 12:11 PM

PERFECT
thread stops there

dmacleo on February 16, 2015 at 12:51 PM

“When are you going to quit Smoking John?”

“When our dog-eating President stops.”

(Every response should be turned back as a negative against the Democrats.)

dominigan on February 16, 2015 at 12:56 PM

Obama only comments when muzzies are killed. He never mentions Christians being slaughtered and I don’t think he has said anything about this either. He does’t have much tack for being such a smart guy.

garydt on February 16, 2015 at 1:04 PM

Schieffer has long had his head in the exact same place as banned Ded Pecker did.

Palate cleanser…

Shocking! You won’t believe what happens at a suicide bomber’s funeral!

WhirledPeas on February 16, 2015 at 1:15 PM

What Republicans should do is pass an AUMF that removes all the restrictions that Obama included in his proposal and replace them with a commitment to fight with all options on the table until ISIS is destroyed, and then let him veto it. That would make the point of Obama’s attempt even more clear.

I agree wholeheartedly that Congress should send a clean AUMF, and said the same a few days ago. They ought to add Boehner and McConnell’s Congressional phone numbers in case he needs more money for it because without them he’ll forget and use that as an excuse shift the blame from himself and implying that Congress is to blame.

In fact, the more I’ve thought about it, the more I think that they shouldn’t write a new AUMF, but amend the existing 2001 AUMF acknowledging that Obama was right to use it to initiate action against ISIS and specifically include ISIS in the way that would have been in a new AUMF. This would address two potentialities I see. One, it would eliminate the possibility that Obama would use a new one to claim a new starting point in the war. Two, that because there is history to what the 2001 AUMF allowed, he could not somehow still claim the extent of the effort is limited in scope, duration or objective.

Dusty on February 16, 2015 at 1:38 PM

And I will preference* this by saying I certainly do not want to see the President of the United States put on a military uniform. No President of the United States has ever put on a military uniform and there is a reason for that, and we all want to keep it that way, as far as I know.

When Congress declares war, or the President executes a unilateral overseas kinetic operation, they should all suit up and grab a gun.

AesopFan on February 16, 2015 at 2:02 PM

* preference should probably be preface (voice transcription sucks when your transcriber is illiterate), but Schieffer is certainly preferential about his preferences.

AesopFan on February 16, 2015 at 2:03 PM

[AesopFan on February 16, 2015 at 2:03 PM]

It’s clear in the vid that Shieffer said preference, not preface, but I know what you mean about it normally being wrong word to use. But I consider it a mask slip showing how he thinks of what news to report — it’s always about preferences on narrative selling, not prefaces, behind the scenes.

Way back in the mid-00’s Lehrer was so bound up with arguing about not doing things unilaterally, he actually called a UN approval of action “unilateral”.

Dusty on February 16, 2015 at 2:25 PM

Poor Bob. The underwear he put on is now chafing him a bit. Well gee Bob, if you and the rest of the cheer leading media had some real ‘optics’, you might have vetted the One and you wouldn’t be ‘bothered’ by his ‘optics’ now.

ghostwalker1 on February 16, 2015 at 2:48 PM

It’s clear in the vid that Shieffer said preference, not preface, but I know what you mean about it normally being wrong word to use. But I consider it a mask slip showing how he thinks of what news to report — it’s always about preferences on narrative selling, not prefaces, behind the scenes.

Way back in the mid-00′s Lehrer was so bound up with arguing about not doing things unilaterally, he actually called a UN approval of action “unilateral”.

Dusty on February 16, 2015 at 2:25 PM

Odds are he has used improper verbiage so much, he doesn’t know which is the correct choice.

AesopFan on February 16, 2015 at 3:08 PM

man you righties are such suckers for optics/propoganda.

you guys wet yourself when jordan’s king talked loudly and released pics wearing military gear, even though jordan carried out fewer airstrikes in response to that murder than Obama did while golfing in the 48hrs after kayla’s murder.

grow up, children.

everdiso on February 16, 2015 at 3:14 PM

Strassel is wrong about one point. What Republicans should do is pass an AUMF that removes all the restrictions that Obama included in his proposal and replace them with a commitment to fight with all options on the table until ISIS is destroyed, and then let him veto it. That would make the point of Obama’s attempt even more clear.

Congress can authorize the use of force. It can’t direct the president to use that force in a certain way.

There is no reason to give Obama political cover by legitimizing his current campaign of political gestures. Given his proclivity for political gestures disguised as military action Congress should authorize nothing until Obama commits to rational and achievable goals and a coherent strategy for accomplishing them.

novaculus on February 16, 2015 at 3:16 PM

So let me get this straight. Putting terrorists in Guantanamo creates more terrorists, but killing them with drones doesn’t?

DepthTested on February 16, 2015 at 3:49 PM

Schieffer: Yeah, I’m bothered by Obama’s optics in hostage death

…does that Suck-up…look like he’s lost any sleep over it?

JugEarsButtHurt on February 16, 2015 at 4:27 PM

Why the heck does a lame duck president need to fund raise? Who is he raising the money for?

Old Country Boy on February 16, 2015 at 6:30 PM

I’d be impressed if Ole Bob was bothered by the policy NOT just the optics

LaserBeam on February 16, 2015 at 7:27 PM

Ya know why “optics” matter?
Cuz, that’s all this fecacta administration has to offer.

They don’t really accomplish anything. That would require knowledge, thought and, you know, work. None of which interests a prog.

All that’s required is to “appear” to know, think and act. Results don’t matter. Power matters.

And, their power is based on perception not reality. Fool enough fools during an election and you possess the power.

My work here is done.

LaserBeam on February 16, 2015 at 7:37 PM