This morning, the White House pushed back on Drudge's promotion of this video:
Linda Douglass, formerly a totally objective reporter with ABC News, appears in the below video in an attempt to debunk the first video. She does this by saying, essentially, "Obama's critics are lying about the President by using words that came directly out of his mouth on video. Now, here are some other things that Obama has also said on video more recently that are different from the stuff in the first video." No kidding. Obama has said entirely different things at different times to different audiences? "As I've consistently said...."
Despite copious coverage this morning, a top link on Drudge, and the Politico dubbing it a "viral campaign," Douglass' dreary video is up to only about 350 views. The original attack video is logging more than 400,000. As the White House should have learned by now, picking a fight with a guy like Drudge can be counterproductive, just like picking a fight with say, Rush Limbaugh. Today, Drudge responds with the uncut version of this 2003 video of Obama advocating single-payer, government-controlled health care, but warning that it will be a gradual process:
That video has 22,000 views right about now. If I were the White House, I wouldn't have lashed out at a guy like Drudge unless I had something stronger than Douglass' weak refutation to combat all that fear-mongering coming straight from Obama's own mouth. Phil Klein examines the charge that Obama was taken out of context in-depth, here. Bottom line:
Taken together, I think this highlights Democratic double-talk on health care. When speaking to liberal audiences who want a single-payer system, Democrats will argue to them that offering a government-run plan within a government-run exchange is the politically pragmatic way of getting to a single-payer system over time. But when addressing the general public, they talk about the government plan merely as something that will provide people with "choice" and foster "competition." They don't get to have it both ways.
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