President Obama Has the Right To Remain Silent ?

Bookmark and Share President Obama recently held a bill signing ceremony for the Daniel Pearl Freedom of the Press Act. When it was over, reporter Chip Reid tried to ask a question and the President responded by saying that a press conference will be forth coming but he would not be answering questions at the time. Some might call refusing to answer questions from the press at a bill signing that promotes freedom of the press,  ironic.   I call it hypocritical and extremely poor planning by the Whitehouse press office and President’s advisors.

But the incident highlighted a very conspicuous failing of this, the “most transparent Administration in history” that candidate Barack Obama once promised us.  Because if this is the most transparent presidency we’ve ever seen, than somebody better tell Huston that we have a problem with lift off.

In a truly transparent Administration, the President and his spokesman do not spend 7 months dodging questions and avoiding answers about possible federal bribery charges regarding attempts to influence the election of a federal official.

In a truly transparent Administration, its President would not avoid addressing questions regarding continued high unemployment and the effects of an unprecedented ballooning of the deficit or avoid being put on the spot with questions regarding the real cost of his socialized government takeover of healthcare which came to light, after he and his Congress rammed it through by a partisan vote and against the will of the people.

If this Administration and President were truly transparent, it would not have spent the last 305 days avoiding the press and refusing to answer questions from the national press corp.

While President Obama has plenty of time to do NBA interviews with TNT, the last time President Obama held a full fledged press conference was on July 21sr of last year.

The longest President George Bush ever went in between press conferences was 214 days. And for that he was attacked and labeled “secretive”. But this President is given a pass.

No contemporary president has gone almost a year without holding a press conference and avoiding the inquiring minds of the media that covers him. Since LBJ, the President to have, so far, held the fewest press conferences, oddly was the Great Communicator, Ronald Reagan. He averaged 5.76 press conferences a year.

60 more days and President Obama will have held no solo press conferences at all.

Like Reagan, President Obama has been touted as “articulate”. They also claim that President Obama is a commanding presence and quite persuasive and knowledgeable.

If that is so, why won’t he come forward and demonstrate how knowledgeable, articulate and persuasive he is and answer the questions of the national press? Could it be that like his socialist policy proposals, he is all about control and is afraid that he can not control the news and information that the free press might generate in the wake of non-scripted press conference?

Could it be that the President does not want to have to go on record denying that his Administration tried to bribe Congressman Joe Sestak in his race for the US Senate or that he does not want to have to defend the bullying tactics of his Chief of Staff Rahm “Rhambo” Emanuele? Maybe President Obama does not want to have to explain why his record level of federal spending has really not stabilized banking and lending interests, the stock market, employment, national productivity or the economy in general?

President Obama also does not want to have to answer questions regarding why so few people in his party actually voted for a healthcare scheme that they did not reads and why it is taking so long for anyone in his Administration to read the new Arizona illegal immigration enforcement law, but are still going to challenge it.

He also does not want to have to explain why it is taking months for his Environmental Protection Agency to issue the permits needed in order for the people of Louisiana to start building the protective sand barriers that they hope will protect the state’s sensitive marshes from the oil that continues to billow out into the Gulf of Mexico. Nor does President Obama want to answer as to why British Petroleum seemingly received preferential regulatory treatment and passes after they donated a million dollars to his political war chest.

In short, President Obama is avoiding a press conference because there is little if anything positive he could say without lying. He can’t say that his strong foreign policy initiatives have deterred Iran from their pursuit of nuclear weapons, or that it has prevented North Korea from doing the same and averted any acts of aggression from them such as the sinking of a South Korean ship.

He can’t claim that either he or someone in his Administration tried to bribe Joe Sestak. And at the same time, if he were to claim that Joe Sestak is lying, he would essentially be costing his Party a much needed seat in the Senate that could even make the difference between minority status and majority control.

President Obama is looking forward to holding a national press conference about as much as he is looking forward to the upcoming mid-term elections. He knows that nothing good will come of it for him or his Party. He knows that anything he says will simply be held against him either in the court of law or the court of public opinion and like a coward he refuses to face his fears.

And so what was once suppose to be the most transparent Administration in his history is quickly becoming the most clandestine, tightlipped, center of secrecy we have seen since the Saturday Night Massacre, when Richard Nixon fired everyone who refused to cover up the truth in Watergate.

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1 Comment

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One response to “President Obama Has the Right To Remain Silent ?

  1. As it turns out, just today, President Obama announced that he will be holding his first press conference in over 300 days. Who says the blogosphere idn’t influencing the world?

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