By LARRY ELDER
After the congressional testimony of fired FBI Director James Comey, many Democrats, with notable exceptions, pulled back from the impeachment talk.
MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, one of the cheerleaders of the Donald Trump-must-go crowd, even said that Comey failed to make a case for obstruction of justice. “The big story has always been … the President had something to do with colluding with the Russians. Something to do, a helping hand, encouraging them, feeding their desire, to affect the election in some way, some role they played, some conversation he had with Michael Flynn, or Paul Manafort, or somewhere. And yet what came apart this morning was that theory.”
Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., the hyperbolic, rabid Trump-hater, still chanted at an anti-Trump rally on Sunday, “Impeach 45.” But she talked less about obstruction and more about Trump’s presumed unfitness for office. She called him a “liar.”
Liar? Were Waters and the other Democrats who make this claim asleep for the past eight years? Let’s talk about just some of the “lies” of the Obama administration.
Barack Obama repeatedly said that his mother, Ann Dunham, fought with insurance carriers to pay her medical and hospital bills as she lay dying from cancer. Obama told this story repeatedly during the 2008 campaign, as well as after he became President, when making the case for Obamacare. After all, if the dastardly insurance companies battle a woman with a PhD and her son with a law degree from Harvard, imagine what insurance carriers will do to you.
During the campaign, Obama said: “She was 52 years old when she died of ovarian cancer, and you know what she was thinking about in the last months of her life? She wasn’t thinking about getting well. She wasn’t thinking about coming to terms with her own mortality. She had been diagnosed just as she was transitioning between jobs. And she wasn’t sure whether insurance was going to cover the medical expenses because they might consider this a pre-existing condition. I remember just being heartbroken, seeing her struggle through the paperwork and the medical bills and the insurance forms.” He also said: “For my mother to die of cancer at the age of 53 and have to spend the last months of her life in the hospital room arguing with insurance companies because they’re saying that this may be a pre-existing condition and they don’t have to pay her treatment, there’s something fundamentally wrong about that.”
But ex-New York Times reporter Janny Scott wrote a flattering book about Obama’s mom. Scott describes Obama’s mom’s “battle” with insurance carriers quite differently. Scott said Dunham had employer-provided health insurance that “covered most of the costs of her medical treatment. … The hospital billed her insurance company directly, leaving Ann to pay only the deductible and any uncovered expenses, which, she said, came to several hundred dollars a month.” The only quarrel was over a disability policy Dunham had, but her pre-existing condition disqualified her. So much for the mean old insurance company, but Obama’s tale helped get Obamacare passed.
Obama, of course, repeatedly said, “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor.” PolitiFact called it the “Lie of the Year for 2013.” PolitiFact wrote, “We found at least 37 times since Obama’s inauguration where he or a top administration official made a variation of the pledge that if you like your plan, you can keep it, and we never found an instance in which he offered the caveat that it only applies to plans that hadn’t changed after the law’s passage. And seven of those 37 cases came after the release of the HHS regulations that defined the ‘grandfathering’ process, when the impact would be clear.”
Obama, who campaigned against the Iraq War, pulled out all the troops against the advice of his entire national security team. But when it became clear that the abrupt pull-out allowed ISIS to metastasize, Obama claimed that he merely followed the timetable for a complete pull-out established by his predecessor. After repeatedly bragging that by puling out he fulfilled a campaign promise, Obama then claimed that President George W. Bush tied his hands.
This brings us to the Iran nuclear deal, Obama’s most important foreign-policy decision, which critics claim gives Iran — the No. 1 exporter of terror — a path to a nuclear bomb. The Obama administration claimed that the ruling ayatollahs were divided into two camps, the hardliners and “moderates.” Obama’s deputy national security adviser for strategic communications, Ben Rhodes, argued that if we want the moderates to prevail, they need this Iran deal to strengthen their political hand. But according to a New York Times writer who profiled Rhodes in 2016: The story of the Iran deal … was largely manufactured for the purpose for selling the deal. Even where the particulars of that story are true, the implications that readers and viewers are encouraged to take away from those particulars are often misleading or false. … (This was) the narrative that Rhodes shaped.”
To Democrats calling for Trump’s head over his “lies,” where have you been for the last eight years? Welcome back.