Does He Lie?
No, but Obama implies, misdirects, and misleads.
By Charles Krauthammer
You lie? No. Barack Obama doesn’t lie. He’s too subtle for that. He . . . well, you judge.
Herewith three examples within a single speech — the now-famous Obama-Wilson “you lie” address to Congress on health care — of Obama’s relationship with truth.
(1) “I will not sign (a plan),” he solemnly pledged, “if it adds one dime to the deficit, now or in the future. Period.”
Wonderful. The president seems serious, veto-ready, determined to hold the line. Until, notes Harvard economist Greg Mankiw, you get to Obama’s very next sentence: “And to prove that I’m serious, there will be a provision in this plan that requires us to come forward with more spending cuts if the savings we promised don’t materialize.”
This apparent strengthening of the pledge brilliantly and deceptively undermines it. What Obama suggests is that his plan will require mandatory spending cuts if the current rosy projections prove false. But there’s absolutely nothing automatic about such cuts. Every Congress is sovereign. Nothing enacted today will force a future Congress or a future president to make any cuts in any spending, mandatory or not.
Just look at the supposedly automatic Medicare cuts contained in the Sustainable Growth Rate formula enacted to constrain out-of-control Medicare spending. Every year since 2003, Congress has waived the cuts.
Mankiw puts the Obama bait-and-switch in plain language. “Translation: I promise to fix the problem. And if I do not fix the problem now, I will fix it later, or some future president will, after I am long gone. I promise he will. Absolutely, positively, I am committed to that future president fixing the problem. You can count on it. Would I lie to you?”
Please click here to read the full article with 2 more examples.
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It's unusual that I disagree with Mr. Krauthammer. I think he's an incredibly brilliant guy, way smarter than I am and more articulate than I can ever hope to be. But he is being quite charitable to the president in my view. When Obama represents something to the American people by implying, misdirecting, and misleading them about the true facts, call me silly - but that's lying!
Joe Wilson was absolutely correct, and he spoke for many of us who aren't prone to skirting the issue with semantics. President Obama, YOU LIE!