It has been almost a week since the president was interviewed by Bill O’Reilly of Fox News. It is also the second time Obama has accused O’Reilly of “misinforming the public” and “distorting his views.”
Like a criminal investigation would be run, Americans should start from the beginning of last Sunday’s pre-Super Bowl interview.
At 4:35 pm (EST), the two men sat down for the quickie discussion.
O’Reilly began with a discussion on the September 11, 2012 attack on the American consulate in Benghazi and CIA headquarters three blocks away that led to the murder of Christopher Stevens, the U.S. Ambassador to Libya and three other men.
It was noted that Obama had said just two weeks before the attack that “al-Qaida was on the run” since the Navy SEALS had killed Obama bin Laden.
Those are straight facts that cannot be refuted, or can they?
O’Reilly said, "That's what they believe," meaning Obama’s detractors.
And then the incredible admonishment from the president - "And they believe it because folks like you are telling them that," Obama testily said.
O’Reilly shot back, "No, I'm not telling them that. I'm asking you whether you were told it was a terror attack."
From that point Obama claims it was "inaccurate" to say that Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told him the attack was terrorism when he first gave him the news.
O'Reilly correctly said Gen. Carter Ham, head of operations in Libya, had testified he immediately told Panetta the attack was terrorism, and not the result of a spontaneous demonstration over an anti-Muslim video.
Obama looked like a deer in the headlights, but O’Reilly dug in.
He added, "But it's more than that because of Susan Rice (the U.N. ambassador at the time)."
It was Ambassador Rice who appeared days later on all five Sunday news shows to pronounce the attack a consequence of an anti-Muslim video.
Obama remained motionless as O’Reilly added, "Just as an American, I'm just confused."
What say you Mr. President?
"Bill, I'm trying to explain it to you if you want to listen."
The interview went downhill from there as time after time Obama refused to take responsibility or even recognize other scandals including the IRS scandal and a host of other unanswered questions.
Obama’s retort on the IRS scandal for example?
"These kinds of things keep on surfacing, in part, because you and your TV station will promote them," the president said. "There was some boneheaded decisions out of a local office," adding that there was "not even a smidgen of corruption."
The interview went further downhill as the president refused to acknowledge that Kathleen Sebelius, Health and Human Services Secretary and primary overseer of the Obamacare rollout catastrophe wasn’t fired.
While O'Reilly noted that only 8 percent of Americans agree with Obama, and again pressed about firing Sebelius, Obama countered with, "Well, I promise you that we hold everybody up and down the line accountable. But when we're midstream, Bill, we want to make sure that our main focus is how we make this thing work so that people are able to sign up, and that's what we've done."
O’Reilly looked exasperated and the president defensive to the bitter end.
O’Reilly ended the interview with, “I know you think maybe we haven't been fair, but I think your heart is in the right place."
Fox News was unfair or the president wasn’t used to this sort of actual journalistic hardball questions?
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