The liberal media gave the ceaselessly political President Obama a pass for campaigning instead of performing his presidential duties when they were most needed, while they castigated Mitt Romney for being political when he was the only one of the two acting presidential.
To be sure, Obama is a political candidate for re-election to the presidency, but do we have to remind ourselves — as he often reminds us — that he also currently holds that office and that it includes duties that supersede his political activities?
After remaining silent for hours after the attacks in Egypt and Libya, Obama called a news conference to issue a brief statement on the matter and, in response to the first question, turned on his heels and walked off. Yet the liberal media, feigning outrage over Romney's alleged political exploitation, are neither curious nor critical about Obama's refusal to answer questions about the attacks, such as whether he considers them an act of war and what responses he is considering.
Instead of criticizing Obama for being political instead of presidential, of putting his personal interests above the interests of the nation he is charged to lead, the media ran interference for him, ignoring his dereliction of duty and turning their attention to the activities of Romney to manufacture the bogus storyline that he was the one being too political. What better way to detract from Obama's incompetence and politicking?
The media were lying in wait for Romney, who was eager to issue a public statement on the attacks but was trying earnestly not to campaign on the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Some "reporters" were even caught on a hot mic, conspiring to trip Romney up at his news conference.
But as a man who is running for the presidency, Romney had to make a statement on the matter. He owed it to the electorate. The media would have savaged him for fecklessness had he remained silent.
The media could hardly have argued with any credibility that a Romney statement would interfere with the official administration position, especially because the administration had been so reluctant to articulate a clear position. In any event, Romney's statement was measured, reasonable and reassuring to American voters who want to restore the presidency to someone who'll vigorously defend the United States and quit apologizing for it.
Romney properly expressed his outrage and disgust with the attacks — in a much more convincing tone, by the way, than President Obama would — when he clumsily read his own remarks without any hint of emotion. But Romney's alleged offense was in criticizing the administration for its statement "sympathizing with those who had breached our embassy in Egypt instead of condemning their actions" and for its mixed signals about whether to own or disavow the statement.
The statement from the U.S. Embassy centered on condemning "the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims." It said, "We condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions."
Many Americans were outraged that the administration, once again, was bending over backward to condemn those who criticize the Islamists instead of the Islamists themselves, who kill people who disagree with them. Sure, the statement came out before the attacks, but the administration persisted with the apologies after the attacks. It spoke as though the attacks had been in response to an anti-Muslim film, when they now appear to have been preplanned and coordinated for the anniversary of 9/11.
Not only that, but the very next day, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton took pains to condemn the video again, insisting that "the United States government had absolutely nothing to do with this video." She continued, "We absolutely reject its content and message," which she said was "disgusting and reprehensible."
Well, that's fine, Mrs. Clinton, but where's the administration's outrage over the attacks themselves, and why are you obsessing over the film instead of the terrorists' atrocities? Why must you keep stressing that this nation honors the freedoms of religion and expression, when it goes without saying that we are more respectful of those rights than any other nation in history? Why do you register such heightened sensitivity toward slights to Islam and freely trample on the conscience rights and liberties of American Christians?
While the media gleefully and supportively report Obama's laughable exercise in projection in depicting Romney as one who shoots first and aims later, they ignore Obama's abdication of his foreign policy duties to free up his schedule for campaigning.
While Obama sends mixed messages on terrorism, which he dare not call by its name, and snubs Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and then lies about it, he soaks up the love in Las Vegas and at other campaign stops, all of which he may do, free of scrutiny, because of a press corps dedicated solely to getting him re-elected.
David Limbaugh is a writer, author and attorney. His latest book, "The Great Destroyer," hit No. 2 on the New York Times best-seller list for nonfiction. Follow him on Twitter @davidlimbaugh and his website at www.davidlimbaugh.com. To read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.