Bill Maher: Barack Obama Is A Moderate Republican By '70s Standards

Bill Maher on Friday said Barack Obama is a moderate Republican by '70s standards.

As the subject on the most recent installment of "Real Time" moved to the retirement of Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, the HBO host actually said that it was the Republican Party that has changed in the past thirty or forty years and not Stevens' view of the world.  

"You know what's ironic is that you know who's really a moderate Republican by '70s standards?" Maher asked. "Barack Obama."

This stupidity came seconds after guest Richard Clarke actually said that the gun rally in Virginia on April 19 was to commemorate the Oklahoma City bombing (video follows with transcript and commentary, file photo): 

RICHARD CLARKE: Let's go back to Susan's point. Where are the people in the Republican Party standing up to the extremists? I'm from Virginia and there was a rally in Virginia on April 19 commemorating the day of the Oklahoma City attack where people were encouraged to carry their guns to the rally. Where were the Republican Party leaders criticizing that? I only heard Democrats criticizing that.

REP. ALAN GRAYSON (D-FLA.): They don't criticize it. They encourage it.

Stop the tape. What staggering nonsense.

As reported by, Monday's gun rights rallies in Virginia were held on the anniversary of Lexington and Concord:

Across the Potomac River, in Virginia, another group of protesters are defending the Second Amendment with a show of arms -- holding an "Open Carry Rally." Signs in the crowd pointed to the role of government, with one reading, "My rights come from God, not from the government." Protesters had large rifles and other weapons strapped to their bodies.

Restore the Constitution Rally event organizers said they chose certain areas in Virginia -- like Gravelly Point Park and Fort Hunt Park -- because they are "firearms carry-legal [locations] as close to D.C. as possible." [...]

Monday's events come on the anniversary of the battles at Lexington and Concord in the Revolutionary War, when the British moved to seize colonists' supplies. It's a point protesters say is the impetus for their call to action.

"This was one of the first displays of American spirit as the colonists united to defend their way of life," according to the Second Amendment March Web site.

April 19 also is the 15th anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing. It's a connection one speaker was adamant to get away from.

"They want to make this about [convicted Oklahoma City bomber] Timothy McVeigh, which really pissed me off," radio personality Erich "Mancow" Muller said at the Washington rally. "How about mentioning that this is patriot's day?" 

As such, Clarke was WAY off base with this claim. But I digress: 

BILL MAHER, HOST: You know what's ironic is that you know who's really a moderate Republican by '70s standards? Barack Obama.

GRAYSON: It's true.

MAHER: Barack Obama, you know, I mean, I'm glad he's getting this financial reform package through but it does not include something that I think we would all think is the main point of it. I'm not an economist but I do understand the phrase "too big to fail," which means banks are just too big. Like 20 years ago the top six banks had like seventeen percent of the business of Americans and now they have like 63 percent. That bill does not address too big to fail. Just like the healthcare bill did not have a public option. It was more like the bill that Bob Dole tried to get through when he was dealing with the Clintons in 1994. A liberal Democrat so-called like Barack Obama today is really a moderate Republican of yesteryear.


Exit question: which remark was the most pathetic -- Maher's or Clarke's? 

HBO Real Time Alan Grayson Richard Clarke
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