The View’s Behar: Obama Critics Hate ‘Reaching Across the Aisle’ to Iran, Cuba

The women of The View on Monday predictably lashed out at critics of Barack Obama’s trip to Cuba, making morally equivalent arguments between the communist country and the United States. Co-host Joy Behar described the President’s deals with despotic regimes like Cuba and the United States as “reaching across the aisle.” 

Behar complained, “President Obama is reaching across the aisle. He opens up dialogue with Iran, they don't like it. He opens up dialogue with Cuba, they don't like it.” She added, “No matter what he does, when a Republican does it, they love it. When he does it, they hate it. That's their MO. Just be aware of it.” 

Co-host Paula Faris reminded Behar, “There are also a lot of prisoners that are in dungeons. There's still a dictator.” Behar, retorted, “You mean to tell me when Reagan went to China they didn't have any criminals there?” Although Ronald Reagan did visit China in 1984, presumably, Behar meant to refer to Richard Nixon’s historic 1971 visit to the country. 

Regarding complaints about Cuba’s human rights record, Behar compared, “After World War II, we harbored Nazi criminals here. I mean, everyone knows that. If you read, you know that. So, we're not innocent in this way.” 

Earlier in the day, ABC’s Good Morning America co-hosts fawned over Obama’s “day of history” in Cuba and skimped on coverage of the 50 dissidents jailed just prior to the President’s visit. 

A partial transcript is below: 

The View
3/21/16
11:28

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: President Obama just became the first U.S. President since 1928 to set foot on Cuban soil, and a lot of people are not happy about this. They feel it's wrong. He shouldn't be doing it. You know, some people say, you know, because Cuba has harbored criminals, U.S. criminals, he shouldn't be down there. What are you thinking? 

JOY BEHAR: Well, we've harbored criminals in this country right after World War II Yeah. People know. 

PAULA FARIS: [People clapping.] Why are they enthusiastic about it? 

BEHAR: They're clapping because I said the truth. 

FARIS: No, I know. 

BEHAR: After World War II, we harbored Nazi criminals here. I mean, everyone knows that. If you read, you know that. So, we're not innocent in this way. So, talk about the pot calling the kettle. That's what we're doing here. And he's opening up doors. The guy —  you know, President Obama is reaching across the aisle. He opens up dialogue with Iran, they don't like it. He opens up dialogue with Cuba, they don't like it. No matter what he does, when a Republican does it, they love it. When he does it, they hate it. That's their MO.  Just be aware of it. 

FARIS: Well, I think the critics are just saying they wish he would focus more on improving conditions. You talk about harbor fugitives but there are also a lot of prisoners that are in dungeons. There’s still a dictator.  

BEHAR: You mean to tell me when Reagan went to China they didn't have any criminals there? Come on. 

FARIS: I’m just saying, they have no internet access. It's a dictatorship. They don't have, you know, free speech or a First Amendment. So, I think, yes, the door is open but let's focus on some bigger issues and improving the conditions. 

GOLDBERG: Well, he’s only here a for a little while longer. You know?  He just got the place opened. No, no, Obama. Frankly, you know, when Mr. Gorbachev, “Tear down that wall” or, you know, opening up China, this is what presidents do, this is what they do. People have forgotten because we have become such a country that says “No, no. Only we know.” But, you know, harboring criminals, we accepted every criminal that Cuba sent. You know that? When they opened the prisons, we accepted everybody so for them to be bitching about it now seems a little freaky to me. 


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