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article imageOp-Ed: Bill Maher — Asks GOPers for specifics of what Obama’s doing wrong

By John Presta     Jul 27, 2014 in Politics
Los Angeles - Critics of President Barack Obama love to say that he lacks leadership, that he doesn't have the respect of the world or that he isn't strong enough when it comes to foreign policy. Ask that same critic for specific examples and they come up empty.
HBO's Real Time host, Bill Maher, has been arguing this point for the last several months on his show and has taken the argument one step further by flatly saying that the criticism is "racially based." His favorite joke is that the tea party started in response to a black president.
Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol took issue with Maher last March on the show. “It was about a black president,” Maher said. Kristol retorted, “That’s bullshit. That is total bullshit. You think tens of millions of people out there just – even you don’t believe that. You’re just saying that.”
But Maher stayed with it. “I totally believe it. It happened a month after he took office. Suddenly white people were very upset about debt even though Bush had raised the debt way more than Obama had.”
Kristol responded that the Tea Party movement was also “upset at Bush for raising the debt.”
Maher insists that Obama's "done fantastic.” Maher was asked last month how he felt President Obama had done in office. “He’s had to deal with things that no other president has had to deal with. It’s true.”
Maher added that the criticism from the tea party is based on race, adding "I know the tea party hates hearing that. That, you know, they’re racist, because 99.999% of them are white and the president who drives them insane is black is just a coincidence."
Maher gave specifics. "I never saw a governor stick the finger in a president’s face like the governor of Arizona did. I never saw a president heckled at the State of the Union like he was. I never saw Bill O’Reilly interrupt a president the way he does. There’s a kind of in your face, in your space, disrespect going on there.”
But this past Friday evening, Maher put that theory of a lack of specifity of Obama to a test, reported
Two of Maher's guests on the show, FreedomWorks CEO Matt Kibbe and Republican Hogan Gidley were pressed by Maher to explain what they mean by their ongoing criticism of Obama's foreign policy. According to Meditiate, Maher "challenged them to say exactly what Obama should be doing differently, and repeatedly emphasized that they should be specific in their criticisms."
FreedomWorks CEO Matt Kibbe started answering Maher and drifted in vagueness land. Kibbe patronizingly said, yes, of course some of it is Bush's fault, but at the same time "“this president has zero respect in the world.” Maher insisted on specificity and asked Kibbs what Obama should do.
“It’s called leadership.”
That wasn't an answer said Maher. “Remember when I said be specific?” and added, “What the fuck does that mean?”
Republican Hogan Gidley also jumped into the conversation and was even less help as to specificity and said that "Obama refuses to act like a strong leader." Gidley buys into the John McCain and Lindsey Graham narrative of Obama's failure to name-call Russian leader Vladimir Putin a "thug." Gidley wanted Obama to name Putin “as a bad actor in the planes coming down.” Maher repeatedly pressed him on what Obama should do, and when Gidley didn’t directly answer, he cries, “You keep veering off the point of what we should be doing!”
This conversation typifies the Republican rhetoric.
Is the criticism based on race? Let's get specific. Yes, of course it is "racism."
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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