Jimmy Carter Continues ‘Obama Attacks Racist’ Rant, Targets 9/12 Protesters

Picture 6Despite the growing criticism from his own side of the aisle over yesterday’s remarks that much of the anger directed at President Obama is racially motivated, former President Jimmy Carter kept hammering at it last night during an address in Atlanta. Only this time Carter was a tad more specific, targeting those “demonstrators” as who describe Obama “as a reincarnation of Adolf Hitler, or when they wave signs in the air that we should have buried Obama with Kennedy” as having a “racist attitude.”

Is this a sign that Carter is planning on going after Glenn Beck? (One imagines the White House is very much hoping otherwise.) The presence of the Obama/Kennedy signs at last weekend’s 9/12 rally were well documented, and last month Beck made headlines for comparing aspects of Obama’s health care plan, to the Nazi’s eugenics program during WWII. The Obama as Hitler signs, meanwhile, made their appearance during some of the more rowdy town halls this summer. It’s hard to miss Carter’s insinuation here.

Regardless of what Carter’s long-term goal is with these sorts of remarks, President Obama wants nothing to do with it. From today’s New York Times:

But this time the White House has made clear that it does not want to engage on the topic, which beyond threatening to distract attention from the health care push could also put further strain on Mr. Obama’s broad but tenuous electoral coalition of liberals and moderates, Democrats and independents. Signaling that he had no intention of lending his voice to Mr. Carter’s accusation, the president declined to answer a reporter’s question on the subject in the Oval Office on Wednesday.

Whether or not that’s realistic remains to be seen. Carters full remarks below.

Video Of Obama’s “Jackass” Comment Removed By Politico, Saved By CNN

Politico has nabbed (not so fast! updates below) the video of President Obama’s now infamous (image saving?) “jackass” remark. It’s a fairly jolly scene! The journalist we heard hooting in the background yesterday, turns out to be John Harwood himself, who thinks the remark in hi-larious. However, any pretense that Obama’s remark was reasonably going to be kept on the down-low is done away with when it becomes clear the President is surrounded by cameras and already miked. His look of exasperation at the room’s response is nothing if not well-practiced.

UPDATE: And now Politico appears to have removed it. Because they feel it’s off-the-record? Can it really still be considered OTR now that it’s become such a public event? Yowzer. Even Mark Knoller doesn’t seem to think the interaction can reasonably be considered off-the-record anymore. Did Politico merely chicken out? Were they on the receiving end of a phone call from the higher-higher ups? It’s hard to imagine them removing such traffic bait for any other reason. We have an email into Politico and will update when we hear back.

UPDATE 2: Politico tells us “We just felt upon reflection that it was more respectful to a fellow news-gathering operation to take it down.”

UPDATE 3: YouTube saves the day! Apparently CNN has no OTR issues with airing the video Politico scooped. You can watch it above. Original Politico link below.

The Nation’s Health Care Headlines And What Obama’s Sunday TV Blitz Is Up Against

43245378Yesterday we reported that President Obama — who has made more public appearances than perhaps any sitting president in history — will be doing a “El Completo Ginsburg” on Sunday, hitting five Sunday shows. On Monday he’ll be on Letterman. It may be that the health care bill gets passed based purely Obama’s persistent willingness to shill for it.

Then again, maybe not. The media deluge of the last few weeks certainly hasn’t appeared to change the tone of the debate or the headlines. This morning ABC’s Rick Klein twittered out “read through healthcare headlines today and tell me why POTUS wouldn’t want a full Sunday circuit – if only to try to regain some order.” I still think the President should consider taking a chalkboard with him (or employ the term jackass more liberally). In the meantime, here’s a quick look at today’s headlines. It’s not encouraging.

“Baucus Offers Health Plan, Trimming Cost to $856 Billion” (NYT)

“Alarm Bell on Health Reform” (WaPo)

“Senate Health Bill Draws Fire on Both Sides” (NYT)

“Revolving door for health care aides” (Politico)

“Young Adults Likely to Pay Big Share of Reform’s Cost” (WaPo)

“Clergy focus on ethics of health overhaul” (USAT)

“Mandated Health Insurance Squeezes Those in the Middle (WSJ)

“Health costs to rise again” (Boston Globe)

“Snowe falls away, leaving Senate Dems without GOP health support” (The Hill)

“Obama takes heat from other side of immigrant healthcare debate” (LAT)

Audio Of Obama’s ‘Jackass’ Remark: Refreshing New Tone For The President!

0915_obama_audio_ex2TMZ has posted the audio of President Obama referring to Kanye West as a “jackass” yesterday. It’s an interesting listen for a number of reasons.

One, Obama is responding to a reporter asking him whether his girls were as “ticked off” as the reporter’s were about Taylor Swift’s treatment at the VMA’s. “I thought that was really inappropriate,” says Obama. “Does that count as the first question?” the reporter asks, suggesting they were already on the record? Obama certainly doesn’t ask to be taken off the record even after he’s made the remark, though he does allude to not wanting the remark to be blown out of proportion. So much for that. Here’s the rest of the exchange:

Obama: The young lady seems like a perfectly nice person, she’s up there getting her award. Why’s he up there?
Reporter: Why’d he do that?
Obama: He’s a jackass.
[Much hooting in the press room over this.]
Obama: Now I’m assuming all this stuff…where’s the Pool [reporter]? Come’on guys, cut the President some slack…I got a lot of other stuff on my plate. Because I remember the last time, there was the fly thing. That was the highlight.
Reporter: But that worked out well for you, you were a ninja!

Yes, yes he was. (According to everyone but PETA.) And this outburst may also work out well for the Prez. Taken in the jokey context it was obviously meant it seems like a, um, reasonable, human response. Kanye was a jackass. The President didn’t try to sugarcoat it. The President’s human! A little more of this side of Obama would be a welcome change in terms of the current health care debate. One can only hope he makes an appearance a some point on his grand tour this Sunday. You can listen to the full audio here.

Did Oprah’s Obama Endorsement Really Kill Her Ratings?

obamapuppetThe sky is falling! Oprah’s ratings are down 7% last season, and as is the case with all things, this must have something to do with Barack Obama, somehow. In an article about the ratings decline, the AP quotes an author who says that Oprah’s endorsement of Obama has hurt her in the heartland. David Carr follows suit on Media Decoder: he says that Oprah’s decline is “understandable against a backdrop of atomizing audiences,” but could be because she alienated part of her base by going political.

It’s a theory, but does it pass the sniff test?

Too often, when the AP writes about the stock market, they feel the annoying need to make every little blip and bloop “about” something that happened that day — when in fact, many are near-random fluctuations, or reflective of broader trends. It’s the same with TV ratings.

According to TVbytheNumbers, who should know about this sort of thing, “for a while, we were getting multiple requests a week to look at that data, and whenever we looked at it, we couldn’t come up with anything to actually support the case. At least unless we could somehow attribute decreases with Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune to Oprah’s endorsement of Obama too.” You have to get to the fifth paragraph of the AP article to see that Jerry Springer, Maury Povich, and Martha Stewart all took double-digit tumbles last season.

A comparison: this Broadcasting & Cable article from February, right after the nomination, claims that Oprah’s support of Obama helped her ratings — even though oh yeah, lots of other top talk show hosts were experiencing similar gains at the time. Maybe… both of these Oprah fluctuations have something to do with talk shows in general?

The 9/12 crowd would love to take credit for the fall of a major TV icon that they don’t like and make puppeteering posters about (above). Maybe, in time, they’ll be able to make that claim. But until there’s hard proof that this is at all political and not, you know, about young people not watching her show because it’s really boring, let’s stick to the important things. Like making parody Tumblrs about Kanye’s VMA outburst.

Time For Obama To Pitch His Health Care Plan Kanye West-Style

obama-addressPresident Obama just can’t seem to catch a break when it comes to holding the nation’s attention with details of his health care plan. Perhaps the President should embrace a ‘if you can’t beat’em, join’em’ mentality and stage his own outburst. It may be a good last resort before all is lost. Consider this.

Last Wednesday Obama made the unusual move of calling a joint session of Congress, once again occupying the airwaves (sans FOX), to once again pitch his health care plan and hopefully clear up some misconceptions about what it does and does not consist of. It was by most people’s measure a fantastic speech…and yet it was mostly lost amidst all the ongoing hubub over Joe Wilson’s “You Lie” outburst.image5302808x

On Saturday, Obama sought to follow up Wednesday’s address with a health care plan rally in Minneapolis. Saturday was also known to some 70,000 rambunctious sign-wavers as 9/12, and it was that outburst of sign wavers, marching around Washington, who dominated both the cablers and the next-day coverage.

kanyetaylorBeing nothing if not persistent, Obama appeared this Sunday 60 Minutes for a second time in six months (video below) to talk to Steve Kroft about…the health care plan. 60 Minutes airs at 7pm ET, which last night put it somewhere between Serena Williams’ outburst at Saturday’s U.S. Open and Kanye West’s Taylor Swift-directed outburst at the VMA’s. The President really just needs everyone — everyone — to shut the hell up for seven days so he can get his point across!

There is a chance Obama will have another shot at the headline ring. Rumors abound he is set to appear on tonight’s debut of The Jay Leno Show…with special guest Kanye West. Perhaps the Prez can get a few outburst notes from the master. Outbursts have appeared to paid off for everyone else.

President Obama Talks Health Care on 60 Minutes

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