Yesterday, conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer appeared as a guest on Special Report with Bret Baier. Krauthammer criticized President Obama for the “condescending remarks he made at a speech commemorating former President John F. Kennedy.” In fact, the remarks were given during President Obama’s acceptance of the 2017 John F. Kennedy Profiles In Courage Award, a detail Krauthammer failed to mention.
Krautnammer went on to say “it was nice to be reminded as a nation why he’s gone after 100 days of virtual silence.” That statement seems a bit odd considering that “why he’s gone” is because his two terms were served in full and he is prohibited by the United States Constitution from serving another.
Apparently the remarks that sent Krauthammer over the edge were when President Obama observed that “it does not take courage to help those who are wealthy or powerful, but that it does take courage to help sick people.” Krauthammer “said it was wrong for Obama to ‘[say] the other guys are cowards’ and that he is the only one who stands up for the sick and underprivileged.” I am left to wonder exactly what speech Krauthammer was referring to, since Obama didn’t say any of those things. He never used the word “coward,” and quite the contrary to Krauthammer’s claim that President Obama said “he is the only one who stands up for the sick and underprivileged,” Obama said nothing of the sort. If he had, it would have been extraordinarily out of character for him. What President Obama actually did was recognize a host of other people for their courage, from the military to law enforcement to first responders and those who fight for what they believe is right.
Krauthammer went on to accuse President Obama of “pretend[ing] you are the one advocating [in a courageous way],” adding that such a notion “is complete nonsense.” Actually, what’s “complete nonsense” is the suggestion that President Obama was doing anything remotely like that. In fact, the characterizations Krauthammer ascribed to President Obama are a far more accurate description of Donald Trump.
Here’s the actual quote that seemed to cause Krauthammer such heartburn:
“I hope that current members of Congress recall that it actually doesn’t take a lot of courage to aid those who are already powerful, already comfortable, already influential. But it does require some courage to champion the vulnerable and the sick and the infirm, those who often have no access to the corridors of power.”
I can only conclude that President Obama hit just a bit too close to home with his actual remarks, and Krauthammer’s only defense was to completely mischaracterize what was said. That leads me to this question: Does that seem “fair and balanced” to you?