Thursday, February 12, 2015

How Robert McDonald and the White House turned his problem into Barack's problem

Today was supposed to be an easy one for US President Barack Obama.

His big moment would require 30 seconds of grim face as he intoned about suicide among veterans and in the military and then he could smile for the photo ops as he signed the Clay Hunt SAV Act into law.

He could talk about the work done and pretend like he did any of it.

The work was done primarily by Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America and by Clay Hunts' parents.

In Congress, support came from both sides of the aisle.

Barack didn't do anything but, as usual, he'll show up for the yearbook photo as he signs it into law today.

But the easy photo op is no more.

In the small number of questions he'll take, you can be sure one reporter will ask about yesterday's scandal.

If it's not asked, it will be clear that the questioning was a joke and that the White House vetted the reporters to find out who would ask an easy question or, worse, who would ask the questions the White House fed them.

Some argue that Barack rallied in 2012 because he enjoys campaigning but that it really has been over for him and his White House since 2011.  Others feel the administration is just on unlucky streak that it will soon break.

At some point, these problems should be recognized for what they are: A lack of real leadership.

As noted in yesterday's snapshot, VA Secretary Robert McDonald lost it at a hearing (something too many administration officials have done since 2009) and insisted he'd run a business and what had the whipper snapper member of Congress ever done.

The member of Congress is US House Rep Mike Coffman who has served in the Gulf War and in the Iraq War.

The rudeness is beyond belief.

The remarks never should have been said and, at a certain point, you start wondering about the parents of these sociopaths -- did they not teach their children manners or were their children -- John Kerry, Eric Holder, Hillary Clinton, etc -- just unteachable?

That McDonald thought he could get away with speaking to any member of Congress like that while he was part of the executive branch and being paid his salary by the US tax payer is appalling.

And, too bad for him, it's made worse that the person he's insulting is a veteran.

Pete Kasperowicz (The Blaze) reports Concerned Veterans of Americans are asking that McDonald apologize.

The knee-jerk counter from the likes of some on my side will be: They're a conservative group!

And your point is what?

There are conservative veterans.  There are liberal ones.  There are centrists ones.

And here's the kicker: As a US taxpayer paid government official, one over the VA, McDonald is supposed to represent every one of those groups and more.

I think all veterans groups should be protesting McDonald's remarks.  But even if it's 'only' Concerned Veterans of America, that's one group too many.

McDonald doesn't get to be the VA Secretary for only some veterans.  He's supposed to represent all veterans.

I stated my opinion yesterday that he had no idea that Coffman wasn't a veteran.  That didn't and wouldn't change the fact that he needed to apologize.

And his failure to do so goes to the lack of leadership in the White House today.

If they'd taken control of the problem immediately, by 5:00 pm EST, McDonald would have issued a statement, it would have been on all the network evening news broadcasts and today, when Barack's already announced public signing of the Clay Hunt bill into law took place, if Barack was asked about it, he would be able to say, "The Secretary apologized for that yesterday.  It was unfortunate and he offered his regrets and apologies.  I consider the matter resolved."

But that didn't happen and the issue is not resolved.

So today when he's at the signing statement -- unless the White House plants questions -- he will most likely be asked about it and he should be.

McDonald should have issued an immediate apology yesterday.

By not doing so, he's turned his own actions into a White House embarrassment.

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