On Sunday’s edition of Political Insiders, Pat Caddell, Doug Schoen, and John LeBoutillier with Harris Faulkner discussed “Duty”, the explosive new book by Bob Gates, and Chris Christie’s BridgeGate scandal.
Schoen characterized the reaction to Gates’ book as a firestorm because of the revelation that political aides have been making foreign policy in unprecedented ways. Caddell reminded viewers of what he said about Tom Donilon being the chief leaker in 2012, when foreign policy secrets were pouring out of the White House to help the president. Gates accused Donilon of having poisoned the atmosphere – and having the nerve to call 4 Star Generals – something absolutely unheard of before now.
“It is unbelievable how political this was,” Caddell said. Also unbelievable was how the media avoided covering the WH leaks like the major scandal it was.
LeBoutillier added, “the idea of political people involving themselves in national security issues for political reasons is really a corruption of the system.”
He noted that back in the day someone like Henry Kissinger ran foreign policy.
“He wasn’t over in campaign meetings, deciding campaign strategy.” He said there was a wall between the two things, “until this administration.”
Faulkner brought up some text from the book that should come as no surprise to anyone who has been studying this president’s character, or lack thereof over the years: “one quality I missed in Obama, was passion, especially when it came to the two wars. In my presence, Bush, unlike his father, was pretty unsentimental… but he was passionate about the war in Iraq; and on occasion, at a Medal of Honor ceremony, or the like, I would see his eyes well up. I worked for Obama longer than Bush, and I never saw his eyes well up.”
Just a devastating indictment, that. 3/4 of the casualties in Afghanistan have been under his dry-eyed watch.
Caddell went on to ask the $64,000 question: “why didn’t Gates resign? When is somebody going to resign over principle the way Cy Vance did?
They segued over to the Christie scandal about which LeBoutillier thought the biggest take-away was how muted the Republicans have been in defense of the embattled governor.
“In New Jersey, they (the Republicans) don’t like him, and they’re afraid of him, he claimed. “He’s steamrolled over a lot of Republicans….”
Democrat Doug Schoen piped in , “isn’t it John, that they’re seeing a guy who embraced President Obama during the last week of the election, during the hurricane clean up? He’s a moderate Republican, and this is, bottom line - payback.”
“But in New Jersey,” Leboutllier insisted, “Republicans have had a tough relationship with him.”
And the fact of the matter is – Republicans don’t know for sure whether or not Christie’s hands are clean in this. It may turn out that they’re not. One thing Republicans have, which the vast majority of Democrats lack, is integrity. We’re not circling the wagons for someone who may turn out to be corrupt. And yeah – the romantic interlude on the NJ beach with Obama didn’t help him with fellow Republicans, either.
Leave it to Caddell, though, to cut to the chase. “What STUNS me about it though – and this really bothers me,” he said, “is the Democratic party is going after Christie with hook and tong – the DOJ, they’re talking impeachment….” Compared to all of Obama’s scandals, Caddell suggested it was no big shakes, but the Republicans investigate Obama’s scandals like the “three blind mice.”
“The fury with which the Democrats are going after Christ Christie in four days, just like that!” Leboutllier insisted, snapping his fingers. “They’ve got committees, subpoenas flying all over the place…..we’re NINE months into the IRS scandal. We’re a year and a half since Benghazi, we have 179 Congressmen saying ‘please, Speaker Boehner, have a Select Committee to get to the bottom of it – and by the way, it might hurt Hillary’, and they they don’t do a thing.”
Schoen concluded, “the Democrats play for keeps, the Republicans play beanbag.”
Sure wish I understood why.
Video via Johnny Dollar
The Hill is reporting that Rep. Darrell Issa will be pursuing the IRS scandal, the Benghazi attack and the lethally stupid Fast and Furious operation in 2014 – which will likely be his last year as the House GOP’s chief investigator.
Issa sounded a cautionary note that the investigations might not conclude while he has the gavel.
“The administration wraps up investigations. We are done when we are done … there shouldn’t be any sort of effort to load in or unload” before his term limit of six years as the top Republican on the Oversight and Government Reform Committee ends in December.
Rep. John Mica (Fla.), who is the favorite to replace Issa as Chairman, told The Hill that he hopes to “have a shot at” the gavel if he gets reelected, and the GOP continues to control the House.
Key Oversight and Reform member Rep. Jason Chaffetz told the Hill that “there’s a lot more to come” on Benghazi, as well as “investigations from healthcare to the IRS to Fast and Furious.”
Issa said, “I’d like to have Fast and Furious be a closed case,” noting that the courts are still reviewing access-to-documents disputes between Republicans and the administration.