by Big Dog on Jul 24, 2008 at 20:55 Political
The right has been waiting for Barack Obama to screw up during his whirlwind campaign tour overseas and his campaign has been holding its breath hoping that he makes it through without a major gaffe. He has made a few but they have been largely ignored by the media. However, it looks like a gaffe that cannot be ignored came when Obama announced that he was changing his plans and would not be visiting wounded soldiers in Germany. There is one thing a person who wants to be president should never do and that is dis the troops. Soldiers expect their leaders to keep their word so this does not sit well for the guy who wants to lead them. This is the lame excuse for the dis:
During his trip as part of the CODEL to Afghanistan and Iraq, Senator Obama visited the combat support hospital in the Green Zone in Baghdad and had a number of other visits with the troops. For the second part of his trip, the senator wanted to visit the men and women at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center to express his gratitude for their service and sacrifice. The senator decided out of respect for these servicemen and women that it would be inappropriate to make a stop to visit troops at a U.S. military facility as part of a trip funded by the campaign. Weekly Standard Blog
First of all, it is never a bad thing to visit the troops regardless of who is paying for the trip. Second of all, was only this part of the trip paid for by the campaign? If not then how does he explain visiting troops in the war zone and at the Combat Support Hospital? Also, if Obama is campaigning in America and decides he wants to visit with the troops at Walter Reed, will he not go because his campaign is footing the bill? This is an extremely poor excuse for not visiting the troops because he can go there and visit without campaigning.
Now don’t get me wrong, the troops are probably relieved they do not have to tolerate this snob who has no idea what military service is. However, it is an honor to meet a member of Congress and if he says he is going to visit, he should. Personally, if I were a patient I would tell the staff that he is, under no circumstances, to be allowed in my room. I would let them know if he visited me it would be embarrassing for him and the hospital. I imagine most of the troops felt he was just using them as a campaign prop anyway (even if he did not actively campaign) and are happy he is not coming but one thing they hate is when people break their word. Obama does a lot of that (like lying about what committee he is on and how he voted).
Earlier this year Obama said that he needed to gain the trust of the troops. Breaking his word is not a real good way to do that. At the time he probably felt he needed their votes but since his Democratic buddies in Congress have worked to keep the military vote from counting, Obama probably does not feel he needs to be bothered with them again. Perhaps it is because the troops watch Fox News. There is no chance in hell that Obama will get the military vote. If he gets 10% he will be lucky.
A possible explanation:
NRO reports that Obama changed plans at the last minute when a campaign staffer was informed he would be denied access. Congressional staffers may accompany but there are rules about campaign visits and what rules they must follow. Obama lacked the guts to leave the staffer behind and go visit the troops. Is this the kind of leadership he wants to show the troops? This also begs the question, did this staffer (or any others) accompany him to his visits with the troops in Afghanistan and Iraq?
My suggestion to my military comrades out there, if offered the opportunity to meet with the guy, just decline. Better yet, say you will and then cancel at the last minute. If they force you to visit with him, bring a basketball. He likes when soldiers hand him one and the media instantly drools when he makes a shot outside the paint. That should provide lots of entertainment.
Barack Obama is not fit to lead the fine men and women who serve in our armed forces. Let’s see to it that he never gets the chance.
Blackfive has a post about how Obama actually treated the troops. It is very enlightening.
The Obama sent out an email soliciting donations. The email was about his speech in Berlin, you know, the one that was not a political speech. Anyone with brains knew what that speech was (why would his campaign pay for that part of the trip if it were not for the political campaign) and they are trying to make money off it. Jake Tapper has the story including the Obama camp’s attempt to say that this was not a solicitation for money (despite the big DONATE button that leads to a donation page).
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