Conservative pundits are accusing liberals of double standards for expressing outrage after former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani questioned President Obama’s love for America. They are pointing out that in 2008, then-Senator Obama also called President Bush “unpatriotic” for adding trillions to the national debt.
According to the Gateway Pundit’s Jim Hoft, “You certainly didn’t hear any reporters lecturing Obama for his uncivil rhetoric after that outrageous attack.”
Fox News also also called “the left” out over “double standards,” saying that “no one no seemed to remember in 2008, when then-Senator Obama similarly questioned President Bush’s patriotism.”
On July 3, 2008, during a speech delivered in Fargo, North Dakota, then-Senator Obama questioned President George W. Bush’s management of the national debt, describing it as “unpatriotic.”
Obama accused Bush of “taking out a credit card from China in the name of our children, driving up our national debt.”
“… we now have over $9 trillion of debt that we are going to have to pay back — $30,000 for every man, woman and child. That’s irresponsible, it’s unpatriotic.”
At the White House press briefing on Friday, Ed Henry, Fox News White House correspondent, pointed out to White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest the fact that during his campaign in 2008, Obama also described Bush as “irresponsible” and “unpatriotic.”
“Josh, given your sorrow for Rudy Giuliani do you think the president has any regrets about saying President Bush was unpatriotic for adding $4 trillion to the debt?” Henry reportedly asked.
“I haven’t seen the actual comments. I don’t know if you have it there in front of you,” Earnest responded.
“He [Obama] said that the president [Bush], I’m paraphrasing this part, had added about $4 trillion to the debt and then he said, quote, ‘that’s irresponsible, that’s unpatriotic,'” Henry said.
Earnest responded, saying that Obama never questioned Bush’s personal love for his country and that at the time he made the statement, he was addressing a specific issue of the Bush administration’s policy and action in contrast with Giuliani’s comment, which was a generalized accusation against Obama that he does not love his country.
“I think that what the president was doing was he was questioning the specific wisdom of that decision, and questioning whether or not that was in the best interest of the country.”
Needless to say, it is unlikely that Obama’s opponents would find his press secretary’s explanation satisfactory; and thus, they will continue to raise the question: “If it’s okay for Obama to say Bush was ‘unpatriotic,’ why isn’t it okay for Giuliani to doubt that Obama loves America?”
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