Could the president sitting down to record a comedy website video harm national security? Bill O’Reilly thinks it could.
The Fox News host blasted President Barack Obama’s mock interview recorded two weeks ago with comedian Zach Galifianakis to help promote enrollment by young Americans in health insurance plans mandated by the Affordable Care Act.
“The interview was a farce, and some believe demeaning,” O’Reilly said on his “Talking Points” program.
But it also has apparently been effective. A government health care spokeswoman said Tuesday afternoon that 19,000 viewers of the Galifianakis video had clicked through to visit Healthcare.gov.
Although O’Reilly noted that the interview, which was posted Tuesday on FunnyOrDie.com, had been recorded before Russian President Vladimir Putin sent troops into Crimea, he suggested that Obama’s participation “raises some questions.”
“I don’t really have a problem with it in general, but I think the timing hurts Mr. Obama,” said O’Reilly, playing the concern troll. “The economy continues to be problematic, and Putin is clearly testing the president. It looks like Putin believes the president is a lightweight; will a comedy video counter that? Just asking.”
He thought the video also sent the wrong message to his domestic political enemies, as well.
“The Affordable Care Act is dubious, to say the least, and using a comedic website to enroll people is a little bit desperate, don’t you think?” O’Reilly said. “I mean, I’m all for PR, and if [White House Spokesman Jay] Carney wanted to go on Funny or Die, fine. But the president of the United States? All I can tell you is, Abe Lincoln would not have done it.”
He urged the president to behave seriously at all times or risk national security.
“We are a divided nation which ‘Talking Points’ believes is in decline,” O’Reilly said. “Mr. Obama is quick, has a good sense of humor, and those are assets. But he needs to be aware – he needs to be aware – of how his enemies perceive him because I believe the testing of America is just getting started.”
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