Update at bottom: Matalin ‘lied’ about Bush inheriting recession
No amount of spit and polish can clean the tarnish of the 9/11 attacks from the Bush legacy, but that didn’t stop GOP strategist Mary Matalin from trying.
During a Sunday appearance on CNN, Matalin attempted to prop up an analogy between the first year of George W. Bush’s presidency and that of President Barack Obama’s. Raising the specter of rising unemployment, anchor John King wondered whether Republicans have the right to attack Democrats over the economy.
According to a CNN transcript, Matalin–seated across a table from her husband, Democratic strategist James Carville–gave a response which was a little more than blindly partisan.
“I was there,” she said. “We inherited a recession from President Clinton and we inherited the most tragic attack on our own soil in our nation’s history. And President Bush dealt with it. And within a year of his presidency at this comparable time, unemployment was at 5 percent. And we were creating jobs.”
The attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 happened during the Bush presidency. While administration officials said repeatedly that nobody could have predicted such a devastating attack, an August 6, 2001, briefing delivered to President Bush — titled “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S.” — later surfaced.
“The memo, sent to FBI headquarters by a Phoenix FBI agent, warned that bin Laden could have been using U.S. flight schools to train terrorists and suggested a nationwide canvass for Middle Eastern aviation students,” The Washington Post reported.
Yet, even with clear warning, the Bush administration did not take steps to prevent the attack. Indeed, the FBI even thwarted efforts of a key informant close to alleged 9/11 plotter Mohammed Atta. The man, a Lebanon-native who pretended to be an Islamic extremist at the behest of American authorities, said that without the FBI’s intervention he is “one million percent positive” the attacks could have been prevented.
“[Matalin is] even full of shit on unemployment,” noted Atrois. “It was much better than it is now, of course, but 5.7%, rising eventually to 6.3%, isn’t 5%.”
This video was broadcast by CNN on Dec. 27, 2009, snipped by Think Progress.
Think Progress’ Lee Fang noted, “Last month, former Bush administration spokesperson Dana Perino claimed that “we did not have a terrorist attack on our country during President Bush’s term.” Former Bush administration officials seem intent on misrepresenting history to pretend that the country never suffered its worst terror attack in history under Bush’s watch. It’s a peculiar talking point, even considering the other efforts to whitewash Bush’s disastrous record.”
Matalin ‘lied’ about Bush inheriting recession
But Matalin isn’t just facing criticism for her 9/11 revisionism.
The Washington Independent‘s David Weigel claims she “lied” about Bush inheriting Clinton’s recession.
Not actually true! Leaving aside the claim that George W. Bush “inherited” the 9/11 terrorist attacks from Clinton, the unemployment rate in January 2001, when Bush took office, was 4.2 percent–a 0.2 point increase over December 2000, but not a recession number. The unemployment rate in December 2001, at the point in Bush’s presidency where Obama is now, was 5.8 percent, up 0.2 points from November. The unemployment rate did not actually hit 5 percent until May 2005. Unemployment never actually fell back to the Clinton-era rate during Bush’s presidency, coming closest in October 2006, when it hit 4.4 percent.
Mocking how television rewards liars, Weigel concludes, “Expect to see her on TV again soon.”
Melania Trump brags her husband ‘sees potential’ in the gays
In a bizarre moment, the first lady announced that President Donald Trump is all for gay people.
Speaking to a crowd in Atglen, Pennsylvania, Melania Trump described the president as someone “who sees potential in everyone he meets, no matter their gender, race, religion or sexual orientation.”
She didn't use the typical term LGBTQ or even mention transgender people. But mentioning LGBTQ voters likely isn't a good idea in the Trump administration because of the laundry list of things they've done to hurt the community.
“Donald loves helping people and he loves seeing those around him and his country succeed,” Mrs. Trump added, claiming he has a “very big heart and a great sense of humor.”
The New Yorker lampoons Republicans who are turning on Trump
Writing in the New Yorker this Thursday, Mike Gillis took a satirical swipe at anti-Trump PACs formed by career Republicans. While not calling out the Lincoln Project by name, it's clear they're the inspiration for the piece.
"For decades, I have been known as one of the most significant voices in the Republican Party. I have advised the Bushes. I’ve aided the Quayles. I’ve tenderly kissed the Cheneys. But today I come to you to reveal that I am leaving this beloved party of mine—the party that educated me, housed me, tickled me, and dressed me up as a donkey and forced me to run drunkenly through the streets of Iowa to scare voters in the 1984 Presidential election," Gillis writes.
‘Reckless incompetence and intentional cruelty’: House issues scathing report on Trump migrant family separation policy
The Trump administration knew it would not be able to reunite refugee and other migrant families as it ripped children—including infants—from the arms of their parents but did so anyway, according to a congressional report released Thursday on the U.S. government's family separation policy.
"The Trump administration's family separation policy lasted far longer than is commonly known and was marked by reckless incompetence and intentional cruelty."—House Judiciary Committee reportThe House Judiciary Committee spent 21 months investigating the planning and execution of the administration's policy, which resulted in the seizure of more than 2,500 migrant children—including some with physical and mental disabilities—from their parents. Its report (pdf) is the "first complete narrative of the inhumane family separation policy in the administration's own words."