Bachmann Blames Media Trap for Her Opinions

October 23, 2008

Rep. Bachmann has a found an interesting way to avoid being held responsible for her words: she claims Matthews trapped her by introducing and repeating the term “anti-American” so that she just used it without thinking. But, as we are accustomed with Republican politicians these days, she initiated the theme by claiming that Obama has “negative views of the United States.” This is standard Republican strategy: don’t call it a duck, but just talk about the quacking and waddling so that everyone knows you’re talking about a duck, yet you can claim you never said “duck.”

In the transcript of the show, Matthews used “anti-American” first, but Bachmann had a chance to immediately respond and repeat the term. But notice Bachmann’s sentence prior to Matthew entrapping question in which she uses a Russian term to evoke images of communism, which, of course, America fought for decades. He uses “anti-American” only twice in his question, which she promptly picks up and uses.

REP. BACHMANN: You have a troika of the most leftist administration in the history of our country.

MR. MATTHEWS: If you have liberal views, does that mean you have anti-American views? What’s the connection? I don’t get the connection. What’s the connection between liberal and leftist and anti-American?

REP. BACHMANN: Anti-American is the point, because —

Matthews immediately interrupts and reuses the term in a refining the question, which, again, she reuses. More importantly, she doesn’t just use “anti-American,” she provides an example of it, which the GOP has been repeating for months. The idea that she was trapped into using the term “anti-American” is ridiculously untrue. She believed it to be true but avoided using the term, relying on indirect accusations of “anti-American.” Her regret is that she was called on the carpet for it. She was trapped only in the sense that she thought she was with a fellow traveller and can speak freely. She then repeats the term twice in her response.

MR. MATTHEWS: I mean, if you’re liberal, are you anti-American?

REP. BACHMANN: Well, the liberals that are Jeremiah Wright and that are Bill Ayers, they’re over-the-top anti-American. And that’s the question that Americans have. Remember, it was Michelle Obama who said she’s only recently proud of her country. And so these are very anti-American views.

So, initially, they use “anti-American” equally. For those counting at home, Matthews ends using it 13 times and Bachman 8 times. But the truth is that Bachmann is the one who raised the idea of “anti-American” with her “troika” reference and accusations:

REP. BACHMANN: It’s important because we look at the collection of friends that Barack Obama has had over his life, and usually we associate with people who have similar ideas to us. And it seems that it calls into question what Barack Obama’s true beliefs and values and thoughts are — his attitudes, values and beliefs with Jeremiah Wright on his view of the United States

MR. MATTHEWS: Okay —

REP. BACHMANN: — which is negative; Bill Ayers, his negative view of the United States. We’ve seen one friend after another. It calls into question his judgment, but also what is it that Barack Obama really believes? And we know that he’s the most liberal senator in the United States Senate, and that’s just after one year after being there. He’s the most liberal. Joe Biden is the third most liberal. You’ve got Harry Reid who’s liberal, Nancy Pelosi who’s liberal.

This is pure political cowardice: she said exactly what she meant, as evidenced by her words prior to Matthews’ first use of “anti-American.”

You’re clearly anti-American or not a real American if you don’t vote Republican. Got that America? And it’s probably our fault that these politicians say this crap.

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