Barack Obama emerged from his Washington mansion to give a speech at MIT on Friday as part of the university’s Sloan Sports Analytics Conference. What the former president has to do with that is anyone’s guess, but what was even stranger was the commitment to secrecy. Had the transcript of the speech not leaked to websites like Reason.com, we would have assumed Obama went on an epic TrumpRant for the ages (which we have to admit, we’ve been waiting for, if only to tear it apart). But no, it was a relatively mundane speech…except for the fact that Obama is still out there trumpeting the lie that his administration was “scandal-free.”
Bizarrely, the former president credited the scandal-free environment of his administration to his commitment to diversity, which he said had nothing to do with “charity or political correctness.”
“It’s just common sense,” Obama said of diversity.
Obama said that if companies and politicians were not willing to reach out to women and minorities, it would only harm their bottom line. “In today’s culture, if you are not deliberately doing that, you are going to fall behind and someone is going to beat you.”
He said this was the approach that governed his administration, which helped him achieve that fabled eight years without “a scandal that embarrassed us.”
“Generally speaking, you didn’t hear about a lot of drama inside our White House.”
Well, first of all, we barely heard about anything inside your White House because you quickly became one of the least transparent administrations in American history as far as press access was concerned. And that’s not a complaint coming from the right wing blogosphere but one that has been leveled by everyone from the head of the White House Correspondents Association to Chuck Todd and all stops in between. So yeah, if you shut everyone out, you’re going to easily avoid the personal soap opera that we get from inside the Trump Sphere.
But let’s talk about that claim of presiding over a scandal-free White House for a moment. Because while yes, you didn’t have anything on the order of a Rob Porter drama, your administration had plenty of inexcusable moments.
Or would you like to avoid talking about…Benghazi…the IRS going after conservative groups for extra scrutiny…Hillary Clinton freely dispensing with classified material…turning your intelligence community against journalists like James Rosen and Sharyl Attkisson…Fast and Furious…virtually everything having to do with the Iran nuclear deal…trading Gitmo terrorists for Bowe Bergdahl…and, apparently, spying on your political opponents through the mechanism of a corrupt FBI!
Your supporters like to pretend that the worst transgression of your presidency was that time you wore a tan suit to a press conference, but c’mon Barack: We both know better, don’t we?