Obama does O’Reilly

About Bill O’Reilly’s 10-minute pre-Super Bowl interview with Barack Obama, I will say this: it was more competitive than the Super Bowl. His questions were focused but disappointing and, other than trying to get Obama to respond, O’Reilly didn’t seem prepared to follow up on Obama’s transparent BS: Obama referred to Benghazi as an act of terror in the immediate aftermath of the attack? the IRS Commissioner’s numerous visits to the White House were focused (“number two,” after Obamacare) on legislation to prevent “taxpayer funded bailouts” of financial institutions? the IRS has been cleared of politically inspired misconduct (O’Reilly referred to it as “corruption”) in “multiple” hearings? “the folks” at the IRS didn’t know how to apply 501(c)(4)?

The interview is revealing to this extent. If you have any familiarity with the underlying stories, you can see that Obama can and will say anything about them. We knew that, but it goes on the credit side of the ledger that O’Reilly made it evident in such a limited interview. (On the IRS Commissioner’s visits to the White House, incidentally, see this. O’Reilly doesn’t appear to be up to speed on that either.)

O’Reilly doesn’t bite when Obama falls back on the line that “your television station” has turned these stories into scandals. Well, okay, but does O’Reilly really have to take his leave with the judgment that Obama is pure of heart?

When the time is short and Obama can make it up as he goes along, there isn’t a lot more you can do. If you haven’t seen the interview, this is worth a look.

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