Republicans are proving that their desperation for an Obama scandal is limitless by frantically deleting their previous praise of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl from the Internet.
Mashable documented that at least three Republicans praised Bergdahl after his release, then deleted their statements:
A grateful nation welcomes the news of the return of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl,” Rep. Lee Terry (R-NE) said in a statement that’s since been removed from his website.
“I have the pleasure of regularly speaking with our nation’s active duty military and veterans and I know that there is nothing more solemn than the pledge to never leave one of their own behind on the field of battle,” Terry said in the statement, before calling Bergdahl “a national hero.”
Rep. Mark Amodei (R-NV) seemed excited when he heard the news, too. “Best news I’ve heard in a long time!” the Twitter account for the Republican congressman said, including the hashtag “#standwithbowe” and a link to a USA Today story about the soldier’s release.
Joni Ernst, the leading Republican candidate hoping to replace retiring Sen. Tom Harkin in Iowa, tweeted at 3:31 p.m. on May 31, “US Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl freed after being reported missing 5 yrs in Afghanistan. Thoughts & prayers go out to Sgt. Bergdahl & his family.”
This confirms that Republicans really are trying to play this out as an Obama scandal on two fronts. First, the White House didn’t notify them, and secondly, they are going to swiftboat Bergdahl in order to harm Obama politically.
Republicans have as usual picked the two areas that are most likely to backfire on them. The Obama didn’t notify us tantrum sounds like the turf war between the executive and legislative branches that most Americans don’t care about, and the choice to swiftboat Bergdahl is illustrative of the fact that Republican strategy appears to be perpetually trapped in 2004.
The swiftboating operation is being run a former Bush administration official who has rounded up soldiers from Bergdahl’s unit and they are making the rounds on conservative media criticizing his service. This is strictly a partisan political operation that is straight out of what the Bush campaign did to John Kerry during the 2004 presidential election campaign.
Republican hypocrites quickly deleted their praise and replaced it with criticism, because they now view bringing an American citizen and soldier home after five years of captivity as something that should be up for debate. Republicans are oblivious to the fact that this line of attack makes it look like they are opposing the freeing of a U.S. citizen and soldier.
Just like their opposition to people having health insurance, this gambit is doomed to fail spectacularly.
The two-faced Republican three have offered up a valuable lesson. Nothing on the Internet is ever really gone. You can’t erase your words and pretend that they didn’t exist. Republicans still haven’t learned that deleting a tweet or message doesn’t mean that it is gone.
The “Bergdahl scandal” isn’t going to catch fire, because John Boehner and the Republicans had already admitted that they know about the swap for three years before it happened. This is another sleazy attempt to distract voters from focusing on the terrible job that congressional Republicans have done.
Instead of talking about their role in the VA scandal, their refusal to extend unemployment benefits, their wholly incorrect predictions on Obamacare, and refusal to create jobs, Republicans want to distract with things like Bergdahl.
Don’t be fooled by the hypocrisy driven shiny objects. Keep your eyes on the prize and do what Republicans fear most. Go to the polls, and vote this November.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association