Just hours before John Boehner was set to scold Obama for calling his political opponents "enemies," - as reported on AT yesterday - the president tried to take back the smear:
In Monday's radio interview with Michael Baisden, Obama said: "I had a conversation with a Hispanic radio outlet, Univision, and during the course of that conversation, one of the things that I had to say to the Latino community, which is frustrated that we haven't seen progress on immigration reform, was that they can't sit out of this election. There were arguments being made that because Democrats hadn't gotten this done, that Latinos should vote against Democrats or just sit out the election.
"And I said, well, you can't punish your friends when - the folks who've been supporting it. Now, I did also say if you're going to punish somebody, punish your enemies, and I probably should have used the word ‘opponents' instead of ‘enemies.' Now the Republicans are saying that I'm calling them enemies. What I'm saying is you're an opponent of this particular provision, comprehensive immigration reform, which is something very different.
Sorry, Mr. President but your use of the word "enemies" was deliberate and designed to provoke a response from your Hispanic audience. The only reason you regret it is because the GOP is rightly attacking you for it. And yes, Republicans are indeed accusing you of calling them enemies because, well, you did. Whatever you're saying now about it is irrelevant.
Note also that there was no apology coming from our president for his baseless smear. It would take a bigger man than Obama has demonstrated himself to be in order to reach that level of comity and largeness of spirit.