The State Department's New Mouthpiece
The new State Department spokeswoman, Jen Psaki, has a history of serving as Barack Obama's mouthpiece. People will yearn for the days of Victoria Nuland -- who actually had a long bipartisan and impressive career. She has been replaced by a hack.
Obama's second term even more than his first term has been marked by political hacks being rewarded with plum government jobs. This is true over at the State Department, as well, where Jen Psaki has been given the high profile position as its spokeswoman.
How did she get the job? How else does one get a job in this administration? As payback for service done not for the nation but for the career and image of Barack Obama.
Jen Psaki first came to my attention back in 2007 when she zealously defended Barack Obama for attending a fundraiser for his campaign held at the home of former NBA basketball player Allan Houston, who has a history of espousing anti-Semitism -- a history that drew the ire of the Anti-Defamation League, American Jewish Congress and other groups. Among other statements, Houston has said that Jews were responsible for the death of Jesus, "spit in his face and hit him with their fists." When the AJC and other anti-discrimination groups asked that Obama return the money since he was doing well with fundraising anyway and did not need to take money from an anti-Semite, Psaki blithely dismissed their concerns and said Obama had no plans or intentions of returning the money.
Similar concerns were raised when news surfaced that hedge fund billionaire George Soros was playing a key role in Obama's campaign -- not only personally and with his family skirting campaign financing rules to fund Obama, but activating his fundraising network and empire of 5217 groups to propel Obama into the Presidency. Soros is well-known as a bitter critic of Israel who also funds a wide range of groups that oppose Israel. Psakis' response was, well, Psakian: "Mr. Soros is entitled to his opinions" (with the obligatory statement that Obama and Soros disagree on Israel -- the same defense offered when the close ties between Obama and Reverend Jeremiah Wright Jr. became known.
But there is more recent evidence that Psaki is willing to do Obama's dirty work for him.
I have written a series of columns regarding Barack Obama's seeming "Ongoing War On Inspectors General." These are the inspectors who bring government waste, corruption, failures and malfeasance to light. So naturally they are Obama's natural enemies-and needless to point out, they have been quite buys the last four years since Obama has produced a target-rich environment for them (most recently with the IRS scandal).
When Neil Barofsky, the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP), criticized how that program was run (waste of money, cover-ups of its manifold failures, "Enron-like" accounting), Psaki went to work on him. She was serving at the time as the deputy communications director at the White House.
On her blog, she attacked Baraofsky (a lifelong Democrat, by the way):
Some people don't like movies with happy endings[.] ... How else to explain this week's report by Sigtarp? Rather than focusing on the growing evidence we've seen in recent months that TARP will be far less costly than anyone expected, Sigtarp instead sought to generate a false controversy over AIG to try and grab a few, cheap headlines.
The name calling and vilification continue for seven more paragraphs.
Hasn't Obama repeatedly called government service the highest one can aspire to do? Not if one runs afoul of the Obama attack machine.
So now the State Department official mouthpiece is the same person who has served as Obama's spinner, attack dog and character assassin. Psaki is someone who willingly will do whatever it takes to serve the political interests and image of Barack Obama, not America. She has already peddled a very soft and silly line on Iran, a fairy tale at odds with reality, just like Obama.
Welcome to Obama's America.