CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News question attacks on Obama during Democratic debate – Washington Examiner

CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News question attacks on Obama during Democratic debate - Washington Examiner 2

Each of the three major cable networks spent time questioning why former President Barack Obama drew the ire of a number of Democratic presidential candidates during the debate.

Obama’s record on immigration and healthcare were prominent facets of Wednesday night’s debate. In one viral moment, former Vice President Joe Biden was confronted about the 3 million deportations that took place under the Obama administration by fellow candidates Julián Castro and Bill de Blasio, after protesters heckled him over the same issue.

In another extended heated back-and-forth, candidates took turns attacking the current healthcare system and Obamacare, with many candidates arguing in favor of a single-payer system.

MSNBC host Joe Scarborough issued a scathing rebuke of their attacks on social media in the middle of the debate.

“Ok. Let me get this straight. Democrats hate Obamacare AND hated his immigration policies? What planet are they from?” he tweeted and added, “You know you have extreme ideologues running for president when @BarackObama is a punching bag for being too conservative. FWIW, President Obama is the only Democrat to twice win a majority of the vote since FDR (and is still hugely popular in the Democratic Party.) Not. Smart.”

His colleague, Joy Reid, echoed that sentiment on the network’s post-debate coverage, saying “It was weird for me to watch about 40, almost 40 minutes of primarily attacks on the Obama administration’s policies. It was odd.”

Similar sentiments were expressed on Fox & Friends Thursday morning. They had Robert Wolf, a network contributor and former Obama economic adviser, on to discuss the attacks.

He said it’s not a good strategy “because if you look at the recent poll, he’s at 97% popularity” with Democrats and added that he and Michelle Obama are the “number one endorsement.”

“This idea that everyone’s trying to punch up and they’re throwing Hail Marys, this is going to be short-lived. We know that. We’ve seen it before,” Wolf added. “So, listen, last night was cringeworthy. I’m still shaking my head. I mean, it was a circular firing squad that President Obama all warned us about. Unfortunately, the middle of the circle was Vice President Biden.”

In a later segment on the show, host Ainsley Earhardt called Michelle Obama “beloved around the world,” while Brian Kilmeade said, “I don’t know why 9 different people thought, and two nights ago too, why it’s important to put down Barack Obama. I thought Donald Trump had that market cornered.”

CNN also questioned the attacks against the former president.

Senior Political Analyst John Avlon published a column Thursday titled, “When did Barack Obama become a Republican?”

“Of course, all this is absurd,” he wrote of the attacks. “Obama is the Democratic Party’s most popular ex-President in living memory. Despite Republicans’ relentless and often unhinged attacks on him as socialist and worse, it’s now clear that he was a responsible center-left leader.”

He continued, “A political party needs both wings to fly, and if the policies of Barack Obama — a person who is still America’s most admired political leader — are being castigated as Republican talking points, that’s a sign of how unmoored our political conversation has become from reality.”

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