For years Jay Carney has honed his ability to dodge and divert the American public, but now his talent for dissembling has reached new heights–to the point where right-leaning, Washington media are confused about the very nature of his job as White House Press Secretary.
Most Americans see Carney as the official spokesman for the President of the United States, and for the actions of the Executive Branch of the federal government. When the press asks him a question, Americans expect him to answer truthfully. That means either telling us what actually happened, or, if he doesn’t know, promising to find out. There is no other option.
So when Bill O’Reilly and Bernie Goldberg say on Fox News that Carney’s job is to cover for or defend his boss, President Obama, they are wrong. If that is Mr. Carney’s job, then he should be working for–and paid by–the Obama Campaign. He is not. He is paid by the American people, and he works for them. His job is not to cover for or defend his boss; his job is to tell us the truth.
That’s why Congressman Darrell Issa (R-CA) is justified in calling Carney “a paid liar” in the wake of the Benghazi, IRS/TEA Party-targeting, and media-stalking scandals. O’Reilly, Goldberg, and others who suggest that Issa’s condemnation is too harsh inadvertently defend Carney by reducing him from a fallen de facto statesman to a mere Tammany Hall henchman.
When the media asks Carney a question, they are not looking for his opinion or for political talking points, but for truth. When Carney said that the White House made only insignificant changes to the Benghazi talking points in the hours and days after the September 11th attack on the U.S. consulate, Carney lied, for we now know that huge bodies of fact were removed based on White House pressure.
[Read on OCR: “What Is an Attack on the U.S.? Don’t Ask Obama.”]
When Carney tells the press and the American people that the White House did not know about the IRS Targeting of TEA Party Groups until they read it in the newspaper, when in fact they knew months in advance, he lied.
When Jay Carney refuses to concede that Attorney General Eric Holder knew about the wiretapping of the Fox News reporter, when it is now clear that Holder signed off on the wiretapping, he is lying to the American people.
As an employee of the American public, Mr. Carney needs to stop playing politics and disseminating “facts” before he actually knows them, or he should resign. Meanwhile, the inside-the-beltway media need a reality check, because in a sense, they also work for the American people. We, the People, gave them special privileges in our Constitution so that they could challenge our government when it lies to us. The media abuse this privilege when they suggest that Mr. Carney’s job is to protect the President when in fact it is to give us the truth.
Tom Zawistowski is the CEO of TRZ Communications, the Executive Director of the Portage County TEA Party, and the President of the We the People Convention. He is a featured contributor to Ohio Conservative Review.
Michael Hamilton contributed to this article.
All opinions expressed belong solely to their authors and may not be construed as the opinions of other writers or of OCR staff.