Obama Defends 'Broken Promises,' Blames Republicans
by Stu Padaman
WASHINGTON, D.C. — In the face of increasing criticism over what some observers call broken campaign promises, President Barack Obama today held a press conference to defend his actions.
"When Americans placed their trust in me by electing me as Leader of the Free World," Obama said, "I made one overriding promise, and it's a promise I intend to keep. That promise is to bring change to America. It preempts any other statement that may or may not have been made during the rigors of the presidential campaign.
"I take great pride in my administration's ability to live up to that promise despite the Republicans' refusal to do anything that could benefit America. As you all know, the Republican Party has become the party of no. Yet despite their constant negativity, we have succeeded in some remarkable achievements. I won't go over all those successes today, but I want to mention the one I'm most proud of. That is the health insurance reform bill, the most sweeping Legislation passed by Congress in more than 40 years, and we did it without a single Republican vote and without a single congressman reading it all the way through."
The President then opened the press conference to questions.
"We don't have any questions," yelled a reporter from the New York Times. "We all know you've done the best you can."
Virtually the entire press corps jumped to their feet and gave the president a standing ovation, leaving only three reporters sitting on their hands. After the applause subsided, Fox Reporter Megyn Kelly said, "You promised that nobody would have to give up their health insurance if they were happy with it. Yet we are hearing of citizens who already have been cut off because of the insurance bill ...."
"Is that a question?" Obama interrupted as aides escorted Kelly out of the room, obviously anxious to help her make her next appointment.
All eyes then were turned on Immanuel "Manny" Taux of the Wall Street Journal, who began with, "You promised to close Guantanao withine one year ...." before his microphone went dead. Two Secret Service officers sandwiched Taux, each grabbing an arm before exiting through a side door. The other reporters clapped and whooped their approval except for Weir Dupte, the French-German reporter for WorldNetDaily.com. All eyes turned on him as he stood.
"You promised that you wouldn't hire any lobbyists, yet 30 of them ...." Dupte said before two representatives of
the White House Correspondents’ Association, whispering something about insufficient credentials, whisked him away.
All remaining reporters then broke into applause and whistled and cheered until Obama cut them short.
"Thank you," he said, smiling. "But I think I should explain some of the challenges we are still working on."
The President said Republicans are to blame for every promise he has not been able to deliver.
"All my campaign promises will be met," he said, "some of them sooner and some of them later, but all of them will be met."
He said he has not been able to close Guantanamo Bay because of opposition to housing and trying captured detainees on U.S. soil.
"There's also a problem with the judicial system here," he said. "Innocent people are found guilty all the time, especially if they're minorities. And people who are guilty, especially those who don't look like me, are often acquitted. Now that we've ensured that our detainees have the same rights as an American citizen, we can't afford to try them in our court system. Plus we've learned that doing so would be very unpopular, so I've decided to go with what the American people want."
Obama said his promise not to raises taxes on citizens who make less than $250,000 has been kept as long as the definition of tax is limited to income tax.
"Our opponents don't seem to understand that we need money," he said. "If we can't raise income taxes, then we have many ways to raise the money. For example, there's a penalty for not buying health insurance if you make more than $9,800 a year. And if you don't pay the penalty, you're subject to a fine of up to $25,0000. And we have many, many other ways to get people to send money to the IRS without raising taxes, such as eliminating the deduction for mortgage interest or charitable contributions. We also have the option of calling any income above the poverty level as unnecessary bonus income, which we could then use to give tax refunds to people who don't have jobs."
Obama said his promises to end the "war on terror" within 16 months was fulfilled when he issued a memorandum that prohibited White House staff from using the term.
"We're now engaged in a struggle or a fight," he said. "It's not a 'War on Terror' anymore. Thus, it is over. The struggle, however, must go on. As President, I now have information that I did not have as a candidate, which is why I'll be the most experienced candidate when I run for my second turn."
Glancing at a new Rolex, Obama announced, "Well, ladies and gentlemen, I must get going to my next appointment. I'd love to chat with you more, but I'm confident I've answered all your questions. May Allah bless you."
Amid resounding applause and fleeing an overly enthusiastic New York Times reporter who wanted an autograph for a nephew, the president turned and vanished behind a curtain.
Quote of the Day
"I've got two daughters .... I am going to teach them first of all about values and morals. But if they make a mistake, I don't want them punished with a baby." — Barack Obama