Why Is President Obama Lying About Patrick Murphy's Record?
The TV spot targeting African-American voters in Tallahassee and Jacksonville that Obama cut for Patrick Murphy's drowning Senate primary campaign puts the president's credibility dangerously on the line. Murphy's record in the House is unquestionably one of the most reactionary and blatantly anti-progressive of any Democrat serving in the House. He has been an unabashed advocate for cutting Social Security and Medicare, an unflinching ally of Wall Street and payday loan predators and a consistent backer of Republican initiatives against the environment and, in fact, against the Obama administration itself. Murphy was one of just 4 Democrats still in the House to have voted with the GOP to establish the anti-Hillary Clinton witch hunt they called Benghazi and he was one of the only Keystone XL Pipeline supporters among the Democrats who actually voted to unconstitutionally remove Obama himself from the decision-making process. He even voted with the Republicans for oil drilling off Florida's pristine beaches!
"Patrick," lied Obama in the TV ad, "is a strong progressive." Obama is entitled to back whichever reactionary, corporate whore whose parents are bribing him with a donation for his presidential library he wants to, but to call Murphy "a progressive," is just monstrous and makes one wonder what else is Obama lying to the public about. He claims, falsely, that Murphy has "fought special interests on behalf of working families and won." Wall Street has given more money to Murphy than to any non-incumbent running for the Senate this cycle-- $1,413,950-- which is also more money the banksters gave any Member of the House other than Speaker Paul Ryan and Republican Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy. There is no other Democrat in even in the top 10! Obama knows better than most that isn't to reward him for standing up to special interests-- exactly the opposite in fact.
Obama cut similar spots to influence African Americans to vote for fracking lobbyist Katie McGinty in the Pennsylvania primary (and against Joe Sestak and John Fetterman) and has campaigned in Miami for Debbie Wasserman Schultz with the same distortions he's using to help Murphy. This week, he came out explicitly in the California primary race for murky, unproven Democrat Kamala Harris in her Senate race against fellow Democrat, Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez. (To my eye neither is remotely qualified for the Senate, Harris being merely mediocre and Sanchez nearly as bad and almost as reactionary as Patrick Murphy.)
Sanchez-- mindful not to offend low-info Obama supporters-- struck back tepidly. "I am disappointed," she wrote in response to the Obama-Biden endorsement, "that President Obama chose to endorse in an historic Senate race between two Democrats. I would think the leader of the Democratic Party would be focused on defeating Donald Trump and supporting Democratic Senate candidates against Republicans. I believe that California voters are deeply concerned about the entrenched political establishment which has failed to work for them. Yet, it has been clear for some time that the same political establishment would rather have a coronation instead of an election for California's next U.S. Senator. California's Senate seat does not belong to the political establishment-- it belongs to the People of California, and I believe California voters will make their own independent choice for U.S. Senate in November."
Neither Harris, Sanchez, McGinty nor, especially, Patrick Murphy, belongs anywhere near the U.S. Senate. Obama is wrong and he's making himself less credible by endorsing blatantly unqualified candidates, especially in primary elections. It's what you'd expect from a lifelong party hack like Biden-- a member of whose staff confided in us several months ago that Obama is trolling for presidential library money. The reason this is especially grievous in Florida is because by pushing the incompetent Murphy forward, Obama is diminishing one of the most iconic and accomplished progressives in Congress, Alan Grayson, and is making it far easier for Marco Rubio to win in November, since the unaccomplished and fatally flawed Murphy would be a complete push-over for an experienced politician like Rubio.
Please consider helping Alan Grayson win this one by contributing what you can to his campaign at the thermometer below. The Florida Democratic Party Senate nomination isn't the property of Beltway insiders like Schumer, Reid and Obama/Biden. Only Florida Democratic voters can decide this issue. Grayson has earned their trust and devotion; Patrick Murphy certainly hasn't.
A very progressive and well-loved Member of Congress just e-mailed me her worries about Obama losing credibility just when the Democrats need him most in the battle against Trump. "What he says about all of the candidates he endorses is completely untethered from reality," she wrote. "He just says whatever he thinks will sound good. It’s very revealing about his own mental processes."