It’s a scandal that President Obama didn’t attend the mass rally against terrorism in Paris yesterday. All day long I heard on TV that Eric Holder was there. Perhaps he was in the city, but he was MIA at the rally. So was John Kerry, our Secretary of State. We had no important presence at the event.
Under Bush and probably even under Clinton, the president probably would have gone. Clinton has always been a sucker for a photo op. Bush’s sense of America as the leader of the world against terrorism would have put him there, too. Probably others would have attended as well.
Not so Obama. Maybe power behind the throne Valerie Jarrett was against it. She was born in Iran, after all and Obama enjoyed the time he spent listening to the Muslim daily call in Indonesia.
It’s understandable in a way that these two were reluctant to go. Terrorism has never been a top issue for them, nor has American security or American’s preeminence in the world.
But where were the Republicans? Where was John Boehner, Mitch McConnell? Why didn’t Boehner hop on a plane and go to Paris? He could have flown commercial and made a big impact on the day. Were he and McConnell afraid of stepping on Obama’s toes? He’s not afraid of steamrolling over theirs. The press would have derided them, but they do anyway. The American people would have applauded. At least we would have had some presence at the rally.
And where the 2016 presidential candidates? Had I been Rick Perry, Mitt Romney, Jeb Bush, Chris Christie or others, I’d have been in Paris. How could it have hurt them? What held them back? They are citizens who are allowed to travel to Paris. Any pressing business wouldn’t have taken place on Sunday anyhow.
It’s this lack of creative thinking that hurts the GOP. Fortune favors the bold, so they say. It does.