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Matt Vespa

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February 11, 2013 - 6:56 am

When Krystal Ball was beaten in her bid to unseat incumbent Republican Congressman Rob Wittman in 2010, I thought it was due to his congressional district being Republican-leaning.  It’s voted Republican for president since 1996.  Wittman has been representing the district since 2007.  Some people can point to her photo scandal, which showed some sexually suggestive poses from a Christmas party.  Ball later said that the scandal was “devastating,” and “played into her insecurities about not being taken seriously as a female candidate.”  Yes, that’s an obvious observation.  Another reason she lost could be for statements like this:

“I voted for President Obama because I trust his values and his judgment, and I believe that he is a fundamentally responsible actor,” she added. “Without gratuitously slamming ex-President Bush, I think he displayed extraordinary lapses in judgment in executing his primary responsibility as commander-in-chief, and put troops in harm’s way imprudently.”

“President Obama would have exercised better judgment and he has exercised better judgment,” Ball said. “What would George W. Bush do? That’s our standard? We would never allow a power to the presidency that we wouldn’t feel comfortable giving to George W. Bush?”

Ball said that, for perspective, Obama has the “unilateral power to drop nuclear bombs and destroy the entire planet.” “Do you feel the same about George W. Bush having the nuclear codes as you do about President Obama?” Ball asked in conclusion. “Call me a hypocrite, but I sure don’t.”

Uh, what!?  Ball made these remarks on MSNBC’s The Cycle during the February 8 broadcast.
First of all, George W. Bush did have the nuclear codes for eight years. Last time I checked, we’re still here.  It’s an outrageous slander to suggest that President Bush would be insane enough to start nuclear war, and bring about Armageddon.
Second, the President of the United States doesn’t have the unilateral ability to launch nuclear weapons.  While the president can give the order, the Secretary of Defense must give confirmation to authorize the delivery of atomic payloads.  It’s call the “two-man rule,” Ms. Ball.  A fictional portrayal of this process is depicted within the first fifteen minutes of 2002′s The Sum of All Fears.
Also, did President Obama exercise “better judgement” in Benghazi?  Obama didn’t call Secretary of Defense Panetta back during the terrorist attack.  Now, some liberals slammed Bush’s response during 9/11, but there was nothing he could’ve done to save lives at the time.  Tragically, the planes were already in the air, and panicking a bunch of schoolchildren wasn’t going to do much.
Benghazi was smaller in scale, they had intelligence pointing to security concerns, and Obama decided to do nothing.  Drones were redirected to survey the compound, but Mr. Obama decided to check out mentally.  If he didn’t, no one can explain why he never called back.
Lastly, to say that President Bush acted “imprudently” with our troops, but preface that remark by saying you don’t want to “gratuitously slam him,” is disingenuous in the extreme.  Every commander-in-chief knows the risks of engaging our enemies with military power.  It’s nonsense to think that a Republican president would be oblivious to this fact.  In Ball’s world, a Democrat is angelic, and a Republican is evil.  It’s political hackery at its worst stage of evolution.
I know why Ms. Ball was slaughtered in her congressional bid.  She says things that really don’t make sense, the current lot on the Hill are equally incomprehensible, and the American people weren’t going to send another fool to Congress.  Yes, there is a difference between Bush and Obama.  Bush wasn’t blowing American citizens out of the sky abroad.  President Bush didn’t have a kill list, in which he personally approved names.  President Obama is doing this, has done it, and really has benefited from the aegis of the political left, who are also equally bewildered that he continued most of the Bush anti-terror programs – and kept Gitmo open.
So, Ms. Ball, your comparison of Obama and Bush is somewhat irrelevant since you’re mostly talking about the same person.  In the real world, Americans, even some liberals, know that if Bush had a kill list, the reaction would be more intense than the one Obama is receiving right now.
In 2008, Obama campaigned on closing this so-called dark chapter  of American history, and reaffirming the rule of law when we execute operations in our War on Terror.  Yes, Ms. Ball, you’re a hypocrite, and we’re all laughing at you.  You’re using a nuclear codes comparison shows that you need to go way beyond the realm of reality to make your point that Bush is evil, and Obama is the messiah.

Matt Vespa is a web editor at Townhall.com and occasional writer for Hot Air, RedState, and Townhall Magazine.
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