Roger L. Simon

If Obama cheated, the Enquirer should be transparent about itself

If The National Enquirer’s report of a 2004 Obama extra-marital affair proves to be true, what interests me most is why are they publishing it now.

I am not one to doubt the Enquirer, especially after the Edwards affair revelation, for which they deserved a Pulitzer but were, not surprisingly, completely ignored. (The Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting in 2007, when the Enquirer broke the story, went to Brett Blackledge of The Birmingham (Al) News for his exposure of corruption in the state’s junior college system.  Remember that?  I don’t either. In 2008, it went to the Chicago Trib for its “exposure of faulty governmental regulation of toys, car seats and cribs.”) The Enquirer is at least as accurate in its reporting as, say, The New York Times, especially where personal behavior is concerned, and generally not as biased.

But this is an old story. The Daily Mail had it in October 2008, less than a month before the election.  I remember reading it then and wondering.  Of course , the DM dismissed it as a “smear:” Barack Obama is the target of a shadowy smear campaign designed to derail his bid for the US Presidency by falsely claiming he had a close friendship with an attractive African-American female employee.

Now I am not particularly interested if this is true.  Whether Barack Obama was a cheater in 2004 is scarcely relevant at this point, since we already know he was prepared to lie and fudge about practically everything from his knowledge of  and relationships with Reverend Wright and William Ayers to his promise to have the most transparent administration ever to the ever-shifting hidden contents of the healthcare bill and virtually every other piece of legislation he has put forward (not to mention his mendacious and disingenuous warning the other day at a college graduation that strong criticism of his policies could cause violence).

So what’s the big deal about an extra-marital affair?  It wasn’t in the Oval Office or even during the campaign.  Small beer by today’s standards.

But why is the Enquirer publishing it now?  Did it just recently learn this information – six years after the fact and roughly a year and a half after the Daily Mail published their article?  Could the Enquirer possibly have had whatever evidence they have of this a while ago – like during the election – and decided not to publish?  Suspicious minds, like yours truly, would like to know.

I’m not making an accusation here.  I have no knowledge whatsoever, only a “paranoid mindset.”  But in the interest of transparency, I would like to see a clarification from the NE.  The mainstream media notoriously neglected to investigate in any depth the background of Barack Obama during the campaign and has been accused (properly, in my view) of extreme bias in that regard.  I would not like to see the normally courageous Enquirer tarnished by the same brush.  Then who would there be to trust?