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Former Obama Staffer Ben Rhodes Dreams of Ryan, McConnell, Pence Obituaries

Photo of four Republicans in suits in the Oval Office.

On Thursday morning, a former staffer for President Obama infamous for the Iran Deal daydreamed about the deaths of House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), and Vice President Mike Pence. He joined the chorus of liberals attacking the tax reform bill President Donald Trump signed into law Wednesday.

"I hope this is the photo they use on the front page of the Times on the day Trump is indicted," former Obama national security advisor and CNN contributor Dan Pfeiffer tweeted Tuesday night. Pfeiffer implied that Ryan, McConnell, and Pence would be remembered as willing accomplices to treason in the history books.

As if this insult were not enough, Ben Rhodes chimed in, "And alongside the obits for Ryan, McConnell, and Pence."

Rhodes is infamous for his role in propping up the Iran nuclear deal. A New York Times profile on Rhodes revealed that he was a speechwriter without any foreign policy educational experience, military experience, or international experience, and yet Obama tapped him to become deputy national security advisor for strategic communications and speechwriting.

In September of this year, The Washington Post published a fake news story at the top of the front page about President Obama allegedly prodding Facebook on Russia's role during the 2016 election. After the story ran, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg corrected the report, pointing out that Russia was not discussed at the Obama meeting.

Rhodes traveled with Obama to Lima, Peru, at the time of the meeting. He did not attend the Obama-Zuckerberg meeting in person, but likely knew a great deal about it. This separation would give him plausible deniability if called out on leaking the false story to The Washington Post.

 

Democrats and liberals have insisted that Republicans will pay a political price for tax reform — a package that grants wide-ranging tax cuts to the middle class as well as slashing corporate tax rates to boost economic growth. The suggestion that a picture of Trump with Ryan, McConnell, and Pence would one day become infamous stems from the liberal certainty that this tax reform bill will be hated by Americans in perpetuity.

That is not likely to occur, but the liberal narrative of destruction from the inequality the tax bill will allow (along with growth that should benefit every American) should serve as a lesson to the public that they will twist anything to make Republicans seem evil. Furthermore, various reports have mentioned the "sunset" clauses in the tax bill — many provisions will phase out in 2027 — as a sinister ploy by Republicans to hurt the middle class in the long run. In reality, these clauses are standard practice and the tax cuts are likely to be extended in ten years.

While this liberal misinformation should come as little surprise, Rhodes' tweet proves remarkable because he not only jumped to the idea of Ryan, McConnell, and Pence dying — he also suggested that the tax bill will be so destructive that their memories will be plagued with it in perpetuity. He is so certain of his view that tarnishing these three men and dreaming about their deaths seems natural.

In reality, the picture may well be associated with the legacy of Ryan, McConnell, and Pence — and it may be remembered fondly after America enjoys a season of economic growth and prosperity from these tax cuts.

It would indeed be ironic if Rhodes were proven right, and this picture is featured in obituaries — as a thank you from a grateful nation.