NewsBusters reported Thursday that CNN's Wolf Blitzer shamefully allowed former President Bill Clinton to absurdly claim that prior to Tuesday's controversial interview with CNBC's Maria Bartiromo, he thought the Bush tax cuts expired before Election Day.
On Friday's Starting Point, CNN's chief political correspondent Candy Crowley agreed with NewsBusters saying about Clinton's preposterous statement, "I don’t buy that explanation" (video follows with transcribed highlights and commentary):
As the segment began, host Soledad O’Brien said, “It’s like surrogates gone wild for the Obama campaign. What is going on?”
After a chuckle, Crowley replied, “You know, that’s a problem with surrogates. And honestly, if you have a surrogate who’s a former President, he pretty much gets to say what he wants, and he always draws attention”
A bit later, Crowley said, “I do know one thing: he said that he made a mistake on advising the President or saying out loud, ‘I think we ought to extend all these tax cuts,’ which the President said he’s not going to do, that he wants to cut them off for the wealthy. And President Clinton said yesterday, ‘Well, I didn’t know when the, you know, when these expired.’”
After shaking her head, Crowley continued, “I actually don’t buy that. It’s just hard for me to believe.”
“Yeah, you know, I was going to ask you that,” injected O’Brien. “I was like, really? Because I know when they expire, and I was never president.”
“Yeah,” added Crowley, “and also, like when would tax cuts expire? They’d expire before the next tax year. Right? So, I just, so I don’t buy that explanation.”
Neither did I.
But that still begs the question: why did Blitzer?
If Crowley and O'Brien both knew when the Bush tax cuts expired, how could Blitzer let Clinton get away with telling the nation that he didn't, especially as Clinton had an extensive private discussion with President Obama about the extension on December 10, 2010, and participated in a joint press conference that day to sell the program to the nation?
Maybe somebody ought to ask Blitzer.