Sitting in rare bumper-to-bumper traffic on my way home from work today, my phone gave out the little, almost imperceptible “ding” that signifies a new e-mail message hitting the inbox of the e-mail account associated with America’s Right. It happens so many times over the course of the day, but something compelled me to check it. I needed something to do while I was sucking exhaust from the diesel Volkswagen in front of me.
It was an e-mail from Philadelphia-area talk radio host Michael Smerconish. Or, at least, from his automated e-mail service.
I’m honored to be able to say that tomorrow, Wednesday October 27th, I will conduct my fifth interview with President Obama. I’ll be stationed at home base in Philadelphia, while the President will log the call from the Oval Office. There are no guidelines for the discussion, though one topic that is sure to come up is my long-held concern about Pakistan and the hunt for Osama bin Laden. And while President Obama knows I will be direct in my questioning, he can also expect to be treated with dignity and respect. You’ll be able to listen to the interview in its entirety at 12:30pm eastern time tomorrow at Smerconish.com.
Thanks as always for your support,
Michael A. Smerconish
Well, color me surprised. No, not really. The idea that Barack Obama is seeking an audience with a friendly figure who spends his days–mornings, actually–masquerading as one of the enemies is about as surprising as the left’s response to the decision by a boneheaded Rand Paul supporter that, despite the work done by millions to effectively argue that the Resurgent Right has nary a violent bone in its proverbial body, last night was the right night to stomp on the head of a liberal activist.
(Not that it’s an excuse for the head-stomper, but reports show that the stomped-on activist was actually there to harass Paul and may have lunged at him.)
While he’s eminently likable and certainly on the right side of the discussion when the discussion turns to support for the military, support for law enforcement and specifically support for the family of Daniel Faulkner, the Philadelphia Police Officer murdered in December 1981 by Mumia Abu-Jamal. When it comes to carrying the mantle of conservatism, however, Michael Smerconish is a fraud.
In October 2008, Smerconish endorsed Barack Obama for president. Last fall, he suggested that for the GOP to be viable in the future it must “reshape its primary process” and find “a new strategy to give voice to its remaining middle-of-the-road voters.” Confronted with a bona fide conservative ascendancy occurring from coast to coast, Michael Smerconish’s answer for the Republican Party was to moderate.
No wonder the president wants to talk to him.
Yes, as I wrote almost exactly a year ago today in This Big Talker Needs a Muzzle, Michael Smerconish is likable. Yes, he is endlessly professional when it comes to his interviews, and I have no doubt that he will fulfill his promise and treat the president with dignity and respect. But gosh, I wish Smerconish would understand that he is simply being used.
I have no doubt whatsoever that the president is seeking Smerconish in order to render him a useful idiot. Today, we stand less than a week out from the most important mid-term election in a generation. Today, we learned from the folks at Harris Interactive that the president’s approval rating has reached a low of 37 percent, and we learned from the folks at The Hill that the president is keenly aware that this election is very much a referendum on himself. And today, we see that three out of five polls gathered since early last week show that Pat Toomey is very possibly starting to run away with Arlen Specter’s Senate seat in the Keystone State.
Of course, Barack Obama is seeking out Michael Smerconish. He has proven time and time again that he is starstruck when it comes to Barack Obama, and proven time and time again to be completely and unequivocally disconnected from the realities of this political environment.
Now that I think about it — that much, Michael Smerconish has in common with Barack Obama.