Sometimes, I find myself wondering what it is about Republicans that seems to render so many of them incapable of simple human decency. It’s almost as if they’re so convinced of their righteousness and rectitude that they’re unable to grasp that their narrow agenda doesn’t trump anything.
Reince Priebus, the chairman of the Republican National Committee, will never be confused for a statesman. The man’s job is to elect Republicans to office, so his single-mindedness, while patently offensive in cases like this, is almost understandable. That said, would it be too much to ask that Priebus refrain from using an undeniable tragedy to score cheap political points? I find it difficult to respect someone who seemingly lacks the decency gene and sees nothing inappropriate in using the Costa Concordia’s captain as a cheap metaphor for President Obama.
Stay classy, eh?
Or not. Priebus wouldn’t recognize class and decency if they showed up bearing kneepads and a tube of AstroGlide.
(CNN) - The chairman of the Republican National Committee unveiled his latest attack on President Barack Obama on Sunday, comparing him to the captain of the wrecked Costa Concordia cruise ship.
When asked if the infighting in the GOP presidential primary race would harm the eventual nominee’s chances against Obama in November, Reince Priebus said the party would unite by then in an effort to win the White House.
“In a few months, this is all going to be ancient history and we’re going to talk about our own little Captain Schettino, which is President Obama who’s abandoning the ship here in the United States and is more interested in campaigning than doing his job as president,” Priebus said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”
Priebus added the president is “fleeing the American people,” just like Schettino allegedly fled his cruise liner.
So, 17 people are confirmed dead, 15 are still listed as missing, and Priebus is using this tragedy to score some cheap political points? To call this nonsense anything less than despicable would be to miss the point completely. There’s absolutely no way that Priebus’ analogy could be seen as anything but inappropriate, offensive, and dismissive of those who’ve suffered, and in some cases died, as a result of the Costa Concordia shipwreck…and yes, Americans died. That in and of itself shouldn’t increase the level of tragedy, but Priebus should at least be cognizant that he’s using a tragedy that killed Americans in the hopes of gaining a measure of political advantage.
Priebus even had an opportunity to walk his comments back. Instead, he chose to double down:
Following the jab, CBS host Bob Schieffer seemed caught off guard by Priebus’ comment, asking with a laugh: “What did you just say? What did you call President Obama?”
Priebus was defiant in his response.
“I called him Captain Schettino, you know the captain that fled the ship in Italy,” Priebus said. “That’s our own president who’s fleeing the American people and not doing his job and running around the country and campaigning.”
Honestly, this is about as classless, disrespectful, and mean-spirited as I could imagine a politician being. When you’re all and only about winning, you’ll do and say whatever you think might provide an advantage…even if it reveals you to be a classless monster devoid of anything resembling humanity. I can only hope for Priebus’ sake that he never has to come to grips with a tragedy like the Costa Concordia shipwreck. He didn’t lose anyone that he knew or cared about, so I guess that makes it fair game as ammunition in the GOP’s constant attempt to paint the President in the worst possible light.
May there be a reserved parking place in Hell waiting for Priebus. He richly deserves one.