(1) IRAQ WITHDRAWAL
Let’s get one thing clear, because I don’t think this is the first time it is going to come up.
Regardless of whether you think it was good or bad, the withdrawal of troops from Iraq was Bush’s idea, not Obama’s. I say this because Jeb was on the campaign trail yesterday spewing nonsense:
The former Florida governor asserted that the Islamic State’s takeover of large swaths of Iraq in 2014 was a direct consequence of the “fatal error” of Obama’s decision to withdraw U.S. forces from the country in 2011 after the eight-year U.S. military occupation. He claimed the withdrawal squandered the “success, brilliant, heroic and costly,” of the 2007 U.S. troop surge. He said Clinton “stood by as the hard-won victory by American and allied forces was thrown away.”
Bzzzzzt! Wrong! Thanks for playing! It was Jeb’s brother who set the withdrawal date of Dec. 31, 2011, in an agreement that he signed with the Iraqi government in 2008. And that withdrawal had already begun by the time Obama took office in January 2009.
So be careful of this lie.
(2) IOKIYAR — FETAL TISSUE EDITION
Planned Parenthood is on the chopping block for selling fetal tissue (that would otherwise become medical waste) to medical researchers so that we can cure disease. All the GOP candidates are lining up to condemn Planned Parenthood, including Dr. Ben Carson, the retired neurosurgeon who is rising in the GOP field:
Carson, formerly director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins University medical school, said the benefits of fetal research have been “overpromised” and “under-delivered.”
He called it “disturbing” that some people don’t even realize the “callousness with which we are treating human life.”
Carson has explained that, at 17 weeks, a fetus is “clearly a human being.”
The problem is…. apparently Dr. Carson was not so put off the idea when he was conducting fetal tissue research. (And by the way, did you ever think we would have a candidate running for president who actually conducted medical research on fetal tissue? Let’s just pause and contemplate that). Oh, and the age of the fetal tissue he conducted research on? 17 weeks and…. wait for it…. 9 weeks.
Today, Carson said he did not support a ban on fetal tissue research. He was asked to explain the apparent contradiction.
In an interview with the Washington Post, Carson called the revelation “desperate,” and ignorant of the way medical research was carried out.
“You have to look at the intent,” Carson said before beginning a campaign swing through New Hampshire. “To willfully ignore evidence that you have for some ideological reason is wrong. If you’re killing babies and taking the tissue, that’s a very different thing than taking a dead specimen and keeping a record of it.”
Carson went on to give a rather dishwater-y “not my department” response to his earlier use of fetal tissue:
“Bear this in mind about pathologists,” said Carson. “Regardless of what their ideology is, when they receive tissue, they prepare the tissue. They label it. They mark how it got there. Regardless of whether it’s from a fetus or someone who’s 150 years old, they bank them in tissue blocks. Other people doing comparative research need to have a basis. When pathologists receive specimen, their job is to prepare the specimen. They have no job opining on where the tissue came from.”
Taken together, it sounds like Carson is fine with fetal tissue research as long as…(I’m guessing)… the fetus dies a natural death? Of course, that inquiry was never made when he was doing research, and/or he didn’t seem to care.
And let’s be clear — he didn’t merely “prepare the specimen” back in 1992 — he authored the research paper, so he has (arguably) some accountability for the material used in his research, including where it came from.
I don’t think this odd and murky bit of hypocrisy is going to sink Carson’s campaign (which will sink someday), but I thought it was interesting.
(3) A LOOK AT KASICH
This guy is a Republican? Sure he would have been A LONG TIME AGO, but not in this political climate.
(4) CAGE MATCH BETWEEN TRUMP AND RAND PAUL