Politico's Jim VandeHei and Mike Allen published a feature today (currently their top story) that pretends to be an examination of the double standard we're seeing from the media with respect to the vetting of Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. But through the use of that infamous Politico sleight-of-contextual-hand, Allen and VendeHei are actually protecting Obama while pretending to be critical of the media.
The duo intentionally focuses only on the vetting that's occurring surrounding Obama's pot-smoking years, but not the vetting Breitbart News and others have done surrounding Obama's adult years, including his association with a number of troubling radicals and the convicted felon who helped purchase the Obamas' $1.65 million Chicago home.
Under the cover of hitting the media for its biased reporting, the subtext Politico pushes is how silly all this vetting is. Obama smoking pot, Romney hassling some high school classmate, Ann Romney's horse hobby, and isn't this whole vetting crusade just about the dumbest thing we've ever seen?
On the front page of its Sunday edition, the New York Times gave a big spread to Ann Romney spending lots of time and tons of money on an exotic genre of horse-riding. The clear implication: The Romneys are silly rich, move in rarefied and exotic circles, and are perhaps a tad shady.
Only days earlier, news surfaced that author David Maraniss had unearthed new details about Barack Obama’s prolific, college-age dope-smoking for his new book, “Barack Obama: The Story” — and the Times made it a brief on A15. …
It’s certainly hard to argue that the Romneys’ horse-riding habits today are worse than the Maraniss revelations, which have gotten little mainstream coverage.
And the horse-riding story came a few weeks after a second story that made Republicans see red – another front-pager, this time in the Washington Post, that hit Mitt Romney for bullying a kid who might have been gay, in high school nearly a half-century ago. The clear implication to readers: Romney was a mean, insensitive jerk.
Maraniss works for the Post and his pot-smoking scoop, which included details of Obama’s college-era dope-smoking club and waste-no-weed rules for inhaling it, never made the front of his own paper.
Regardless of Politico's contextually-dishonest spin, the fact of the matter is that the vetting isn’t just about anyone's high school days. Breitbart News broke an exclusive about a 1991 biography written by Obama's literary agency in 1991 that incorrectly claimed the President had been born in Kenya. We also discovered that it is the normal practice of the this agency to have their clients write their own bios, and that the online version of this bio listed Obama's birthplace as Kenya until 2007 -- two months after Obama announced his decision to run for president.
Barack Obama turned 30 in 1991. And questions remain over whether or not a sitting president or someone on his behalf might have spruced up a bio into something more exotic in order to sell books.
So why would Politico choose to ignore the vetting of Barack Obama's adult years?
Because that's a little harder to dismiss than smoking dope and, should any of the stories surrounding Obama's radical adult associations and the possible faking of his biography ever get the attention deserved or the in-depth follow-up reporting that we all know would occur if Obama had an R after his name, the damage to the President's reelection could and should be very real.
And the story of Obama as an adult goes way beyond even what Breitbart News has been reporting. Because the media doesn't want to know the truth, we still know next to nothing about Obama's relationships with Bill Ayers, Father Pfleger, Derrick Bell, Tony Rezko, and Jeremiah Wright -- and nowhere in their piece do Allen and VendeHei even mention those un-vetted relationships.
By the way, this David Maraniss biography everyone is talking about ends when Obama enters Harvard. Which means we're not going to get anything from it about Obama palling around with Chicago radicals. And you can bet Obama's Media Palace Guards have no intention of filling that hole until long after Obama is out of office.
After all, the fate of the Republic lives or dies based on Ann Romney's relationship with her horses, not Obama's relationships with Rashid Khalidi. The fate of the Republic lives or dies based on Romney's relationship with Donald Trump, not whether or not the Obama campaign attempted to bribe someone in 2008.
Let us not forget that the very Politico scolding others for bias is the same Politico that covered up Jeremiah Wright's claim that he was offered a bribe by the Obama campaign in '08.
The only good news is that we're having this discussion. And I'll call anyone a liar who wants to argue that this debate would even be occurring had it not been for Andrew Breitbart declaring that both candidates would be vetted whether the corrupt media liked it or not.
Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC