It’s clear that five and a half years into his presidency, Barack Obama doesn’t give a rip about optics.
That’s why he continues to golf every weekend as the fledgling democracy of Iraq descends into violent chaos. It’s why his family continues to take lavish vacations on the taxpayer’s dime while telling the rest of us we need to sacrifice.
Obama’s fundraising trip to Texas, this week, really takes the cake. The president always makes time for at least one official event in between fundraisers so he can burden the taxpayers with the tab. But that event, White House aides say, will not be a trip to the Mexican border to view firsthand the devastating result of his immigration policies.
“Instead of taking the easy way out, I wish the president would step up and lead,” Texas Senator John Cornyn said on the Senate floor Monday. “It’s puzzling and frustrating that the president chose the path he’s going to take.”
QUESTION: You said this is an urgent humanitarian situation. Are you not at all concerned about the optics of the president flying to Texas to raise political money but he cannot go see the humanitarian situation?JOSH EARNEST: We are not worried about those optics, George, because the president is very aware of the situation that exists some the Southwest border. Senior administration officials, from the Secretary of Homeland Security, the secretary of HHS, top CBP officials, even senior White House officials have traveled in the last couple of weeks to the Southwest border. What they have seen is troubling: this influx of illegal migration from Central America . . .
In addition to three fundraisers, Obama will deliver yet another economic speech (ugh) and at least one event devoted to border issues.
Gov. Rick Perry declined an offer to greet President Obama when he arrives in Austin on Wednesday, saying he’d like a “substantive meeting” with the president on the immigration crisis, instead.
In a letter to the White House on Monday, Perry turned down what he called “a quick handshake on the tarmac.”
In response, the White House deigned to invite the Governor of Texas to a meeting that has been scheduled for Wednesday to discuss the crisis on his border with “faith leaders and local elected officials in Dallas.”
One imagines he’ll be the only Republican there. But the White House concedes that “it made sense” to “allow” the GOVERNOR of the state being inundated with illegals (as a direct result of the president’s open borders policies) an audience with his Majesty.
“We thought it made sense here to extend an invitation to Gov. Perry, to allow him to participate in that meeting with other Texans who are seeking to address this situation in a constructive manner,” Earnest said. “We’re looking forward to Gov. Perry participating in that meeting.”
I’m sure Governor Perry is looking forward to it, too.