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Update to President Statement on Arkansas Recruiter Shootings

All Posts  June 12 2009
 — By CJ Grisham

I’ve been tracking down an official word on the “press release” discussed by the AP that I opined was a fake last week. Anyone else notice that the only statement released by the President about this was only released by the AP? I did.

I normally get all the press releases by email, but didn’t get this “press release” that supposedly expressed “shock” and caused Obama to be “deeply saddened” by the attack against the hometown recruiters in Arkansas that killed one Soldier and severely wounded another. The statement still isn’t on the WhiteHouse.gov site where every other such statement – including the recent Holocaust Museum killing – is located. Did the AP fake the statement?

I first emailed the White House and asked, “Why can’t I find a statement on [whitehouse.gov]? Why wasn’t a statement emailed to me and others as a press release? To whom and when was a press release sent and why is the killing of our troops getting less attention their Commander In Chief than the others?

I fully expected to be sent the official press release directly from the White House, shooting my theory down in a flaming hulk of overinflated ego and ignorance. Instead, I got this reply:

“Completely understand, but we did a statement on June 1st (see below) regarding the shooting. I will pull the official statement when I get to my desk.

[I'm omitting one aspect of this conversation per his request, but will release if my inquiries aren't answered soon that will speak volumes about this whole ordeal.]

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5gQACNshVFYt6M9CDykHq6DKqPhiwD98JVGFG4

Yup, a link to the AP article that only initially contained snippets of the “statement.” Not content with this reply, I sent a follow-up email to the White House asking for an update:

“I want to make sure I don’t use conjecture when talking about why the statement on Soldiers wasn’t released through normal press release channels when all the others were and why only the AP got it. Thanks for your help. I know you’re busy.”

The response:
“I think many more than AP got it. I had already left to go overseas, so I’ll have to get with our press folks for specifics. Feel free to call me at 202-xxx-xxxx if you’d like to discuss.”

And call I did. I don’t think my contact wanted to be on the record by continuing to email. On the phone he told me that there are different press release distribution lists and that this one probably went out to a regional list. I asked if there was only a list that the AP was on since no other media outlet was reporting the statement and only referencing the AP statement. Even Michelle Malkin referenced the AP statement. No Fox News release, not MSNBC, not CNN, not ABC, etc.

Naturally there is no AP-only list and he was confused about why it didn’t go out via normal channels. He tried the excuse that obviously when the incident occurred he and Gibbs were out of town (they were in France for D-Day commemorations) and the press releases were handled by someone else…obviously more incompetent (my description there).

I’m increasingly convinced that one of three things happened here: The president did not release a statement at all, the President released a statement and the incompetence rampant in the White House screwed it all up and STILL hasn’t fixed it by publishing the statement on whitehouse.gov, or the President do NOT release a statement and the AP is covering for the administration.

Why is it so hard for the “most transparent government” in the history of mankind (and probably extraterrestrial-kind) can’t find a simple statement released by the President about the killing on American soil by an Islamic Extremist of one of his own troops? The killing took place on 2 Jun and we’re now ten days after the fact.

(7) Readers Comments

  1. Go get em CJ, take our flawed governmental system to task.

    CJ, I apologize for being flaky lately. I hope that you are considering my offer to post at PASP your recent revelations and new understanding of self.

  2. they goofed. Hope it was the last…
    NY-David

    • And with each passing day that they don’t mention it or correct the website deficiency, they keep goofing.

  3. well you did a good thing by following up. I was so po’d about this that I made three calls that day….white house, and two California senators. I’m pretty well convinced that nobody at any of those place cares too much about what I have to say, but it still feels right to go that extra step and tell your elected officials to do their job and do it now. I asked the phone handlers to please record my statement in writing and had them read it back…at least there is that.

    CJ I will keep your approach in mind and ask for more specific answers next time around. I like that. And no doubt a next time is coming. Dangitall. Wish the next times would just stay away…

  4. “Completely understand, but we did a statement on June 1st (see below) regarding the shooting. I will pull the official statement when I get to my desk.”
    Did your contact really type June 1st??? The shooting happened on June 2nd??? Is there a disconnect? If what your contact typed IS true, then it would appear that there never was a press release…just someone covering for our “Dear Leader”.

    • Shooting happened June 1st.

      What I saw when I thought a statement was issued June 4th was not an official White House Statement. It was something that had been released to local media on June 3rd.

      This does bring that statement into question if they will not list it on the offical White House statements listing.

      I was praying that I was wrong about Obama, but from what I have been seeing, probably not.

  5. PRESS BRIEFING BY
    PRESS SECRETARY ROBERT GIBBS
    AND SECRETARY OF COMMERCE GARY LOCKE June 10th, 2009.

    If you scroll down you will see a question about the lack of a statement.

    response was:
    MR. GIBBS: Well, I believe a statement did go to many stations in Arkansas regarding that.

    Too bad the questioner didn’t hold his feet to the fire on the lack of an official statement.

    Have you heard anything more CJ?

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