President Obama singled out a GOP Congresswoman for comments she made about student loans, The Blaze reported yesterday. The president also called out Rep. Akin (R-MO) for comments he made on the same subject.
As it turns out, the president publicly chided these two Republican members of Congress for things they didn’t actually say.
The two members of Congress claim President Obama “misrepresented them in citing comments suggesting they oppose keeping student loan rates at 3.4 percent, rather than allowing them to revert to 6.8 percent on July 1,” the Washington Post reports.
As mentioned yesterday, President Obama went after GOP Congresswoman Virginia Foxx (R-NC) in both her home state and at the University of Colorado in Boulder.
“I’m going to quote this because I know you guys will think I’m making it up,” the president said at the University of North Carolina. “She said she had ‘very little tolerance for people who tell me they graduate with debt because there’s no reason for that.’”
See it at the 7:45 mark:
But the quotes the president uses are not entirely accurate.
What the North Carolina Congresswoman actually said was this: “I have very little tolerance for people who tell me that they graduate with $200,000 of debt or even $80,000 of debt because there’s no reason for that.”
“She went on to say that she reminds people that the Declaration of Independence promises life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness — stressing the word ‘pursuit,’” The Post reports.
“You don’t sit on your butt and have it dumped in your lap,” she added.
“The only thing I would say is that I wish the president’s speech writers would get their quotes right,” Rep. Foxx said yesterday in reference to President Obama using her as an example in a not-campaign speech.
On radio Thursday, Glenn Beck caught the mischaracterization and played both sets of audio, and he was sure to offer some hysterical running commentary:
And Rep. Foxx is not alone in this — the president also went after Rep. Todd Akin for the same thing.
“You’ve got one member of Congress who compared these student loans — I’m not kidding here — to a ‘stage-three cancer of socialism,’” the president said at the University of Iowa.
“Stage-three cancer? I don’t know where to start. What do you mean? What are you talking about? Come on. Just when you think you’ve heard it all in Washington, somebody comes up with a new way to go off the deep end,” he said.
Although President Obama did not specifically name Rep. Akin, his comments are clearly in reference to remarks the Missouri Congressman made in a debate Saturday. When asked about the subject, Rep. Akin criticized the government for taking control of college loans in 2009.
“America has got the equivalent of stage 3 cancer of socialism because the federal government is tampering in all kinds of stuff it has no businesses tampering in,” is what he actually said.
Rep. Akin shot back at President Obama in a statement:
With all due respect, the President misquoted me. I was not saying that student loans are a cancer. I referred to the policies where there is a government takeover of private industries.
The Congressman says he suspects “the President was given a misquotation.”
“I am sure we have a fundamental disagreement on the role of government and what constitutes socialism regarding current public policy,” Rep. Akin said.