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GOP Rep. Bob Inglis Chastises Vitter’s Birtherism, Criticizes ‘Bad’ Leadership From Boehner And Cantor

By Ben Armbruster  

"GOP Rep. Bob Inglis Chastises Vitter’s Birtherism, Criticizes ‘Bad’ Leadership From Boehner And Cantor"

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Rep. Bob Inglis (R-SC) recently lost a GOP primary run-off to keep his seat in the House of Representatives, and since then, the South Carolina Republican has felt liberated to speak the truth about the state of his Party and the conservative movement. Last week, Inglis criticized Sarah Palin’s “death panel” claims, Glenn Beck’s “demagoguery,” and disparaged the right’s divisive rhetoric.

Today on C-Span, Inglis continued to rail against his Party, again calling out the right’s “misinformation about death panels” and chastising Sen. David Vitter’s (R-LA) recent claim that he supports challenging President Obama’s citizenship status in court:

INGLIS: As to the Birther matter, let me be clear. The president is obviously a citizen of the United States. … So, really we do lose credibility when we spend time talking about such things. Why do we do that? We do it because we want to vilify the other side. We want to make them into the big bad guys.

Inglis also didn’t have very supportive words for House GOP Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) and Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA). “I think that to some extent we’re getting what we deserve,” with Boehner and Cantor leading the Party, Inglis said, adding, “We have basically decided to stir up a base, and that’s a bad decision for the country.”

Later in the segment, Inglis criticized those on the right who blamed the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) for causing the 2008 financial crisis:

INGLIS: What I’m supposed to do as a Republican is just echo back to you Anne that yes, CRA was the cause of the financial meltdown in October of 2008. And if I said that to you I’d be clearly wrong because if you think about it, CRA had been around for decades. So how could it be that it caused the problem suddenly in October of 2008? … So therefore we can just establish it as a scapegoat. Democrats like it and we can of course put the racial hue on that and that makes it even more powerful. But if we do that, we go further away from the solution, the solution is to deal with those fundamental things, not pick up on scapegoats and run with it.

Watch it:

Sen. Bob Bennett (R-UT) also recently lost his primary in his bid for re-election and has been similarly critical of the GOP. “I find plenty of slogans on the Republican side, but not very many ideas.” he said.

Transcript:

CALLER: And a last thing here. One of our Senators, Republican Senator David Vitter, and I actually saw him on the news a couple of days ago talking about this Birther stuff, and that’s where Republicans lose a lot of credibility with me, not just on Tea Party coming out and blaming everything financially on Obama when they had eight years of Bush, and people before that, but that and also this Birther thing, where they persist upon saying that this man is illegitimate when I’m pretty sure if he was illegitimate somebody would have found out by now. Thank you. That’s all I had.

[…]

INGLIS: As to the Birther matter, let me clear. The president is obviously a citizen of the United States. You know, you can – you can see some kind of way of how you could have a conspiracy to change the official records in Hawaii, but it sure would be difficult to go back into two newspapers and change the announcement that was made that bouncing Barry, baby bouncing, bouncing baby Barry Obama was born in Honolulu, whatever, it would be hard to go back and change that in the public libraries across the country. When I was born, they announced the births in the papers back then, we didn’t have HIPA (sp). So, really we do lose credibility when we spend time talking about such things. Why do we do that? Why do – we do it because we want to vilify the other side. We want to make them into the big bad guys.

[…]

HOST: By that description, are you in fact criticizing your current house leaders, Mr. Boehner and Mr. Cantor, for being overly partisan?

INGLIS: I think that to some extent we’re getting what we deserve. We have basically decided to stir up a base, and that’s a bad decision for the country because the country needs people here serving in Washington to say, listen, let’s lead, and let’s help people to understand, it does not help to put out misinformation about death panels, for example. There were no death panels in that health care bill. And then you lose credibility when you say things like that, when you scare people. And then how are you going to get them to follow your lead as you say, listen, really, we need to make some changes here, and it’s for our collective good, our common good as a nation, we’re going to make some changes. And so that’s – that’s the kind of leadership that I think we need. It’s the kind that, like I say, people like Rob Portman, who I hope wins that Senate race, and later becomes president, could supply to the country.

HOST: So how do you work together if your views about government involvement are very very different?

INGLIS: They are very different. But let’s start with some clearing up some misinformation. I followed a senior recently in a car that had a sticker, “Socialism” on the back of their car. And I got close enough to read what it said. It said, “Socialism is that system that works fine until you run out of other people’s money.” Well, that’s a good understanding of how it is that conservatives don’t want to spend other people’s money, but the people driving were seniors. And therefore they’re receiving Social Security, and they’re on Medicare. And perhaps they were fairly young seniors. They might have an older relative in a Medicaid bed having run out of money, their own money, and maybe they’re now converted to a Medicaid bed in a nursing home. That’s pretty much the society keeping up those folks.

And so what we need to have is an honest conversation okay, if that’s the case, if we really want to have individual reliance, which is what I believe we should be doing, then let’s figure out a way to do that. But that means changing Medicare, Social Security, and Medicaid.

[…]

The other thing, just to pick up an example, what I’m supposed to do as a Republican is just echo back to you Anne that yes, CRA was the cause of the financial meltdown in October of 2008. And if I said that to you I’d be clearly wrong because if you think about it, CRA had been around for decades. So how could it be that it caused the problem suddenly in October of 2008? The problem was over borrowing in our individual lives, in our corporate lives and in our country. That’s what created the problem, along with interest rates being kept too low, too long by the Fed. Those kinds of things are what created the financial meltdown in October of 2008. It was not CRA. But I know that as a Republican, what I’m supposed to say is, “Yep, Anne, that’s exactly right. It’s CRA.” Because you see we conservatives don’t like that program. So therefore we can just establish it as a scapegoat. Democrats like it and we can of course put the racial hue on that and that makes it even more powerful. But if we do that, we go further away from the solution, the solution is to deal with those fundamental things, not pick up on scapegoats and run with it.

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