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Mark Caserta: White House lacking presidential character

May. 23, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

To say the past few weeks have been challenging for the Obama administration would be an incredible understatement.

Currently, Barack Obama is burdened with not one but three different scandals involving agencies of his administration, each of them presenting real problems not only for the legacy of his presidency but for his continued effectiveness in governing.

One involves the revelation of a distressing abuse of government power involving the Internal Revenue Service, the nation's most feared government entity, targeting grass-roots conservative organizations applying for tax-exempt status by unfairly subjecting them to rigorous scrutiny solely based on their political leanings.

Another pertains to a blatant government overreach infringing on the freedom of the press with a sweeping phone records seizure of Associated Press personnel in an admitted effort to identify internal security leaks.

And finally, the ongoing Benghazi-gate investigation into the increasing likelihood that the Obama administration knowingly withheld details of the terrorist attack on our U.S. consulate simply to protect the uncertain re-election of Barack Hussein Obama.

With this "triad" of problems facing the president early into his second term and the tyrannical nature of these acts, what does this administration expect the American people to believe about the current condition of government?

Are we to believe this White House is so smitten with power there isn't an article of the constitution upon which it will not tread to propagate the liberal aspirations of Barack Obama? Or should we believe this administration is one of the most inept in our nation's history?

And is it believable or even remotely acceptable for our nation's chief executive and top government officials to assert ignorance and plausible deniability of the details of the aforementioned deeds?

Is this the fundamental change for America the president had in mind?

Many recall that in January 2009, this president promised Americans "a new era of openness in our country" as it related to his ethics guidelines for his administration.

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency," Obama said.

I would challenge liberals to cite pertinent examples of this administration governing with any forthright attempt at transparency!

If indeed the president lacked knowledge of any of these contemptible acts occurring on his watch, one would be compelled to question the hours he spent on the golf course or on his "perpetual" campaign trail vs. allocating the time required to be commander-in-chief.

However, if bipartisan investigations confirm this president was indeed knowledgeable of any of these improprieties, our nation must then consider to what extent the character and integrity of this administration has been diminished in the eyes of Americans -- and the rest of the world.

Abraham Lincoln once said, "Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power."

Character is the capstone of the presidency. Without it, structure is compromised and irreparable damage can result.

This White House is in desperate need of presidential character right now.

Mark Caserta is a Cabell County resident and a regular contributor to The Herald-Dispatch editorial page.

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