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Juan Williams and Fred Barnes Pounce On Obama About Family Interview

Reported by Deborah - July 13, 2008 -

On Beltway Boys yesterday, Juan Williams and Fred Barnes offered an over blown reaction to the Obama family interview on Access Hollywood last weekend claiming they didn't believe his regret and explanation about how the interview happened. Both men said Obama did not take responsibility for the decision and blamed it on his staff.

During the Ups and Downs segment, Iran got the first down. After showing reactions from both McCain and Obama, Barnes acted as if Obama's suggestions for sanctions and diplomacy would actually have some influence on Iran while Bush is still in office. First he warned that the worst thing that could happen to Obama as a newly elected President would be a nuclear ready Iran because sanctions and diplomacy don't work with " bad guys". Although McCain also suggested sanctions, Barnes didn't conclude that McCain was unprepared to handle Iran.

Then they went after the Obamas for allowing the interview. Williams said if you bring someone into the political arena "people start throwing things" adding if the Obamas object to that they're hypocrites. Then trying to smear Michelle Obama he mentioned her "proud" comment saying that people had a right to attack her for saying outrageous things and his kids don't deserve that.

Then both guys went off on a tangent about Obama always blaming his staff for things and they don't believe it. The criticism escalated until Barnes noted that Obama might be able to repair the damage as if a few minutes of video showing two charming kids talk about their Dad was a form of child abuse.

In the statement Obama offered on NBC about the interview ,his staff wasn't blamed.

“I think that we got carried away in the moment,” the Illinois senator and presumptive Democratic presidential nominee told TODAY’s Matt Lauer Wednesday. “We were having a birthday party, and everybody was laughing. And suddenly this thing cropped up. I didn’t catch it quickly enough. I was surprised by the attention it received.”

comment: The Obama family was out in full view throughout the day before the interview. Cameras followed them wherever they went and we all peered at them sitting in the stands watching the parade. Commentators all over the country talked about the girls and Malia's birthday and repeated Obama's remark about her July 4th birthday. That apparently was just fine with Williams and Barnes. However the moment the world had an opportunity to see the special Obama family dynamic displayed in the interview, they seemed to panic. Williams even felt compelled to remind people that Michelle Obama isn't a proud American because she seemed like a typical American mom sitting there with her kids .