What’s Obama Hiding?
- 23 April 2012 by Author 0 Comments
What’s Obama Hiding?
By Richard Larsen
Published – Idaho State Journal, 04/22/12
Is President Obama right in assuming that Mitt Romney is “hiding something?” Responding to a Washington Post article which revealed that Romney “is using an exception in federal ethics laws to avoid disclosing the full extent of his investment holdings,” Obama sent three tweets under his verified personal Twitter account attacking Romney. In his last tweet Obama queried, “What’s Romney hiding?”
Having filled the requirements of the Office of Government Ethics by what he’s already disclosed, the expectation that Romney would open his entire economic history to public scrutiny is not required, though it would be a courtesy to American voters. Obviously the OGE didn’t have any problems with Romney’s disclosures since they requested no further documentation, explanation, or more tax returns.
This isn’t an isolated instance, but seems to be an inscrutable theme by the Obama camp. Just a few months ago, before the first release of tax documents by Romney, Ben LaBolt, a spokesman for the Obama campaign, was asking, “What is it that he doesn’t want the American people to see?”
Let’s turn the table on what Obama tweeted. We should all be asking, “What’s Obama hiding?” In spite of having written two ideologically oriented autobiographies, we know remarkably little about the man who’s been our president. Charlie Rose and Tom Brokaw admitted four years ago on PBS, “We don’t know a lot about Barack Obama,” and now three years later, we still know very little about him.
And the reason? So much of his documented history is sealed and proscribed from release to the public. It seems only logical that if someone goes to such great lengths to seal and hide records, that there must be something worth hiding, based on Obama’s own reasoning. There must be something that would raise serious questions about his candidacy, or at the very least, provide an unwanted distraction to a candidate in a presidential election campaign.
While there are verifiable lists of nearly twenty items from his past that Obama has had sealed, there are a few undisclosed items that have particular relevance to his past that voters deserve to know about him. Yet for some unexplained reason, have remained hidden from the public.
For example, none of his college records from his two years at Occidental College in Los Angeles have been released, or from his next two years of undergraduate study at Columbia University. No records, grades, or transcripts from his years there. And, you guessed it, we have none from his law school days at Harvard either, including papers published while president of the Harvard Law Review.
He has prevented all such records from being made public. It can’t be a matter of being embarrassed by bad grades, for he wouldn’t have been able to go from a small private liberal arts school to Columbia, one of the most prestigious higher education institutions in the country without stellar grades. And for that matter, with bad grades he wouldn’t have been able to matriculate at Harvard Law School, either. So, Mr. President, what are you hiding?
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act prevents institutions from releasing student educational records, but in the spirit of full disclosure, shouldn’t Obama release those records, including his transcripts?
We also have no records from his 18 months as a practicing attorney, including client lists. In fact, even his record with the Illinois State Bar Association remains sealed.
All of his records and files from his years as an Illinois State Senator are sealed. Even his medical records are sealed, as the only evidence we have of his medical health is a one-page, 276-word statement from his doctor. By comparison, John McCain, in the last election cycle, released over 1,000 pages of medical records.
Even more troublesome, is the obvious duplicity and lack of impartiality on the part of the mainstream media. The cacophony of talking heads from the media is parroting Obama’s call for Romney to release his records. So where are the calls for Obama to open the books and records on his past?
Just last week Obama said in an interview on Univision, “I think that it’s important for any candidate in public office to be as transparent as possible, to let people know who we are, what we stand for, and you know, I think that this is just carrying on a tradition that has existed throughout the modern presidency.”
Mr. President, are you not to be held to the same standards of transparency? Or is this a standard you hold everyone to except you? So, what are you hiding? How about a document swap; all of your sealed records for Romney’s tax returns?
AP award winning columnist Richard Larsen is President of Larsen Financial, a brokerage and financial planning firm in Pocatello, and is a graduate of Idaho State University with a BA in Political Science and History and former member of the Idaho State Journal Editorial Board. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.