Did you hear about the poor ol’ Boston teacher who Barack Obama talked Thursday about having met? He’s the experienced teacher who Obama talked having been laid off three times as he pushed his jobs bill — so we can get “Robert back in the classroom teaching our kids.”
There are only a couple of problems with the story. First, Obama never met the guy. Second, the guy is still happily employed in a school as a “data and literacy coach” working with other teachers to make them better at what they do.
Unfortunately for the Liar in Chief, the Boston Herald tracked down the facts and pointed them out, even if the paper was polite enough to simply sat that Obama’s story “stretches” the truth.
Here were Obama’s actual words:
“I had a chance to meet a young man named Robert Baroz. He’s got two decades of teaching experience. He’s got a master’s degree. He’s got an outstanding track record of helping his students make huge gains in reading and writing. In the last few years, he’s received three pink slips because of budget cuts. Why wouldn’t we want to pass a bill that puts somebody like Robert back in the classroom teaching our kids?”
Baroz was actually invited to the White House and was in the same room as Obama in September, when the administration brought in some teachers who supported the jobs bill to be props. But Obama didn’t meet him. Some of Obama’s aides met with him to get details of his story, which were obviously used in this week’s news conference, but that’s it.
Politicians do this all the time. I’ve seen it in my own career and I’ve seen it in national politicians. To most of these folks, people such as Baroz are merely fodder of their anecdotes. (Remember Ronald Reagan’s story of the Welfare Queen in the Cadillac? The specifics of that story were a lie, too.) Sadly, the people who are influenced by these stories are less interested in facts than they are in something that reinforces the emotional tales they want to believe.
Obama’s supporters want to believe his jobs proposal is going to get great unemployed teachers back to work. The administration can’t actually find any of those people who would be good examples, so they manufacture their own and parse the words carefully so they can claim they’re not completely lying. Their intent is to deceive. You know it. They know it. Sadly, most people don’t even care.