Commentary Magazine


A Nightmare Scenario

Let’s do a thought experiment. Let’s suppose that Barack Obama gets narrowly re-elected. And then, in a week or a month, the lid blows off the Benghazi story and what is now a trickle of leaks from bureaucrats protecting their butts turns into a flood.

The mainstream media that has been so studiously ignoring this story while the election was still to be won or lost will have no choice (and, indeed, every reason) to make it the big story it would have been had it happened on President McCain’s watch. And it turns out that Obama, to protect his re-election prospects, decided to sacrifice four American lives, including an ambassador, and spun a deliberate lie to mislead the public.

The fury, I suspect, would be boundless. The House, almost surely to remain in Republican hands, might well impeach the president. Only a majority vote is needed to impeach. The Senate, whichever way it goes, is probably unlikely to muster the two-thirds vote needed to convict. But would Obama be able to govern under those circumstances? This wouldn’t be about personal failings such as nearly brought President Clinton down, it would be about violating his oath of office.

If this political nightmare should come to pass, the cause of it will have been, of course, the president. But equally culpable will be the mainstream media that deliberately failed to do its duty in order to bring about a desired political result. Journalists rank with used-car salesmen and members of Congress in public esteem already. How much lower can they go?