Free Markets, Free People

Spinning The Census Move

I guess this is “excitable Andy” day, but Andrew Sullivan is engaged in some pretty poor spin today. Calling it a canard, Sullivan has this to say about the proposed census move to the White House by the Obama administration:

Again, this is not a real issue. It’s an issue driven by the paranoid GOP base. The census has not been removed from the Commerce Department’s purview, as Ambers explains below. And past censuses have long been conducted with coordination from the White House staff.

The explanation Sullivan offers says:

“This administration has not proposed removing the Census from the Department of Commerce and the same Congressional committees that had oversight during the previous administration will retain that authority.” …

Kenneth Prewitt, who served as Census director from 1998 to 2001, said he worked with White House staff during the 2000 Census on budgeting, advertising and outreach efforts.

But as Jeff Zeleny of the NYT reminds us, that’s not at all what the White House proposed:

The White House signaled last week that it would exert greater control over the Census Bureau, in part because of a concern among minority groups over Gregg leading the Commerce Department. Then, in response to complaints by Republicans, the administration said it would work closely with the director of the census, but it would not be under the direction of the White House.

Those “minority groups” were the Congressional Black and Hispanic caucuses. So it was political pressure that precipitated the move. Additionally the move was to have the director of the census bureau work with and report directly to Rahm Emanuel, President Obama’s chief-of-staff.

Now the claim is that nothing different was planned, and it all was a misunderstanding and that it will be business as usual (now that it appears a Republican isn’t going to be running Commerce).

A "Spinorama" Adventure

A "Spinorama" Adventure

Of course, that’s nonsense. But not to excitable Andy. He, with his fine tuned discrimination antenna says:

This issue was championed by Republicans for the usual “the-darkies-are-taking-over!” reasons.

Lost in his sloppy analysis is the fact that the announcement by the Obama administration was very specific about the move and why – complaints from the CBC and Hispanic caucus. Also missing is the fact that the move was overtly political and meant to placate the complaining political special interest groups. For a guy who constantly complained about the politicization of the Justice Department, he seems fine with covering an attempt to do the same thing with the census. Coordinating budget and outreach with the executive department isn’t at all the same as proposing a move of the entire census bureau out from under the Commerce Dept. – where it has always been – to the White House.

Sullivan will be fun to watch as he becomes part of the effort to backtrack and coverup for the new administration.


Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on TumblrShare on StumbleUponShare on RedditPin on PinterestEmail this to someone

10 Responses to Spinning The Census Move

  • So, how long till Sully starts sock puppeting and completes his descent??

  • I hope that obama administration well overcome this challenge.

  • Quote him if you must, but why link to him?

  • So what is it with Sullivan these days? He’s a mystery to me.  I understood that he was angry at Bush for opposing Gay marriage, although neither Kerry nor Obama would come out in favor of it.  Then he claimed to be a “true” conservative opposing the GOP’s takeover by “Christainists.”  OK; I could understand that, too, although why Obama, with his dopey Social Gospel  (Chistianism plus State-socialism), was a preferable choice to someone allegedly pro-freedom was a mystery. Has he now even abandoned limited-government conservatism in favor of Obama’s Cult of the Unlimited State?  That seems like taking his man-crush on Obama way too far.  If he found Che cute would he have become a communist?  The charge that  his meds or some kine kind of disease has wreaked havoc with Sully’s thinking processes smacks too much of “ad hominem,” but I’m hard pressed to come up with any other explanation for why someone who was once so pro-freedom is now so pro-Obama.  Any theories?

  • Bilwick It is not hard to understand Andy.  He is the too sensitive, intelligent poof who never fit in but always, always was desperate for acceptance.  That is why, originally, he was happy writing articles for conservative magazines because as the one gay conservative he could be the center of attention.

    But that was not enough. When he came to realize that he would never be accepted as “one of the guys” by those mean old religious conservatives he turned on them and now he is spinning in an ever decreasing circle, caught between his base desires, his knowledge of what is really right, and his nonacceptance in full by either group. 

    This will end badly I fear.

  • Sullivan has literally lost his mind.  When he or anyone else resorts so easily to the accusations of bigotry they lose me.  I think the best thing we can all do is ignore him.

  • Sen. Gregg withdrew because (1) Obama’s chutzpah crossed the line and (2) Obama CANNOT put away his “birth certificate” issue.
    1. Here’s the chutzpah: The Republicans didn’t get their act together enough to challenge Obama for not being constitutionally qualified to be President as an Article 2 “natural born citizen” so Obama’s White House steals the census from the Commerce Department against the specific instructions of the constitution itself — “actual enumeration” under Article 1.
    2. Here’s the “birth certificate” issue: Since Obama’s earnest drive to convince the nation to weaken its economic strength through redistribution as well as weaken its national defense, COUPLED WITH HIS UNPRECEDENTED WHITE HOUSE TAKEOVER OF DECENNIAL CENSUS TAKING FROM THE COMMERCE DEPARTMENT, has confirmed the very threats to our Republic’s survival that the Constitution was designed to avert, it no longer is sustainable for the United States Supreme Court to refrain from exercising WHAT IS ITS ABSOLUTE CONSTITUTIONAL DUTY TO DEFEND THE NATION FROM UNLAWFUL USURPATION. The questions of Obama’s Kenyan birth and his father’s Kenyan/British citizenship (admitted on his own website) have been conflated by his sustained unwillingnes to supply his long form birth certificate now under seal, and compounded by his internet posting of a discredited ‘after-the-fact’ short form ‘certificate’. In the absence of these issues being acknowledged and addressed, IT IS MANIFEST THAT OBAMA REMAINS INELIGIBLE TO BE PRESIDENT UNDER ARTICLE 2 OF THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION. Being a 14th Amendment ‘citizen’ is not sufficient. A ‘President’ MUST BE an Article 2 ‘natural born citizen’ AS DEFINED BY THE FRAMERS’ INTENT.

  • This is what I am doing to oppose The Clown™ and His Illegal Abusive Unconstitutional Power Grab of the Census: I am calling one of my US Senators, and demanding that when The Clown™ finally names a Commerce Secretary who is not under indictment or has paid his/her taxes or has some other ethical problem, that the GOP demand that this person (man or woman or something else) promise, IN WRITING, that they will not allow the White House to control the Census in any way. If the nominee does not do this, the Republicans will put a hold on their nomination and let it sit until such an assurance is given.

    Play hardball (not the p*ssy Chrissy Matthews kind) with The Clown™, and show that his unconstitutional power grab will not go unanswered.

    Now THAT would be a Republican Party I can be proud of again.

  • Given Sully’s prominence (and Kos et al) it is evident that Jeff Goldstein nailed an observation of the left:

    They have their story, told to them the way they want to hear it.

    While both left and right have elements that project and indulge in idol worship, I do not recall the right mainstreaming their fairy-tellers.

  • Blatant race-baiting must be some flavor of “hope and change” with which I’m unfamiliar.