Rick Warren, an influential pastor perhaps best known for his Purpose Driven series, brought together U.S. Presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain on the Civil Forum on The Presidency to get to know their views on various matters that the Christian electorate find important.
Here I present to you a collection of reviews of the session, as well as Youtube videos of the entire interview.
The session is broken up into 12 separate videos, each around 10 to 11 minutes long.
I suggest you open this post in a new window (click the link below if you’re now on my blog’s main page) and start all 12 of the videos with sound muted, then go read other posts and come back in a while.
For a shorter video focusing on the main answers each candidate gave to the questions, see this first one:
Links direct to the Youtubes precede each embedded video. Kudos to Youtuber subscribe2me4more for uploading the whole set.
If the video links are defunct, you can always Youtube search for more recent videos.
A primer before you begin: Various references are made to Obama’s lack of experience. What they are referring to is his mere 143 days of Senate experience before he chose to run for President. And it shows.
Scott’s observations in square brackets (work in progress):
Rick asks: Who are the three wisest people you know?
[Say it Obama - JEREMIAH 'GOD D*MN AMERICA' WRIGHT, your pastor of 20 years! Say it, you coward!]
Obama: Wife, white grandmother [whom he threw under the bus], lots of advisors together.
Rick asks: What would be the greatest moral failure in your life?
Obama:I experimented with drugs, I drank in my teenage years… It was a certain selfishness on my part, I was so obsessed with ME…
[You still are, o one whom you've been waiting for, who causes the rise of the oceans to slow and the planet to heal!]
Obama: A lot of times, I’m trying to protect myself instead of doing God’s work…
[So having admitted this, maybe you'll start being honest (No liar shall inherit the kingdom of God) instead of flip-flopping, evading (see the 'pay scale' quote below) and lying every time a hard question comes along.]give far less to charity than conservatives?]
Rick: Greatest moral failure of America?
Obama: We still don’t spend enough time think about the least of us.
[Then why do your liberals
From Moonbattery, Obama avoids the question on abortion, which he knows his support of doesn’t play well with conservative Christians:
Careful: Don’t Step in the Nuance
Here’s how the Obamessiah answered Rick Warren’s question, “At what point does a baby get human rights?” (with all the uhs thoughtfully removed by the Los Angeles Times):
I think that whether you are looking at it from a theological perspective or a scientific perspective, answering that question with specificity, you know, is above my pay grade.
If only La Times had also filtered out the smokescreen of $5 words like “specificity,” they could have saved some ink by translating the answer as “I dunno.”
Asked the same question, McCain “immediately responded that a baby’s rights begin at conception.”
La Times characterized Obama’s answer as “more nuanced.” Shovel away the nuance and you will find that Obama’s voting record is 100% pro-abortion.
Too bad Warren didn’t ask the Obamination, If you don’t know you’re wrong, why can’t you just admit what you stand for? Why hide beneath the stinking heaps of nuance?
[See How Obama is a Genocidal Anti-Black Racist for Obama's record on support for abortion, including partial birth abortion where the baby could survive outside the womb if it weren't stabbed in the brain first.]
A comprehensive review excerpted from Gateway Pundit:
Faith Forum: Obama & McCain Saddle Up At Saddleback …Update: Obama on Abortion Video
Obama starts off: He says his opposition to the war in Iraq was his hardest decision. Puh-lease! We are all sure it was an agonizing decision for an Illinois state senator– Obama is such the politician. He still believes the Iraq War is not in America’s best interest. That is not only ridiculous but dangerous.
Obama abortion: He is asked at what point does a baby get human rights– He just dodged the question… “It’s above my pay grade.”
I doubt that will play well with the religion voters.
Here’s the video:
Obama on marriage: “Marriage is between a man and a woman.” He says he does not support same sex marriage. Oh buddy!!! Watch the nutroots go C-R-A-Z-Y tonight!
Obama on stem cell research: He’s in favor of embryonic stem cell research.
Obama on evil: It has to be confronted (But, not in Iraq.) We have to have humility in confronting evil. Just because our intentions are good doesn’t mean we are doing good (a typical liberal view of America).
Obama on Supreme Court: Obama would not have nominated Clarence Thomas or Scalia. Obama says Thomas did not have experience. Glenn Reynolds says, “Kinda ironic, huh?”
[Scott: Obama almost said the experience thing, but didn't - see the Michelle Malkin review below.]
Good for Rick Warren for asking these questions.
John McCain is up.
John McCain is doing excellent- He quotes Rick Warren’s book. McCain talks about energy. He jokes about Sarkozy and Governor Arnold. He woos the crowd with his heroic story about his days as a prisoner of war.
McCain tells his wonderful story about the Christian North Vietnamese guard.
What a beautiful story.
OK– McCain is knocking it out of the park.
I never knew I liked McCain so much. He was brilliant.
John McCain: I will be the President of every American.
From Michelle Malkin:
Saddle up: Saddleback Forum open thread; Obama on abortion: “Above my pay grade,” attacks Clarence Thomas
Obama on abortion: It’s “above his pay grade.” What the…
Obama on which Supreme Court justice he wouldn’t have nominated: Clarence Thomas.
Disturbingly, commenters note, the Saddleback audience cheered.
Allah’s got the near-gaffetastic video of Obama’s Thomas remarks.
Watch him catch himself mid-sentence, the first fateful syllable of the word “experience” already out of his mouth, before he stops short and switches gears by basically calling Thomas a moron instead (at least, “at the time”) :
Mark Levin: “On Obama’s best day he can’t hold a candle to Thomas’s intelligence.”
McCain on when babies are entitled to human rights: “At the moment of conception…this presidency will have pro-life policies.”
Define marriage: “A union between a man and a woman. One man and one woman.”
Warren asks about California marriage preservation proposition and Calif. Supreme Court. “California Supreme Court was wrong.”
OBAMA JUST SAID CLARENCE THOMAS DIDN’T HAVE ENOUGH EXPERIENCE TO SERVE ON THE COURT: Kinda ironic, huh? (Scalia’s qualified, but Obama wouldn’t have nominated him). Just turned off the TiVo and his appearance with Rick Warren was on.
And Allah goes to the video on Clarence Thomas. I’m standing by my call — biting the word in half isn’t the same as not saying it. In fact, it kind of underscores things that he recognized the error himself, doesn’t it? “Holy crap, I can’t say that!“
From Ann Althouse comes a complete rundown of the event, live-blogged from 7 am to 8.55 am. Contrast McCain’s responses with Obama’s:
Let’s watch the Saddleback Presidential Forum together.
8:09: What is the most “gut-wrenching” decision he’s ever had to make? He says it was facing the offer to leave the prison in North Vietnam, which he refused because the code of conduct forbade leaving before an earlier-captured comrade, though he was in “bad physical shape” and the refusal meant that it would not “be easy” for him after that and it wasn’t. He adds, “It took a lot of prayer.” This corresponds to Obama’s tough decision to oppose the war in Iraq.
8:15: What does it mean for you to be a Christian? “It means I’m saved and forgiven.” He gets through that super-fast, then claims time to “tell a little story.” The story is about how the North Vietnamese tied him up tightly in ropes, and a particular guard loosened the ropes, then hours later retightened them. Later, on Christmas, that guard marked a cross in the dirt for him.
8:18: At what point is an unborn child entitled to human rights? Without hesitation, McCain says: “At the moment of conception.” (Remember, Obama said, that’s “above my pay grade.” ) Big applause in the Saddleback Church. “I have a 25 year pro-life record.”
8:51: “What would you say to people who oppose me asking you these questions in a church?” “Our nation was founded on Judeo-Christian values. I’m happy to be here…. I’m honored to be here.” And that’s the end. Another standing o.
IN THE COMMENTS: Lots of folks think McCain won clearly. A telling comment from XWL: “McCain has the advantage of just being able to say what he thinks.”
In response to Obama’s poor performance in the interview, from Newsbusters:
NBC’s Andrea Mitchell Floats Idea McCain Cheated
Think John McCain did pretty well in last evening’s Saddleback Civil Forum on Presidency hosted by the Rev. Rick Warren? You’re not the only one. The Obama campaign thinks he did well too — so good, in fact, that they think he might have cheated. And on this morning’s “Meet the Press,” Andrea Mitchell wasted no time floating the Obama campaign’s “private” concern:
SEN. JOHN McCAIN (R-AZ): Defeat it. Couple of points. One, if I’m president of the United States, my friends, if I have to follow him to the gates of hell, I will get Osama bin Laden and bring him to justice. I will do that and I know how to do it. I will get that done.
MR. GREGORY: Andrea Mitchell, that’s a pretty clear contrast.
MS. ANDREA MITCHELL: Oh, absolutely. And, you know, there was the crisp, immediate, forceful response by John McCain, clearly in a comfort zone because he was with his base. And Barack Obama, taking a risk in going there but seeing an opportunity. And a much more nuanced approach. The Obama people must feel that he didn’t do quite as well as they might have wanted to in that context, because that — what they’re putting out privately is that McCain may not have been in the cone of silence and may have had some ability to overhear what the questions were to Obama.
MR. GREGORY: Right.
MS. MITCHELL: He seemed so well prepared.
Michelle Malkin points out that McCain did not have the opportunity to listen in on Obama, and that Rick Warren doesn’t buy the conspiracy theories either:
Sore loser: Obama and Obamedia accuse McCain of “cheating”
No, really. The Obama camp and its media water-carriers are seriously accusing John McCain of “cheating” in his appearance over the weekend at Rick Warren’s Saddleback church forum because he was in his motorcade when the program started– and then escorted to an empty room without media hook-ups.
NBC’s Andrea Mitchell spread the unsubstantiated rumor that somehow McCain heard Obama’s questions while on his drive. The nutroots went, well, nuts. The NYTimes piled on (“Despite Assurances, McCain Wasn’t In a ‘Cone of Silence’“). The McCain camp has protested.
[Scott: McCain protests that NBC abandoned its 'non-partisan' stance. I find this an odd statement, seeing as the liberal media are blatantly and documentedly biased towards Obama - what did McCain actually expect, especially with McCain's own ads mocking the Obamedia love affair?]
The event wasn’t even head-to-head. How is the Obama team going to behave should The One wipe out in an official debate this fall? The wah-mbulance will be working overtime.
Warren told CNN Sunday evening, “we flat out asked him” if he heard any of the questions. The McCain campaign “confirmed that McCain did not hear or see any of the broadcast” in the motorcade or after he arrived, Ross said.
When asked if McCain overheard anything, Charlie Black, a McCain adviser who was with him at the time, told CNN: “We were in motorcade until 5:30 p.m. ET; then a holding room in another building with no TV.”
Warren said, “I trust the integrity of both” candidates, and said he “knew they would abide by the rules.” He joked McCain may not have been in the cone of silence, but “he was in the cone of a Secret Service motorcade”.
Wait… It seems that Rick Warren did give some warning of the questions… To BOTH interviewees.
Above my Pay Grade?
For while Warren and Obama may have been tied at the hip for a few years now, even in the friendly confines of Saddleback Church, Obama was unable to speak truth, and now the world saw it exposed.
His most outright lie was his claim that abortion rates had gone up over the last eight years. Within minutes bloggers at TownHall.com, pro-life groups like Americans United for Life, and even the analyst panel on Fox News Channel had the stats in front of the American public. Abortion rates have actually decreased over the last eight years, and have done so in significant fashion. In fact in January of 2008 it was reported by the Guttmacher Institute and repeated in U.S. News and World Reports that abortions had reached a three decade low.
[Scott: See also Michelle Malkin - In 2005, 1.21 million abortions were performed, down from 1.31 million in 2000. From 1973 through 2005, more than 45 million legal abortions occurred.]
For Obama to so blatantly say otherwise demonstrated paramount ignorance; ignorance to such degree that he should not be elected dog catcher, much less the most powerful chair of the free world. And if not ignorant then he was more than willing to manipulate the issue by forthright lying to the largest audience of evangelicals in America, and a pastor on national television.
But his willingness to do so is easily parsed in the world of liberal far-left politics today. There is no real consequence to telling untruths in the world of the academic elite that Obama stems from. Every time he opens his mouth it is an opportunity for him to appear as though he is weighing multiple sides of an issue and with his smooth articulation drip words that his sycophantic, brainwashed, supporters believe are divinely inspired script.
But they aren’t because he’s just a man, just like any other man, with temptations, sin, and deficiencies of judgement. Only Obama’s deficiencies in judgement seem unparalleled in recent history.
When asked most forthrightly by Warren as to when a child should have its God given rights protected, Obama balked and claimed “knowing when something” that is obviously living, “begins to live” was, “above his pay grade.”
Even as a father he knew it was a lie.
Go back to the day when Michelle first told him that she was pregnant with their first daughter. Was his daughter alive? If someone had desired to injure his baby girl while developing in his wife’s body would he have “misunderstood” as to whether it would have been morally wrong? How deep would his anger have been if someone had robbed him of the relationship with his little girl?
And yet this flail speaks to his fundamental misunderstanding of morality and whether or not his moral judgement could be trusted as the most powerful man on earth.
Obama has added even further doubt by outright lying about why he supported the exact same “Born Alive Infant Protection Act” that was even too radical and immoral for Barbara Boxer, Hillary Clinton, and Dianne Feinstein to support. Put differently Obama is the only elected official on record to ever vote in favor of denying life-saving medical care to children who had been born but that were struggling for life.
Is that a decision too confusing so as to be “above the pay grade” as well?
It isn’t for most Americans.
But don’t let the facts be confused, Obama is now lying about his lie, and claiming that those who say he is lying are the ones doing so.
So is he confused about the facts, bought and sold by the abortion lobby, or just manipulating the issue for bait and switch political gain?
The answer to all three is likely “yes.”
Ann Coulter (with sarcasm):
CONSTITUTIONAL SCHOLAR OBAMA QUESTIONS LEGALITY OF SLAVERY BAN
After seeing Obama defend infanticide with the glib excuse that the question of when life begins is above his “pay-grade,” Rev. Jeremiah Wright announced that although he’s known Obama for 30 years, he only recently became aware of how extreme the senator’s viewpoints were. Wright, after all, has his reputation to consider.
Network heads responded by dashing off an urgent memo: During the main presidential debates this fall, ask NO questions about abortion, ethics or evil! Morality isn’t the Democrats’ forte.
But most stunningly, when Warren asked Obama if he supported a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between a man and a woman, Obama said he did not “because historically — because historically, we have not defined marriage in our Constitution.”
I don’t care if you support a marriage amendment or not. That answer is literally the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard anyone say. If marriage were already defined in the Constitution, we wouldn’t need an amendment, no?
Say, you know what else was “historically” not defined in the Constitution? Slavery. The words “slavery” and “slave” do not appear once in the original Constitution. The framers correctly thought it would sully the freedom-enshrining document to acknowledge the repellent practice. (Much like abortion!)
But in 1865, the 13th Amendment banned slavery throughout the land, in the first constitutional phrase ever to mention “slavery”: “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”
On Obama’s “historical” argument, they shouldn’t have passed the 13th Amendment because the Constitution “historically” had not mentioned slavery.
[Above video features Ann Coulter and others discussing Obama's support fo 4th-trimester abortion. Babies are only in the mother's womb for 3 trimesters before they would normally be born...]
Obama’s performace with Rick Warren is consistent with the Obamessiah’s proven track record of zero experience, general ignorance of basic facts, lack of ability to think without a script, die-hard support for unrestricted abortion, and lying and flip-flopping on all the issues whenever it seems politically prudent to do so.
Frankly, this interview reaffirms what alert, Bible-believing Christians ought to know already: That A vote for Obama is a vote for depravity.
Editorial cartoon takes on the Saddleback Civil Forum:
Following from Day by Day:
Following from The Ryskind Sketchbook:
Following from The Ryskind Sketchbook:
Following from The Peoples Blog:
Tags: above my pay grade, Civil Forum on The Presidency, McCain on faith, obama abortion, Obama McCain debate, Obama on faith, Purpose Driven, Rick Warren, Rick Warren Obama McCain, Saddleback Civil Forum