New Obama Aide Apologizes For GOP ‘Cult’ Jab

John Podesta says sorry after old comments surface

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An incoming senior adviser to President Barack Obama found himself in hot water on Wednesday after the publication of old comments in which he compared House Republicans to the Jonestown cult.

John Podesta, the chair of the Center for American Progress who is starting as a counselor to Obama in January, told Politico in an interview several months ago that the White House needs to “focus on executive action given that they are facing a second term against a cult worthy of Jonestown in charge of one of the houses of Congress.”

Brendan Buck, a spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner, criticized Podesta’s remarks in a statement. “For those who’ve forgotten, a Democratic member of Congress was murdered in Jonestown and a current one, Rep. Jackie Speier, was shot five times during the same incident,” Buck said. “If this is the attitude of the new White House, it’s hard to see how the president gets anything done again.”

On Twitter, Podesta apologized for the “snark.”

In 1978, more than 900 people died in a mass cult suicide in Jonestown, in the South American country of Guyana.

24 comments
Arimathean
Arimathean

If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck...

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

I'm confused how is this worse than the constant calls of terrorist, nazi, secret Muslim, etc, etc.

tommyudo
tommyudo

I don't think Podesta was out of line. The GOP is an extreme cult, just not a death cult.

SallyFields
SallyFields

I just find it terribly troubling how the democrats project onto others what they themselves are doing!  I mean, really...it's the democratic base, the followers of the 'messiah Obama' that have the characteristics of a cult.  Pleeze...stop this nonsense.  You're so transparent!!!!!! 

SallyFields
SallyFields

I just find it terribly troubling how the democrats project onto others what they themselves are doing!  I mean, really...it's the democratic base, the followers of the 'messiah Obama' that have the characteristics of a cult.  Pleeze...stop this nonsense.  You're so transparent!!!!!! 

jmac
jmac

Snark.   Snark as in a Vice President telling a senator to go f himself on the Senate floor?  I don't remember an apology, so good for Podesta.  

aztecian
aztecian

@mantisdragon91yeah...this is nothing and it is 100% true.  these racist obstructionist are non-stop name calling.  why apologize to a pig with lipstick?

drudown
drudown

@tommyudo 

Tell me, how is the GOP "shutting down" our own government and advocating for a "default" on US Treasury obligations anything other than "suicidal"? How is the REFUSAL of a SINGLE GOP member of Congress to vote differently anything other than "cult-like"? Do tell. 

jmac
jmac

@SallyFields The Democratic base does not like Obama.   He gave them a Republican health care plan (yes, he took the Senate and House bill and called in Romneycare's writer and morphed them into a Republican health care plan and told Reid and Pelosi to pass it)/    He's center right on the economy - he didn't have the knowledge to follow Clinton's lead on taxes (and the great result Clinton got) and didn't stop the Bush tax cuts.   He hasn't put tough regulators in to regulate the banks.   Some even think he's too hawkish with the drones.    I could go on.


He's acceptable because of the alternative.  

drudown
drudown

@SallyFields 


I think that you are the "transparent" one. Let's see.


Isn't it true that Climate Change is a grave threat to National Security interests and should be regulated by the EPA?


(cricket, cricket)


Thought so.

SallyFields
SallyFields

@jmac This president doesn't even compare to past presidents as far as how much they lie, cheat, decieve...if this were 1972, this president would have been impeached...Nixon broke into ONE HOTEL room, OBAMA broke into 300 million homes.  Don't waste your breath on trying to defend this defenseless president.  If he had ANY dignity or respect for this country, he would've resigned long ago!!!  At least Nixon had the decency to do so.

Rustiga
Rustiga

@jmac 'You Lie!' must be absent in your already dwindling brain cells..

tommyudo
tommyudo

@aztecian


Let me revise and extend my previous remark. You are correct, the GOP is a death cult because they are trying to  take the rest of and dragging the entire country down into Third World irrelevancy.

drudown
drudown

@SallyFields @jmac 


Sally, I would like to direct your attention to the documentaries "Loose Change: 9/11" and "Dark Legacy".


Who's the political party without dignity again?


Prescott Bush is a NAZI.


"Thy love afar is spite at home."- Emerson


tommyudo
tommyudo

@SallyFields


Huh??? Obama broke into 300 million homes???  What did he do, drop a loaf on the living room rug and depart?


What is clear is that the GOP is hellbent in controlling what goes on in every bedroom in this country.


Btw, the only people who refer to Obama as the messiah are you reich wingers. Dummy up, girlie.



jmac
jmac

@SallyFields @jmac You're cracking me up.   The CIA report is out with Bush's torture.   He invaded a country based solidly, one hundred percent on lying just to (as a Repulbican noted) 'kick some butt.'    If Republicans wanted an impeachment, they had plenty of opportunity to do it while they were destroying our reputation to the world.    Bush makes Obama (and hopefully any future president) look like a saint. 

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@SallyFields@jmacWhat about Reagan? You know the man who had 138 officials indicted, arrested and investigated. Who encouraged and assisted ethnic cleansing in Central America and provided targeting coordinates to Iraq for chemical use on Iranian Civilians.


How about GWB who covered up the Saudi involvement in 9/11 and lied to invade a country that never attacked us, all the while politicizing the justice department, and outsourcing torture to 3rd world countries.


How about Bush the elder, who assisted in bringing crack into the US and invaded Panama because he got into a disagreement with his drug supplier?

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@Rustiga@jmac  

While the current vice president is showing contrition over dropping an F-bomb, the last one seems proud of his own famous off-color moment.

On the Senate floor for a photo session in 2004, Dick Cheney had a run-in with Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.). After the two argued over Cheney's ties to Halliburton and President Bush's judicial nominees, the then-vice president told the senator "f--k yourself."

Cheney, who has never regretted the incident, appeared on Thursday's "Dennis Miller Show" and took a compliment about it from the host.

"I love that move," Miller said while thanking Cheney for going after Leahy. "One of my favorite stories -- muttering that."

Cheney responded that a lot of people liked the comment. "That's sort of the best thing I ever did."

Think Progress pulled the clip.

jmac
jmac

@reallife @jmac @SallyFields Why is that a spin?   The Republican's are controlled by their base, not their mainliners who compromise, and the Democratic party is controlled by it's center.  That's a fact.  


If we had a "coffee party" we'd have such "heresies as single-payer health care for all Americans, a significant carbon tax, a living minimum wage, publicly financed elections, Eisenhower-level income taxes, wars on corporate welfare and corporate tax evasion, an end to the wars on drugs and 'terror' and downsizing the Pentagon till it can be drowned in a bathtub." (Ian Keay letter to ed NY Times)  


Code Pink would actually have an influence; poor women could get birth control; our inner city schools would look like my neighborhood school;    the banks wouldn't be so smug about their ability to take us under again, the number of kids in poverty wouldn't equal the number before LBJ had his war on poverty, etc etc