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NOLAN FINLEY

Nolan Finley: Is Obama trying to ruin Clinton?

Nolan Finley
The Detroit News

The Republican campaign machine must have felt like it hit solid gold Tuesday when President Barack Obama spoke publicly about the Paris terrorist attacks.

The president delivered one sound bite after another that will ultimately find their way into attacks aimed at Hillary Clinton, his former secretary of state and the presumed Democratic presidential nominee.

A dismissive and defensive Obama declared himself not interested “in posing or pursuing some notion of American leadership or America winning or whatever slogans they come up with that has no relationship to what is actually going to work to protect the American people and to protect the people in the region who are getting killed ... I’m too busy for that.”

He certainly conveyed the appearance of being too busy to reassess U.S. strategy in the fight against the Islamic State, let alone commit to a stronger response. And he didn’t back away from his pre-Paris assertion that ISIS had been contained.

But he did assure the Islamic State that they won’t have to worry about American ground troops entering the conflict.

What his condescending tone didn’t do is reassure a frightened American people that they can count on him to do whatever it takes to keep them safe.