MSNBC's Chris Matthews just quoted former Bush chief of staff Andy Card attacking Barack Obama. Card is upset that Obama allows people to go without jackets in the Oval Office. Matthews rightly mocked Cards' nonsense, as did Time's Joe Klein a few minutes ago.
But Matthews and Klein, like other media that have covered this idiotic controversy, are stipulating to Cards' claims that jackets were required in the Bush Oval Office.
That is not true. And Andy Card knows it isn't true. Take a look at this picture:
That's quite clearly the Oval Office, and that's quite clearly George Bush. Now: the guy standing up, in the pink tie? That's George Tenet, and he quite clearly isn't wearing a jacket.
Finally, see the guy on the far right? The one looking right at the jacketless George Tenet? That's Andy Card.
Yes, that's the same Andy Card who now sanctimoniously attacks Barack Obama for allowing people in the Oval Office without jackets -- something that was never allowed in the Bush White House, according to Andy Card.
And yet the media repeat Card's claims about the Bush White House without bothering to factcheck them.
It's not like this photo is a big secret; John Aravosis posted this photo at Americablog back on January 22. Yet MSNBC has now devoted multiple segments to Card's comments, without once noting that he's lying.
Now, granted, many of the reporters who have mentioned Card's comments have poked fun at his stuffiness. That's all well and good. But Andy Card isn't just being pompous -- he's lying. That's the important part. That's the part that completely undermines his criticism of Obama. That's the part that reminds us once again that it's probably a pretty bad idea for any reporter to ever take anything said by a former Bush official at face value. That's the part they should mention. And, unfortunately, it's the part they consistently omit.