The Fetterman Debacle


Staff member
The Fetterman Debacle
Stumbles, lies and videotape.
By Joseph Klein

The one and only debate between the two candidates for the open U.S. Senate seat in Pennsylvania, Democrat Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman and Republican Dr. Mehmet Oz, turned into a pathetic demonstration of John Fetterman’s unfitness for office. Despite the use of closed captioning during the debate to accommodate Mr. Fetterman, who had suffered a stroke in May and is still recovering, Mr. Fetterman’s answers were at times incoherent and halting.

Mr. Fetterman did try his best to obscure his extreme leftist positions on a host of issues such as crime, energy, the economy, and abortion when challenged by Dr. Oz, but he failed. Fetterman was even caught in an outright lie about his position on fracking, a critical issue for Pennsylvanians.

The Democrats are desperate as they confront the distinct possibility of a major red wave in the mid-term elections. Thus, they want to win the Pennsylvania Senate seat at all costs, in order to hold on to their power in the upper chamber. They will do whatever they can to make sure that John Fetterman is the winner, knowing that he will be an automatic vote for the Biden-Schumer left-wing, progressive agenda.

Mr. Fetterman also has many cheerleaders in the mainstream media. They claim that criticizing the hapless lieutenant governor’s debate performance is an example of “ableist” discrimination against the disabled, that Mr. Fetterman was brave just to show up, and that he held his own against supposed bullying from Dr. Oz. Mr. Fetterman’s cheerleaders also assert that his condition will not affect his ability to serve in the U.S. Senate where, they emphasize, he is just 1 out of 100 members and needs only to enter the chamber and vote.

Gail Collins, an opinion writer for the New York Times, was at least honest about why she advises Pennsylvania voters to ignore John Fetterman’s debate performance. “The most important thing about this election, by far, is that it could decide who will control the Senate,” Ms. Collins wrote. “At this point, party is all that matters.”

What difference does it make if Mr. Fetterman is unable to fully contribute to the Senate’s deliberations in the legislative body that is supposed to act like a “saucer,” in George Washington’s words, to “cool” legislative passions? Party is all that matters.

According to Ms. Collins, “oratory certainly doesn’t matter. When was the last time a friend told you she’d changed her mind about a big issue after a rousing speech by Senator X?”

What difference does it makes that the strain of the job may put Mr. Fetterman’s questionable health in further jeopardy? Party is all that matters.

“You certainly hope he’ll at least be able to get up and go to work,” Gail Collins declared. “But whatever his condition, don’t express your concern by helping turn the Senate over to Mitch McConnell,” she added.

This cynical, compassionless attitude is typical of John Fetterman’s supporters in the wake of his stroke and dismal debate performance. All they care about is dragging Fetterman across the finish line first, whatever it takes, and then making sure that he votes strictly along party lines.

According to John Fetterman’s primary care physician, the Pennsylvania Democrat Senate candidate “has no work restrictions and can work full duty in public office.” The doctor added that Mr. Fetterman “spoke intelligently without cognitive deficits” but suffers from “auditory processing disorder” in which words that he hears are “not processed properly.”

If nothing is seriously wrong with Mr. Fetterman’s health that would prevent him from working “full duty in public office,” why does he still refuse to release publicly his full medical records? What is John Fetterman trying to hide? This question is particularly relevant considering the fact that Mr. Fetterman’s doctor, Dr. Clifford Chen, has donated to his campaign as well as to the Democratic National Committee, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, and other Democrat candidates.

In any event, if we take the clean bill of health that John Fetterman’s doctor has given him at face value, then Fetterman cannot use his stroke as an excuse for grossly misrepresenting his positions on key issues during the debate. Take fracking, for example.

“I absolutely support fracking,” John Fetterman declared nearly midway through the debate. One of the debate moderators pointed out that Fetterman had said in 2018 that “I don’t support fracking at all. I never have.” The moderator asked the lieutenant governor to explain his changing position.

“I’ve always supported fracking and I always believe that independence with our energy is critical,” John Fetterman replied. To her credit, the moderator followed up.

“I do want to clarify something,” the moderator said. “You’re saying tonight that you support fracking, that you’ve always supported fracking, but there is that 2018 interview that you said, quote, ‘I don’t support fracking at all.’ So how do you square the two?”

Fetterman acted like a deer caught in the headlights with his halting answer, but he stuck to his false narrative: “Oh, I do support fracking. I support fracking, and I stand, and I do support fracking.” The video of the exchange captures this moment the best.

John Fetterman also said during the debate that “I believe that I run on my record on crime.” If Lieutenant Governor Fetterman’s record since 2019 as chair of the Board of Pardons is any indication of what criminal justice priorities he would pursue as a senator, heaven help us. During that time, the number of pardons granted in Pennsylvania has skyrocketed. And while he has been chairing the Board of Pardons, Mr. Fetterman has supported release from prison and clemency for convicted murderers who had been serving life sentences for their heinous crimes.

The Fetterman campaign has seized on a statement about abortion that Dr. Oz made during the debate. He believes that there should not be any involvement from the federal government in how states decide their abortion policies. “I want women, doctors, local political leaders letting the democracy that’s always allowed our nation to thrive to put the best ideas forward so states can decide for themselves,” Dr. Oz explained.

Democrats are trying to exploit Dr. Oz’s mention of “local political leaders” having some role in connection with abortion decisions, citing it as evidence of Dr. Oz’s supposed extremism. But they are the ones taking an extreme position on abortion by denouncing the notion that government has any role to play at all in regulating abortions, even up to the time of birth.

John Fetterman said during the debate with Dr. Oz that he supported codifying Roe v. Wade into federal law, while dodging the question of whether he supported any limits on when a woman can have an abortion. Last April, however, during a Democrat primary debate, when Mr. Fetterman’s true left-wing colors were on display, he had no problem directly answering the question whether there are any limits on abortion that he would find appropriate. “I don’t believe so, no,” Fetterman replied.

John Fetterman stumbled badly during his debate with Dr. Oz. Even so, he tried his best to hide the truth about his extreme left-wing beliefs. However, Mr. Fetterman’s record clearly exposes his deceptions. John Fetterman is a left-wing progressive who has been opposed to fracking, soft on crime, and supportive of abortion on demand with no limits. No wonder Democrats catering to their progressive base are so anxious to have Fetterman take over retiring GOP Senator Pat Toomey’s seat in the Senate, no matter what effect this may have on his health.