The conservative media is doing backflips over a video they’re touting as the long-sought smoking-gun proof that Barack Obama is a socialist. In an interview with Geraldo Rivera Sunday on Fox News, Al Sharpton uttered—get this!—that “the American public overwhelmingly voted for socialism when they elected President Obama.” Wow! Case closed, right? Conservatives sure thought so, with Newsbusters, the Heritage Foundation, and finally Glenn Beck jumping to tout the quote.
But if you actually watch the video (left), you’ll see that Sharpton is just “smacking down a talking point introduced by Geraldo,” writes Alex Koppelman in Salon. Geraldo posits that Obama is leading the country “some would argue to socialism.” Sharpton’s point is that, if this is socialism, the public voted for it. “The president promised the American people health reform when he ran, he was overwhelmingly elected … and he has delivered what he promised.”