CNSNews.com thought they had it all worked out.
When it tried but failed to get an answer from the White House about whether President Obama would stop to view flooding in Rhode Island during a trip to Massachusetts for a Democratic fundraiser, it posted an April 1 article by Penny Starr and Fred Lucas in an attempt to paint Obama as insensitive:
President Barack Obama was scheduled to fly past flood-ravaged Rhode Island aboard Air Force One twice on Thursday as he traveled to Maine to give an afternoon speech lauding his health care bill, then to Boston for an evening fundraiser for the Democratic Party, and then back to Washington, D.C. late Thursday night.
Spokespersons for the Obama administration did not respond to CNSNews.com’s questions about the disaster, including why the president didn’t visit R.I., if he planned to do so in the near future and whether he could survey any of the extensive destruction caused by what the state’s governor is calling the worse flooding in 200 years.
Neither White House spokesman Nick Shapiro nor White House press office staffer Mora Mack responded to the questions asked via repeated e-mails.
In his speech in Maine, Obama did not mention the hardship faced by many of Rhode Island’s 1 million residents, but he did claim his health care law will help “struggling” small business owners “here in Maine and across America.”
Their smear, it turns out, was a bit rushed. When Obama did, in fact, visit Rhode Island, CNS hurriedly added an editor's note to the article:
(Editor's note: Businessweek.com reported at 5:34PM EDT that President Obama had made an unannounced visit to Framingham, Mass., to discuss the flooding in New England with Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick.)
Oops. Perhaps CNS shouldn't be so eager to smear.
Then again, CNS was able to keep another smear alive. Another April 1 article by Starr complained that FEMA administrator Craig Fugate "was in sunny Orlando, Fla., giving a speech" instead of going to Rhode Island. Starr did not explain what Fugate should be doing in Rhode Island, or why he must go to Rhode Island to do it instead of directing any needed federal operations from Florida.