Louisiana Republican Literally Runs Out Of Interview To Avoid Explaining Why She’s A Birther

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lenar whitney

Lenar Whitney being interviewed by David Wasserman, via Lenar Whitney’s Facebook page

Journalist David Wasserman has made a career of interviewing hundreds of politicians – this is the first time one has fled his office to avoid answering one of his questions.

The distinction goes to conservative Louisiana state Rep. Lenar Whitney. In a state that is known for being very conservative, Whitney has made a name for herself as being the furthest right-wing she could manage. According to Wasserman’s assessment, Whitney “cites Minnesota’s Rep. Michele Bachmann (R) as a political role model, and takes kindly to the nickname ‘Palin of the South.’” Using those conservatives as inspiration, Whitney denies climate change, hates Obama, thinks all 11 million undocumented immigrants should be deported, and loves guns. Oh and she wants to repeal Obamacare, of course.

It should come as no surprise, then, that Whitney has a long track record of legislative idiocy and willful ignorance regarding basic facts. While many of her colleagues on the Right (but by no means all) have been quietly softening their position on climate change, Whitney paid for a campaign video titled (in all caps, no less) “GLOBAL WARMING IS A HOAX.”

The video, done in tasteful black-and-white, explains how the “lamestream” media is after Whitney for “telling the truth” about global warming. After comparing herself to George Orwell and contrasting her position against the closest thing conservatives have to a boogeyman, Al Gore, Whitney remarks that “any 10-year-old can invalidate their thesis with one of the simplest scientific devices known to man: a thermometer.”

Whitney needs the simplest scientific devices, because she is certainly not a climate scientist. Despite her confidence in climate change being a hoax, Whitney – who’s career before politics was running a dance studio – appears to know nothing about what global warming means and how scientists track it. As if to prove that, her campaign ad interweaves shots of Whitney with scenes of blizzards – your move, scientists.

When Wasserman asked Whitney about her stance on climate change, she didn’t mind standing by it. To prove it, she bumbled through a cringe-worthy answer:

“But it’s not unreasonable to expect candidates to explain how they arrived at their positions, and when I pressed Whitney repeatedly for the source of her claim that the earth is getting colder, she froze and was unable to cite a single scientist, journal, or news source to back up her beliefs.”

Clearly, she feels that denying climate change is an asset to her electoral chances. Even when she doesn’t have anything good to say, she’ll try to keep talking. Instead, it was when she was asked about her other views, particularly her alleged birtherism, that things got awkward.

Wasserman recalls the scene:

“To change the subject, I asked whether she believed Obama was born in the United States. When she replied that it was a matter of some controversy, her two campaign consultants quickly whisked her out of the room, accusing me of conducting a ‘Palin-style interview.’”

At least, she got to be her hero Sarah Palin, if only for a moment.

Whitney represents a particular breed of Republicans who don’t feel “facts” need apply to them. When confronted with inconvenient truths about climate change or anything else, they dig in their heels and play the victim. Fighting against the “lamestream” media means never having to say you’re sorry – nor must you even explain yourself. The strict adherence to an ideological dogma is enough.

As a perfect bookend to this story, Whitney actually wrote a Facebook post decrying the way she was treated during her interview and inadvertently proves that point.

She wrote:

“What The Cook Political Report printed about me is an outright lie. I left the interview with Dave Wasserman, several questions later, after he asked me if I was a “birther”. It was obvious, from the onset of the interview, that Wasserman had planned to jump me simply because I am a Conservative Woman and liberal shills like Dave Wasserman want to destroy us. That’s the real #WarOnWomen

Nowhere does she mention the fact that she is, in fact, a birther, which makes the question a completely reasonable one to ask of someone who is in politics. Instead, Whitney finds the line of inquiry distasteful and uses it as more evidence that the world is against her, not because she is wrong, but because she tells it like it is.

Reprinted with permission from Addicting Info