Clinton: another exaggeration challenged (UPDATE)
Pretty soon she’s not going to have anything to talk about:
Over the last five weeks, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York has featured in her campaign stump speeches the story of a health care horror: an uninsured pregnant woman who lost her baby and died herself after being denied care by an Ohio hospital because she could not come up with a $100 fee.
The woman, Trina Bachtel, did die last August, two weeks after her baby boy was stillborn at O’Bleness Memorial Hospital in Athens, Ohio. But hospital administrators said Friday that Ms. Bachtel was under the care of an obstetrics practice affiliated with the hospital, that she was never refused treatment and that she was, in fact, insured.
“We implore the Clinton campaign to immediately desist from repeating this story,” said Rick Castrop, chief executive officer of the O’Bleness Health System.
How does one get a story so wrong?
Oh! Whew. Sorry, I had to duck there. Sniper fire you know.
Anyway, here’s how the Clinton campaign explained it:
A Clinton spokesman, Mo Elleithee, said candidates would frequently retell stories relayed to them, vetting them when possible. “In this case, we did try but were not able to fully vet it,” Mr. Elleithee said. “If the hospital claims it did not happen that way, we respect that.”
Or said another way, “if we hear a good story, one that will make big points for us and pushes our agenda, whether we can confirm it or not, we’re using it until someone makes us stop.”
What were those three words again? Judgment? Integrity? Honesty? I’ve always thought they were integral to that fourth and most important of words – leadership. If so, we know who we don’t want answering the phone at 3am.
UPDATE: Just breaking from AP:
The manager of Hillary Rodham Clinton’s presidential campaign says Mark Penn has asked to give up his role as chief strategist of the campaign.
First published at QandO.