They seem kind of hostile to the president. First there was Uncle Charlie, who Obama claimed had liberated Auschwitz (he’d helped liberate Buchenwald). And when Charlie was asked, months later, about Obama’s visit to Buchenwald, he took a rather cynical view of the president’s motives:
SPIEGEL: Mr. Payne, early in June your great-nephew, President Barack Obama, will visit the former concentration camp Buchenwald, which you helped liberate at the end of the war. Will he be travelling in your footsteps?
Charles Payne: I don’t buy that. I was quite surprised when the whole thing came up and Barack talked about my war experiences in Nazi Germany. We had never talked about that before. This is a trip that he chose, not because of me I’m sure, but for political reasons.
Obama’s own uncle thinks he is a craven and calculating politician. Now Ben Smith posts the transcript of a Dana Bash interview with another Obama uncle, this one his great uncle Ralph Dunham, who was mingling freely with the right-wing mob at a town hall meeting in Northern Virginia this week:
DANA BASH, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Do you feel like you have a good grasp of what’s in the plans for overhauling health care?
RALPH DUNHAM, PRESIDENT OBAMA’S GREAT-UNCLE: No, I don’t, because the thing is over a 1,000 pages long, and the House and the Senate are going straighten out the two bills. And nobody knows what’s going to be in it, I don’t think.
BASH: Do you feel confused by it?
DUNHAM: I don’t really know very much about it. I don’t know whether to be confused or not. I’m hoping we get some information just like everyone else.
BROWN: Now, Dunham tells Dana his great nephew, the president, needs to do a better job of reassuring the public about all this.