Staged White House gathering bears marks of his political crafting.


WASHINGTON – The question of what has happened to newly appointed Ebola czar Ron Klain was answered Wednesday afternoon at a White House messaging event.

The message as the event in the East Room unfolded appeared to be President Obama is preparing the way for Americans to understand why closing borders to West Africa would not be an effective way to stop the Ebola crisis from becoming a worldwide pandemic.

The unspoken background of the White House event remained the continued opposition to travel bans or mandatory quarantines, and the possibility the State Department might decide to permit Ebola-infected foreign-nationals from seeking treatment here.

As the event began at 4 p.m., the newly appointed Ebola czar, Klain, was the last person to be seated, taking a place in the front row.

Reporters spotted among the audience Secretary of Health and Human Services Sylvia Burwell, Department of Homeland Security presidential adviser Lisa Monaco, former head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Anthony Fauci, Director of the Domestic Policy Council Cecilia Muñoz, USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah and National Security Adviser Susan Rice.

After Klain was seated as two unidentified men in lab coats entered and stood on the podium, followed by various health-care workers the White House identified as having just returned from West Africa, or about to travel to there, to treat Ebola patients.

The White House identified the audience as primarily health-care workers and representatives of various nongovernmental health organizations, as well as “the faith and African diaspora communities and individuals from across the government” working as part of the Obama administration’s “whole-of-government response to Ebola.”

Obama was introduced by Dr. Kent Brantly, the Samaritan’s Purse physician who contracted Ebola in Liberia and recovered after being evacuated to the United States, where he was treated at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta.

“President Obama is an international leader, representing the best interests of us all as global citizens,” Brantly said.

Obama quipped that Brantly had “gained a little weight since before I saw him last.”

While the Ebola czar did not say a word throughout the event, the staging and structuring of it appeared to bear the marks of his long experience inside the Beltway as a manager of political messages. 

‘American heroes’

Beginning his prepared remarks, Obama explained to the audience that he had just come from a meeting in the Situation Room with health-care professionals and his public health and national security teams.

“As I said yesterday,” Obama began, “we know that the best way to protect Americans from Ebola is to stop the outbreak at its source. And we’re honored to be joined today by some of the extraordinary American health workers who are on the front lines of the fight in West Africa.”

Written by JEROME R. CORSI
Read more at WND


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