Off the Record

Greta: Maybe Pres. Obama skipped American history in school - or just doesn't get it

'Off the Record', 11/19/13: Snubbing the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg address is not the first time Pres. Obama has opted not to recognize an important date in American history


By Greta Van Susteren

Let's go "Off the Record" for a minute. Remember this? President Reagan at the 40th anniversary of the Normandy invasion?


PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN: Behind me is a memorial that symbolizes the ranger daggers that were thrust into the top of these cliffs and before me are the men who put them there. These are the boys of Flintaho. These are the men who took the fiscal cliffs. These are the champions who helped free a continent and these are the heroes who helped end a war.


That was inspiring. It felt so good listening to our president - such important date in our history. He traveled 4,000 miles across the Atlantic to honor those who fought or even died for the world's freedom. This is one of the reasons he had

We admire our presidents. They console us in great times of grief and hardship. They inspire us when we achieve and admire greatness of those who come before us and changed the nation all for the better. This is important to America.

So, it's with disappointment that I ask this question tonight: Why didn't President Obama travel a short distance, 63 miles, to Gettysburg to speak at one of our nation's most important anniversaries.

One hundred fifty years ago, President Abraham Lincoln, like President Obama is from Illinois, talked about the civil war and what it means to be an American. Today's White House explanation for President Obama's no show at today's historic Gettysburg event is that didn't work with his schedule. His schedule? I don't get it. And frankly this is not the first time President Obama has missed the mark, big-time.

Last fall, he opted for out-of-town fundraising instead of attending the memorial here in D.C. for astronaut Neil Armstrong, the first to set foot on the moon and for America --the chance to claim victory and announce to Russia we won, we beat you to the moon. That step on the moon was incredible moment in history, and winning the space race was a huge source of pride to many Americans.

I still can't figure out why President Obama didn't make time for Mr. Armstrong's memorial or why he would snub today's Gettysburg address commemoration. Maybe President Obama, with all his great education, skipped American history and just doesn't get it.

That's my "Off the Record" comment tonight. If you have an important story or issue you think I should take "Off the Record," go to and tell us about it.