- - Friday, May 16, 2014

Remember when John McCain ran for president in 2008, and the liberal media were deeply concerned about his age and health? Hardcore left-wing pundits and bloggers weren’t subtle about it — they made fun of him for his age, and the health problems he developed while he was a Vietnam prisoner-of-war. They said he was an out-of-touch old man who couldn’t even handle a computer keyboard.

A group of 2,000 doctors ran a full-page ad in The New York Timesdemanding that McCain release every last scrap of his medical documentation to the general public. Liberal website Salon.com said even that wasn’t good enough — it wanted to see his psychiatric records, too.

Remember how McCain’s running mate, Sarah Palin, was treated? Liberals said she couldn’t possibly handle the demands of the vice presidency because she had so many children. Pure misogyny came boiling out of every left-wing throat. A deranged blogger named Andrew Sullivan ran column after column questioning whether Palin was actually the mother of her youngest son, or maybe she was just pretending to be the mother of one of her daughter’s illegitimate children. Liberals mocked Palin as a ditzy broad. Comedienne Tina Fey made up a line about Palin claiming she could see Russia from her house that many left-wingers to this day think is a real quote from the candidate.

But now you’re supposed to forget about all that because political consultant Karl Rove had the nerve, the unmitigated gall, to ask questions about Hillary Clinton’s health. Hillary avoided testimony on Benghazi by saying she had passed out and developed a blood clot in her head after a fall. She spent a couple of days in the hospital, and was out of action for quite a while afterward. Rovedared to remember that, and ask if we could see some official medical reports to reassure us there are no long-term repercussions from the incident, should Mrs. Clinton decide to run for president in 2016.

All hell broke loose from the liberal palace-guard media, which are practicing for the day when they can stop protecting King Barack and move on to ignoring stories that damage Queen Hillary. MSNBC quickly convened a panel to say that asking for Hillary’s medical records is “sexist.” Host Krystal Ball said it was just like asking Barack Obama for his birth certificate.

Sally Kohn at the Daily Beast said Rove’s question was both ageist and sexist. Savannah Guthrie of NBC News leaped in front of Hillary with her sword and shield at the ready, gushing about how Clinton’s team was “hitting back hard” against Rove’s “explosive claims.” (For the record, he only made one “claim” that was demonstrably inaccurate — he said she was in the hospital for 30 days, but it was only three days. )Faithful Clinton media bodyguard Natalie Morales chimed in and said Rove was “over the line.”

(Newsbusters has video of the NBC segment here.)

Brian Williams of NBC called Rove’s questions a “smear campaign.” Chuck Todd, on the same network, said Republicans were “going nasty early” to scare Clinton out of the presidential race because they’re afraid she’ll win. Everywhere you turned, the media action line was that Rove was way out of line for even mentioning Clinton’s health; the big story was what a beautiful job Hillary’s defenders were doing of smacking him down.

The saddest thing about the furious media dogpile on Rove is that he didn’t actually say what supposedly made them all mad. He didn’t say Hillary had “brain damage” — that was part of the New York Post’s headline. The entire media ran with that instead of checking to see if those were Rove’s actual words.

So the liberal bully of the week goes to the palace-guard media, which will not allow certain questions to be asked about their favorite Democratic candidates. They jumped on Ronald Reagan in 1980 and said, at 69, he was too old and feeble, and would only be able to fulfill one term. Some left-wingers gleefully portrayed John McCain as a walking corpse at 72 years old in 2008 … but then the media went ahead and ran big stories about his medical history anyway. They didn’t think questions about Reagan’s or McCain’s health were out-of-bounds at all. When he ran in 2008, McCain was only about three years older than Hillary Clinton will be in 2016 — 69, the same age Reagan was when he was first sworn in.

Rusty Humphries is a nationally syndicated talk-radio host.