Weeks after reports came out that White House Chief of Staff and serial tweeter Ron Klain was heading for the exit, he sat down for an interview with MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell where he dutifully sang the praises of the Biden administration.
Klain had also spoken at the White House that same day last week before President Joe Biden gave his remarks about the transition from Klain to former White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator Jeff Zients, which O'Donnell played a clip of. Klain memorably broke down in tears during his time at the podium.
Ron Klain breaks down sobbing as he recalls being given a rock by a White House staffer:— Addison Smith (@AddisonSmithOAN) February 2, 2023
“It’s always symbolized to me… that this team has been rock solid.” pic.twitter.com/Dfi84a6O1g
Speaking about the team during these remarks, as well as with O'Donnell, Klain reminded viewers just how obsessed this administration is with leftist ideas such as diversity and equity.
In speaking about his "remarkable staff," Klain bragged that "it's the most diverse staff in history" and "the first time ever a majority of the White House staff is female," which Klain called "a big advantage for us." He also went on to brag about how "we have people of color represented, consistent with their representation in the population," and that "it's a staff that brings together diversity of experiences as well as racial and gender diversity."
Stunningly, Klain did acknowledge that there had been low marks of the administration, sort of, but he used it to harp even further on how diversity supposedly got them through. "It's clear we've also had some rough moments in these two year and we got to the finish line on all these accomplishments because we stuck with it, even when things were going poorly, even when people were counting us out, even when people saying you'll never get it done, and I think the diversity, the maturity, the experience of the team, that's really what shows here."
Such a bogus response does not explain how Biden has consistently had a low approval rating, though.
Klain gave perhaps his most ridiculous and memorable response of all when it came to one of those colossal failures, the administration's withdrawal from Afghanistan.
Despite regarding the death of 13 American service members on August 26, 2021 when a bomb went off outside the Kabul airport as "our saddest day, our hardest day, our most horrific day," Klain still found a way to spin the withdrawal as a positive, including and especially when it comes to the airlift efforts.
RealClearPolitics (RCP) highlighted this particularly absurd part of the interview, during which Klain focused on the lives saved and tried to claim there was any positive out of the chaotic and catastrophic situation. "Look, I know we've been criticized for the president's policy decision there, but we ended America's longest war." Such is a point that Biden himself has stuck to, his belief that he did end it.
"It was time for that war to end, it's always hard to end a war," he went on to say, seemingly seeking to tone down expectations. "Those 13 brave people who lost their lives, those others who were injured at the Abbey gate in Kabul, that is a horrible, horrible price to pay, but I do think that that evacuation was, uh, you know, a tremendous humanitarian achievement for the many lives that were saved, and I think ending the War in Afghanistan was the right decision."
There's actually a lot to unpack there, staring with Klain's--and President Biden's--claim that this war is really over. Biden handled it so catastrophically that it's entirely possible another president will have to go in to fix that mess, despite what Biden may have thought he was promising.
A Quinnipiac poll released days after the final troops left Afghanistan showed that a majority of Americans believe troops will have to return to Afghanistan. Not long before, just as the withdrawal was occurring, a Washington Post-ABC News poll found that a majority also blamed Biden for the death of those 13 service members.
Amidst the withdrawal from Afghanistan and thereafter, Biden's approval ratings plummeted, according to multiple polls. This includes those from CBS News, USA Today/Suffolk, NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist, YouGov, and Gallup.
It's also worth reminding that amidst the chaotic withdrawal, there were countless people left behind, including Americans. We finally learned last February that as many as 9,000 Americans were left behind, despite how the administration gaslit us into believing it was at about 100-500 people. Meanwhile, among those who did make it over included accused rapists.
When confronted about the bodies of those who fell from departing airplanes to their deaths, some even getting caught under the wheels of the planes, Biden dismissed the matter with a claim that "that was four days ago, five days ago." In addition to being so callous, such a remark was inaccurate, as his interview with ABC News' George Stephanopoulos actually took place two days since such pictures came out.
Further, Klain must really be dreaming if he thinks what took place was "a tremendous humanitarian achievement" given what's going on in Afghanistan under the Taliban control, where women are far worse off. An Amnesty Internal report from last July was featured in an analysis from ForeignPolicy.com, under the headline of how "Afghan Women Are Worse Off Than Ever."
RCP has highlighted other similar takes on Klain. Last month, not long after his exit was reported, RCP also featured an editorial from The New York Post, "Good riddance to Ron Klain and his ridiculous spin obsession."