Axelrod Can't Help Freaking Out at a Karl Rove Misquote

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We were wondering if President Barack Obama's camp would have something to say about Karl Rove's Wall Street Journal op-ed about The Road We've Traveled, and David Axelrod's Twitter freak-out makes it clear Rove's inaccurate dismissal of the Bin Laden raid touched a nerve. That's especially obvious because it's not like there weren't critics refuting Rove's out-of-context quote grab already.

Talking Points Memo noticed that on Thursday mid-morning, David Axelrod sent out a flurry of tweets correcting Rove's characterization of Bill Clinton's take on Barack Obama's decision to authorize the strike on Osama bin Laden. Rove wrote in his WSJ takedown of the Obama campaign movie that any commander would have decided to authorize the mission. "Even President Bill Clinton says in the film 'that's the call I would have made.' " But that's not exactly what Clinton said. Axelrod tweeted: "Actual Clinton quote: “WHEN I SAW WHAT HAD HAPPENED, I THOUGHT TO MYSELF, I HOPE that is the call I would have made.” But The Washington Post's Greg Sargent had already beat him to it, making the same point in his Plum Line column earlier on Thursday.

Axelrod either didn't see Sargent's column or he couldn't help but chime in as well. Either way, the aggravated response suggests Axelrod's worried about the very point Sargent made in his piece: Downplaying the success of the Obama raid will "be central to GOP efforts to rewrite the history of the Obama presidency." Rachel Maddow pointed out in her blog that it's a case they can't win. "If Rove and other Republicans want to spend 2012 debating whether Obama deserves credit for this accomplishment, I suspect the president's re-election team would be delighted." Others in the team, maybe, but not Axelrod.

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