Fact Check

Caroline Kennedy on Barack Obama

Caroline Kennedy said she can't stand President Obama's voice and that he's a liar?

Published Aug 8, 2012

Claim:   Caroline Kennedy said that she can't stand President Obama's voice and that he's a liar.


Example:   [Collected via e-mail, August 2012]

Just saw on Facebook a photo of Caroline Kennedy quoting that she just can't stand to listen to President Obama's voice and that he is a liar. True?


Origins:   The quote attributed to Caroline Kennedy (daughter of President John F. Kennedy) referenced above originated with Edward Klein's 2012 book The Amateur: Barack Obama in the White House. It appeared in the following passage, which talked about Caroline Kennedy — who had been a strong supporter of Barack Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign — becoming disenchanted with the Obamas for making "catty" remarks about her family and for not being more liberal in political policy-making:

"Through these [spies that the Kennedy family has in the Obama administration] and other people, Caroline heard back that there was a lot of nasty shit being said about the Kennedys by the president and Michelle," [a] family member [said]. "There were catty remarks about how badly the Kennedy women dressed, and how their houses were shabby and threadbare. Caroline got the impression that most of this negativity was coming from Michelle, who didn't want the Kennedys to be part of the administration for fear that they would have too much influence over the president."

"Gradually, Caroline began to change her tune and side with Bobby and Kathleen [Kennedy Townsend] against the Obamas. Unlike Jackie, who was completely apolitical, Caroline is a liberal with a capital L. When Obama didn't raise taxes to balance the budget, Caroline marked him down. In her eyes, he's a mess because he doesn't follow the liberal bible on politics. More important, Caroline discovered that the Obamas didn't give a damn about her support. For instance, she was not invited to the state dinners at the White House hosted by the Obamas, or to the president's forty-ninth birth celebration in Chicago.

"It really annoyed Caroline when comparisons were made by the media between Michelle [Obama] and Jackie [Kennedy]. Caroline had a word for such comparisons; she called them 'odious.' She really got annoyed. And when she began to fall out of love with the Obamas, love was replaced by outright scorn. Now she says things about Obama like, 'I can't stand to hear his voice any more. He's a liar and worse.'"

However verifying exactly what Caroline Kennedy might have said is difficult because the quote offered in this passage is second-hand rather than direct (i.e., it's someone else talking about what she said, not a direct statement from Caroline Kennedy herself) and because the source of the statement is anonymous (beyond the description of his or her being a "member of the Kennedy clan"). Caroline Kennedy herself has neither confirmed nor denied that she made the remarks attributed to her, but even after their publication she has continued to publicly express support for the Obamas, such as issuing a message to wish President Obama a Happy Father's Day, campaigning in New Hampshire for the President's re-election, and making plans to attend the Democratic National Convention.

Last updated:   19 August 2012

David Mikkelson founded the site now known as snopes.com back in 1994.

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