BENJAMIN WEINGARTEN: Here’s why Obama stepped in to save Harvard prez Claudine Gay.

But Obama’s defense of Gay almost assuredly transcends sympathy for her remarks and the students for whom she spoke, concern about Harvard’s stability or a desire to effectively defend a political ally, given Pritzker’s responsibility for Gay’s presidency.

Like l’affaire Gay broadly, Obama’s intervention should be seen as a major salvo in the broader war over diversity, equity and inclusion in America’s most influential institutions.

Obama is making a play to protect the DEI regime itself — a regime, already roiled by the backlash against wokeism and the Supreme Court’s strike against affirmative action in schools, critical to maintaining political power.

Barack Obama is the leader of the Democratic Party in everything but name and the face of our credentialed pseudo-elites.

Harvard is arguably the most prestigious university in the world.

Claudine Gay, proudly touted as Harvard’s first black and second female president, has devoted much of her career to advancing DEI and led the creation of a sprawling DEI administrative state, injecting racist “anti-racism” and anti-equality “equity” into every aspect of the school.

This parallels what Obama’s progressive successors have done to the federal government under the Biden administration.

Israel- and Jew-hatred on college campuses is a natural byproduct of DEI.

The ideology, rooted in cultural Marxism, divides the world into oppressors and oppressed, casting Judeo-Christian Western civilization and its defenders as uniquely evil and Israel, the collective Jew — a state whose modern incarnation emerged out of the Holocaust and thrived despite perpetual attempts by tyrannical Jew-hating neighbors to destroy her — as most evil of all.

DEI cloaks leftism, and its rotted and corrupted core, in race and identity to provide it a moral and virtuous veneer and make it unassailable; to organize a coalition of otherwise disparate groups; and pit them against other Americans as part of a divide-and-conquer strategy.

DEI, in short, is a tool of power and control — engendering political and ideological conformity and the mobilization and weaponization of its cadres — the left has wielded to maximum effect as it’s taken over every influential institution.

If Claudine Gay were to fall, it could topple the entire house of cards the left, led by Barack Obama, helped build.

QED: “Barack’s Lieutenant: The Racism, Revenge, and Ruin of Claudine Gay,” a topic explored by Scott McKay at the American Spectator:

Indeed, there is no more apt poster child for the America Obama left us than the pathetic Ms. Gay. In a time when not just race but adherence to noxious neo-Marxism govern hiring decisions everywhere from the campus to the “entertainment” world, (and, increasingly, Fortune 500 boardrooms), no one better exemplifies the ruinous legacy of our 44th president.

And ruinous by intention. This is only one facet of the “fundamental transformation” of America that Obama promised on the eve of his 2008 election. All the American people really wanted in electing Obama was to neutralize race as a persistent issue in politics and culture, thinking that taking a chance on a not-particularly-qualified politician as our president would prove we aren’t a racist country, and further, we’d be proving that we’d realized the dream of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., that men and women would be judged in America by the content of their character and not the color of their skin.

What a vile bait-and-switch that was.

Barack Obama’s own academic qualifications were dubious. It’s still not particularly well-understood how he managed to secure admission to Columbia and Harvard with undistinguished grades or how he managed to serve as president of Harvard’s law review without authoring a single article in that publication.

He advanced based on the color of his skin and not his individual merit. Everyone understands that now. Obama then demonstrated at Harvard Law along with the bizarre racist professor Derrick Bell, the inventor of Critical Race Theory, when the latter demanded the university hire more black faculty simply because they were black. This after Obama was made president of the law review simply because he was black.

As Claudine Gay was made president of the university simply because she is black.

Finally, there’s their shared apparent love of the P-word, Lloyd Billingsley writes at Power Line: Presidential Plagiarism.

“He wants people to believe his story,” David Garrow told Samuels. “For me to conclude that Dreams from My Father was historical fiction—oh God, did that infuriate him.”

It’s hard to exaggerate the fakery of the composite character, the fathomless credulity with which he was received, and the fallout now on full display. In “The Obama Factor,” David Samuels saw Obama’s hand in “the disaster we are living through now.”

No surprise that the composite character president, whose book ripped off Ralph Ellison and Kuki Gallmann, should support the plagiarist Claudine Gay, who says anti-Semitism depends “on the context.”  As this plays out, don’t forget White House resident Joe Biden.

As Mark Bowden noted in 2010, the Delaware Democrat was basically a “salesman,” and showed little sign that he had ever read or written anything of importance. So no surprise that in his 1988 presidential run, Biden plagiarized a speech by British Marxist Neil Kinnock. Consider also “presidential historian,” and one-time Harvard “overseer” Doris Kearns Goodwin, author of The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys.

“Goodwin’s plagiarism of sentences, nearly verbatim, from source materials is inexcusable,” the Harvard Crimson editorialized in 2002. “She should recognize that her action is unbecoming an Overseer and resign her post immediately, sending the clear message to the campus that she understands the gravity of the offense she has committed.”

Exit quote: “At this writing, Claudine Gay is still president of Harvard. As Donald Trump likes to say, we’ll have to see what happens.”