Obama hands over podium of White House press room to former President Clinton, and leaves
Various pundits, including Allahpundit, who also has a link to the short version of the video, have various opinions about the meaning of it. I have no idea what is the meaning of it. All I know is, it’s surpassingly strange.
Ending weeks of speculation and rumors, President-Elect Barack Obama today named Bill Clinton to join his incoming administration as President of the United States, where he will head the federal government’s executive branch. “I am pleased that Bill Clinton has agreed to come out of retirement to head up this crucial post in my administration,” said Obama.Here is Doug Powers’s take:
A few minutes in, President Obama excused himself because he had to “get to a Christmas party.” Clinton barely batted an eye while continuing to take questions for another half-hour under the “White House” backdrop, leaving onlookers with a palpable “let the adults take over now, Barry” feeling:
Paul K. writes:
I happened to be watching this press conference live and it was one of those startling TV moments.LA replies:
That’s not entirely clear to me. When Obama introduced Clinton, he said, “I’m going to let him speak very briefly.” If you stopped there, it would seem that Obama intended to let Clinton speak for a few minutes at most and then re-take command of the press conference and bring it to an end; but that Clinton, being Clinton, went on gabbing at length, leaving Obama with no choice but to decamp if he was to save the shreds of his dignity. But that wasn’t all that Obama said in his introduction of Clinton. He said that Clinton might want to answer questions from the press, and that he, Obama, would have to leave soon for a Christmas party. So clearly Obama, at the very beginning of this event, was setting up a scenario in which he would be leaving and handing the press conference over to Clinton.LA continues:
The closest analogy I can think of to Clinton’s inappropriate one-man performance in the White House press room was when President Reagan was shot and his chief of staff Alexander Hague rushed to the White House press room and stated breathlessly, “I am in charge here.”Dan R. writes:
In the AP’s uber-PC coverage, there is only the slightest hint that Obama had left the press conference.LA replies:
I had read this story earlier and completely missed what you saw. The article does bring out that Clinton gave an unusual ex-presidential performance in the White House, but it never actually mentions the main thing and the very embarrassng thing for Obama—that he awkwardly exited, leaving the ex-president acting as though he was the president.Paul K. replies:
It’s interesting that you bring up Alexander Haig because I also thought of him when trying to recall comparably odd behavior at a presidential news conference.David B. writes:
Suppose in 1962, former President Truman had visited the White House. Can you picture John F. Kennedy and Harry Truman acting out the scenario Obama and Clinton put on?
Posted by Lawrence Auster at December 11, 2010 12:11 AM | Send