WASHINGTON – Diplomatic tensions rose today after a Fox News camera caught President Barack Obama talking to one of his press aides and making some very undiplomatic comments about Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper after the two met briefly at a Washington international benefit event.
As Obama and Media Relations Director Clive Leonard walked away from reporters, the Fox newsfeed clearly picked up the conversation.
LEONARD: “The Prime Minister is requesting a 15-minute meeting Mr. President.”
OBAMA: “What’s with that guy?”
LEONARD: “Sir?” (coughs)
OBAMA: “He’s shifty…he’s never standing where his voice seems to be coming from.”
OBAMA: “And he’s a large lump isn’t he? All pudge and hair.”
The comments were aired after a one-second tape delay before Fox News began repeating them in their entirety with added commentary. White House officials immediately asked Fox to stop airing the embarrassing comments but the network’s leading political commentator Bill O’Reilly responded to the request live on air with “Yeah right!”
Other news outlets quickly began running the footage with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer (not his real name) stating that the President’s harsh words were “school-yard” and could damage relations between the two countries at a time when cross-border issues such as the Keystone Pipeline are already causing friction. However, Wolf could be seen snickering when Obama was shown saying Harper is all pudge and hair.
“The President chose not to talk about the state of the American economy today. Instead, the President chose to talk about the considerable belly and hokey hair of our close Canadian friend,” said John Boehner, Republican Speaker of the House. “True Americans do not call our friends lumps.”
Prime Minister Stephen Harper officials were unavailable for comment.
The White House issued a statement indicating that they do not comment on “eaves-dropped and out of context” conversations but one senior Democrat called the President’s comments “tame compared to when President H. Double Ya Bush was taped saying German Chancellor Angela Merkel had big knockwursts.”
Reporting for The Lapine