OK, what the heck is CNN doing in this segment? Is there something wrong with Blitzer and their news department? For them to waste almost three minu
April 10, 2009

OK, what the heck is CNN doing in this segment? Is there something wrong with Blitzer and their news department? For them to waste almost three minutes of their biggest news show on something as trivial and ignorant as the conservative kerfluffle over Obama's bow to King Abdullah is quite shocking.

The only people making this a story are right-wing fanatics such as wingnut billionare Richard Melon Scaife' and his op-ed pages, looking for any excuse to attack President Obama.

And Blitzer praises CNN reporter Dan Lothian as if it were an incredible question to ask Robert Gibbs. The Pittsburgh Gazzette is proof positive that "people" are just so upset by it. And I think Gibbs is 100% right when he says America couldn't care less about this.


BLITZER: But I want to move on to some controversy involving the president when he was in Europe last week.

He met with the king of Saudi Arabia. We got a picture there. I think we also have some video as well. He appears to bow when he met with King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia. And the White House press secretary Robert Gibbs had this exchange with our Dan Lothian over at the White House briefing earlier.


DAN LOTHIAN, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: It does appear that the president actually bowed to King Abdullah. Did he bow or didn't he?

GIBBS: I think he bent over with both to shake -- with both hands to shake his hands. So I don't...

LOTHIAN: To show one hand...

GIBBS: No. I...


LOTHIAN: Did he bow or didn't he?

GIBBS: No. But I think this meeting was like a week ago, right?

LOTHIAN: That's right, but this is something that a lot of people are still talking about today.

GIBBS: I can only imagine it is of great cause and concern for many people struggling with the economy.


BLITZER: All right. Clearly trying to play down the issue. The "Pittsburgh Tribune Review" editorial said this, Donna, "In the least, it was an embarrassing protocol faux paus. Mr. Obama is not the king's subject but his equal. But the bow," in quotes, "actually was worst than that, it's a troubling metaphor for a deferential presidency."

He's getting a lot of criticism from the right.

BRAZILE: Well, you know, they criticized Michelle Obama, the First Lady, for supposedly touching the Queen, so I don't know if it was a bow, a nod or that was his way of saying -- you know (speaking foreign language), I don't know what the greeting was, but look, the fact is that he was just showing his friendship and his kindness to a country that we hope remains a strong ally in the Middle East.

BLITZER: Big deal or little deal?

PERINO: I think it's a little deal if they would have let it be a little deal but I think that they have perpetuated this story for several days because if you look at the tape, just from the plain face of it people can look at it and go, oh gosh, that kind of looks like a bow.

But I think they could have handled it differently. Look, when President Bush did the cultural and customary thing of grabbing the king of Saudi Arabia's hand, we saw the Democrats play that card over and over again.

BLITZER: He went further. Take a look at -- turn around, you can see the video we have. If you turn around, Dana, right behind you. But he went further, he actually gave him a kiss.

PERINO: Well, that's the customary thing to do. And you get your State Department memo, you left that protocol and you want to do the right thing.

BLITZER: But you can imagine if President Obama...

PERINO: But no American bows to anybody else.

BLITZER: ... would have kissed King Abdullah...

PERINO: But America -- our whole country is based on the fact that we're not the subject of anybody else and we're not supposed to bow. That's probably why this is a controversy. I think the White House probably could have blown this off earlier if they would have just said thought that that was the protocol, trying to be kind. You know, move on.

Instead, now it's like four days later and we're still talking about it and you're showing the videotape.

BLITZER: All right.

BRAZILE: Look, I just think he was just trying to show just some -- just show mutual respect.

I have to hand it to LGF for exposing this from the right-wing perspective: "Bush Bowed Too."

Garbage like this makes America look incredibly petty and xenophobic in the eyes of the rest of the world. From our perspective, it just makes right-wingers look like idiots -- and their media enablers like the handmaidens of idiots.


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