President-elect Obama’s first gaffe: A slap at Nancy Reagan

In a hasty and wise bit of damage control, president-elect Barack Obama quickly telephoned former First Lady Nancy Reagan this afternoon to apologize for “a careless and offhanded remark” he made about her this morning during his first post-election news conference.

Obama was asked how he was preparing to take over the White House, what books he’s reading, if he’d talked to any ex-presidents. He replied:

Former First Lady Nancy Reagan

“In terms of speaking to former presidents, I’ve spoken to all of them that are living. Obviously, President Clinton — I didn’t want to get into a Nancy Reagan thing about, you know, doing any seances.”

The passing reference to the former First Lady’s alleged interest in horoscopes struck some observers as a gratuitous slap at an old lady at a time Obama was trying to set a positive, professed bipartisan tone for his transition.

The Obama press office received numerous inquiries for explanation and reaction. And this afternoon issued the following statement:

““President-elect Barack Obama called Nancy Reagan today to apologize for the careless and off-handed remark he made during today’s press conference.

“The President-elect expressed his admiration and affection for Mrs. Reagan that so many Americans share and they had a warm conversation,” said President-elect Obama Transition Team Spokesperson Stephanie Cutter.”

–Andrew Malcolm; The Los Angeles Times


One Response to “President-elect Obama’s first gaffe: A slap at Nancy Reagan”

  1. Shirley Draeger Says:

    I reiterate: I doubt Nancy told Mr. Obama that she hated Sean & Rush as much as he does. Contrary to popular belief conservatives don’t hate people that don’t think the way they do. Mr. Obama thought it funny to say to a crowd, not privately “caught” by an open microphone and there is a huge difference. Of course while Nancy did get in to the whole astrology thing it was Hillary that had the séance at the White House. What he is learning now is the job is a lot different than the stump. And finally, what decent man makes fun of an old lady?

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