Thursday, September 1, 2011

Dude, Where's My Heavy-Duty Teleprompter?

The Obama administration's clumsy and petty attempt to step on the Republican debate (subsequently short-circuited by Speaker Boehner) made no sense. First, America has pretty much tuned out the president's tiresome speeches. Second, the controversy would (and still will) probably wind up increasing ratings for the probably boring GOP face-off, which most TV viewers would have otherwise ignored. Of course, a president can command the airwaves anytime he wants by delivering a speech from the Oval Office, Martha's Vineyard, or anywhere else. In a matter of extreme urgency, why wait until Congress is back in session? As New York Post columnist Michael Goodwin writes, "It's not a jobs plan; it's a political photo-op."

That being said, one wonders how many presidential teleprompters will be necessary for an address to a joint session of Congress. The Washington Examiner reports that the president "required two heavy-duty teleprompters on Monday during a three-minute speech in which he nominated Alan Krueger to serve as chairman of his Council of Economic Advisers."