The Corner

A Question for O (Not Oprah)

I’ve been thinking lately that it’s been a while since Obama fielded questions from the press (except in a loose, on-the-fly way). And then I spotted this headline on Drudge: “Obama Hasn’t Held Press Conference Since July.” (Story here.) You know what I’d like to see Obama asked about? I have yakked about this in Impromptus, but will do so again here. I’d like to see him asked about his bowing: before the Saudi king, the Japanese emperor, and the Chinese premier. He did not bow before the British queen, the Norwegian king, and others. So, what are the rules? What are his criteria? How does he decide? Is there a diplomatic calculation? Is it simply spur-of-the-moment?

I don’t believe he has ever been asked about this. And I’m not interested in “gotcha” (honestly!). I’m genuinely curious. Aren’t you? It’s especially interesting that the president bowed before the Japanese emperor, since we were all taught that MacArthur’s physical behavior with the Japanese emperor was huge — hugely important. Did Obama mean to signal a new era? Make some statement about history? What?

Perhaps other Cornerites have questions they would especially like to see asked of the president, when he opens himself up to questions again. Has he ever been challenged on his behavior toward Honduras? Has he been asked about the Iranian demonstrators in the streets, and what we owe them? Is Hugo Chávez still his “amigo” (which is what Obama called him, when they met)? Etc.

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