Video: Obama gets annoyed with photo-seeker

posted at 3:49 pm on April 2, 2008 by Allahpundit

Whatever. The guy seems like a pain in the ass. It’s a rookie-ish mistake that he didn’t just pose and send him on his way before it turned into all this, but there appears to be more here than is captured by the clip: Note that Obama recognizes him and asks him to lay off even at the very beginning. How long was he hounding him, I wonder?

Some of the exchange is hard to make out but Ben Smith has a transcript.

Update: A good point from the comments. How did the Secret Service let this guy get this close?


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Then you shouldn’t have run it.

mymanpotsandpans on April 2, 2008 at 3:52 PM

Run what?

Allahpundit on April 2, 2008 at 3:52 PM

It’s racist to take pictures of Obama.

OhEssYouCowboys on April 2, 2008 at 3:52 PM

Gotta love how, whenever Ben Smith posts anything that doesn’t portray Obama in a positive light, the commenters there pounce saying “This is news?”.

amerpundit on April 2, 2008 at 3:52 PM

got just wants a picture man. anyway, he looks familiar.

Vincenzo on April 2, 2008 at 3:53 PM

And, besides, he’s “already answered, like, 8 questions.”

OhEssYouCowboys on April 2, 2008 at 3:53 PM

Who’s the black guy he wants a picture with?

Vincenzo on April 2, 2008 at 3:54 PM

I am not an Obama fan, but the Secret Service let this guy get waaaaaaaayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy too close.

Seven Percent Solution on April 2, 2008 at 3:56 PM

I can’t blame Obama here. The guy is acting like a jerk. Probably better ways to handle this; but why is the secret service letting random people get their hands all over him? Isn’t that some sort of breech or something?

lorien1973 on April 2, 2008 at 3:56 PM

I don’t think Obama was rude enough. He should have told him where to go after belittling him in front of the crowd. The guy was more than annoying.

Free Constitution on April 2, 2008 at 3:57 PM

What a whiney jerk. The photohound, I mean. Obama should have popped him in the mouth. I still wouldn’t vote for him, but it would have been a sweet don’t-taze-me-bro moment.

argos on April 2, 2008 at 3:58 PM

Was that Joe Pesci?

txsurveyor on April 2, 2008 at 3:58 PM

“You’re an eBay guy and I know it,” Obama says in the video

Is he serious?

myamphibian on April 2, 2008 at 3:58 PM

I agree with Lorien. the secret service should be keeping people away from the presidential hopefulls. Considering the reporters acting like a jerk anyways, that wuold be a really good reason to keep him back.

Wyrd on April 2, 2008 at 3:59 PM

I won’t jump on Obama for this. For the most part he seems like a nice guy, and from the transcript the guy sounded a little creepy.

Even Mr. Cult of Personality can have a bad day. But Allah’s right, Obama should have taken the picture and got it over with.

seanhackbarth on April 2, 2008 at 3:59 PM

Obama should have socked this idiot, broken his camera over his knee, then tossed a few 20′s on the ground James Caan style. He’d then have my vote.

Chuck Schick on April 2, 2008 at 3:59 PM

If he is an ebay guy, his asking price just tripled because of this video.

Matticus Finch on April 2, 2008 at 4:01 PM

The guy sounds like my brother’s five year old brat. “Can I ask you a question? Why can’t I just have some cookies.” I turned it off, so did the guy start crying when he didn’t get his way too?

rw on April 2, 2008 at 4:01 PM

Obama should have popped him in the mouth. I still wouldn’t vote for him, but it would have been a sweet don’t-taze-me-bro moment.

argos on April 2, 2008 at 3:58 PM

Heh.

MadisonConservative on April 2, 2008 at 4:02 PM

That dude was really annoying. I don’t blame Obama at all.

SoulGlo on April 2, 2008 at 4:02 PM

“You’re an eBay guy and I know it,” Obama says in the video below.

Um, someone’s going to spend a chunk of change a non-autographed picture of the Senator with some stranger in it?

amerpundit on April 2, 2008 at 4:03 PM

Gotta love how, whenever Ben Smith posts anything that doesn’t portray Obama in a positive light, the commenters there pounce saying “This is news?”.

amerpundit on April 2, 2008 at 3:52 PM

Ben Smith is a Hack, he’s the one that started the BS Rudy Story.

Chakra Hammer on April 2, 2008 at 4:04 PM

It’s racist to take pictures of Obama.

OhEssYouCowboys on April 2, 2008 at 3:52 PM

Good one. It’s probably coming to that.

petefrt on April 2, 2008 at 4:05 PM

Seems like that guy did a lot of talking, when he could have been doing some snapping. What did he want a posed, arm on shoulder photo? If he did that, all those people would have wanted one.

I frankly would have either cursed him out and sicked my followers on him, or let him take the picture and have the Secret Service get rid of him.

Agrippa2k on April 2, 2008 at 4:06 PM

Ben Smith is a Hack, he’s the one that started the BS Rudy Story.

Chakra Hammer on April 2, 2008 at 4:04 PM

Regardless, the commenters aren’t (most of the time) questioning the legitimacy of the piece. It’s a “This is news?” or it becomes a full-blown, unreasonable defense, even if it is actually news and 30 outlets are reporting on it.

amerpundit on April 2, 2008 at 4:07 PM

I have to agree with others on here that the Secret Service let this imbicile way too close for comfort. But maybe they have already checked him out and determined that he is no threat. It sounds like he has been hounding Obama for awhile now.
Obama should agree to take the photo and then give the two finger peace sign over the guys head. Now that would be funny.

RobG on April 2, 2008 at 4:07 PM

wow I was reading the comments on Bens site. I don’t think the story put Obama in a bad light. looked to me that some guy was being pushy and obnoxious, and Obama delt with it in a fairly understandable way. If anything it makes Obama look more human and respectable. Here he is, doing his event and some guy is litterl stalking him and demanding a photo, and won’t take no for an answer.
The differnence between what HA posters say and the people on Ben’s site are pretty remarkable.

Wyrd on April 2, 2008 at 4:07 PM

What is odd is that he would not have a procedure to deal with this sort of thing by now. It can’t be the first time.

Agrippa2k on April 2, 2008 at 4:07 PM

amerpundit on April 2, 2008 at 4:03 PM

My thoughts exactly. I’m going to have to look into this eBay.

myamphibian on April 2, 2008 at 4:09 PM

PRoves Obama is against free enterprise…so the eff what if the guy wants to sell the autograph on ebay??? Whiner! We are going to elect a whiner to the presidency.

ihasurnominashun on April 2, 2008 at 4:09 PM

Obama should have popped him in the mouth. I still wouldn’t vote for him, but it would have been a sweet don’t-taze-me-bro moment.
argos on April 2, 2008 at 3:58 PM

I dunno. Did you see him trying to bowl? I don’t think he could throw much of a haymaker.

Akzed on April 2, 2008 at 4:10 PM

Ye gods. Does anyone remember the scene from Quiz Show when Mario Cantone cornered Ralph Fiennes in a phone booth? It sounds exactly the same.’

I’m on Obama’s side on this one, too. The Secret Service should have intervened earlier.

Ed Morrissey on April 2, 2008 at 4:13 PM

As far as the Secret Service, pretty hard to keep people away from the candidates when they are walking around shaking hands with everybody.

exhelodrvr on April 2, 2008 at 4:14 PM

I can’t stand the lying imbecile, but I don’t see BHO doing anything wrong. The guy was a jackass. Any man relentlessly begging another man to take a picture with him must be.

Vigilante on April 2, 2008 at 4:14 PM

Gotta love how, whenever Ben Smith posts anything that doesn’t portray Obama in a positive light, the commenters there pounce saying “This is news?”.

amerpundit on April 2, 2008 at 3:52 PM

That’s how his faithful respond everywhere. I was just at another site where the same thing happened.

Grayson on April 2, 2008 at 4:16 PM

Consider that ebay reaches the Americans who believe that Elvis is alive …. (Nope, even after that, I still don’t get it)

corona on April 2, 2008 at 4:16 PM

That exchange was disturbing. I am sure there will be a discussion in Secret Service land about it.

The “fan” should have been dispatched at the beginning. Dangerous.

eaglesdontflock on April 2, 2008 at 4:26 PM

Yeah that guy (photo-seeker) appears to be a mega-tool. I’m with Barry on this one. And as disruptive and weird as he was, it’s definitely strange that the secret service wouldn’t usher him away more quickly. I wonder why…oh, probably because they’re racist. Duh.

mattyj86 on April 2, 2008 at 4:27 PM

Ed Morrissey on April 2, 2008 at 4:13 PM

I wonder if Obama’s given the Secret Service certain orders about how close people can come? I hope he reevaluates his security. Michelle couldn’t have been thrilled with the incident.

seanhackbarth on April 2, 2008 at 4:28 PM

The differnence between what HA posters say and the people on Ben’s site are pretty remarkable.

Wyrd on April 2, 2008 at 4:07 PM

Yeah, but that’s not good. Just more proof that a good number of our fellow American are insane. Soon the country is gonna tilt.

JiangxiDad on April 2, 2008 at 4:29 PM

what’s the “genie in a bottle” stuff mean?

LtE126 on April 2, 2008 at 4:34 PM

Okay, gonna have to side with Obama on this one. Jerks need to be told they are jerks. No presidential hopeful should be pushed around by some jerk.
Speaking of jerks

right2bright on April 2, 2008 at 4:34 PM

I am no fan of B.O. but the guy was pushy and annoying and I would not give him the time of day either.
He reminds me of the guy from Brooklyn who hassles Ralph Fiennes by the phone booth in “Quiz Show”.

RobCon on April 2, 2008 at 4:34 PM

Geez, people wanting photos and handshakes and to talk to him and stuff. What a drag. He might as well run for President and walk around from photo op to photo op if he wants to do stuff like that all day.

phelps on April 2, 2008 at 4:35 PM

I think Obama’s a mess, but I respect him for the way he handled this whiny jerk. And Lorien nails it: why on earth is this loser putting his hands on a Presidential candidate? Somebody needs to do their job.

Jaibones on April 2, 2008 at 4:36 PM

if Barry can not handle a photo hound, what will happen with WORLD leaders?

custer on April 2, 2008 at 4:37 PM

Obama is lucky he didn’t call the guy Macaca.

abw on April 2, 2008 at 4:38 PM

After seeing the video, I thought the citizen might have been related to John David Hinckley.

If I ever get that whiny about something this insignificant, please end my life.

asc85 on April 2, 2008 at 4:39 PM

Ahh, I get that all the time. Take a picture, sign this, will you sleep with, eh, you get the picture.

Geronimo on April 2, 2008 at 4:41 PM

A good point from the comments. How did the Secret Service let this guy get this close?

I could tell you but I’d have to kill you. :)

Shy Guy on April 2, 2008 at 4:41 PM

If McCain did this, it would be yet another case of his “losing his temper”.

When BO here does it, of course it’s understandable.

McCain will never get a break the media will give to Obama.

NoDonkey on April 2, 2008 at 4:42 PM

Man Of The People!

(Actually, reminds me a bit of Coriolanus…)

Tzetzes on April 2, 2008 at 4:44 PM

Soon the country is gonna tilt.

JiangxiDad on April 2, 2008 at 4:29 PM

I swear, this is what a liberal acquaintance once said would happen, if we don’t quit building.

Entelechy on April 2, 2008 at 4:52 PM

B Hussein handled it poorly. He should have had his pic
taken and been done with it. Who cares if it’s Ebay
or family. The guy was a pest and Obama could have
end it quick with a smiley pic.

Pour judgement from the wanna-be prez.

Texyank on April 2, 2008 at 4:53 PM

That photo guy is WAY ANNOYING. Screw that guy, Obama wasn’t rude enough.

Dr. Manhattan on April 2, 2008 at 5:00 PM

The guy’s not rude, he’s just from New York.

bloggless on April 2, 2008 at 5:06 PM

“A good point from the comments. How did the Secret Service let this guy get this close?”

Especially with the jacket on.

PresidenToor on April 2, 2008 at 5:09 PM

What is this “E Bey” thing of which you speak?

Cuffy Meigs on April 2, 2008 at 5:11 PM

Some guy right now is studying these film clips and plotting….

BTW, who would by a picture of this guy with B Hussein O? This guy alone I could understand. But with B Hussein O? Puh-leeeze….

Andy in Agoura Hills on April 2, 2008 at 5:23 PM

I don’t get the eBay angle. He wants to be in the picture. Why would anybody buy a picture of some random guy shaking hands with Obama?

Tanya on April 2, 2008 at 5:28 PM

That guy was incredibly obnoxious.

The guy’s not rude, he’s just from New York.

bloggless on April 2, 2008 at 5:06 PM

Heh, I was thinking the same thing.

4shoes on April 2, 2008 at 5:39 PM

Heck I’ll pay top dollar for a pic of Obama and the Big Ragu.
Anyway these guys shake hands and pose for pics all day, not sure the SS are in a position to do much until it’s too late, then it’s curtains. They’d have to put an end to the whole glad handing, baby kissing tradition to keep the nuts at a distance.

Buttercup on April 2, 2008 at 5:45 PM

The guy was pretty creepy and I don’t blame Obama for not wanting to do it.

Hog Wild on April 2, 2008 at 5:50 PM

“You’re an eBay guy and I know it,” Obama says in the video

That’s It!!!

Now I’m really not going to vote for Obama!

seanrobins on April 2, 2008 at 6:14 PM

That guy was incredibly obnoxious.

The guy’s not rude, he’s just from New York

No. . .South Philly…

seanrobins on April 2, 2008 at 6:14 PM

You’re all missing the larger point here. Obama was against the photo before he was for it. He totally flip-flopped on the taking photos with creepy strangers issue. Also… how can he be expected to stand strong against Ahmadinejad when he cannot even stand strong against creepy photo guy? I can just see Ahmadinejad now:
Ahmadinejad: “Oh, come on Mr. President, just one nuclear missile?”
Obama: “Okay, but I won’t be smiling.”

The Clinton commercial writes itself.

Spolitics on April 2, 2008 at 6:30 PM

“brother”. crybaby phony.

LtE126 on April 2, 2008 at 6:45 PM

This, too, prompted Obama to share with his readers a life lesson on how to handle white people: “It was usually an effective tactic, another one of those tricks I had learned: People were satisfied so long as you were courteous and smiled and made no sudden moves. They were more than satisfied, they were relieved — such a pleasant surprise to find a well-mannered young black man who didn’t seem angry all the time.”

From today’s Ann Coulter column.

logis on April 2, 2008 at 7:33 PM

This is similar to Obama confronting the reporters on his family vacation, and as I said on that thread he is well within his rights to tell people like this to get lost.

joewm315 on April 2, 2008 at 8:32 PM

Additionaly, I think this clip would have run differently had McCain been handled in such a manner… probably with the whiny jerk on the ground and threatening a lawsuit.

joewm315 on April 2, 2008 at 8:41 PM

That guy is lucky. You don’t get all up in Obama’s grill. Obama is from the streets, ya’ll.

moxie_neanderthal on April 2, 2008 at 8:45 PM

How did the Secret Service let this guy get this close?

What? The Secret Service is supposed to arrest someone for being a jerk? Maybe beat him up and leave him in the gutter? Obama essentially walked up to the guy in the first couple of seconds and never seemed to feel threatened -just annoyed. Had there been _any_ physical threat I have no doubt the Secret Service would have done what they were trained to do. They blocked him off when it was appropriate to do so without violating any of the guys rights or even being rude. Just as I assume they are trained to do. I’d also note “the jerk” didn’t try to walk around the Secret Service people when they blocked his way -he stopped, as is appropriate. Had he tried to push through, then I would expect some “action”.

Just curious what action others seem to think would have been appropriate.

taznar on April 2, 2008 at 9:09 PM

This clown should have been locked up after two goes.

This is pure harassment.

And a primer for nuts.

profitsbeard on April 2, 2008 at 9:37 PM

I think it’s great that Obama’s security detail lets the peasants feel the celestial aura of his halo. It’s important Barak Hussein Obama not feel too comfortable and removed from the unwashed masses. He should always feel the hee bee gee bees up his neck it may make him think twice before he fast track’s the country into socialism.

Alden Pyle on April 2, 2008 at 9:53 PM

That’s how he’ll deal with Mahmoud. . . comon lemme have nukes, comon leme leme leme, please please please? I just want it for energy I swear.

Obama, ‘you’re wearing me out Mami, OK fine you can have your nukes’.

ThackerAgency on April 2, 2008 at 11:09 PM

I’d have more respect with Obama concerning this incident if he hadn’t caved in at the end. Is this how he would going treat real nuisances like North Korea as President?

Wait. Don’t answer that.

amkun on April 3, 2008 at 1:04 AM

It’s racist to take pictures of Obama.

OhEssYouCowboys on April 2, 2008 at 3:52 PM

Yeah, you wouldn’t want to steal his soul with the magic box.

James on April 3, 2008 at 7:07 AM