Yesterday, President Obama delivered an address on green energy after watching several presentations from companies hoping to reap the bounty of his new policies. Unfortunately, he didn’t pay close enough attention to the presentations, as Obama repeatedly mispronounced the name of one firm he used as an example of innovation:
President Barack Obama just finished speaking at a White House roundtable on clean energy efficiency attended by Neal Verfuerth, Orion president and chief executive. Obama saluted Orion.
Obama said the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act includes $59 billion for “clean energy and energy efficiency” and said his proposed 2010 budget would ocmmit [sic] $150 billion in funding over 10 years. …
All terrific press for Orion, except that Obama kept pronouncing the company’s name wrong, calling it OAR-ee-on.
Here’s the video of the Obamateurism:
Of course, one can’t be expected to get the pronunciation of every word on the TelePrompter correct. Not even, say, a word that plays a large role in Greek mythology and astronomy, two topics that a well-educated person could be expected to have some familiarity — if not the presentation that had taken place just minutes before, which Obama himself acknowledged in his speech. (via Jill and Bruce)
Update: Via Instapundit, I see some claim that Obama got the pronunciation correct. Let me refer back to the JS-Online report to have the President himself rebut that:
After finishing his remarks and talking with a few people, the president returned to the microphone and said his prepared remarks led him to pronounce the firm’s name wrong.
“I suspect this is Or-EYE-on as opposed to OAR-ee-on. Just wanted to make sure that when I’m giving you a plug, that we’ve got the right plug. It’s Or-EYE-on.”
I originally intended to include that in the video clip, but it wasn’t caught on tape.
Got an Obamateurism of the Day? If you see a foul-up by Barack Obama, e-mail it to me at with the quote and the link to the Obamateurism. I’ll post the best Obamateurisms on a daily basis, depending on how many I receive. Include a link to your blog, and I’ll give some link love as well. And unlike Slate, I promise to end the feature when Barack Obama leaves office.
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