Obamateurism of the Day

How does the Leader of the Free World impress other national leaders at one of the more consequential multilateral meetings of the year? By chomping gum while chatting with them. From a pool report last week:

A very long start to working session #3. Because host French President Nicolas Sarkozy had not yet arrived, the pool was allowed into the start of the session for nearly 45 minutes.

Unfortunately, pooler could not hear most of what was said.

But there was plenty to see, including Obama, who was chewing gum throughout, spending at least 15 minutes in animated conversations, first with British Prime Minister David Cameron and later with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Keith Koffler wonders who would think to do something that, well, gauche.  Perhaps someone still having nicotine fits?

The White House this week released the results of a physical exam in which President Obama was triumphantly declared “tobacco-free.”

But watch the wording here closely. He doesn’t seem to be “nicotine-free.”

It is widely known that Obama was using Nicorette to quit smoking. But it’s not clear he’s quit the Nicorette. …

Now, when do world leaders ever chew gum at the G-20? Or the G-8? Or the G-anything?

Never. Except maybe if they are having a Nicotine fit.

Hey, it could have been a Doublemint fit, too.  Either way, it’s not a terribly impressive manner in which to interact with government leaders and heads of state from around the world.  If Obama could find a happy medium between gum-chewing and bowing in the presence of foreign potentates, he might finally get the hang of diplomacy.

Got an Obamateurism of the Day? If you see a foul-up by Barack Obama, e-mail it to me at [email protected] 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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