Even when Obama went before the cameras to express outrage at the AIG bonuses, he seemed to nod to the contrived nature of it. During an East Room event, when Obama coughed, he drew laughter by departing from the teleprompter to crack: “Excuse me, I’m choked up with anger here.”
The aide said that the White House is not as focused on “the immediate sound bite about AIG” as it is on “the fact that everything we do demonstrates … that he’s on the side of the American people [and] that he’s fighting for them.
“They believe it wholeheartedly — poll numbers show that,” the aide said, accurately describing the data. “We’re going to make it clear how angry he is about AIG. But he doesn’t need to devolve into showmanship to make a point. His entire presidency is about being on the side of the American people.”