In the press they’re calling it “the snub” — Barack Obama declined to greet Democratic presidential rival Hillary Clinton before President Bush’s State of the Union speech on Monday night.
After Obama entered the House chamber, he greeted many House members, Supreme Court justices, the president’s cabinet and the military joint chiefs.
Then Obama walked to his seat next to Sen. Edward Kennedy, who had endorsed Obama earlier in the day.
As Hillary approached, she leaned toward Kennedy over a row of seats. Kennedy leaned toward her, and they shook hands.
“Obama stood icily starring at Clinton during this, then turned his back and stepped a few feet away,” Frank James writes on the Web site The Swamp.
“Kennedy may’ve wanted to make peace with Clinton, but Obama clearly wanted no part of that.”
James added: “Judging by how much conversation there was about this brush-off in the press gallery, Americans will be hearing a lot more about this.”
Indeed, Americans did not have to wait long to hear more about “the snub.” Joe Scarborough asked Obama’s top campaign strategist David Axelrod about it on MSNBC on Monday morning, and Axelrod sought to downplay to incident.
“I don’t think he snubbed her at all,” Axelrod said.
“It was really a matter of letting Senator Kennedy have his own conversation, his own greeting with Senator Clinton without [Obama] hovering over them.”
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