A lip-reader was recruited to solve the mystery behind Michelle Obama's eye roll at the Inauguration Day Luncheon on Monday.
The first lady's eye roll, seemingly at a comment by House Speaker John Boehner, caused a stir online with animated GIFs and Tumblr blogs popping up almost immediately. Video of the exchange didn’t have audio so some theorized that Obama's reaction could have been political, while others insisted it was simply a joke.
"Inside Edition" sought help from lip-reading expert Larry Wenig on Tuesday to put an end to the conjecture. Wenig said his analysis showed that Boehner asked the president if he had a cigarette, prompting a dramatic reaction from the first lady. According to Wenig, Boehner was referring to Michelle Obama when he quipped to the president, "Somebody won't let you do it."
The president quit the bad habit in 2010 after 30 years of smoking, but Boehner is still a smoker, according to The Hill, a Washington, D.C., newspaper.
But Boehner spokesman Michael Steel told The Hill in an email that Wenig's version of events "is not true," and other reports offer still different explanations.
According to the Examiner, Louisiana Republican Rep. John Fleming was in a closed-door meeting with Boehner Tuesday where the speaker reportedly said he had "no clue" why Obama rolled her eyes at him.
"He said he doesn’t know why she rolled her eyes," Fleming reportedly told the media after the meeting. "It was nothing they were communicating on that would be a reason to do that so he's not sure. Maybe she heard something else. He was speculating that maybe there was another conversation she was hearing."
The Daily Mail dispatched three lip-readers on the case, but each said it was too difficult to read what was said.
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