The Politico characterizes this moment between the President and the Governor of AZ, one of the states his Dept. of Justice is suing, as “tense”:
President Obama, alighting from the stairs of Air Force One in Phoenix this afternoon, was greeted by Arizona Governor Jan Brewer, who handed him an envelope and the two exchanged what appeared to be some heated sentiments. At one point, she pointed her finger at him.
Asked afterward what happened, Brewer said, “He was a little disturbed about my book, Scorpions for Breakfast.
“I said to him that I have all the respect in the world for the office of the president. The book is what the book is. I asked him if he read the book. He said he read the excerpt,” she said, according to a pool report. “He didn’t feel that I had treated him cordially. I said I was sorry he felt that way but I didn’t get my sentence finished. Anyway, we’re glad he’s here. I’ll regroup.”
In the envelope she had given him was a handwritten letter, Brewer said – “an invitation that I’ve extended to him before with regards to coming to Arizona and going to the border with me….We’ve had a remarkable comeback here and I want to share that with him.”
A White House official confirmed the invitation and described the encounter in more bureaucratic terms: “The President said he’d be glad to meet with her again, but did note that after their last meeting, a cordial discussion in the Oval Office, the governor inaccurately described the meeting in her book. The President looks forward to continuing taking steps to help Arizona’s economy grow.”
The Politico’s pool reporter says Obama walked away from the Governor while she was still talking.
What she said in the book was that he had a condescending, lecturing attitude with her when she visited the White House to discuss border security and immigration issues, if you can believe that!
I had the pleasure of meeting Governor Brewer when she was the keynote speaker at the 36th Biennial NFRW Convention in Kansas City, last Fall.
She gave a spirited speech which was very well received:
She started off by crediting her single mother with raising her to appreciate hard work, responsibility, honesty, integrity, and courage. She spoke of the mess she inherited from Janet Napolitano, and took great delight in announcing the fact that she was able to balance the budget in less than three years. She is well qualified to go after the President for his ruinous, and illogical policies.
While touting her book, Scorpions For Breakfast, she also talked about being sued by the Obama administration and called his jobs bill “a ketch-up pop-cycle.”
Newt weighs in on the tense moment:
Local News coverage of the incident:
This is why I was feeling deja-vu!
The Weekly Standard: Thou Shalt Not Write Bad Things About Obama:
Bobby Jindal got the same treatment when Obama came to visit Louisiana and the governor met him on the tarmac. Jindal would later recount in his book:
I was expecting words of concern about the oil spill, worry about the pending ecological disaster, and words of confidence about how the federal government was here to help. Or perhaps he was going to vent about BP’s slow response. But no, the president was upset about something else. And he wanted to talk about, well, food stamps. Actually, he wanted to talk about a letter that my administration had sent to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack a day earlier.
The letter was rudimentary, bureaucratic, and ordinary. . . . We were simply asking the federal government to authorize food stamps for those who were now unemployed because of the oil spill. Governors regularly make these sorts of requests to the federal government when facing disaster.
But somehow, for some reason, President Obama had personalized this. And he was upset.
Hat tip: Weasel Zippers