Barack Obama just visited the White House! He's the next president, so he's required by tradition to meet the guy still squatting there through the end of the year. They pose for pictures, then disappear into the Oval Office for a private talk about Russia and Iran and the helicopter button and how the White House Coke machine is free and how you get to call the Redskins and call your own plays that they have to run every Sunday during the season. In other words, no news. The fun stuff doesn't get leaked out for months, sometimes years after both guys are safely out of the office. So how did everyone cover this important event? With babbling about symbolism and historic blah blah and the weather today. All the networks broke in to cover the stroll along the colonnade (your word of the day: colonnade), but even the cable news nets quickly got bored and moved on. The Times describes the scene:
Broadcast images showed Mr. Bush and Mr. Obama strolling along the colonnade toward the outer entrance to the Oval Office. Mr. Obama walked just at Mr. Bush’s shoulder and appeared to be speaking animatedly, gesturing with both hands. Each of the men waved several times to reporters and others off camera.As the Times also notes, everyone was just watching in case it looked really awkward. It didn't. The Associated Press works in a little body language analysis:
Obama and his wife, Michelle, arrived at the South Portico 11 minutes early with President Bush and first lady Laura Bush waiting for them. Mrs. Bush and Mrs. Obama enjoyed a warm greeting, while the president and his successor exchanged smiles and a handshake. Taking a bit of prerogative, the president-elect put his left hand on Bush's back as the two couples entered the Diplomatic Reception Room.Yes, that hand thing clearly means something. Right? Also from AP: "The scene was a sunny fall day with moderate temperatures and colorful—but fading—autumn leaves." Good to know. Anywhere, there is your Symbolic News-Free Event of the Day. At the HuffPo, you can watch video and look at the historic Bush/Clinton handover photo-op , taken when George W. Bush was 100 years younger.