President Bush Almost Calls Blair A Poodle

[ Posted Thursday, May 17th, 2007 – 12:04 UTC ]

Maybe it's just me.

During a press conference with Tony Blair this morning, President Bush interjected some comedy in his opening remarks. The joke we're supposed to focus on (the White House transcript helpfully tells us it was greeted with "Laughter") was a self-depreciating joke Bush told which reminded everyone of his recent gaffe in front of the Queen. Here is how Bush opened his remarks:

"Thank you. I'm pleased to welcome Tony Blair back to the White House. He is a good friend. He has led the British people for a long time, since 1797." (Laughter.)

But a few paragraphs later, Bush seems to almost slip up and use the "P" word. I mean, is it really a coincidence that in his recovery he substitutes the word "dogged" for whatever he was going to say?

"I do congratulate the Prime Minister for being a -- when he gets on a subject, it's dogged. Witness his patience and resolve regarding Northern Ireland. And congratulations for your leadership."

The rest of the press conference was the predictable blathering and obfuscating, with both Blair and Bush merrily ducking questions from one and all.

Now, I know the American media probably won't pick up on this, and as I said, maybe it's just my biased reading of the transcript. But I do wonder if any in the British press will notice what Bush (almost) said. After all, they're the ones who came up with the "poodle" moniker in the first place.

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