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The Bush-Obama Meet and Greet

Well, that was a letdown.

Obama wore dark sunglasses as he walked slowly from his plane at Washington National. Instead of the usual campaign SUV, he climbed into a presidential-style limousine with all the bells and whistles: a black haz-mat truck, a communications van and a decoy limo. Hundreds of spectators waited outside the White House for his arrival.

But if they were hoping for a good look at the president-elect, they were probably disappointed. Usually even a photo op requires a politician to say a few words as he waves to the cameras. But Bush and Obama managed to avoid uttering a peep in public as the president whisked his successor into the Oval Office for a meeting. On the other hand, there was a lot of touching.

Michelle Obama embraced Laura Bush. Barack Obama grasped Bush's bicep as he shook the president's hand. As they strolled the collonade and entered the White House, the two men took turns putting their arms on each other's backs.

The touching probably won't be confused for interpersonal warmth. And the squinting photograph they and their wives shared at the South Portico probably won't be destined for any prizes.

But they do have some common ground. The punctual president was bound to be impressed by Obama's arrival: eleven minutes early. They looked like a pair in their matching flag lapel pins. And they shared at least one leadership strategy: keep the media at bay.

By Dana Milbank  | November 10, 2008; 3:27 PM ET
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Next: Obama Fitness Watch, Cont'd


George W. Bush Presidential Library? One book, "My Pet Goat," will do it. And thank you for your sage broadcast commentary.

Posted by: jimmychooboots | November 10, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Will the GWB Library be a wing of the American Petroleum Institute's headquarters?

Posted by: jmsbh | November 10, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Dont Forget "Everybody Poops"

Posted by: rdy4all2000 | November 10, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

The singular of biceps is biceps.

Posted by: mouthoff | November 10, 2008 6:31 PM | Report abuse

Did Milbank make this up, as per his usual practice? If so, it's pretty unimaginative. He's the only journalist in DC to have equipped his keyboard with a perpetual sneer.

Posted by: emainland | November 10, 2008 7:04 PM | Report abuse

President Bush never looked so good.Laura,as usual, was a class act.I,for one, will miss these two great Americans.I wish them all the best.

Posted by: cincigal74 | November 10, 2008 7:35 PM | Report abuse

All MSM-ers and bush enablers that supported the lies of the bush administration should be indicted with charges of treason against the people of the United States of America !!

Gates is one of your advisors on foreign affairs. Don't trust him cause he funneled America in an unjust war with Iraq.

My advice to the new president of the U.S. is:

1. If you want others not to make nukes and NBC weapons, get rid of these weapons you harbor yourself on American and foreign soil.

2. To prevent dependance on foreign oil, grow food in the proximity of those that use it. Make world wide arrangements and treaties for that. Fire up state wise local economies and infra structure, so that people have new jobs to work on.

3. Change your war economy in a peace economy, and restore a minimum health care for everybody.

4. You spend 400 billion dollar a year on defense. Cut that with 10 % and give the whole world bread and games and accept the equality of all peoples all over the world.

5. Move Israel with al its holy grounds and cities to America, Europe and Russia.
That will restore peace in the golan region.
Let the Arabs, peoples of the middle and far east write their own history.

6. Greediness is the main reason why most people have nothing and a few have heaps of money and power.
Cut out the main cause of the financial crisis in society, and that is too much power and money in too few hands.

7. Indict all bankers,brokers and taxateurs that sold phony mortgages.
Most of these people are bribed by house owners to increase the value of houses to a level in which most Americans will not have a change to buy a house of their own.


9. And last but not least, show the American people that you are sincere by impeaching Bush and Cheney. You don't need these bast_ards anymore.
Their heritage will haunt you for centuries if you dont do anything about their wrong doings.

Posted by: jwholtkamp | November 10, 2008 11:34 PM | Report abuse

Note that it was not just the 'power move' of Obama to touch the president's biceps first - but to put his arm on Bush's back first - THAT is a POWER move - and it was presumptuous to initiate that type of contact. As Obama has noted, George Bush is still the President of our United States. At 12 noon of January 20th, THEN it will be Obama's turn - and he can make such a move on anyone he chooses. It may have appeared to be a 'small thing' - but it spoke volumes about Obama's state of mind.

Posted by: lgfox | November 11, 2008 10:01 AM | Report abuse

To jwholtkamp,

You are an IDIOT.

Posted by: UnclePeter | November 11, 2008 10:40 AM | Report abuse

Uncle Peter, I agree. jwholtkamp IS an idiot!

Posted by: Lilycat1 | November 11, 2008 11:08 AM | Report abuse

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