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Obama's World Cup promise

Will President Obama visit South Africa for the World Cup this summer?

"I remember him saying that he would maybe consider coming if the American team goes to the quarterfinals, might come if they reach the semifinals, and will come to the finals," South Africa foreign minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane said.

Obama made the pledge while meeting with South African President Jacob Zuma at the nuclear security summit in Washington.

"I'm a witness," Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said.

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By Steve Goff  |  April 15, 2010; 7:46 AM ET
Categories:  2010 World Cup , U.S. men's national team  | Tags: Hillary Rodham Clinton, Jacob Zuma, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, Presiden Obama, South Africa, World Cup, soccer  
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Comments

I'm curious Steve, did you get that quote directly from Clinton and Nkoana-Mashabane or is it sourced from somewhere? Very cool though if you did!

Posted by: dsheon1 | April 15, 2010 8:00 AM | Report abuse

Glory-chaser!


:)

Posted by: VercengetorixII | April 15, 2010 8:35 AM | Report abuse

"Will come" to the finals no matter who's playing?

God help him if it's two decadent Western European nations playing in the final and he takes days off to see that.

Imagine France-Netherlands with SOCIALIST DOCTORS on the sidelines.

Posted by: fallschurch1 | April 15, 2010 8:57 AM | Report abuse

And if he meant he'll go to the finals if the US is in -- I would hope so. God help him if he doesn't show for that.

Posted by: fallschurch1 | April 15, 2010 8:59 AM | Report abuse

I think he meant he'd go as far as the Nat's go.
Checking out of this thread before it gets ugly.

Posted by: DadRyan | April 15, 2010 9:00 AM | Report abuse

No politics! ;)

Posted by: Reignking | April 15, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

I love decadent Western European nations --don't get your undies in a bunch. I kid because I love.

Posted by: fallschurch1 | April 15, 2010 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Well, futbol is a socialist, communist, furrriner sport played by nothing but no good illegals anyhow. Sounds like a Nobama shoe fits in reell well.

Posted by: delantero | April 15, 2010 9:33 AM | Report abuse

who really cares?

Posted by: torrey151 | April 15, 2010 9:36 AM | Report abuse

It's just like Invictus. I can see the movie now. A cast of unknowns, plus Forrest Whitaker as Jacob Zuma, Daniel Craig (or maybe Matt Craven) as Bob Bradley, James Badge Dale – Private First Class Robert Leckie from The Pacific - as Landon Donovan, and Denzel Washington as Barack Obama.

Posted by: fischy | April 15, 2010 10:00 AM | Report abuse

who really cares?

Posted by: torrey151 | April 15, 2010 9:36 AM
__________________________________________

Precisely. Whatever the USMNT accomplishes in SA, they will have done without the help of any politicians. It is a shame that these politicians are allowed to swoop down and exploit the situation for their own publicity/propaganda purposes. I think Pia Sundhage did the right thing in declining an invitation to the White House with her Olympic gold medalists a couple of years back. I only wish the entire team had joined her in staying away.

Posted by: universityandpark | April 15, 2010 10:20 AM | Report abuse

How dare the leader of the nation take an interest!

Posted by: Reignking | April 15, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Obama wouldn't know a free kick from free health care.

Posted by: hofbrauhausde | April 15, 2010 10:53 AM | Report abuse

@ universityandpark -

So let me get this straight - a guy wishes to support his national team in a sport that most of his nation could give a rats rump about and yet he stands to gain some strange political points on that...exploiting/publicity/propaganda, move you speak of? Where do people come up with this stuff? I try to stay away from political conversations - especially with people that I cannot talk to face to face - as I have come to find lately that it is an effort in futility. Politics aside, what's the guy to do? He's damned if he does and damed if he doesn't.

I guess that's a small price to pay for becoming the leader of the "free" world.

Posted by: Kosh2 | April 15, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Politics aside, what's the guy to do?
_________________________________________

He is welcome to follow the team on exactly the same terms as the rest of us, no more, no less. For that matter, he is free to post here, again on the same terms as the rest of us.

Posted by: universityandpark | April 15, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

universityandpark-

You're being a pill.

Posted by: mason08 | April 15, 2010 11:27 AM | Report abuse

The way I read it, he's not going to SA. No way we're going to the quarters. Let along the semis. And the final is a dream.

If I was in the white house, I wouldn't miss a game, whether the US was playing or not. I'd have AF1 standing by to jet me from pitch to pitch in style. The free world be damned for the month of June.

Posted by: Matte | April 15, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

US State Department transcript and video:
http://www.state.gov/secretary/rm/2010/04/140237.htm

Posted by: tailwagger | April 15, 2010 11:40 AM | Report abuse

cmon people, this doesn't mean anything. he's neither taking an interest nor showing his "true" nature as an undercover kenyan plant. he's just stating the obvious. heck even bush would have gone if we made it to the finals in japorea and probably had the exact same guidelines for attendance.

here's the translation: i definitely won't go if the US doesnt make it to the quarterfinals. i probably wont go if the US is in the quarters. I might go if the US is in the semifinals. i will go if they reach the final of the single biggest event in the entire world.

Posted by: PindarPushkin | April 15, 2010 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Reaching the semifinals or finals would be the greatest sporting accomplishment of our country's history... How could he NOT come?

Posted by: carmines757 | April 15, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Obama should definitely go, regardless of our team's fortunes.

He is of direct African descent. He can continue the good will garnered from his predecessor's actions against HIV-AIDS (see, I can something nice about George Bush), and his presence can only be looked upon favorably enhancing the perception of the United States and futbol for that matter. Win, win, win.

Posted by: delantero | April 15, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Skip to 11:00.

Posted by: tailwagger | April 15, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

eh, if it brings a little extra media attention the game, that's cool.

For being such a hoops fan, has Obama been to a Wizards game? (right, I know...) Or college hoops games? I mean, I think he should be a good dad and bring his girls to a DC United or Freedom game, too, but I'm guessing he's a bit busy these days.

Posted by: eadc | April 15, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Yes, Barack has been to Wiz games. He was courtside for Bulls v Wiz. I think he's been to G'Town b-ball too.

If we get a new stadium, I wouldn't be surprised to see him there . . in his second term (that's for you Joe Doc, not take your Xanax!)

Posted by: delantero | April 15, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Joe Biden would definitely go to the quarterfinals, AND he'd think it was a BFD.

Posted by: dccal | April 15, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

So cool he can just jump on a plane at a minutes notice and party in S. Africa. I mean the US is not in a recession or anything, and what about the carbon footprint and cost of travel.

Posted by: cr10 | April 15, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Screw Obama, he'll be using our tax dollars to fly over there with his Manly Wife. I think she's tougher than him.

Posted by: godpere | April 15, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

universityandpark-

You're being a pill.

Posted by: mason08 | April 15, 2010 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Standing ovation!

================================

Screw Obama, he'll be using our tax dollars to fly over there with his Manly Wife. I think she's tougher than him.

Posted by: godpere | April 15, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

This is a family blog but since you started it, S@@@w you, you're an idiot!

Get over it people. This is great for US soccer. Take your political beliefs and stick them where the sun doesn't shine. ;-)

Posted by: Gambrills4 | April 15, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

Hey cr10 I'd say the billions of dollars saved by scrapping the Marine One replacement project alone buys him a ticket to SA. Since when have conservatives been in a position to talk about carbon footprints of anyone anyway?

Posted by: DadRyan | April 15, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Other things Obama has promised:

-That he wouldn't sign a health care bill without a public option
-That he wouldn't drill offshore for oil
-That creating jobs would be the "first priority"
-That he would regulate Wall Street

So if he attends, great, but let's work on some of those other things, hm? Otherwise, it looks like I'll be voting third party in 2012...

Posted by: kdiff813 | April 15, 2010 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Other things Obama has promised:

-That he wouldn't sign a health care bill without a public option
-That he wouldn't drill offshore for oil
-That creating jobs would be the "first priority"
-That he would regulate Wall Street

So if he attends, great, but let's work on some of those other things, hm? Otherwise, it looks like I'll be voting third party in 2012...

Posted by: kdiff813 | April 15, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

that's a brilliant idea. Waste your vote. absolutely brilliant. You'll surely teach us all a lesson.

Posted by: DadRyan | April 15, 2010 10:20 PM | Report abuse

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