Top 10 FUNNY PRESIDENT MOMENTS (Presidential Bloopers - Bernie Sanders, George Bush)
Being the President of the United States of America is not an easy job. You’re under constant scrutiny from not just the country you lead, but also the world. Of course, this makes it tremendously difficult to hide any sort of gaffe, guffaw, or even moments of splendor – such as these 10 greatest presidential moments in American history. For this list, we've also added presidential candidates and nominees.
Bush Gets Handsy
… alright, three times! We’re trying, but, come on. Good ‘ole George Dubya left behind some legendary unintentionally comedic moments. George Bush made it known many-a-time that he was not too keen on the “do’s” and “dont's” of being president, but he made one of his biggest mistakes at the G8 summit in St. Petersburg, Russia in 2006. And no, we’re not talking about the sidebar comment made to British Prime Minister Tony Blair. While meandering about, he passed by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and, like an awkward frat boy, stopped to give her an awkward shoulder squeeze. The Chancellor’s reaction was extremely telling as she flung her shoulders up to shake Bush and grimaced at the very inappropriate gesture. Bush, however, went on his merry way, likely none-the-wiser.
Maybe if the DNC had listened to Mother Nature’s instincts, the 2016 presidency may have gone to a Democratic candidate. During a 2016 rally at the Moda Center in Portland, Sanders was in the middle of discussing education when a tiny feathered visitor drew an ecstatic reaction from his supporters. The small bird interrupted the Bern’s flow as audience members became distracted by the visitor. Just as Bernie took notice to his newest supporter, the House Finch flew up onto the podium where it perched for a moment before flying off. The crowd went wild, memes were created, a hashtag was born, and Bernie would go down not as the 45th president of the United States, but as Birdie Sanders.
Obama: Fly Slayer
During a 2009 interview with John Harwood on CNBC, Obama found himself pestered by a tenacious fly in mid-speech. Being a man of power, there was no way he could let the winged infidel get away with its obnoxious buzzing, especially after ignoring POTUS’ gentle swatting. The creature took things a step further and landed on the president’s hand who, in one quick but loud motion, put an end to the pesky bug’s life. As if it were nothing, Obama coolly re-engaged the interview. Fly-Gate didn’t just end with a tiny carcass on the floor, though, as PETA allegedly started receiving media inquiries on Obama’s more murderous tendencies. In response, PETA writer Alisa Mullins wrote: “Human beings have a long way to go before they think before they act.”
Shoes for Bush
As an American, nothing about this clip should be funny… but we’re not perfect. During a press conference in Baghdad, an Iraqi reporter Muntadhar al-Zaidi stood up and threw both of his shoes at President Bush. While there was an undeniable rage focused into each throw, Bush’s catlike reflexes are impressive, to say the least, and add a little comedic value to this clip. It’s tough to see, but it also looks like Dubya was smiling a little on his rebound.
Legalities According to Nixon
Sometimes context can be the difference between making a valid point and sounding like a tyrannical maniac. Richard Nixon may have learned this lesson during his series of interviews with British journalist David Frost. In response to Frost inquiring whether the president can cross legal boundaries in the interest of the nation, Nixon claimed: “When the president does it, that means it is not illegal.” While it sounds like Nixon is enjoying crime sprees as President of the United States, what he was referring to was the president’s ability to approve a motion that may otherwise violate certain laws, therefore making it legal in that instance. Maybe providing the explanation at the same time as the bold statement would have been a better option.
The Lust of President Carter
You probably wouldn’t expect to open the latest issue of Playboy and find a tell-all from a presidential candidate, but it has happened. In the November 1976 issue, which featured a spread of playmate Patti McGuire, Democratic candidate Jimmy Carter sat down with Robert Scheer, who had also interviewed California governor Jerry Brown. Despite the length and depth of the interview that Scheer conducted, American media really only latched on to one thing. When questioned on how the public views his religious beliefs, the presidential candidate somehow got onto the subject of sin, admitting that he’s “looked on a lot of women with lust” and has “committed adultery in [his] heart many times.” Definitely not a presidential legacy you want to be leaving behind, but thanks to Amazon, it’s not too late to get your hands on that issue!
Clinton’s Big Debut
When running for President of the United States, you want to make a big impression on the people that aim to vote you into office. Even more-so, you want to show the people working against you just how cool of a guy you are. Cue presidential candidate Bill Clinton’s appearance on an episode of the Arsenio Hall Show in 1992. The performance was… interesting, to say the least, and maybe not the first choice of things we’d have done after literally just clinching the Democratic nomination. Then again, we probably aren’t as cool as Clinton was back in his hay day.
We’ve all heard the saying: Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, like white on rice. No, wait, that doesn’t sound right. Fool me once bitten, twice shy? Ugh, I can’t remember it. Hey, Dubya, a little help here? <play Bush audio / video> Ah, good ‘ole Texas, providing our president with idioms for him to completely muck up. During a 2002 speech at a Pledge Across American event, lovable 43rd president George Dubya Bush decided to pass along his own bit of wisdom, as skewed and fumbled as it sounded. The saying, of course, is “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.”
Al Gore and the Internet
Imagine being so into yourself that you take credit for one of the world’s greatest resources. In March of 1999, all eyes were on Al Gore who, during an interview on CNN’s “Late Edition” with Wolf Blitzer, claimed he “took the initiative in creating the internet.” Was Gore really stepping forward as the brain trust within the United States Congress that brought the internet to life? Much of the country thought so, creating a frenzy within the media surrounding the 2000 Democratic nominee. If you dissect his words, which most of the media failed to do, what you’ll likely realize is that he wasn’t touting himself as the inventor of the internet, but rather an important part in initiating the implementation of it, which he was, though more careful wording could have avoided the insanity.
A world leader should have grace and style, especially in those very public moments; but sometimes mother nature aims to work against your ability to do even the simplest of things, like walk down stairs. After landing in Austria in 1975, President Gerald Ford was making his way down the stairs from the craft and, at about ¾ of the way, tumbled down to the ground. While the footage is amusing, especially watching him stand back up as if nothing had happened, what makes this clip so great is that it seemed to mark a long string of stumbles that earned Ford the reputation of a klutz.