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White House Doctors Transcript of Obama Remarks

Updated 1:33 pm ET
Updated 11:14 am ET

The White House Monday left a potentially embarassing phrase out of the official transcript of the president’s remarks, altering what is supposed to be a verbatim rendition and, unless it was a mistake, effectively lying to the American people.

The odds, of course, of something harmful being the one thing left accidentally on the cutting room floor or unheard by the stenographer would seem rather low.

According to the White House pool report by Politico’s Jennifer Epstein:

The White House’s transcript of tonight’s DNC fundraiser omits the president’s reference to unpaid bills being stacked up on his desk at home in Chicago. I included a partial quote in the pool report earlier, but in the interest of transparency, especially since this was a print pool only event, I’m sharing the full quote, as I transcribed and checked just now, and as it was in the transcript. Thanks to AP’s Josh Lederman for pointing out the discrepancy

The quote:

“One of the nice things about being home is actually that it’s a little bit like a time capsule. Because Michelle and I and the kids, we left so quickly that there’s still junk on my desk, including some unpaid bills (laughter) — I think eventually they got paid — but they’re sort of stacked up. And messages, newspapers and all kinds of stuff.”

In the transcript, the quote leaves out the reference to unpaid but probably eventually paid bills: “there’s still junk on my desk, including some — newspapers and all kinds of stuff.​”

The Bush people also tried altering a transcript and were caught, but that was early in the administration, and they learned their lesson and stuck to exact transcriptions from then on. Given Bush’s challenges with regard to verbal expression in public, it couldn’t have been an easy thing.

Obama’s propagandists should know by now not to produce a false transcript.

The omission was included in the transcript that was emailed out to reporters. A copy has not yet appeared on the White House website. We’ll see what it looks like.

UPDATE: THE PLOT THICKENS: The White House is claiming the stenographer did not hear the omitted phrase. It released a new transcript this morning with “(inaudible)” inserted where the missing phrase should be. Somehow, it wasn’t inaudible to the White House pool reporters, who picked up on the discrepancy between what was said and what was in the transcript.

UPDATE 2: White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest this afternoon said the recording equipment used for the event malfunctioned. Earnest specifically denied that the phrase was intentionally left out. I’d like to hear the recording.

29 Responses to White House Doctors Transcript of Obama Remarks

  1. I just sorted out why there has been more missteps than usual from the white house. Val jar was in the hospital and there was no one to wisper in his ear. Well that, and no one to order up a flogging for mistakes.

    It’s not that they don’t know what they are doing. More like they appear to realize they don’t know what they are doing. Little wiffs of panic here and there. Could be the election.

  2. Here is the transcript on the White House website:

    “When we think back to when I first took office, one of the nice things about being home is actually that it’s a little bit like a time capsule because Michelle and I and the kids, we left so quickly that there’s still junk on my desk, including some — (inaudible) — newspapers and all kinds of stuff. We always thought we’d be back every month and we’d kind of get everything in order and filed, and it hasn’t happened. But it’s useful, actually, to take a look at some of these old articles to remind ourselves of where we were when we took office and to think about the progress we’ve made over the last six years.”

    Is “inaudible” lying?

  3. Keith:

    Your link goes to a Free Beacon story on ebola, while Drudge links the topic to the Weekly Standard. Do you have a different link? Thanks.

  4. Stenographer misheard the phrase….right…. Once again, when you get your hand caught in the cookie jar, blame, blame, blame others.

    Pathetic excuse for professionalism.


  5. Maybe if he went home and cleaned his desk instead of always being on vacation or the golf course…he wouldn’t have that problem. Have they ever “gone home” to Chicago to stay???

  6. I’ll bet he wishes they had omitted, “If you like your plan, you can keep your plan; if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor; “it was a spontaneous reaction to a video”; “shovel-ready”; “57 states”; “marine corpse”; “I’ll get to the bottom of it”; “red-line in the sand”; “not a smidgen of corruption”………just to name a few.

  7. Aside from the issue of the WH omission from the transcript, just his statement alone is ridiculous. He’s always trotting out his lame “jokes”, but he’s just just a lying POS.

    He acts as if they left the Chicago house in a hurry in 2009, the house has been closed up, and they’ve never been back. While not there often, they HAVE stayed there a few times in the last several years.

    Most notably, two years ago the entire family (Grandma included) spent the weekend at the Chicago house for the wedding of ValJar’s daughter:

    A White House wedding in Chicago: First family attend marriage ceremony of aide’s daughter (and their security shuts down a whole suburb)

    By Daily Mail Reporter
    Published: 21:24 EST, 16 June 2012 | Updated: 08:33 EST, 17 June 2012

    President Obama and the first family walked to a wedding in their hometown neighbourhood of Kenwood Saturday under tight security.

    Strolling out in the open along the leafy streets, Mr Obama, his wife Michelle and daughters Malia, 13, and Sasha 11, were back in Chicago together for the first time in two years.

    They were attending the wedding of the daughter of President Obama’s advisor Valerie Jarrett, at her home, although the White House will not officially confirm this.

    The media was cordoned away from the Jarrett’s residence, but guests seen arriving were subject to strict searches by security and the Secret Service was an obvious presence.

    Arriving in Chicago on Friday evening, the first family have caused road closures and traffic restrictions to be imposed for the length of their stay which ends on Sunday.

    And before the wedding began, two light aircraft were intercepted on Saturday afternoon by an F15 fighter jet dispatched from NORAD in Colorado Springs.

  8. You would like to hear the recording, and so would I.
    But I believe we know what happened: This is the OBAMA
    administration after all, and they have shown their relationship
    with the truth before.