Irate Matthews Defends Obama's White House Attire, Bashes Bush

Former White House chief-of-staff Andrew Card's suggestion to Barack Obama that his administration should continue the Bush fashion code of wearing a jacket and tie in the Oval Office, out of respect, ignited Chris Matthews, on Thursday night's "Hardball," to unleash an angry litany against Bush's foreign and domestic policies and then condemned, "If that's dressing for success I prefer shirt-sleeves."

The following rant from Matthews occurred during the "Sideshow" segment on the February 5 edition of "Hardball":

CHRIS MATTHEWS: Isn't former Bush chief-of-staff Andy Card getting a bit dainty? Check this out. See these photos of President Obama at work. It's something of a departure, certainly in dress code, from President Bush who required a coat and tie in the Oval Office at all times. Well it seems that precious Andrew doesn't like what he sees. He said, quote, "I do expect him," that's President Obama he's talking about, "to send the message that people who are going to be in the Oval Office should treat the office with the respect it has earned over history." The office has earned respect, anyway.

Well let's think of a couple of smart decisions that were made while the Bush administration was smartly dressed. You know, in full suit and tie. Let's see. Starting a war over a baseless argument. Bringing a government in surplus into adding more national debt than all the previous presidents put together. Oh yeah, letting an economic boom under Clinton become an economic catastrophe. If that's dressing for success I prefer shirt-sleeves.

Geoffrey Dickens
Geoffrey Dickens
Geoffrey Dickens is the Deputy Research Director at the Media Research Center.