'Today' Wonders If Europe Will Swoon for Obama Again?

<div style="float: right"><object width="240" height="194"><param name="movie" value="http://www.eyeblast.tv/public/eyeblast.swf?v=Gd4znzkU6U&amp;c1=0xCE4717&... name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><embed src="http://www.eyeblast.tv/public/eyeblast.swf?v=Gd4znzkU6U&amp;c1=0xCE4717&... allowfullscreen="true" width="240" height="194"></embed></object></div>Previewing Barack Obama's trip to Italy for the G8 summit, on Wednesday's &quot;Today&quot; show, NBC's Matt Lauer asked Savannah Guthrie what kind of reaction the President will receive as Lauer noted the President got a &quot;chilly reception&quot; in Russia. Guthrie responded that &quot;It was a real contrast,&quot; because she is used to seeing, &quot;really swooning Europeans who are very excited about Mr. Obama.&quot; [audio <a href="http://media.eyeblast.org/newsbusters/static/2009/07/2009-07-08-NBC-TDY-... target="_blank">excerpt here</a>]<br /><br /><blockquote><p>MATT LAUER: And, and what kind of reception will the President receive from the Italian people? We all know that it was a rather chilly reception when he went to Russia the other day. <!--break--></p><p>SAVANNAH GUTHRIE: It was a real contrast. Because when he comes to Europe we usually see these throngs of crowds, really swooning Europeans who are very excited about Mr. Obama. He's personally very popular here. In Russia there was a real contrast. It's not that Russians don't like Mr. Obama, they're just more indifferent. A little more skeptical. So we'll see if he gets the same reaction we've seen in Europe as we've seen during past trips. On the other hand security is very tight here, so there's not a lot of opportunity here in L'Aquila for interaction with the public.</p></blockquote><p>The following is the full report as it was aired on the July 8, &quot;Today&quot; show:</p><blockquote><p>MATT LAUER: And now the latest stop on President Obama's trip overseas. He flew from Russia to Italy overnight where he's already met with his Italian counterpart, and will attend the G8 summit in L'Aquila, a region devastated by an earthquake back in April. NBC's White House correspondent Savannah Guthrie is traveling with the President. Savannah, good morning to you. And, and I'm curious does this summit have clearly defined goals for success or will there be clear marks if it's is a failure?</p><p>[On screen headline: &quot;The Obamas Abroad, President Arrives In Italy.&quot;]</p><p><img src="http://media.eyeblast.org/newsbusters/static/2009/07/2009-07-08-NBC-Guth... vspace="3" width="240" align="right" border="0" height="180" hspace="3" />SAVANNAH GUTHRIE: Well it's interesting. A lot of times, as you know with these world leader summits it's hard to point to real concrete achievements but there are some things we're expecting. The U.S., of course, is expecting that there will be a declaration from these world leaders, the G8, about Iran. And there will be a lot of discussion, as you might expect, about the world economic crisis. You know there's some division between the U.S. and the, and the Brits on the one hand and some of the Europeans about whether there should be more stimulus. The emphasis that there should be on financial regulatory reform. So we expect that to be a robust debate. And so we may hear a little bit more about the world economy. And as you mentioned the setting is a little unusual. It was moved actually from a resort town to this hard hit earthquake area of L'Aquila, still experiencing aftershocks, Matt.</p><p>LAUER: And, and what kind of reception will the President receive from the Italian people? We all know that it was a rather chilly reception when he went to Russia the other day. </p><p>GUTHRIE: It was a real contrast. Because when he comes to Europe we usually see these throngs of crowds, really swooning Europeans who are very excited about Mr. Obama. He's personally very popular here. In Russia there was a real contrast. It's not that Russians don't like Mr. Obama, they're just more indifferent. A little more skeptical. So we'll see if he gets the same reaction we've seen in Europe as we've seen during past trips. On the other hand security is very tight here, so there's not a lot of opportunity here in L'Aquila for interaction with the public.</p><p>LAUER: Alright Savannah Guthrie who's traveling with the President in Italy this morning. Savannah thank you very much.</p></blockquote>

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