WashPost Royally Ribs Bush for Gaffe

Updated below with link to video (10:30 EDT).

Washington Post writers Tamara Jones and Roxanne Roberts (who co-writes the paper's "Reliable Source" gossip column) took just four paragraphs into their page A1 story on Queen Elizabeth's state visit to snark about a gaffe of President Bush's during the welcome ceremony.

The President was noting that the Queen had visited the United States for the bicentennial in 1976, but he started to say 1776 before catching himself.

Noting that the Queen "did not appear amused," Jones and Roberts described Bush's reaction as "sheepish" and that the Queen's disapproving glare was not his only "comeuppance of the day."

With the important business out of the way, Jones and Roberts eventually got around to quoting the speeches by Bush and Elizabeth II.

By contrast, the New York Times' David Stout waited until the 11th paragraph of his story -- after quoting excerpts from Bush's and Queen Elizabeth's speeches -- to note the Bush gaffe:

Mr. Bush set a relaxed tone to the White House gathering, albeit unintentionally. “You helped our nation celebrate its bicentennial in 17 — in 1976,” he said as laughter broke out. A moment later, Mr. Bush said the queen had flashed him a look “that only a mother could give a child.” That line brought more laughter.

Update (10:30 EDT): Allahpundit at HotAir blogged about the media's obsession with the 1776 gaffe here. He includes a video link and observes that it seems the Queen was perhaps only half-paying attention when Bush made the 17-, er 1976 slip.

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is the Managing Editor for NewsBusters