Rather than update viewers on the latest details of the scandals plaguing the Obama administration, or the President's foreign policy failures in the Middle East, the hosts of NBC's Today devoted over a minute of air time Wednesday to discussing whether broccoli was really Obama's favorite food. [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
News reader Natalie Morales sparked the exchange by proclaiming: "You know it's July in Washington when there's a broccoli brewhaha." She explained how President Obama told a kid reporter at a White House children's event that the vegetable was his favorite food, "with many greeting the President's claim with skepticism."
Gullible co-host Savannah Guthrie took the commander-in-chief at his word: "See, now I totally believe that broccoli could be his favorite. He's skinny. They're fitness fanatics. I believe it."
Such important breaking news prompted an extended broccoli symposium among the cast, with fellow co-host Matt Lauer informing viewers: "Broccoli rabe is my favorite food. No, I'm not kidding, I love broccoli rabe."
Here is a full transcript of the incredible waste of time on the July 10 morning show:
8:14AM ET (1 min 15 sec)
NATALIE MORALES: Also trending on Twitter, you know it's July in Washington when there's a broccoli brewhaha. Well, this all started on Tuesday during the First Lady's state dinner for kids. President Obama made a surprise appearance and he took some questions from young reporters. One intrepid reporter asked him his favorite food. His response, broccoli. Well, pretty soon the veggie was a top trending term on Twitter with many greeting the President's claim with skepticism.
[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Really?! Obama: My Favorite Food is Broccoli]
Because you may recall that broccoli of course has been quite a history in Washington. President George H.W. Bush banned it from Air force One, declaring, "I am the President of the United States, I'm not going to eat any more broccoli." He said the broccoli he ate, the way it was prepared in his house, usually was mushy and overdone, so.
MEREDITH VIEIRA: Have you ever seen the President eat broccoli?
SAVANNAH GUTHRIE: No, but I've seen him take one bite of a burger. I think – see, now I totally believe that broccoli could be his favorite.
VIEIRA: That's his favorite food, really?
GUTHRIE: He's skinny. They're fitness fanatics. I believe it.
MATT LAUER: Broccoli rabe is my favorite food. No, I'm not kidding, I love broccoli rabe.
LAUER: Brussel sprouts, broccoli rabe.
MORALES: We don't have broccolli rabe, but Jerry prepared you some steamed broccoli.
[PRODUCER BRINGS OUT PLATES OF STEAMED BROCCOLI]
VIEIRA: I've never seen you eat broccoli rabe.
LAUER: That's because you've never invited me to your house. That's why.
VIEIRA: Oh, please, don't start.
LAUER: If you've serve it at your house.
MORALES: Some nicely steamed broccoli for you.
GUTHRIE: You haven't been to broccoli-fest?
LAUER: No, I haven't.
GUTHRIE: It's so fun, every summer we get out there and we pick it.
LAUER: Yeah. No, I haven't done it. There we go right there (pointing to plate of broccoli), I'll chow down on that.
GUTHRIE: There's you favorite food.
MORALES: Is that from the White House garden? Probably not.
LAUER: Thank you. I will eat that.