David Akin is reporting a conversation he saw on CTV News Channel between anchor Dan Matheson and a DC radio host who characterized Prime Minister Harper’s welcoming at the White House today by some “[unknown] woman”
Here is UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown greeted at the White House by Acting US Chief of Protocol Gladys Boluda on March 3rd of this year.
Was this an “unbelievable insult and snub” or a radio host less familiar with protocol than say, the acting US chief of protocol?
I can’t mesh these two statements together because they must not relate to the same:
“unbelievable insult and snub” and “I must be fair, when it came to Gordon Brown, they did the same thing”
So is it a snub, or is it standard operating procedure?
To the Liberals and media making a story out of this… you can do better.
Here’s the CTV News Channel conversation reporter by Akin:
Matheson: Mr. Plotkin, I take it that it matters who greets you at the White House. I didn’t see Barack Obama there as Stephen Harper was being ushered in.
Plotkin: I’m not being hyperbolic or inflammatory but I thought it was an unbelievable insult and snub. If you are – quote – important, the president comes out and greets you as you depart from the car and ushers you in.
I am supposed to know something about American politics, and believe me, I do not know who the woman was who greeted [your prime minister].
I tried to find out and I was told by the national security press advisor that supposedly that was the deputy chief of protocol, not the chief of protocol of the state department.
… I don’t know if it was deliberate or accidental, but it surely was not a symbolic gesture of friendship and it was really, in my mind, demeaning.
Matheson: Does this go hand in glove with the way [UK Prime Minister] Gordon Brown was treated? At one time, the Brits were called the greatest friend America has in the world, and that was a couple years ago, and we, of course, are American’s greatest trading partner. What’s going on here? What do you make of this?
Plotkin: Well, what I think of it — I scoured the Washington Post which every – quote – opinion maker reads and there were two scintillas of mention – very, very brief about this visit.
One just said [Harper] was meeting with [Obama], and then there was some other passing reference that had nothing to do with the visit, but just with Canada, and how you’re our good neighbor. You don’t cause any trouble. You don’t have drug wars that we know about. You don’t plan to invade … and you’re taken for granted. You’re the neighbor who we can count on and we can rely on and is really our very nice neighbor but we really don’t invite them in for holiday parties or when there are serious things. So this, to me, is a very pro forma visit. I must be fair, when it came to Gordon Brown, they did the same thing. I’ve been told here that Canadian reporters are getting one question [of Harper and Obama] and an American reporter is getting one question and that’s it. If you are really significant, important, big, huge, you get something in the east room which is a joint press conference where the prime minister and the president would stand there with their flags and they would receive inquiries and questions. To call this downplayed visit is an overstatement.