Tales from the Trail

Publisher apologizes for ‘Obama bin Laden’ gaffe

April 14, 2008

WASHINGTON – White House hopeful Barack Obama often says his “funny name” is one of the things that makes his status as the Democratic frontruobama4.jpgnner so unexpected.
    But at a luncheon with U.S. newspaper publishers and editors on Monday, a publisher made an embarrassing gaffe when asking the Illinois senator a question about the Taliban and al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden — but accidentally said “Obama” instead of “Osama.”
    “I think that was Osama bin Laden,” Obama corrected him.
    Realizing he had made an error, the publisher, Dean Singleton, chairman of the board of the Associated Press and founder of the NewsMedia Group newspaper company, apologized.
    “If I did that, I’m so sorry,” Singleton said.
    Obama made light of the mistake, drawing a mixture of laughter and some relief in the audience, which had been taken aback by the gaffe.
    “No, no, this is part of the exercise I’ve been going through for the last 15 months,” Obama said. “Which is why it’s pretty impressive that I’m still standing here.”

- Photo credit: Reuters/Jason Cohn (Obama addresses members of the Alliance for American Manufacturing)

Comments
11 comments so far | RSS Comments RSS

..Still the past shows the results of actions, the future is worried about its health yet time has still not come

Posted by Roy | Report as abusive
 

If Obama wins, let’s just hope this incident does not happen when another Prime Minister greets him during a visit!

Posted by Twahi | Report as abusive
 

You honestly think that was a mistake?

The newspaper PUBLISHERS don’t want a constitutional lawyer to be the head of the free world, because he might actually find a way to break up the media monopoloies that are producing the saddest excuse for news I have seen in decades.

Posted by Julie | Report as abusive
 

Perhaps his name is just confusing. Everything is not an insult. He was named after his father, who is considered his idol. It is a Muslem name and we were attacked by terrorists who are Muslem. As president he will have to accept some confusion.

Posted by Martha | Report as abusive
 

Martha:
There is no confusion.
Assuming that Obama’s name were Muhammad, why would that be something to be afraid of?
How is being “Muslim” an insult?
There are 1.4 billion Muslims worldwide, yet we act as if every single one is a terrorist.

Posted by Zombeer | Report as abusive
 

What an absolute disgrace. There was no mistake. You don’t make a mistake like that when you are speaking in a national forum to a man who may very well be the next President of The United States of America.

Posted by David Levy | Report as abusive
 

I AM SO GLAD THAT SEN OBAMA IS A MAN OF CLASS AND FORGIVENESS. HE WAS RAISED BY LOVING PEOPLE GOD BLESS HIM AND FAMILY. THE NEXT PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA ON JAN 21,2009.

Posted by SANDRA | Report as abusive
 

I commend Obama on a job well done. I would say that Obama probably expects this sort of thing, even though it’s not right. But in knowing that he has the audacity to run for president, things are amp to happen. No problem, he’d say, then move on…Go Obama, that’s the kind of man we need ‘represent’ us in the White House’. Despite the distractions, ooops, rhetoric and the like, Obama rises above it all to continuously combat the ‘real’ American people’s concerns. Hey, Dean, let me drop a ‘dime’ on you. ‘Get with the Obama’s campaign, I’m sure you’re make a change, no ‘small change, but a BIG change’ in your choice of words. Obama 08

Posted by Nisey01 | Report as abusive
 

There is not a conspiracy behind every curtain. We Americans had bin Laden’s name drilled into our heads for the better part of two years – no real surprise if it comes so easily to the tongue. It was a mistake. I made the same one just the other day. Furthermore, to judge Dean Singleton’s remark by one’s impression of the media is to…what was that word? Stereotype?

@Zombeer – Martha’s implication is that it is NOT an insult, but rather an embarrassing mistake.

Posted by Sean | Report as abusive
 

It’s ridiculous to think something like that was intentional. The man was asking a question about Osama bin Laden, the names sound similar, it was just a psychological mix-up. Anyone and everyone is capable of doing something like that, especially as “Osama” has been the single most uttered name for the past seven years.

Posted by Amanda | Report as abusive
 

Prefacing the “apology” with the phrase “if i did that” makes it a pretty lame apology. Singleton i believe insidiously smeared Obama for his own political ends, otherwise wh/y not a more full throated apology?

Posted by Jim | Report as abusive
 

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