Posted Feb. 21, 2008 – It’s not the first time that time that a TV news person has confused Barack Obama – you know, that gregarious, bright, big-smiling clean-shaven presidential candidate from Chicago – with Osama bin Laden – that reclusive, evil, scowling, bearded terrorist from Saudi Arabia. And it’s not the first time that a TV news person has been reprimanded for mixing the two up.
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The latest case involves a mistake by a graphics person at MSNBC who flashed a picture of Osama on the screen Monday while Chris Matthews, host of “Hardball,” talked about Obama.
The story Matthews was previewing was about the flap over Obama's use of Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick’s words on the campaign stump. The text next to the bin Laden picture was "Words About Words." It only took a member of the Obama camp a few minutes to blow up MSNBC telephones.
Matthews issued an apology a few moments later, and when the show reran later that night, the proper photograph was in place.
"This mistake was inexcusable," MSNBC spokesman Jeremy Gaines said.
This seems to be a regular occurrence, which has made some people think that it’s too common to be an accident. Last year, CNN apologized for running a story about bin Laden with the tease headline: “Where’s Obama?” This from the same station whose correspondent once said, "Barack Obama's campaign has been dogged by false rumors, among them that Osama … Obama rather … is a Muslim."
And Mitt Romney, who recently gave up his bid for the White House, offered this “slip of the tongue” when talking on the stump about terrorism: "Actually, just look at what Osam, uh, Barack Obama said just yesterday ...."
Do you think these are legit slip-ups or deliberate attempts to tie Barack Obama to Osama bin Laden? Click "Discuss Now" to post your comment.