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Barack Obama confronts the all-important tattoo question

From the no-question-gets-unasked department:

While he was blowing off West Virginia (and paying the price for that on Tuesday), Barack Obama spent several recent days campaigning in Oregon (where the May 20 primary now looms as his latest must-win). As part of his foray into the state, he made time for a brief chat with Portland's alternative newspaper, the Willamette Week.

The session wrapped up with this query:

Question: "If you had a tattoo, what would it be and where would you put it?"

Obama: "Uh, I cannot imagine any circumstances in which I would get a tattoo."

The candidate then allowed that if placed under gunpoint, "then I suppose I’d have to have [my wife] Michelle’s name tattooed somewhere very discreet."

The rest of the interview, which covered more conventional ground, can be read here.

-- Don Frederick

Comments () | Archives (10)

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And this guy wonders why he did badly in West Virginia? I'm a West Virginian born and raised (I tried CA for a while though) I have a degree, my husband has two post graduate degrees, including a law degree. My older son (who is half Asian by the way) just graduated from college and my younger one is going this fall. We all voted for Clinton. You know why? Because she's tough and qualified. Period.

The general consensus among the people in this State is that Obama is, well, . . a pussy. He's also considered to be a trendy fashion fad and West Virginians are not easily caught up in whatever tends to come down the pike. When you live your life on the fringes you tend to be amused by what people get caught up in and leary of joining in. That's because by the time the trends hit W.Va., they're already over. So we get to enjoy a certain hindsight that comes from seeing the trends played out. They say when the world comes to an end, you want to be in West Virginia because everything happens 20 years later here.

People in West Virginia are in fact, xenophic and suspicious. We're not easily BSed. Obama is viewed here as being more than a little thin of substance and as an impractical folly of the elite. If Obama were white and had the same background he would still have lost. And any guy who would have his wife's name tatooed on his ass because he's afraid of her is not going to win any hearts in West Virginia.

I'm not sure what might have been a more winning response to the tattoo question that might have garnered more WV votes (Bible, American flag, a motorcycle, a scantily clad woman???), but I'm a little shocked that the LAT printed the earlier blogger's reference to Obama as a crude slang form of female genitalia. Could someone edit that out? The LAT website is not exactly your corner bar, and it's certainly not the corner bar in West Virginia.

Kap, could you be more of a cliche? Since I have one of those I can say that word if I want. Get over it.

The Demacrate primay is like a drama of
"The Emperor''s New Clothes"

One see the clothes.
One see the color.
One see the body.


KAt from WV

Obama did badly in WV because many of you guys are archetypal "Ugly Americans", so well-known to people all over the world:
anti-intellectual, ignorant, and semi-literate; ultra-conservative and small-minded; gun-toting, flag-waving, violent, and cheap patriotism-espousing; church-going and Hustler-reading; truck-driving, donuts-eating, and bad cofee-consuming types.

this is not about whether anyone likes tattoos or not.
coercion is unethical. anyone who would occupy the highest office to uphold and defend the principles the country was founded on, might be expected to understand this, and unmistakably say so. not so obama: he clearly signals that he could be forced or compromised to give up his right to decide for himself and to defend basic ethical principles. whether this is about having his wife's name, or a number tattooed on his body is a technicality; or about having the rights of other people violated, their bodies mutilated, maimed or marked, selling them into humiliation and slavery. where did we last see people tattooed without their active consent? the irritating implication here is that the people of america are expected to renounce liberty, and even to elect their own concentration camp capo. and why would he take care to descretely hide the mark, if he was not aware of the abominable corruption and betrayal it would represent? cynically hiding his true colors, he'd expand the scope and scale, spreading the disease of hateful treason.
but then, there's still the true contender for PRESIDENT, RON PAUL champion of the constitution, and of integrity.

Wow SR. Your quite the wordsmith. Original too. But you missed inbred, barefoot, toothless, cousin loving, four wheel driving and most of all HILLBILLY.

Don't be a menace . . . .

I live in California, therefore I am better than you. The folks in West Virginia came up with the name "toothbrush", not "teethbrush" because they have a tooth, not a full set of teeth. Obama doesn't need your vote. Just vote for McBush....waste your vote, just like you wasted your life by living in a crap-hole like West Virginia. Not only am I better than you, but every American NOT living in West Virginny is better than you.
Elitists Rule!
Move out of the way, while people with indoor plumbing take over.
Do you calll you father..."Uncle Dad"?

SR or Wilford or whatever your name is.

I always know I hit a nerve when someone goes ad hominem. In this case it sounds like I put a dental drill right into the pulp of your biggest molar. It makes me just feel warm and fuzzy all over.

p.s. Wilford

My Dad's name was actually Coy, just like on Dukes of Hazzard and he was named after the foreman of the jury who acquitted his father of murder. My grandfather promised the jury foreman he would name his first born son after him after the verdict was read. You did ask.

Also, I did have a long time on again off again fling with my second cousin. It all started when I did some nude modeling for him. Here in West Virginia, they say "incest is the best."

Whoooooo dogggies!

Remember, don't be a menace.


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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