Posted at 3:19 PM on January 24, 2007
by Jeff Horwich
Ok, I guess it wasn't just us. The New York Times and other State of the Union viewers couldn't help but notice newly elected Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann's "death grip" (as the NYT's "Caucus" blog put it) on President Bush's shoulder as he made his way out of the House after his speech. (KSTP.com has some video up, if you missed it.)
Love her or hate her (and we, of course, admit to neither), it was odd. Play-by-play: Bachmann gets an autograph from Bush on her speech invitation. She then gathers up invitations from other people around her, and gets Bush's attention again to sign those invitations. As he walks away, her hand goes to his shoulder. It stays there -- about 30 seconds -- as he wanders across the aisle and talks with other lawmakers. It stays there as he kisses the cheek of the woman next to her. And it stays there as he finally accepts the inevitable and plants one on Bachmann herself. Big smile throughout. (Screen shot: CNN)
It was smart (think of the face-time on national TV) or silly. Or both. Either way, you kind of get the feeling the Congresswoman is somewhat fond of the President...