Should the President have mentioned the carnage first?

Posted on July 20, 2012 by

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Mr. Obama appeared at a campaign event in Ft. Myers, Florida this morning after the killings in Aurora, Colorado just after midnight.

It can be argued that the event should have been canceled but others have noted that it was the first opportunity for the President to speak about the violence. He had earlier issued a written statement.

He began his speech thanking people who helped organize the rally and those attending.

It is a minor point but we believe Pres. Obama should have started with comments about the tragedy, which he talked about after the thank yous. Most in the audience were probably seeing him in person for the first time and so the cheering was natural.

As others have suggested, perhaps someone could have spoken to the audience before the President was introduced and requested a subdued reaction, explaining that he was planning to talk first about the tragedy.

The campaign staff, which is considered separate from the White House staff, wants the attendees to greet the President enthusiastically. But in this case, perhaps a more reserved response could have been arranged.

As we said, we don’t consider this a major issue. But the loud welcome did seem inappropriate.