Future former future President Jeb Bush is nearly as handy with a gaffe as his famous brother was, but on Tuesday, the former Florida governor pulled a two-fer, slamming President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama for “insulting” China, while also butchering their oldest daughter Malia Obama‘s name. Along the way, he also reminisced about President Obama’s 2009 “reelection,” and opined that either the Chinese or the Obamas “don’t think the same way we do,” and if my understanding of the English language is correct, called the President’s daughter a science project:
They have no clue about us. And frankly, we have no clue about them. And that difference can create all sorts of bad outcomes.
The best example — seems like a small thing — is in 2009 after the president’s reelection. There was the summit in Palm Springs, and Mrs. Obama didn’t go to the summit in Palm Springs. And the glamorous first lady of China went with President Xi. And the big scandal was that Mrs. Obama, and the United States government, and the United States, therefore, were insulting China and its first couple by not being there.
And every meeting I had in Beijing started out for the first 10 minutes started out lambasting me about why it was, as an American, why it was that we insulted China. And I’m thinking, you know what, it could be that Mrs. Obama was worried about the science project of Malayla. I mean, we’re different, we don’t think the same way they do, I’m sure that they didn’t go out of their way to try and insult the country, 1.2 billion or 1..3 billion people of China.
Some folks on Twitter think Jeb was confusing Malia with Malala Yousafzai, but I’m pretty sure he was just having an Eric Clapton moment in his own head.
As Politico noted, this isn’t the first time Jeb has pronounced Malia Obama’s name this way, but probably the first time he did it while accusing her mother of insulting an entire country. The gaffe is currently making the rounds on Twitter, including internationally.
As for why Mrs. Obama missed that 2013 (not 2009) summit, no, she wasn’t working on a science project for Malayla:
First lady Michelle Obama will travel through Europe from June 15 to 21, working to promote the Let Girls Learn, Let’s Move and Joining Forces initiatives, according to the White House’s Office of the First Lady.
Accompanying her on this trip will be her mother, Marian Robinson, and daughters Malia and Sasha.
This is an opinion piece. The views expressed in this article are those of just the author.