November 27th, 2008
10:00 AM ET
5 years ago

First White House Chrismukkah cards accidentally sent

A card sent to Jewish leaders had a distinctly Yuletide flavor.
A card sent to Jewish leaders had a distinctly Yuletide flavor.

WHITE HOUSE (CNN) – Whoops! A picture of a Christmas tree is not the first thing you would expect to see on an invitation to an event celebrating Hanukkah, but that is exactly what recipients of invitations to this year's White House Hanukkah reception initially got in the mail.

The invitation sent to American Jewish leaders on behalf of the President and First Lady, requesting "the pleasure of your company at a Hanukkah reception," bore an image of a Clydesdale horse-drawn cart, carrying the White House Christmas tree, with a Christmas wreath-adorned White House in the background.

Mrs. Bush's press secretary, Sally McDonough, attributed the snafu to a "staff mistake" in not printing separate cards for the different White House holiday events, as has been the custom in years past. "Mrs. Bush is apologetic, It is just something that fell through the cracks," she said, referring to the role of the First Lady's office in sending out the invitations.

The card as originally intended featured a menorah given to the White House during Harry Truman's presidency. That mailing was to have gone out today, according to Mrs. McDonough.

McDonough added that the White House had received "dozens" of calls of support from members of the Jewish community to express their appreciation for what President and Mrs. Bush had done for them through the course of Mr. Bush's presidency.


Filed under: Popular Posts • White House
soundoff (418 Responses)
  1. Charlie in Maine

    Happy Festivus (for the rest of us)

    November 26, 2008 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  2. Craig in Washington

    Didn't "Christmas" trees have pagen origins? At most, they're non-sectarian. Most of the Jews I've known wouldn't be overly upset about it, if at all.

    November 26, 2008 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  3. Gene

    This is OBVIOUSLY Obama's fault.. yeah, change we can believe in! ;)

    Yes.. that's a joke.. happy holidays :)

    November 26, 2008 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  4. Anonymous

    QUOTE: S.B. Stein E.B. NJ November 26th, 2008 2:36 pm ET

    It shows to me that this administration is thinking that the country is one kind of group of people. There is little understanding as to what needs to go to different groups. Not everyone celebrates the same thing.
    _________________________________________

    Are you kidding? The only reason this invitation went out is because the Bushes realize there are more than "one kind of group of people" (otherwise, the Bushes wouldn't be hosting such a celebration). They've done this every year without any problems, and they intended to send a different card picturing a menorah.

    I don't like Bush. I don't like his policies. But this was the result of some idiot in the mail room not using the right mailing list or something. It is not a reflection on Bush. Relax.

    November 26, 2008 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  5. Jeff in Dallas

    Penny – Island Lake, IL November 26th, 2008 2:28 pm ET

    I can't believe how many mean spirited Democrat’s there is out there. It seems like every article about the President; these evil Democrat’s have to voice their dumbness

    Thanks for summing up what is wrong with the GOP. Happy Thanksgiving.

    November 26, 2008 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  6. mac

    I guess Dick Cheney wasn't supervising this one, anyway!

    November 26, 2008 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  7. Chas in Iowa

    The fact an error was made does not phase me in the least.

    What is setting me back in my seat is some of the right wing responces posted here making light of an unwarranted war in Iraq, Halburton, and Cheney. These are not joking matters,...people are giving their lives over there folks!!!! That's kinda sicko!

    Lets get our priorities straight.

    November 26, 2008 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  8. Can't wait for 1/20/09

    Inept 'til the very end...

    November 26, 2008 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  9. ModRepub

    I hope that Obama doesn't make any mistakes when he sends out his cards to the 57 states....oops, I mean 50.

    November 26, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  10. B. Churchill

    OK, you hard-right wingnuts, we give up. Yes, we really do think BO is the messiah and the reason no one has reported on his background is because he HAS no background – he just materialized directly from heaven immediately prior to the election, and there is no birth certificate because he was born in a manger. We should've known we couldn't fool you forever, you Einsteins...

    November 26, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  11. Jeff

    Another example of 10,000 to illustrate the incompetence of this bush administration. Repukes have almost run the USA into the ground the last 8 years...Thank God, Allah, and Jehovah that we have chosen to go in a new direction. January 20th, a breath of fresh air and return to sanity. The journey will be long, the fight hard, but we will get it back together. You repukes out there that have something negative to say about a president-elect calling for unity, hope and change for a positive future for ALL Americans can go straight to hell. Merry Christmas and happy channukkah, and all that. Joy to the world, Bush is outta here finally!!!

    November 26, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  12. Greed is not good

    Just pagan symbols regardless. Not what either Judaism or Christianity intended anyways.

    November 26, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  13. It's not a worm with wings; it's a BUTTERFLY!

    Goodness people, CNN especially, what about good will??? Why must EVERYTHING from the current administration be considered negative and of ill will? If Obama is such a great man and leader, why aren't you happy and why not bury the hatchet? Surely, this isn't what he desires from you? Is it? Be thankful for SOMETHING and leave the Bushes alone. I hope you and your children never make a mistake.

    I am sure no one with a heart for good is offended by this. I don't think ANY of my Jewish friends would be offended receiving a card such as this one. Please let goodness overcome all the bitterness you people have. There will be a time when you need forgiveness.

    Move on. Find another target if you must.

    November 26, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  14. Can't Wait "Til 1/20/13

    This is a non-issue.

    November 26, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  15. Ross

    This administration can't even get a holiday card done right. A perfect ending for Bush.

    November 26, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  16. Jeff

    HAHA!! Charlie in Maine, I totally agree!! Can't wait for the 'airing of the grievances"!! The list for the last 8 years will be long for sure!!! :)

    November 26, 2008 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  17. Sara

    Is this really news, CNN? How about reporting on something that's actually important?

    November 26, 2008 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  18. SD Demo

    It's part of the "culture wars"–this time an "attack on Hannukah"!! Must have been engineered by the good folks at Fox News.

    November 26, 2008 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  19. Joyce, from New Jersey

    that one is too funny just another blunder from the Bush White House good way to go out DON'T YOU THINK ......LOL

    November 26, 2008 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  20. Mike

    Give me a friggin break....
    Festive season...December...Snow...Reindeer...did you see a nativity set?....Merry Christmas

    November 26, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  21. joe

    It figures. More lunacy from Dumbya! THANK GOD FOR OBAMA!

    November 26, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  22. Nija

    We love you Mrs. Bush happy holiday.

    November 26, 2008 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  23. k

    President and Mrs. Bush,
    Thanks for taking the high road through it all.

    To the 'One' who stands behind the podium which reads 'the office of the President-Elect,'
    I am humbled by your greatness, oh wise One... I cannot wait for you to enter office and dazzle us with your brilliance, stun us with your intellect and "school" us on these 7 states we know not of...please, sire, hurry, the nation needs you!

    November 26, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  24. Ian

    No big deal, it only came out of our taxes.

    November 26, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  25. beevee

    Not a big deal to fuss about. I am sure the jewish leaders will understand an honest mistake.

    November 26, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
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