(CNN) – Gov. Bill Richardson showed up to his press conference with President-elect Barack Obama Wednesday morning without the beard he has been sporting since dropping out of the presidential race in January, sparking his new boss to tell reporters he is "deeply disappointed with the loss of the beard."
"I'm going to answer this question about the beard," said Obama, when Richardson was asked where the facial hair went. "I think it was a mistake for him to get rid of it. I thought that whole Western, rugged look was really working for him.
"For some reason, maybe because it was scratchy when he kissed his wife, he was forced to get rid of it.," Obama continued as his nominee for commerce secretary smiled broadly. "But we're deeply disappointed with the loss of the beard."
Obama didn't let Richardson answer the question, but the New Mexico governor told Esquire Magazine in an interview posted online Wednesday that "After the campaign, I grew a beard as a rebellion against those consultants who told me I had to comb my hair, shave, lose weight. I said, You know, I’m gonna do what I want now. That was a good feeling."
I like him with the beard. But, I have to complain a little. The headline on the main page said Obama was disappointed with Richardson. I'm like, 'Don't tell me he said no to the job'. But, nooooo! It's about his beard! That's called 'bait n' switch'!
CNN is silly for the title of this article. Sensational journalism to a new level.
Hi! I saw the press conference and truly 'laughed out loud' when Obama answered the question about Bill's 'beard'. It's nice to see a little humor these days! Glad to see that Obama and Richardson have a sense of humor. And, Bill...you look great with or without the beard!
I really thought Richardson would get something better than the Commerce job. Oh well...
Watch out for the nasty Repubs...rumor has it that they have a site out there that is a smear machine – but this one is supposed to give codes out to GOP operatives. Can't remember what it's called though. Any help???
President Elect Obama and Commerce Secretary Richadson are going to be great together. I love them both.
I think it's great that Obama has the time to make Comments about things like this but doesn't take the time to answer Genuine questions from the Media...
It's just awesome that people care more about what dog his kids choose than the economy, and he cares more about one of his cabinet members beards than a nuclear armed Iran in the first term of his presidency...
What are you joking or are you an idiot! Obama was making a joke and implementing laughter into press conference.
You're probably one of those people who finds something to dislike/ distrust about Obama no matter what he does. Good Grief!
Doesn't everyone realize how difficult it is to lose weight in New Mexico with all the wonderful food of the Southwest available? Joe S.
Richardson spent a lot of time trying to look "Hispanic" because it got him some votes and more attention. He wanted a job, any job, so he decided to look as Hispanic as possible.
He's so fat he looks gross, and the lack of beard reveals the heavy layers of fat lolling and shifting under his chin.
"Tubby" had best drop at least 100 pounds, or he'll wreck every photo op and drop dead like Tim Russert and so many other obese men.
Poor Hillary has to look at this gob of fat for 4 years.
Why don't you give us news rather than infotainment? My God, CNN is becoming Fox. Have you no standards?
He looks much better with a beard. No doubt about it.
he looked too much like Wolfman Jack...
Is this really "headline news"?
It was a cool look for him and he looked younger.
Wow, there are some really nasty and personal comments here about the man's appearance. I wonder how beautiful the people are who are so critical of Richardson's personal appearance. Beauty, which is completely subjective, is only skin deep but ugly goes clear to the bone. There are some really ugly people on this blog, regardless of how they look. Is it really necessary to be so mean about something so frivolous and irrelevant?
I liked the beard as well. But what matters is Richardson doing the job to the best of his ability.
Jesus H. Christ! With all that is going on in our country,i.e. wall street meltdown, auto companies about to fail,CNN considers whether or n ot some guy in Obama's cabinet has a beard to be newsworthy? If I wanted to read that kind of crap, I'd pick up the national Inquirer!!
Meanwhile, several American troops and Iraqi civilians were killed.
The world is coming undone and someone thinks this is newsworthy?
grow the beard again!!!!!!!!!!
For those of you asking "is this news?".....Oh grow up people! Even CNN gets to have fun sometime!
Because of its proven history of working well with Gov. Richardson, the president-elect has nominated Richardson's beard for Secretary Of Energy.
The beard gives him a handsome, rugged look! No baby-face for this girl!
I don't understand why you put such misleading headlines on your home page that reference the ticker. It seems that CNN has been doing this a lot lately and I wish they would get back to the accurate news source they used to be!
Beard or no beard. Your choice Mr. Secretary of Commerce to be. Either way, I think you'll do a great job.
I vote for the beard, too. Without it, he looks like Fred Flintstone.