May 8th, 2009
04:24 PM ET
9 years ago

Obama official resigns over photo flap


The White House has released a photo taken during the controversial flyover of New York City last week.

(CNN) - Louis Caldera, the director of the White House Military Office who authorized the controversial Air Force One photo-op over New York City last week has resigned, the White House announced Thursday.

The White House has also released a photograph taken during the unannounced flyover that caused a brief panic in the city.

Full story

Full White House statement after the jump

Statement from White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs:

The President has accepted the resignation of Louis Caldera as Director of the White House Military Office. Attached is Mr. Caldera's resignation letter. Also attached is a report sought by the President and conducted by Jim Messina, deputy chief of staff, and a photo.

The President has asked his Deputy Chief of Staff Jim Messina and Defense Secretary Gates or his designee to jointly review the organizational structure of the White House Military Office and the reporting relationship of its components to the White House and the Air Force, and to make recommendations to him to ensure that such an incident never occurs again.

Filed under: Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (234 Responses)
  1. CKS

    personally – I think this guy was given the short end of the stick – he certainly didnt act alone. He shouldn't resign – others should.

    May 8, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  2. Diva

    I think President Obama has made a mistake in accepting the resignation. I was living in NYC when 9/11 took place. I think the media and the public have ONCE AGAIN overreacted to something that is nothing. How can you get upset when the planewhich is a 747 is CLEARLY marked with the US flag and the ONLY plane in the WORLD to be painted in the fashion it is. Not only that, it was flanked by TWO F16 fighter jets. This is just people and the media once again exploiting simple things in life.

    May 8, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  3. jcow2

    Lord have Mercy!!! The WHMO (White House MIlitary Office) is probably the most innocent of the lot. Having worked with this organization they are not some rogue group out doing their own thing. The Director of WHMO in past administrations has reported directly to the Chief of Staff of the White House – not the Pentagon or the Department of Defense – so for Obama and his people to claim they had no idea about this photo shoot is inexcusable.

    May 8, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  4. tjaman

    That photo is gorgeous!

    May 8, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  5. Chenna Benna

    Wow. So this is what accountability is like. Haven't seen this in eight years. Although the photo is nice, it doesn't make how this whole thing was handled right. Caldera should have been fired last week. Next time get someone who knows how to use Photoshop.

    May 8, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  6. Wayne in St. Pete

    Wasn't it Forrest Gump who said it well..."stupid is as stupid does"?
    Bye bye Louis

    May 8, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  7. fudge

    Hey...The Death of America by Obama.....
    You don't have to insult to get your point across that just shows your white, conservative wackoo values your use to holding onto as a republican loser that you are.

    May 8, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  8. Dave

    love the picture... if EVERYTHING is going to SCARE these people....then the terrorists will have won.... Im sooooo sick of fighting and war and bickering.... OBAMA is your president...embrace it and try to help....stop complaining over eeeeeveeeerrryyyyyyything....jeez

    May 8, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  9. CNN is FOX-lite

    CNN has been invaded by neo-cons. I am disgusted by the comments posted here. Nice picture though. Louie should not have resigned over this beautiful picture.

    May 8, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |

    That was one of the dumbest things i've seen an official do.

    And he had to be hispanic! 😦

    May 8, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  11. Rob

    I'm surprised that this idiot had enough sense and decency to even resign. This administration and their supporters are so delusional, Obama could order a re-enactment of 9/11 and people would go for it.

    May 8, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  12. Nichole, Tulsa, OK

    Honestly, I think the picture kind of sucks. I would ask for the photographer's resignation as well.

    May 8, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  13. picture = not bad

    I dunno. I like the picture. I think people are taking it out of context. I did see how scared some people were in NY when it happened and that was bad to see. But I wonder why this is a national tragedy and torture or becoming terrorists ourselves by condoning torture is not a tragedy.

    May 8, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  14. Tulsa

    lol.... boy, you idiots from the right sure are fired up about this.
    Where were you when King George was getting into Iraq? It was ok when he lied?
    stupid, stupid Republicans.

    May 8, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  15. 1 down, many more to go....

    One bonheaded mistake of many already done, and many more to come from this administration...As they say "Do as I say, not as I do"

    May 8, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  16. richard - Minneapolis

    I wonder who all these perfect people are who have never made mistakes themselves and don't allow others to do so! Jeez!!!

    May 8, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  17. G NO P

    bj, Texas May 8th, 2009 4:30 pm ET

    When is Obama going to resign?

    When is Texas going to secede?

    May 8, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  18. Level Headed

    To: The Death of America by Obama,

    Why in the world would Obama need to be informed about the details surrounding random photo ops? He shouldn't have to ask his subordinates the specific details of how a "photo shoot "will take place. If the the President had to be involved in such meaningless decisions, how in the world would he have the time to be able to tackle the more important ones? Obviously Lou made a fatal error that cost him his job.

    May 8, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  19. Gerry

    Any president has a large administration who act constantly on behalf of the president. Yes it was a mistake, and it scared people so the man in charge of this small operation resigned but remember, Rush Limbaugh IS a mistake, and he scares LOTS of people and you dont see him resigning!

    May 8, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  20. FAYE, NV

    I think our President is sending a message and that is he will not accept nor tolerate unaccepting mistakes. For, Mr. Caldera to allow that incident to happen show poor judgment and heartless for the American.

    I am not saying he intentionally upset us; however, not much thought was put into it either.

    Thank you
    President Obama

    May 8, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  21. RD

    Wow, what a nice picture though ... plane looks good; Statue looks good. So, ah, what is the purpose of this nice photo again? To show off to people?

    May 8, 2009 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  22. R

    Boo hoo, we're scared. There's a plane. get over it.

    May 8, 2009 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  23. john smith

    There is more to this story. None of the officials in NY city were told prior to this fly by. This was not a planned event.

    May 8, 2009 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  24. MN

    Very nice picture.

    May 8, 2009 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  25. Just Jim

    Well, Kurt, JP, Reg & BJ, it seems that you aren't happy that PRESIDENT Obama hasn't cleaned up the mess George W took 8 years to make. I suppose you are a loyal American like that big, fat, idiot Rush that wants OUR President to fail. He fails we all fail. But, what the heck, you four are already losers.

    May 8, 2009 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
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