Obama: No offense taken at Eastwood speech
September 2nd, 2012
09:37 AM ET
6 years ago

Obama: No offense taken at Eastwood speech

(CNN) – President Barack Obama said in an interview published Sunday he took no offense at Clint Eastwood's prime-time address at the Republican National Convention, in which the legendary actor and director posed questions to an empty chair, which he said represented the Democratic incumbent.

"One thing about being president or running for president - if you're easily offended, you should probably choose another profession," Obama told USA Today.

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Eastwood's speech came the same night Mitt Romney accepted the Republican presidential nomination in Tampa, Florida. The sprawling, off-the-cuff address drew criticism from some, who said Eastwood's unorthodox remarks overshadowed Romney. The Republican nominee's advisers wrote off the criticism, saying the crowd found Eastwood's remarks funny.

"He's a great messenger. The guy is an American treasure," Romney senior strategist Stuart Stevens said.

Obama agreed with that sentiment in the USA Today interview, calling Eastwood "a great actor, and an even better director."

"I think the last few movies that he's made have been terrific," the president added.

That appreciation, however, doesn't mean Democrats will try to mimic Eastwood's performance at their own confab, slated to begin in Charlotte, North Carolina, on Tuesday.

"I think we'll be playing this pretty straight," Obama said.

soundoff (391 Responses)
  1. independent

    It's Halftime in America, baby.

    September 2, 2012 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  2. cause for delay

    Mr Eastwood needs to run for President ...and for VP sell raffle tickets for 3$ Live Drawing, National TV... Nov 6th

    September 2, 2012 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  3. farawayplace

    For all of the damage the liberal media claims Eastwood's "rambling" speech did not do, it's quite interesting that they're still in damage-control mode several days later.

    September 2, 2012 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  4. Jessie P.

    For all the people cutting down Democrats on this site I have something to say. I and my family are registered Republicans but will be voting for Obama because we are concerned about how the Republicans will only
    benefit big business and the wealthy..........this is not an opinion, it is a fact. If you don't have the guts to check independent facts from independent fact checkers about all of the out right lies and huge distorations that Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan have said about what Obama has or has not done, then you will get what you deserve!!! You see if you have not figured it out yet, the Republicans don't want you to know the facts and any one who won't check the facts as so many of you don't, then you will believe anything! The choice is extremely simple........if you want to give your money to insurance companies for less health services, if you want to pay higher taxes so the rich will become even more wealthy, and if you want your children to grow up in a world of paying higher taxes and never receiving Social Security and medicare (and please note if you believe Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan that there is not enough money or that ithese are ponzi schemes well I have a bridge you can buy) by all means vote for Mitt Romney and get what you deserve!

    September 2, 2012 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  5. park

    Wow, and I thought his speech didn't do anything. Why are papers still trying to discount it so long after the fact?

    September 2, 2012 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  6. Devoneco

    Clint's behavior could be a result of Dementia. Dementia isn't a specific disease. Instead, dementia describes a group of symptoms affecting intellectual and social abilities severely enough to interfere with daily functioning. Many causes of dementia symptoms exist. Alzheimer's disease is the most common cause of a progressive dementia. Some of the symptoms are

    – Memory loss
    – Difficulty communicating
    – Inability to learn or remember new informatio
    – Difficulty with planning and organizing
    – Difficulty with coordination and motor functions
    – Personality changes
    – Inability to reason
    – Inappropriate behavior
    – Paranoia
    – Agitation
    – Hallucinations

    September 2, 2012 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  7. Jim Hahn

    I've seen on facebook where the Democrats are trying to get Betty White to do the same thing. Now that woman has balls!

    September 2, 2012 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  8. rocinante

    Democrats could definitely respond.

    I'd imagine... lets say.. .Betty White... talking to... a caricature of the Richie Rich comicbook cartoon.

    September 2, 2012 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  9. michael in houston

    You freaks who keep saying we democrats worship Obama or consider him the 2nd coming....I got a news flash for you. Its YOU in the GOP that started those comments as a way of another level of criticism against the President and his supporters. We don't consider him a God and we don't worship him. Just because you in the GOP want to call it that, that's YOUR issue not ours. Give us a break and grow up.

    September 2, 2012 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
  10. Transitdave

    Obama didn't take offense because the metaphor of the empty STOOL was lost on him........A little too nuanced for most dems, I guess........

    September 2, 2012 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  11. Smeagel4T

    It appears Eastwood is another delusional Republican who believes he's an entirely self-made person. He does not appear to realize the world would never had heard his name if it wasn't for camera men, lighting people, electricians, set constructors, on location caterers, truck drivers, bus drivers, writers, and all the "little people" who made his career even possible.

    September 2, 2012 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  12. Scott

    Look, if you are taking time to post your views on this board then you are a middle class or below poor pin head. That being said...yes, I am in the same class.....and I am dang sure not stupid enough to vote Republican and let the class of the people without a concscience continue to control the corrupt world of big business. Then, they sim ply say "we want to lower taxes" and every idiot with an IQ below 100 votes for them thinking this is all that matters. I only wish there were more smart middle class people like me in this world.

    September 2, 2012 08:08 pm at 8:08 pm |
  13. Matthew Williams

    Melvin, do you even know what Clint said?? He was just rambling on that microphone I thought he was gonna drop dead on that stage.

    September 2, 2012 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  14. Gordyb

    The RNC lost control of its convention just like the GOP lost control of our economy when they were in power. This skit confirmed it is better to stick with the President in November.

    September 2, 2012 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  15. greenaxe

    "Go ahead make my.....oops I pooped my pants"...

    September 2, 2012 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  16. JerseyGirl

    @Reggie from LA
    "The Romney's speeches were awkward and as phony as $3 bills. I mean really, you're suddenly a great guy overnight?"
    You left out that Romney when young also closed a door on a blind teacher so he/she would bang into the door as a prank.

    September 2, 2012 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  17. southernwonder

    an empty chair can not talk back.

    September 2, 2012 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  18. Rudy Gonzales

    Let's all take a breath and realize those in charge of the RNC dropped the ball on Romney's neck! It was entertaining, but totally out of the norm. Romney has no inkling of what the average man or woman has to go through on a daily basis to live life. Romney has never walked into a Waffle House and watched and listened to the intense amount of work that has to go into keeping and maintaining a job like these wonderful people do. He has no clue how much a woman who works in these simple everyday jobs has to put up with.

    September 2, 2012 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  19. NanookoftheNorth

    I thought Clint was great ! I got it...the crowd got it...Romney got it...and Prez Obama got it 🙂 I think the only ones who didn't, were those involved in the 'Twitterverse' and social media generation. Would be great if when Obama is introduced to the crowd at the Dem convention, the curtains would part... to reveal him sitting in a chair next to the podium 🙂 🙂

    September 2, 2012 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  20. chedar888

    Mr. Eastwood. the president win over you rant. You Mr. Eastwood look cheap. Look how president act. He is the president of all people unlike Romney, the president for the rich and the Bahamas and Cayman where his money is.

    September 2, 2012 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  21. Martin muhia

    Clint was asked to talk about Obama care and due to old age dementia heard Obama chair...

    September 2, 2012 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  22. chedar888

    If you guys have enough brain, Obama inherited the worse economic disaster aftter the great dust bowl. He handle them well and avoid economic depression. Even if McCain won the presidency, he will end up the same or worse than what Obama did at the end of 3.5 years.

    September 2, 2012 09:34 pm at 9:34 pm |
  23. Maty

    I am planning on voting Democrat this November, but I thought Eastwood was fantastic! Just illustrates the adsurdity of contemporary American politics....

    September 2, 2012 09:39 pm at 9:39 pm |
  24. Name Richard K.

    Thank you Mr. Eastwood for reminding us that this country belongs to us, the American people, and that all these politicians are our employees. Thank goodness we have the ultimate performance evaluation coming up in November.

    September 2, 2012 09:40 pm at 9:40 pm |
  25. Nuance

    I'm wondering why all these people like Mr. Eastwood are only just now complaining and disillusioned with the direction this country is going....considering "when" all these problems/issues first initially arose all this talk now about the state of America is hindsight. The early 2000's was the critical juncture where all these so-called patriots should have been complaining about the direction the country was heading....too late now as the damage is done already.

    September 2, 2012 09:44 pm at 9:44 pm |
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