Picture of the day

President Obama gets caught enjoying those famous Italian vistas just a little too much

By Alex Koppelman
Published July 9, 2009 9:30PM (EDT)

Reuters/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama (C) and France's President Nicolas Sarkozy (R) take their places with junior G8 delegates for a family photo at the G8 summit in L'Aquila, Italy, July 9, 2009.

Drudge is leading with this picture right now, with a banner headline that reads "Mr. President!" Gotta give it to him, though he's probably just trying to drum up some controversy, that's a pretty funny headline. The look on French President Nicolas Sarkozy's face may be even funnier.

I've been waiting for some conservatives to work themselves up into a lather over this photo, but so far, except for the occasional comparison to President Clinton, everyone just appears to be laughing, and giving President Obama a little well-deserved ribbing. Which is good -- because hey, let's face it, we all have that occasional impulse to stop and appreciate certain features of our fellow men. And women. Obama just has the misfortune of being on camera for the better part of his day. Let's just hope, for his sake, that the first lady is willing to buy that excuse.

Plus, Obama has clearly gotten in that European spirit. Turns out this is only one of at least three photos from the G-8 summit currently underway in which he, Sarkozy and Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi apparently got caught in flagrante gluteus. (The other two are here and here.)

And yes, you're allowed to laugh at this: I checked with Broadsheet.

Update: ABC News found video of the moment captured in the photo. You can watch it below -- it's potentially exculpatory, and seems to suggest Obama's attention was actually elsewhere, as he was about to help the woman above him walk down, but it could go either way. Sarkozy, however, doesn't even try to be discreet. Gotta love the French.

Either way? It's funny. And it's summer. And we can all use a laugh sometimes.

Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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