Friday, June 22, 2007

so, now the president does product placement?

Middle of last week, I posted this picture, joking that Commander Crocs & Sox should be impeached for his sick-making sartorial choices alone. (After all, ”An impeachable offense,” as Gerald Ford once remarked, “is whatever a majority of the House of Representatives considers it to be at a given moment in history.” Surely the majority can agree on this.)

Perhaps I was joking then (perhaps), but as it turns out yet again—and for some reason I always forget this—in BushWorld, the most cynical, short-sighted, greedy, venal explanation is probably the correct one (we call this “Bush’s Razor”). It might have been the President’s choice to add the seal socks, but it is likely that Bush enjoys wearing the plastic shoes in public because those Crocs put money in campaign kitty.

You see, Boulder, CO-based Crocs, Inc. has as its Chairman of the Board big-time Republican contributor/fundraiser Rick Sharp (Sharp is also founder and chair of CarMax), and just a few weeks prior to Bush’s footwear photo-op, George and Laura made a stop in Goochland (that’s the real name, I swear), VA—home to the “sprawling estate” of Rick and Sherry Sharp. The occasion was a fundraiser for the Virginia Republican Party (that night’s haul, a mere $630,000).

Whether the presidential product placement was discussed at the party, or Bush was given those black crocs in exchange for his signature on a big check (OK, I’ll admit it, even at 28% approval, Bush’s mere appearance was probably enough to garner a free pair of plastic shoes), we can only speculate—the event was closed to the media.

But don’t feel bad for the ladies and gentlemen of the president’s press pool—they may not have gotten their own free Crocs, but they did get to play ping-pong (yes, the metaphor writes itself) with White House Deputy Press Secretary Tony Fratto inside a separate Goochland building that housed the Sharps’ gym.

They even got dessert!

(photo: Julie Mason

(hat tip: GL)

Update: Does 26% still earn you a pair of free shoes? Twenty-six percent—sheesh!

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