Drudge Stirs the Pot in Presidential "He Said, He Said"

In this corner, the President of the United States, and in this corner, the (former) President of the United States.

Is there a real feud happening over a snub or is Drudge simply trying to stir things up and manufacture a presidential pre-pope funeral squabble?

According to Matt, Jimmy Carter claims he was “passed over”.

President Bush selected his father and Bill Clinton over Jimmy Carter for the official delegation attending the funeral of Pope John Paul II, the Carter Center claimed Late Tuesday.

“President Carter expressed to the White House a desire to attend the Pope’s funeral,” an official said.

Carter “was informed that the official delegation would be limited to just five people, and there were also others who were eager to attend.”

“The Carters always relish the memories of Pope John Paul II being a delightful personal guest at the White House in 1979, on a pope’s only visit to our nation’s capital city. Subsequently, they visited with His Holiness in the Vatican.”

But, published reports claim there was no intentional snub. (emphasis mine -ed.)

Former Presidents Bush and Clinton will accompany President Bush to the funeral of Pope John Paul II, the White House said Tuesday. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will also be part of the small official U.S. delegation, but former Presidents Carter and Ford will not.

President Bush and his wife, Laura, will lead the group representing the United States at the funeral on Friday, said White House press secretary Scott McClellan.

McClellan said the White House “reached out” to Carter, but he would not explain why Carter was not going along.

A spokesman at The Carter Center in Atlanta, Jon Moore, said Carter _ relishing the memories of two visits as president with the pontiff _ had told the White House he wanted to go to the funeral. Upon learning that the Vatican was limiting the U.S. delegation to five people and that “there were also others who were eager to attend,”Carter was “quite willing” to withdraw his request, Moore said.

“He and his wife Rosalynn are very pleased with the official delegation,” Moore said of Carter.

Fess up Matt.

UPDATE: NBC, ANDREA MITCHELL – Carter was told no former presidents were going to pope funeral.

Comments

  1. The truth of the matter is that Carter is down in Cuba puffing on stogies with his good buddy, Fidel, and discussing the possibility of holding sacrosanct elections next year.

    ;D

  2. News from Around the World says:

    Drudge Stirs the Pot in Presidential “He Said, He Said”

    Yeah:…

  3. No offense to Jimmy, but his request is obviously self-serving.

    Beyond that, he had the opportunity to attend Pope Paul VI and Pope John Paul I’s funerals, but snubbed the Catholic Church both times….

    In any event, it is sad that much of media’s focus is on Jimmy Carter, and not the Pope John Paul II’s life and accomplishments.

    BB

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