December 15th, 2008
02:02 PM ET

And now I would be happy to take your questions and/or dodge your odorous footwear

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/WORLD/meast/12/14/bush.iraq/art.shoes.bush.afp.gi.jpg caption="President Bush, left, ducks a thrown shoe as Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki tries to protect him Sunday."]

Jack Gray
AC360 Associate Producer

Just call it payback for the time Helen Thomas threw her stiletto heel at Nuri al-Maliki.  As I’m sure you’ve heard by now, an Iraqi journalist threw his wingtips at President Bush in Baghdad Sunday.  Apparently the man was upset he had missed former Payless Shoes spokeswoman Star Jones’s USO tour.  Frankly, I think people should be less concerned that the president had shoes thrown at him and more concerned that he was later spotted wearing them.

Meanwhile the resignation watch continues in Illinois, where Rod “Where the #$&@ is my blow dryer?” Blagojevich remains in office.  He and his wife, Patty, had a relatively low-key weekend, meeting with advisors and mugging Salvation Army bell-ringers.  In fact, they were so low-key about it that they probably would have gone unnoticed by the press had Mrs. Blagojevich not been wearing her coat made from the fur of 101 Dalmatians.

The conventional wisdom is that there is no way Blagojevich and his bangs can hold onto his office and that he is spending his time trying to work out a deal where he trades his resignation for a lighter sentence.  That’s of course when he’s not wandering around in his bathrobe muttering, “I’ll see you in hell, Eliot Ness.”

President-elect Obama, who no doubt wishes Blagojevich would become the victim of an unfortunate hairspray mishap, will meet with his national security team today.  The meeting will begin with the Pledge of Allegiance and the customary, “um Hillary, you’re in my chair.”

Elsewhere, John McCain declined to say whether he’d support a possible 2012 presidential bid by Sarah “I’ve never met a polar bear I couldn’t gun down from a helicopter.”  Said McCain on ABC, “I can't say something like that. We've got some great other young governors.”  The senator added, “but I fully support her three-episode arc as the saucy neighbor on the new Beverly Hills 90210.”

Palin’s former rival, Vice President-elect Joe Biden has a new puppy.  Biden’s wife Jill bought him an adorable German Shepherd.  Just remember, Mr. Vice President-elect, puppies are a delight but they like to chew everything.  Especially hair plugs.

And finally, in yet another sign of the global economic downturn, there’s word from England that Queen Elizabeth II has resorted to – gasp – wearing the same outfit more than once.  Which explains why she delivered her annual Christmas message wearing track pants and a Madonna: Sticky & Sweet Tour sweatshirt.

And shoes that someone threw at her.

soundoff (59 Responses)
  1. Louisiana Joe

    Nike should give that journalist a contract, Is it the shoes? We all knew that Bush could duck the heat!!!!!!!

    December 15, 2008 at 9:06 pm |
  2. anima9

    lols bush has mad skillz in dodging. must be used to it by now that he can actually smile at it.

    December 15, 2008 at 8:54 pm |
  3. Jerry York, Lexington, Oklahoma

    Had the Secret Service taken along a TSA Airport Security Team–the shoe tossing event could not have happened–no one would of had any shoes!!!!

    December 15, 2008 at 8:38 pm |
  4. William of Iowa

    For an old ballplayer the President surprised me. Ducking a soft toss that could easily have been fielded and then on the second pitch closing his eyes for what was obviously a high hard one. Easy work for even a novice player. Cmon Mr. President.

    December 15, 2008 at 8:38 pm |
  5. Brandi - bottom of the boot

    @ pati,

    thanks, i didnt think about using the NYE show as an excuse to stay home, i already do that and everyone knows why. they stopped asking me years ago too. lol

    and having been to new orleans for mardi gras, i totally agree with anderson too about the bathrooms and expectations, not to mention the repulsive smell of vomit and, well, people can be such pigs... lol you actually have to buy a $5 or $6 stale beer and show your receipt just to use an actual restroom in the french quarter for mardi gras, so ill let your imagination take over as far as the smell goes.

    its actually been 16 years so, i really just make sure i have a good movie in and maybe a little daquiri here or there (the really big ones go 2 for 1 around here, lol). i still have a great night, just not exactly celebrating NYE, more like trying to forget it. lol

    December 15, 2008 at 8:00 pm |
  6. pati mc., camp hill, pa

    @ Brandi – I hate NYE too. I am thankful that Anderson rescued me from having to turn people down all of the time when they invite me to their parties, etc. At least now I have a valid excuse! (really they gave up on me a long time ago – LOL – they got tired of asking and being turned down).

    As Anderson said, there are too many expectations and too few bathrooms. Well said, my friend. Besides, watching other people throw up and fight are far from my idea of a fun evening.

    Sorry to hear about the reason for your dislike of NYE. 🙁

    December 15, 2008 at 7:26 pm |
  7. optimumdude

    Why isnt anybody talking about W's, reflex .... wow! our president moves like a cat. He must have spent a childhood ducking moms fly'n shoes

    December 15, 2008 at 6:48 pm |
  8. Helen Bullen, Reading, UK

    Happy Monday everyone! Hey, Jack, how's my favourite bit of crumpet today? Once again, your take on current events has cheered me up, thank you! Can't wait to see the shoe throwing incident on 360 later, it didn't even cause a ripple over here, mainly because we were much more interested in watching the final of The X Factor (one of Simon Cowell's talent shows) and complaining to the BBC over a voting cock up on Strictly Come Dancing (or Dancing With The Stars, as you will know it)! Not really surprised that Dubya managed to dodge the shoes, isn't dodging what all politicians do best, after all? As for Her Maj re-cycling her wardrobe, go easy on her, she's probably down to her last few tiaras by now! Maybe Madoff made off with some of her millions, ha, ha! So Blago's still hangin' on in there? I've just thought, with all that hairspray he uses, he's single handedly put that hole in the ozone layer! Oh, wait, no, that was me in the 80's..Anyhoo, it's way past my bedtime and it's a school night, I'd better sign off. Sleep tight Jack and fellow bloggers x x

    December 15, 2008 at 6:36 pm |
  9. Allan Nkob

    Please give the president some token. He does have good reflex's I dont think the secnd shoe would have missed my face. way to go President George Bush..... I love replaying this video

    December 15, 2008 at 6:35 pm |
  10. Brandi - bottom of the boot


    i actually examined a pack of 'starburst' in the drug store today and it said, and i quote, 'starburst fruit chews', hence the 'chews' trumps the 'starburst' for the extra 's'. lol

    so there you have it, the answer was in the hands of the crew dude the entire time. rofl i think he just wanted to have a little fun.

    @EJ, I wont be watching no matter who the hosts are, as much as i adore anderson and kathy both, i detest NYE with a passion. it will be like any other night of the year for me (or as close as i can get to it). something about losing a loved one on that night just takes all the fun out of it. havent found the cure for that yet. 🙁

    however, i do agree with you, no one else would watch if they changed the hosts. lol 🙂

    December 15, 2008 at 6:34 pm |
  11. Wayne from Fullerton, CA

    If we had that custom here..., I can guarentee you Thom McCan and Foot Locker will never be asking for a bailout.

    December 15, 2008 at 6:14 pm |
  12. Don, WA

    Thanks for "Blago-Blogging" today. I've seen the photos on the "Blagosphere", and I believe we may have found the evil half brother of Austin Powers – I'll bet he even has bad teeth.

    December 15, 2008 at 5:57 pm |
  13. EJ (USA)

    Besides that, I thought 2009 was suppose to be the year of change? Why have the same co-host 2 years in a row? Oh well…..

    Because no one would watch it if they changed the 2 hosts.

    December 15, 2008 at 5:46 pm |

    Personally, I don't think much of President Bush as the leader of the free world. However, if this would of been Obama the media would have been outraged. Instead, once again the U.S. takes a beating because of some shoe throwing moron in Iraq. And where was the secret service during all of this? One shoe I can understand, but two?

    December 15, 2008 at 5:46 pm |
  15. Tammy, Berwick. LA

    Like the president said, part of the rights of a free Iraq are to express themselves. Mission accomplished. When Saddam was in power, do you honestly think a reporter would even feel brave enough to show anger like that? Thank Bush and our troops for that freedom (and the millions of Americans who support those men and women and their mission still). I'm just waiting for an Iraqi version of Saturday Night Live to hit prime time and really get freedom of speech to a new level. If an Iraqi version of John Belushi, Gilda Radner, or Chris Farley exist, it really was all worth it.

    As for the IL governor fiasco, I think he's going to walk away from this a free man, get a book deal, and laugh all the way to bank. I've seen it too many times in the history of my oh so honest home state. Guess it depends on how much he has on Obama and how much the PE wants it quiet. Blago is holding the trump card. Don't think he doesn't know it. And the Dems are secretly ready to puke in fear.

    December 15, 2008 at 5:44 pm |
  16. Megan Dresslar (Shoreline, WA)

    On an unrelated note, maybe you could tri-host Anderson’s New Years “Laughin” Eve with Kathy Griffin and Anderson- how fun would that be!?!
    I agree with you!!! That is good idea!!! maybe Jack and Anderson can do the event New Year's with Kathy Griffin....... I hope so! I can't wait!!!!

    December 15, 2008 at 5:36 pm |
  17. Lee

    I agree with some of the people above, Jack, you would be great to be able to participate a little in the on air NYE jokes.

    December 15, 2008 at 5:31 pm |
  18. Megan Dresslar (Shoreline, WA)

    Hellooo Jack!!
    Last night, LOL!!! It was so funny!!! I saw Iraqis reporter threw his shoes at Pres. Bush!!!! it was not good day for Bush....... I hope you're right Bloggers and Jack!!!! I am amusing that is really so hilarious!!!!Pres. Bush is so lucky to duck fast!!!! Wow!!! that was so scary for Pres. Bush........ I will see you there on Webcast tonight..... See you tonight! Very funny blog!!!!! that is good one joke! 🙂

    P.S. I like new layout on CNN TV all the program day and night! it's good great idea!

    December 15, 2008 at 5:25 pm |
  19. Jolene, St. Joseph, MI

    Happy Monday to you! Yes, the old "shoe throwing" trick appeared to gain that Iraqi reporter some fame. I mean if you are going to decide to throw a shoe at our American President, at least make sure you have big feet so the shoe has an even better chance of hitting him! The guy missed him twice and he wasn't that far away. I guess we can't expect a reporter to actually get the "shot" now do we?

    On an unrelated note, maybe you could tri-host Anderson’s New Years “Laughin” Eve with Kathy Griffin and Anderson- how fun would that be!?!

    @Pamina: Something tells me there won't be enough room on the CNN platform for 3 people. 🙁 I would be surprised if Kathy Griffin doesn't bring her Emmy's and of course, along with her big ego, much space will be needed! 😉

    Besides that, I thought 2009 was suppose to be the year of change? Why have the same co-host 2 years in a row? Oh well.....

    December 15, 2008 at 5:13 pm |
  20. Jim

    He got what he deserved for his victory lap. With the economy in
    shambles, how much tax payer money did waste in his attempt
    to convince the world (your better off now)

    December 15, 2008 at 5:12 pm |
  21. JC- Los Angeles

    I'm stunned that Bush lasted eight years before the other shoe dropped.

    December 15, 2008 at 5:10 pm |
  22. Mythe

    Not one US citizen would upject to putting the Iraqi Reporters defense fund in the Bailout package.. NOT ONE. It was a symbolism that every American would want him to do for us. It was a greater symbolism than the Hussein statute falling down. YES it was. If that guy could hear our cheers. Now ask Prez Bush who he was really fighting for. Throw a shoe for lost jobs, throw a show for mortgages, throw a shoe for 5000 deaths of soldiers in Iraq.

    December 15, 2008 at 4:34 pm |
  23. Diana

    Hi everyone,
    I am curious. If the shoe that was thrown at the President had contained a bomb....then what? Do these reporters get screened before going in to a press conference?
    I am not a government expert at all but if that had happened, what would happen.....would President Obama get inaugurated early or would Cheney lead for all of 1 month? How does that work?
    I would never dream of anything bad happening to our President but according to the news, this stop in Iraq was "not planned" so I am curious what our contingency plans are.
    Please advise.

    December 15, 2008 at 4:26 pm |
  24. Fardo

    Where were the bodyguards and securities? I am really interested to know this. From the videos, it shows they came late from the back door!!

    December 15, 2008 at 3:52 pm |
  25. Andrea

    I have certainly never been a supporter of the Bush Administration; no way, didn't vote for him. But in spite of everything I deplore about the actions of this man, he is my President and I find the shoe throwing incident abominable. It surprises me a little that I react this way, given everything I've thought about him over the past 8 years; but an assault on the President is absolutely unacceptable.

    Edmonds, WA

    December 15, 2008 at 3:51 pm |
  26. Gisselle - Houston TX

    *“um Hillary, you’re in my chair.”*

    OMG – still ROTLFMAO! Need oxygen! 🙂 can't breath.

    December 15, 2008 at 3:30 pm |
  27. LyonsPhilly

    He should have just thrown his socks too....We have no idea here what is going on over in Iraq to innocent people. This man apparently very frustrated and upset. I feel sorry for helpless folks there and out military and their families.....

    December 15, 2008 at 3:03 pm |
  28. Roweena D'Souza, Seattle

    Whatever Bush maybe or not, shoe throwing was an absolutely distasteful act, it is appalling that it could happen... he sure seems like a good shoe ducker though. Practice makes perfect?

    The Iraqi should have been introduced to other avenues to vent his anger... like writing hateful comments on blog posts, but then he must already be doing that!

    Great to hear from you on a bitter cold Monday morning, Have a great day Jack. 🙂

    December 15, 2008 at 2:26 pm |
  29. Jennifer

    After reading the post and some comments, I'm thinking that my trip to the moose and bear shooting state could be a little interesting. A request has been made that I take a picture of Russia while in Wasilla. Now I think I might just have to keep my eyes open for the helicopter flying overhead!

    i won't be watching CNN on New Year's Eve, since I will be in the air on the return flight. That is if I wasn't mistaken for being a bear by some people flying over me.

    December 15, 2008 at 1:58 pm |
  30. Michelle

    So was President Bush once the national dodge ball champion?
    Jack can someone find out how much hair spray is on Gov Blago's
    hair? I mean dude's wig does not move.

    December 15, 2008 at 1:44 pm |
  31. xtina, chicago IL

    Great post! I picture Palin on Desperate Housewives, too. Hey, at least she gave money back to the taxpayers in her state unlike G-Rod in IL. Now which party will get voted back for Gov. in Illinois?

    December 15, 2008 at 1:37 pm |
  32. EJ (USA)

    I wonder if Anderson has gotten shoes thrown at him in the various countries he's been to over the years.

    December 15, 2008 at 1:05 pm |
  33. Lilibeth

    Hi Jack, I laughed so hard when I saw the shoe thing. But I was also impressed that he ducked pretty quickly! He was good! Have a great day, Jack.

    Edmonds, Washington

    December 15, 2008 at 12:46 pm |
  34. Presley

    See, this is why I will sort of miss Bush, he can dodge a shoe like he dodges the English language. That reporter was so not Gellin'.

    So, has the Friday debate been resolved? Is it "Starbursts" or not?
    Where is the Poll of Polls on this? Are there any early results yet?
    Where's John King when you need him.


    December 15, 2008 at 12:17 pm |
  35. Renee

    Jack: Hope you have a good NYE line up this year! Kathy is ok but there has to be more meat to the show. Just like PIP2. Great the first time and must less lively the second times. Maybe it was the December encore presentation that was not good. Do overs just bore me to death. It seems like you have some added competition with Luke Russert.

    Yikes, Palin's church was burned. Sorry to hear that. She put herself on the national platform to try to make change and this is what you get. Our country has some real problems. It keeps good folks from running for office with this kind of non-sense.

    December 15, 2008 at 11:57 am |
  36. Fay, CA

    I would imagine Bush has had lots of practice dodging shoes–you just KNOW the First Lady has thrown a few pairs at him around the White House.

    December 15, 2008 at 11:51 am |
  37. Annie Kate

    Hey Jack – good laughs to start off the week. It was needed!!

    Bush ducking the shoes is hilarious – he should be glad it was just shoes and had no feet still in them. Then he would have 4 feet to stick in his mouth when he speaks rather than just the two he usually gums.

    That hair of Governor Blagojevich looks like a helmet there is so much of it. Just think of all the hair products he must use. I wonder if you lit a match around him if his hair would explode?

    I saw where someone burned Sarah Palin's church in Wassila over the weekend. I wonder if the arsonist had a thing against the church or against Palin? Maybe the moose, polar bears, and wolves Sarah hunts from helicopters decided to strike back. Palin is all over that hunting from helicopter – moose, polar bears, wolves (especially wolves) , and even Democrats on a good day. If Joe Sixpack or Joe the plumber decide to visit Alaska and hear a helicopter while they are there, they might want to hide.....

    Annie Kate
    Birmingham aL

    December 15, 2008 at 11:46 am |
  38. Lorie Ann, Buellton, California

    Politics and the old duck, dodge and weave. Wow, who knew that fabulous footware could become flying, fits of rage..
    So the Queen has joined in on the joys of wearing the same outfit twice? I wonder if the recycling of wardrobe includes her oh so stylish shoes? Better dodge that thought! Happy Monday.

    Lorie Ann, Buellton, Calif.

    December 15, 2008 at 11:46 am |
  39. Betty Ann, Nacogdoches,TX

    Pamina~ I'm with you! I think Jack and Anderson would be a hoot and a holler to roll the new year in! Jack?

    December 15, 2008 at 11:44 am |
  40. Betty Ann, Nacogdoches,TX

    Morining Jack!
    Farewell "W". Don't let the shoes hit you in the back. You know what they say don't you? A shoe in the hand is worth 2 in the bush.
    I don't know what Gov. Blagovich has to hide, unless it's on his forehead. He and Mrs. Cruella could actually plead insane but i don't think they would make the mob proud with that one.
    You made me laugh with that Sarah Palin as the saucy new neighbor on Beverly Hill 90211 hahaha, but don't you think she would be a better neighbor to the Beverly Hillbillies? At least Ellie May could save all of God's creatures from being slaughtered.
    Was Joe Biden's dog adopted? rescued? Where are the role models when you need them? Status, status! Hell, I like German Shepherds but i never met a dog I didn't like, except that pitbull with lipstick. Speaking of, I hope she doesn't make the news this week. I would much rather hear about Ophrah's weight prolem.
    Finally, you know we are in economic times when the Queen of England wears the same outfit twice. Cake anyone? Well, long live the queen anyway.
    Thanks for the LOL today! AND in the spirit of Governor Blagovich, Happy #$*& Holidays!

    December 15, 2008 at 11:14 am |
  41. Stacy

    I have to admit, Bush dodged those shoes rather well. It may have taken eight years, but finally we find something he's good at.

    December 15, 2008 at 11:12 am |
  42. Heather,ca

    Morning Jack

    I thought Pres Bush handled the shoe thing with a lot of class. Especially when he held the head of his Secret Service detail back. In the end we will see this over and over again and this reporter looks bad not Pres Bush.

    I think SNL did a great job with Blago and wife. The only thing that makes Blago and wife different from your common thug criminal is his title.

    December 15, 2008 at 11:09 am |
  43. Pamina

    Hi Jack,
    Could you imagine how fast the Illinois Governor would resign if someone swapped his Rogane for Nair? Just a thought.
    Well, he should know that if this government thing doesn't work out, he could be a great spokesman for Just For Men.
    On an unrelated note, maybe you could tri-host Anderson's New Years "Laughin" Eve with Kathy Griffin and Anderson- how fun would that be!?!

    December 15, 2008 at 11:06 am |
  44. Brandi - bottom of the boot

    i was definitely impressed with President Bush's moves while dodging flying shoes. lol i believe i was most impressed with the smirk on his face that read something like, 'what the heck, did he really just do that???' i thought he handled the situation very well, with comedy, that is usually the best MO in those types of situations.

    now, what im really waiting for is AC's spin on the whole situation. lol boy, this is gonna be good. maybe even better than the whole starburst dilemma?! lol eh, maybe not, that was rather fun. i must say it was quite enjoyable avoiding the discussion of Gov. Blago, or any other news for that matter. it was kinda like recess, WOOHOO! and it is these rare times that are the reason i love AC360 so very much.

    i keep seeing that snippet over and over again, of Gov. Blago where people are walking into his house and he keeps looking back and forth for who is watching. the more i see it, the more im convinced he really is in the mob. and yes....that scares me. lol

    your post makes for a great Monday, Jack! thanks!

    December 15, 2008 at 11:05 am |
  45. pati mc., camp hill, pa

    Morning Jack,

    Ah yes, first we have Cruella De Blago...now that was funny, not to mention dead on.

    Not even sure what to say about the shoe chucking incident. There are so many obvious choices. Of course Bush dodged them rather well, but then, he has to be used to it by now, right? At least there seems to be something that he is good at.

    Hillary in Obama's chair. Oh, man. Certainly he can handle it.

    Have a good Monday Jack and thanks for the laughs.

    December 15, 2008 at 11:00 am |
  46. Jennifer - Michigan

    What a pleasure to see your post this morning. Happy Monday. I was doing some dreaded and much needed housework (mopping kitchen) ugh, when I saw your post up – thanks for the little comedy break.
    Man, I thought it was funny how Bush noticed the shoe about to be thrown, then his ducking so proficiently! His reflexes are very sharp. You can't make this stuff up, crazy! Interesting incident. Anyhow, hope you have a great day today.

    December 15, 2008 at 10:58 am |
  47. Michelle D. Fonthill,Ont

    Happy Monday Jack
    What kind of security do they have there? I guess there is none . That was a close call it happened so fast it was only a shoe it could have been a bomb or bullet wizzing past his head . Wow the queen wore the same outfit twice ? That's for sure a sighn the economy is so bad!
    Thanks for the post Jack ,Have a great day !
    P.S . come back on the webcast soon hopefully Anderson will let you on again ! Ha!

    December 15, 2008 at 10:48 am |
  48. Maria

    Happy Monday Jack,
    let’s talk about the 15 mins of fame for Al-Zaidi and his size 10 (or 44 shoes), remember it was pair. Saudi man offer $10 million to buy the shoes and he is planning to present them in museum as a symbol of freedom! Jack, whenever you visit the Arab world and plan to arrange press conference, make sure to request journalists to strip their shoes, otherwise you will be on the you tube. ..The incidence will be labeled “the freedom and democracy kiss”, I don’t know what Arab will strip next, Jack, I am kidding you deserve more than shoes kiss.
    Have a lovely one

    December 15, 2008 at 10:34 am |
  49. Bev, Ont. Canada

    I'm not a big fan of President Bush but I was disgusted when I saw that video. And the fact that the guy even got the chance to throw the second shoe is very scary. Where was security? What if it had been a knife that he threw, how about a bullet? I would never have dreamt that a sitting President could have been left so open to harm.

    December 15, 2008 at 10:29 am |
  50. Cindy

    The journo hurling his shoes at Bush was SO funny! My guess is the guy wanted to be like RedBull and give the pres wings to get on up outta there! LOL But hey...I guess throwing shoes is better than flinging water or spitting on him huh Jack?

    And it seems Bush has gotten agile in his old age! HMM..or maybe he's just been hunting too much with Cheney and has learned the fine art of dodging. Because you know sooner or later with Cheney's aim you'll always be hitting the floor.

    With the money that the Blago's "borrowed" from the Salvation Army this weekend lets hope that he goes and gets that hair cut. Maybe Coop can introduce him to his barber. Shoot..being half scalped like Cooper would be better than looking like he does now! LOL

    Now come on Jack...you know Biden doesn't wear plugs! The man just has that kind of hair! You know...that kind that looks like it came from the back end of a horse! LOL But hey...give the man some credit. At least he doesn't have a sports car and isn't trying to act 30 again...yet! That'll come once he gets in office and starts getting the big head I'm sure! HMM..but with a bigger head he'll need more plugs right!? LOL


    December 15, 2008 at 10:28 am |
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