White House'Beer Summit' falls flat

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Washington, Aug.1 (ANI): For all practical purposes, the so-called "Beer Summit" held at the White House on Thursday between President Barack Obama, black Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Cambridge, Massachusetts police sergeant James Crowley, has fallen flat in the public and the media's imagination.

Initially, news outlets were tipsy with coverage of the "Beer Summit." MSNBC went with a countdown clock to the big event showing three mugs, while CNN opted for two clinking mugs on its own countdown clock.

The network had five cameras broadcasting live from the White House, used Google Earth maps to show the placement of the picnic table in the Rose Garden, and provided polling on beer drinkers' views of Obama. News stories crossed the wires with headlines such as "OBAMA-BUDLIGHT-UPDATE3."

But the big moment turned flat: The three had no agenda and no comment as they sat in the Rose Garden, inviting the cameras to shoot the scene for a few seconds from 50 feet.

The result: shaky images showing the trio, joined by Vice President Biden, around a table with a mug in front of each. The formally attired White House waiter crossing the lawn with a mug of beer on a platter ruined any hope of projecting a casual image of some guys downing a few cold ones.

The only words audible were those of White House aides shooing cameras away with "keep moving."

In the end, the sudsy summit produced little more than the peanuts the men were served-and the puns.

The Washington Post's Chris Cillizza solicited suggestions for a name. The results: "Yes, Three Cans." "Minage ' Stella Artois." "Beerastroika." "A Thousand Points of Bud Light." And "The Audacity of Hops."

The three men declared in advance which beer they favored for cooling racial tensions.

Crowley wanted a Blue Moon, Gates ordered a Red Stripe, and the president, through his spokesman, requested a Bud but then switched to a Bud Light. Bad choices all around, it turns out:

A Belgian conglomerate made the president's beer of choice, while the professor's beer was from a British corporation. American brewers protested.

Had they been a bit more creative, the summiteers could have used their time in the White House beer garden to promote some small American brews. (ANI)

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