WaPo Labels White House Mea Culpa Over Air Force One Flyover as 'Profuse Apology'

A terse one-paragraph mea culpa by a White House staffer now qualifies as a "profuse apology" at least when it's the Obama White House, and the paper reporting the story is the Washington Post.

That's how the paper's Tomoeh Murakami Tse and Michael D. Shear characterized an apology by White House Military Office director Louis Caldera for Monday's low altitude flyover photo-op of New York Harbor. Here's same 54-word apology in its entirety:

Last week, I approved a mission over New York. I take responsibility for that decision. While federal authorities took the proper steps to notify state and local authorities in New York and New Jersey, it’s clear that the mission created confusion and disruption. I apologize and take responsibility for any distress that flight caused.

Tse and Shear excerpted that apology in the 10th of their 16-paragraph story, "Aerial Photo Op Recalls 9/11 for Some," which ran on page A2 of the April 28 paper. The duo also noted that President Obama "has told aides he was furious over the handling of the matter" but that their source was "a person familiar with the matter, who was not authorized to speak publicly."

But wouldn't a profusely apologetic White House want to go on record at length about this, rather than expect a short statement from a mid-level staffer be the final word?

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is a writer living in New Carrollton, Md.