Obama’s Queen Toast Royally Fails (Video)
President Obama’s relationship with the Queen of England is like a really long bad date.
The Obamas are once again in merry old England, where the first couple two years ago made a series of gaffes, including when Obama gave the Queen an iPod as his official offering, and Mrs. Obama had the audacity to reach out and touch her majesty. This trip has been equally harrowing: While Obama corrected his past gift mistake by bringing Elizabeth II an album commemorating her parents’ Stateside visit in 1939, which is sweet, and managed to get through a meeting with Prince William and his blushing Duchess unscathed, the President made a major goof when he signed Westminster Abbey’s guest registry “24 May, 2008,” as if he had traveled through a time warp. He then found himself drowned out during a post-speech toast to the Queen.
Apparently Obama didn’t know — he does now! — that the Buckingham Palace band traditionally plays ‘God Save the Queen’ before someone gives a toast. He therefore found himself drowned out as he quoted Shakespeare in her majesty’s honor, and had to stand around looking foolish until the rest of the room was released from its pomp and circumstance.
The queen looks decidedly unimpressed in this video, and is most surely thinking, “Boorish American! How dare he disgrace her majesty’s honor!” Because she speaks in third person.
If you think she looks upset with Obama’s toast mistake, one can only imagine what she thought when his speech made reference to her age: “This dinner is a humbling reminder of the fleeting nature of presidencies and prime ministerships; your majesty’s reign has spanned about a dozen of each.”
There was probably a lot of royal cursing under that crown.
President Obama was delivering a toast (no teleprompter so he had to use que cards) to the Queen and the band misunderstood a pause for the president being finished speaking. The band began playing God Save the Queen — you know, England’s National Anthem — and Obama kept toasting during the song. I’m not completely up to speed on protocol, but judging from the Queen’s behavior I think that’s a total no-no.
Obama's guest book gaffe and toast trouble
By Mimi Hall, USA TODAY
The president persevered, finishing his toast and calling on the crowd to raise their glasses by raising his own. That's when the queen either gave him a look or said something under her breath, and Obama put his glass down, bowed his head and placed his hand over his heart for the remainder of the song.
Who knows why? On that day three years ago, he was stumping in Puerto Rico. Maybe he was pining for his days on the campaign trail.