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He talked about his appearance and the size of his ears.. Obama in the White House distributes jokes and his wife gives a political speech

Former US President Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, lifted the curtain at the White House today, Wednesday, from their official portraits, and the former president was very jovial while the former first lady was very serious in reviving the tradition of political courtesy that only former President Donald Trump deviated from.

With the words “Welcome back!” In which incumbent President Joe Biden greeted Obama and his wife, delaying an entire presidential term, he revived a tradition that all American presidents honor their ancestors with their wives at the Presidential Residence, the 1,600th building on Pennsylvania Avenue.

The president and his wife, Jill Biden, recalled at length the eight years he was Vice President under Barack Obama, noting their friendship. “We used to count on you, and I still count on you,” he said.

“He couldn’t have done it without you,” Michel told Obama, emphasizing the bonds that developed between the two families.

“You were by my side when my son was dying,” the 79-year-old Democratic president told Obama. Obama gave a eulogy at the funeral of Beau Biden, who died after a struggle with cancer. Commenting on that, President Biden said, “You will never realize how much that meant to me and a generation.”

Then the couple lifted the curtain on the two paintings that will be hung on the walls of the White House, which were drawn based on photographs.

In the painting by Robert McCurdy, Barack Obama appears standing with his hands in the pockets of a dark suit, and his smile is light, painted in a very realistic way on a white background.

Michelle Obama’s painting by Sharon Sprang shows the former first lady sitting on a sofa in the “Red Room” of the White House, wearing a light blue evening dress.

A place for everyone

As for Barack Obama, who is known for his rhetorical fluency, he made a number of jokes about his time in the White House and about the painting that represents him, noting, for example, that the artist did not hide his white hair and did not reduce the size of his ears.

Obama also praised his former vice president (President Biden), describing him as a “true friend.”

“Joe, America is very fortunate to have you become president,” he said to applause from the audience, including a number of personalities who collaborated with him during his tenure.

On the other hand, Michelle Obama’s speech carried much more political connotations than her husband’s, as it emphasized the symbolism of these two paintings, as they represent the first black president of the United States and the first African American “first lady.”

“The little girl I was, she wasn’t supposed to live in this house,” she said, or her painting would hang next to a Jacqueline Kennedy. “What we’re seeing… is a reminder that there is a place for everyone in this country,” she added.

And if the goal of the tradition of unveiling the panels of former presidents, which has been followed for decades, was to emphasize the importance of the rotation of power in the American system, away from partisan divisions, this alignment is deepening today more and more in the United States.

And former President Donald Trump ignored a number of protocol traditions of this kind, and attacked Barack Obama more than once, not wanting to receive him to lift the curtain on his painting.

On the other hand, the Biden administration has not yet announced any intention to receive the former Republican president in the White House for the same purpose.

Source: Aljazeera



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