Everyone is flipping out over a photo of what looks like President Barack Obama pulling a cigarette out of a pack. In the photo, Obama is standing on a balcony talking to Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi during the ongoing G7 conference. The photo was posted to Instagram by Renzi’s spokesman, Filippo Sensi, according to Euro News.
After the photo became a headline, an aide to the president “insisted” that he doesn’t smoke. Yeah, we’re not buying it. Obama and his people can’t seem to keep straight exactly when the President quit smoking. From Breitbart:
Obama officially declared that he quit smoking after he was elected president. “I haven’t had a cigarette in probably six years,” he said via a hot-mic overseas in 2013. That’s because I’m scared of my wife.” That didn’t quite fit First Lady Michelle Obama’s understanding of Obama’s habit. In 2011, she told the Washington post that Obama hadn’t picked up a cigarette in “almost a year.” “It’s been a while and I’m very proud of him,” she said at the time. In 2010, then White House press secretary Robert Gibbs insisted that Obama had quit. “I’ve not seen or witnessed evidence of any smoking in probably nine months,” Gibbs told reporters.
So when exactly did he quit? It seems like he and his wife aren’t even sure. Obama should know by now he can’t make everyone happy, and this late into his second term, we all assume he probably puts his feet on his desk and lights up at the end of a hard day. The Instagram of Obama secretly taking a smoke break with the Italian prime minister is all too much like that episode of Veep. You know, the one when Julia Louis-Dreyfus goes outside to sneakily smoke with the Prime Minister of Finland’s husband, and he very awkwardly grabs her breast.
Last year, Louis-Dreyfus got flack for smoking an e-cigarette on TV during the Golden Globe awards. Seriously, four Senate Democrats sent a letter to NBC basically telling them to cut it out. But now that Democrats are the minority party in the Senate, Obama probably doesn’t have to worry about what they will do to him if they catch him with a cigarette in his hand.