Washington – In what is assumed to be a miscommunication in the relaying of the day’s talking points, several prominent Republicans each condemned what they referred to as “hairless spending” proposed by President Obama. Members from both houses of Congress made public appearances and gave television interviews in which they used the term.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell appeared in front of reporters at the Capitol this morning, and said, “The problem with this budget, as I see it, is that it reveals a love of spending on the part of this president. Not just a love for spending, but a love of unnecessary spending, hairless spending.” Reporters asked what Mr. McConnell meant by “hairless spending,” and he said, “I mean just what I said. This president has shown that he loves spending. He loves unnecessary spending, and he loves hairless spending. I don’t really see how I could be more clear about it.”
Several hours later, House Minority Leader John Boehner appeared on the CBS Evening News, and in an interview with host Katie Couric, repeated the phrase. “Well, Republicans, Katie, are just not big fans of this much spending,” Mr. Boehner said. “But this president seems to be in love with spending. With unnecessary spending, with hairless spending. And that’s just not what we need right now.”
Ms. Couric appeared confused, and asked if perhaps the minority leader meant “careless spending.” “No, Katie,” Mr. Boehner replied with a smile, “you’re not going to put words in my mouth. I said what I said because I meant it. This spending is hairless, Katie. Hairless and unnecessary.”
Michael Steel, a spokesman for Mr. Boehner, later acknowledged that there had, in fact, been a miscommunication, but that it was on the part of anyone who thought Mr. Boehner had said “hairless spending” when referring to Mr. Obama’s proposed budget. “Obviously Leader Boehner was not speaking about spending that has no hair on it,” Mr. Steel said. “He was misunderstood, and clearly said ‘careless spending’ when referring to the bloated budget proposed by President Obama. Perhaps people who heard ‘hairless spending’ need to get their ears cleaned. I’m sure there’s some money in the Obama budget for that.”