Doug Ross links to Skipping Arlington to spend Memorial Day with Farrakhan; Pamela broke the story:
Jackie Calmes, a New York Times reporter who covers the White House, was in Chicago covering the President’s visit there this weekend. On Saturday night, she was one of the reporters who was assigned to theWhite House pool of reporters covering the President on his evening out having dinner at what appears to be, according to the Chicago reporters on site, the home of Louis Farrakhan. The official line is that it was the home of Marty Nesbitt (treasurer of OFA — Organizing for America), but the house is “is tax exempt for being a religious institution.” The press pool van was parked nearby. Here is what Jackie Calmes reported on behalf of the press pool:
Sent: Sat May 29 21:08:47 2010
Subject: Pool Report 5
At 7:20 local time the pool was holding at Woodlawn and 49th, next to a large sandstone mansion that the Chicago reporters say is the home of one Louis Farrakhan. Our Secret Service agent allowed us off the bus (Air!) and as a dozen of us congregated on the sidewalk, inevitably some shoes touched grass. Immediately a polite man in jeans and Tshirt emerged to ask us to stay off the grass. Though this grass was the curbside city property, we obliged.
Soon, however, he was pacing and talking on a cell phone. He went inside the mansion’s black wrought iron fence, crossed the well-landscaped yard, lifted a water bucket behind rose bushes and, voila!, a walkie-talkie. He was heard to refer to “the CIA” once he began speaking into it.
Soon he approached our agent, asking him to move the van and its occupants, though your pooler could not hear much else he said. But the agent said, “How is this a security breach?” And he asked if the house was a government property. The man said something else and at that point the agent stuck out his hand to shake hands and introduced himself as a Secret Service agent. He added, “Sir, I can assure you that we will do nothing to interfere with whatever is going on in there.”
The man is back to pacing and talking on his cell, walkie-talkie in hand.
A co-pooler searched the Internet for the address and found it listed on a Web site called NotForTourists and another called Taxexemptworld.com.
Indeed, another pooler found a county Web site that confirmed this property is tax exempt for being a religious institution.
Reinforcements arrived–three men in Tshirts reading “Wide or Die!” One surly man has been staring daggers at us. Asked if this is Minister Farrakhan’s house, he just stared at your pooler. Asked again, he said, “I don’t have no comment.”
You should have the WH statement on top kill’s failure. At nearly 8 pm local time we are still holding while POTUS and family remain at the Nesbitts.
Sent: Sat May 29 22:07:24 2010
Subject: Pool Report 5a
It’s 8:45 and nearly dark; your pool has retreated back inside the van. We’re outnumbered now by roughly a dozen Fruit of Islam agents for the Nation of Islam. As each casually dressed man arrives, he exchanges elaborate handshake/hug/double air-kisses with others. Two walked by your pooler chanting “Islam.”
Several have filmed and photographed your poolers, the van and its license plates with their cell phones.
One came and stood close to a couple poolers and OUR agent. He asked if he could help. No answer. He asked again. The man said no. The agent said, “Secret Service — Please move away from this group of people.”
Soon the agent asked us to go in the bus.
But several poolers, hearing the call of nature, are asking whether they might ask the Fruit about using their bathroom.
Still holding. No pun intended.
Michelle Obama’s Mirror’s Blog says, “He’s Just a Guy in the Neighborhood”,
Oh dear! It seems our friendly little neighborhood BBQ last night at, reportedly, the house of an “old friend” was inadvertently held at a home owned by none-other than race baiter, Jew-hater Louis Farrakhan. And even though he’s just “a guy in the neighborhood,” the suddenly not-so-supportive press is probably going to try to make a big deal out of it anyway. At least we still have AP on our side. But it seems like almost everyone else is bailing on us: our “conservative” cheerleader, Peggy Noonan – even the Wapo!
Having fun yet?
Not at Farrakhan’s but across the street:
Farrakhan, press have minor ’stand-off’ in Obama’s neighborhood
For the past two years, when Obama has brought his family over to Nesbitt’s home, the press pool bus parks near Farrakhan’s house. This usually does not cause a problem, but Saturday night — as most of the city was indoors watching the Chicago Blackhawks beat the Philadelphia Flyers in the Stanley Cup finals — a bit of tension emerged on Woodlawn Avenue.
A pool report noted that as a dozen reporters and photographers following Obama stood on the sidewalk in front of Farrakhan’s home, someone’s foot touched the city-owned curbside grass.
Immediately, a polite man in jeans and T-Shirt emerged to ask the press to stay off the grass, the report stated. Soon he was pacing and talking on a cell phone. He went inside the mansion’s black wrought iron fence, crossed the well-landscaped yard, lifted a water bucket behind rose bushes and retrieved a walkie-talkie. He was heard to refer to “the CIA.”
[The Secret Service is a separate agency from the CIA]
Soon he approached the secret service agent minding the press and asked him to move the van and its occupants.
“How is this a security breach?” the agent asked. He asked if the house was government property. Neighbors all over Hyde Park and Kenwood have learned to deal with streets being blocked off and having to show ID to approach their own homes since Obama ascended to the presidency.
The man said something else and at that point the agent stuck out his hand to shake hands and introduced himself as a Secret Service agent. He added, “Sir, I can assure you that we will do nothing to interfere with whatever is going on in there.”
The man paced and talked on his cell phone, walkie-talkie in hand. Three more men in T-Shirts reading “Wide or Die!’’ joined the man from the Nation of Islam. A reporter asked one of the men if this was Farrakhan’s house. The man just stared back. Asked again, he said, “I don’t have no comment.”
Eventually a dozen “Fruit of Islam” agents arrived. As each casually dressed man arrived, he exchanged elaborate handshake/hug/double air-kisses with others. Two walked by a reporter, chanting “Islam.”
The men filmed and photographed the reporters, the van and its license plates with their cell phones.
One came and stood close to reporters and the secret service agent. The secret service agent asked if he could help. The man did not answer. The agent asked again. The man said, “No.” The agent said, “Secret Service — please move away from this group of people.”
The man did.
The agent asked the reporters to go back into the press bus, which they did.
Before they did, some asked the Nation of Islam crowd if they could use the rest room in Farrakahn’s home.
No offer was made.
Rev. Gary Hunter, a Baptist minister in Detroit who writes and blogs for the Detroit Times, told reporter Jackie Calmes of the New York Times that he called Farrakhan and his son and asked them to have the Fruit stand down: “I told him you were good people . . . He said he didn’t know you all were just waiting for the president.’’
And now, a different take from Moe.