Aimee Patton

A pleasantly eccentric take on politics



I’ll admit, I didn’t even know who you were until a few days ago.  Now you are all over the news as the GOP Communications Director for Rep. Stephen Fincher, who resigned over a Facebook post criticizing Sasha and Malia and their appearance when their dad pardoned the White House turkey.


Now we all have bad days on social media.  I recently had one when I posted a picture of my 24 lb Thanksgiving turkey on Facebook with the caption: “A Patton record – 24 lb turkey Biggie T is in the oven” and I received only 22 likes.  Only 22 likes!  Biggie T!  I thought that was hilarious!  Only 22 of my 200+ Facebook friends could find it within themselves to take a micro-second to click the like button on that Thanksgiving gem of a joke.


Turns out, my Facebook fail is nothing compared to your Facebook fail:


“Dear Sasha and Malia, I get you’re both in those awful teen years, but you’re a part of the First Family, try showing a little class. At least respect the part you play. Then again your mother and father don’t respect their positions very much, or the nation for that matter, so I’m guessing you’re coming up a little short in the ‘good role model’ department.”

It continued, “Nevertheless, stretch yourself. Rise to the occasion. Act like being in the White House matters to you. Dress like you deserve respect, not a spot at a bar. And certainly don’t make faces during televised public events.”

Yes, I noticed the eye roll.  Here’s the deal – at 13 and 16, I rolled my eyes bigger and for much less when it came to embarrassing things my parents made me do than a bird pardon in front of millions of people.  I applauded the girls for being able restrain themselves with JUST an eye roll and not add the snarled lip and a big sigh when their dad pardoned a TURKEY.  I would have added all three.  I don’t care what color the President is – white, black, red, purple, green – it’s a stupid tradition.  It deserves an eye roll, arms crossed and a big sigh FROM THE NATION.
It looks like the only person with time to hang out in a sport bar is you since you have resigned over your post even though you issued this apology.
 “reacted to an article and…quickly judged the two young ladies in a way that [she] would never have wanted to be judged…as a teenager.” Lauten claimed that after “many hours of prayer” and speaking with her parents she saw that her words were “hurtful” and apologized to anyone she had “hurt and offended.”

The one thing that struck me about this apology is that it took you “many hours of prayer”.  MANY hours?  Can I ask what took you so long?  Here’s how I think it should have gone.  “Dear God.   I said some nasty stuff about two innocent girls.  I probably shouldn’t have done that and I feel bad.”  God replies, “No you shouldn’t have done that.  It’s not very Christian of you.”  The end.  The only thing I’m thinking is you dialed up the man upstairs and he said, “hold on a second I’m dealing with Ebola, ISIS, hunger, poverty, cancer, Ferguson protests, the Middle East conflict and various other life and death situations.  I’ll be with you in a minute.”  That minute took an hour and forty-five minutes and then you launched into the dialog stated above.
I’ve kept up on all the outrage on Twitter.  I will say in your defense that I don’t think your rant was racist.  It was a lot of things – dumb, thoughtless, partisan, hateful and silly, but I honestly for what it’s worth I don’t think it was racist.
I will also say that it worries me when social media outcry forces people to resign.  I’m a snarky, political blog writer, and I worry if I will experience that same backlash over what I tweet and write about. I am NOT, however, a communications director or working in the public sector.  I think when you are either of those things, you should hold yourself up to a higher standard.  Now that doesn’t mean I can say whatever I want without any consequences.  I am fully aware that there is a line we all walk and it’s easy to cross.  I am mindful of it so I hope never to experience the same type of outcry that you experienced.  Although in this day and age, no one is immune.  If you choose to put yourself out there, anyone can be a target.
I suggest your next career be in something other than politics.
All the best for not criticizing teens or turkeys,

9 thoughts on “A Presidential Turkey Gets Pardoned and a GOP Turkey Resigns #ElizabethLauten

  1. sallybr says:

    OH, yeah…. I was hoping you would write about this “episode” and so glad you did….

    the “many hours of prayer” was the icing on the cake. I already ask for forgiveness for offending cakes with my comment.

  2. Jean Runge says:

    I too was bothered by the “many hours of prayer.” Maybe it took that long for God to get through to her that picking on children, even if they are teens is beyond the pale. Maybe she started with her Christmas list and finally got around to the O girls last. Love your “columns.”

  3. lindiana55 says:

    I thought they were dressed very nicely for a poultry pardon. In my family the girls only dressed up for pardoning mammals with pedigrees.

  4. Sherrie says:

    She is now free to apply for the job at a turkey farm to demonstrate “appropriate ” teenage turkey pardon attire.

  5. David Murphy says:

    So much attention about this! And yet nothing in the mainstream press on this:

    What gives?

    As if I don’t already know!

    Cheers all,
    David M.

    1. Aimee Patton says:

      These two are not related. One is a donor and the other is a GOP staffer. Sorry Charlie – you don’t get a point. What she did was wrong and no number of Democrats behaving badly should cancel this out.

  6. David Murphy says:

    There’s certainly no connection between the stories. She was obviously wrong in what she did.. my point was.. you just don’t hear about certain stories and others like this one are front and center…. a salient point, no!? Discuss.

    1. Aimee Patton says:

      Nope – not going to give this to you. There are literally hundreds of stories about people behaving badly. There isn’t enough time in the news cycle to cover every dirtbag that behaves like a turd.

      1. David Murphy says:

        I wasn’t knocking your take on it.

        All I’m saying is it’s interesting to watch how stories are covered by the various outlets.

        The freak from my earlier link doesn’t show up on NPR’s site when I sought him out.

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