During his tenure as President of the United States, Barack Obama has squared off against some of the world’s most formidable leaders, not to mention his own nation’s toughest critics. But one imagines he seldom has the opportunity to abandon diplomacy and fire back at them as strongly as he gets to in a new video with Zach Galifianakis for Funny Or Die.
Filming a segment for Galifianakis’ popular “Between Two Ferns” series, Obama fielded questions from the comedian and actor before promoting the Affordable Care Act.
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Although Galifianakis was in fine form with a typically awkward, not-so-vaguely insulting interview, Obama gave as well as he got, first drawing blood when he incredulously admitted he was shocked to discover that the host had a following at all.
“I have to say, when I heard that people actually watch this show, I was pretty surprised.”
Galifianakis started the segment with a question about last year’s pardoned Thanksgiving turkey, which gave the President an opportunity to make a jab about his weight. “Was that depressing to you?” Obama asked. “Seeing one turkey taken out of circulation, a turkey you couldn’t eat?”
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After asking Obama what it’s like to be “the last black President,” Galifianakis observes that it must “stink” to not be able to run for a third term. Obama replied, “I actually think it’s a good idea. If I ran a third time it would be sort of like doing a third Hangover movie – it didn’t really work out very well, did it?”
After the two men sparred over Galifianakis’ contributions to the Hangover movies – “Bradley Cooper really carried them, didn’t he?” jabbed Obama – the President offered an overview of the accomplishments of the Affordable Care Act, and the access it affords people to healthcare. Galifianakis mostly listened, although he offered a clever riposte to the length of Obama’s statement.
“Is this what they mean by drones?” Galifianakis said.
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As the interview came to an end, Obama invoked Executive Privilege, so to speak, and pressed the red button Galifianakis occasionally uses to interrupt or end his chats with celebrities. As a result, the black curtain behind the two men came down, revealing that they were actually sitting in the White House Diplomatic Room. When Galifianakis thanked his guest for letting him shoot his show there “for all of these years,” Obama was fairly outraged that the comedian had scored the necessary security clearance.
“Who gave you permission to do that?” Obama asked.
“Bush,” Galifianakis sheepishly replied.
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