a horsefly rubbing
hands and feet
Recently, we read the following:
Washington Post: “IOC member said Obama's absence would be 'noted' “ by Nancy Armour (AP)
“Obama's absence at next month's vote to award the 2016 Games would be noticed, IOC member Dick Pound said Monday. But he's not sure how it would affect Chicago's chances to bring the Summer Olympics back to the United States for the first time since 1996.
" ‘I don't think there's an IOC member on the planet that wouldn't love to meet your president. He's a transformational figure in the world today,’ Pound said at a symposium on the 2016 Games sponsored by DePaul and the McCormick Foundation. ‘If he can be persuaded to go, I think it makes a huge difference.’
“ ‘Chicago is in a tight contest with Rio de Janeiro, Madrid and Tokyo, and the presence of world leaders has been instrumental in the most recent votes. Tony Blair helped London land the 2012 Games when he met IOC members in Singapore in 2005, and Vladimir Putin traveled to Guatemala City in 2007 to push Sochi's winning bid for the 2014 Winter Games.
“Obama has been an ardent supporter of his adopted hometown's bid for the Olympics, videotaping four messages for IOC members in recent months. But he called IOC president Jacques Rogge - personally - last week to say his priority right now must be the fight to reform the health care system…”
And we thought:
…Tough decision: If President Obama does go to Copenhagen to pitch for Chicago, and Chicago gets the IOC’s nod to host the 2016 Olympics, it would certainly be a great stimulus package for Chicago and the rest of the Midwest.
But if Chicago loses its bid, the president’s detractors would have a field day, criticizing him for wasting his time on a "frivolous pursuit" – in the face of critical issues pre-occupying the American people. And he really can’t be sure anyway about his presence in Copenhagen making a difference.
We think – Pass. It’s not going to be a slam dunk. Besides, it really looks like it’s too soon for the U.S. to host the Olympics again…
Postscript: On October 2, 2009, Rio de Janeiro got the IOC's nod to host the 2016 Summer Olympic Games.