- The Washington Times - Friday, March 20, 2009

WASHINGTON (AP) - The White House says President Barack Obama realizes his talk show quip about the Special Olympics was a “thoughtless joke” and the group’s athletes deserve better.

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs on Friday dealt with the fallout from Obama’s appearance on Jay Leno’s “Tonight Show.” In his bantering with the host, the president equated his bowling skills with the Special Olympics. Recognizing his blunder, Obama apologized to the chairman of the Special Olympics before the show aired.

Gibbs said the president believes that the Special Olympics are “a triumph of the human spirit.” Gibbs added that Obama “understands that they deserve a lot better than the thoughtless joke that he made last night.”

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