Documentary: Obama didn’t mean to attack Paul Ryan’s budget with him seated in front row

Matt K. Lewis Senior Contributor
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Remember when President Obama invited Paul Ryan to sit in the front row of a speech about deficit reduction — only to attack his budget proposal from the podium?

According to a new PBS FRONTLINE documentary airing Tuesday, it was all a mistake.

“In their haste to put the event together,” a narrator says, “the White House staff made a crucial error” by issuing Ryan a pro forma invitation.

“When I came into the speech, when I saw him in the room, I thought ‘oh my God,” remembers then-White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley.

“Obama with the lights in his eyes they say, ‘Unable to see who’s directly in front of him,’ just launches into a blistering condemnation of the Republican budget and how this is a small and painful vision of a country’s shrinking,” the Washington Post’s Lori Montgomery says.

Watch the clip here:

Matt K. Lewis