Opinions, Context & Ideas from the TPM Editors TPM Editor's Blog

That Press Conference Went Well

Y5a8ao4au6upvho1fzpa

Presumably the climate of fun for all came to a rather screeching halt with Ibarra's invocation of the N-word.

Ibarra first denied making the statement, which seems kind of hard since he apparently said it at a news conference. He then apologized and said he "was making a reference to what Republicans say."

Things got even better when event organizers explained that Ibarra wasn't expected to speak and was actually brought in as windows dressing for the event. From the Journal Sentinel ...

the news conference Wednesday in Waukesha, conservative business leaders expressed a desire for Republican legislators to work with Obama to develop immigration reform. They denounced Ibarra's remark about the president, saying they were unaware of the businessman's views and hadn't expected him to speak in the first place.

"Orville (Seymer, of the conservative group Citizens for Responsible Government) asked him to help assist us by being part of the backdrop for the visual," said George Klaetsch, a member of the Partnership for a New Economy, an immigration reform group founded by former New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg.

Klaetsch and Seymer, who both spoke at the news conference, had appeared nervous when Ibarra approached the microphone.

"The first four minutes of his speech were genuine, but his comments at the end were unplanned and unnecessary," Klaetsch said after the news conference.