President Obama’s Leather Jacket Has New-Car Smell

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Photo: Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images

One might be inclined to dismiss the stiff, gleaming newness of the leather jacket President Obama wore to greet the troops in Afghanistan today as a sign that his awkward "Tough Guy" stance was a hastily conceived distraction from this morning's lousy jobs report. But before anyone goes there, we would like to point out a few things. First, of course this was a public-relations strategy! They clearly handed Obama the jacket-prop a few minutes before he exited Air Force One. How can we make 9.8 percent look better? I know, get pictures of him mingling with the one sector of the economy not suffering from unemployment! It's true that the sight of the pristine leather immediately calls to mind Obama's predecessor and Dubya's superiority in the rough-and-tumble department. But in Obama's defense, he does seem to devote a significant amount of his time to governance, not necessarily good governance, but at least the day-to-day tasks. We're sure it's a lot easier to break in a bomber jacket when you spend half your presidency clearing brush in Crawford.