Rove couldn't get the Germans to sign a loyalty oath for the town hall meeting
This is rich. If you can’t script it, just cancel it. And guess what? There are no U.S. stories on this up yet. I guess the transmitter hookup used at the debates doesn’t work overseas. With a Hush and a Whisper, Bush Drops Town Hall Meeting with Germans (Der Speigel).
The much-touted American-style “town hall” meeting the White House has been planning with “normal Germans” of everyday walks of life will be missing during his visit to the Rhine River hamlet of Mainz this afternoon. A few weeks ago, the Bush administration had declared that the chat — which could have brought together tradesmen, butchers, bank employees, students and all other types to discuss trans-Atlantic relations — would be the cornerstone of President George W. Bush’s brief trip to Germany.
…But on Wednesday, that town hall meeting will be nowhere on the agenda — it’s been cancelled. Neither the White House nor the German Foreign Ministry has offered any official explanation, but Foreign Ministry sources say the town hall meeting has been nixed for scheduling reasons — a typical development for a visit like this with many ideas but very little time. That, at least, is the diplomats’ line. Behind the scenes, there appears to be another explanation: the White House got cold feet. Bush’s strategists felt an uncontrolled encounter with the German public would be too unpredictable.
…The Germans, though, insisted that a free forum should be exactly that. Wolfgang Ischinger, Germany’s Ambassador to the United States, explained to the New York Times last week: “We told them, don’t get upset with us if they ask angry questions.”
Cool: There’s a DKos diary up on this.