This Week In Pool Reports

POTUS looks a bit shaky on his feet, FLOTUS is hitting 60, Karl Rove has taken to offering candy to poolers (ok, it was the day before Halloween) and who knew he loved the color green?

  • “On a crisp, sunny morning, the president’s first step down the stairs of Marine One at Andrews Air Force Base was shaky, but he quickly grabbed the handrail and righted himself. Still, that split second was enough time for one White House reporter to let loose a delighted ‘Aha!’ (try to figure out who). Bush‘s second step, though, was confident, bold, fully presidential — a step that said he would not quit those stairs until the job of walking down them was done. And, no Defeatocrat, he did not.” — Joseph Curl, Washington Times

  • “Karl Rove in his bright green tie boarded AF One. So did POTUS, tieless from the open-shirt rally.” — Mark Silva, Chicago Tribune

  • “Karl Rove (still wearing the green tie) came back at about 7:21 p.m. EST to note, for the record, ‘There IS a senate race in Nevada-Jack Carter,’ versus Ensign. AP had a color-coded (shades of red and blue) Roll Call map of election 2004 results which Rove proceeded to unfold, pointing out Elko, Nev. and other deep red areas, before he retreated without taking questions.” — Molly Hennessy-Fiske, Los Angeles Times

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  • “First lady Laura Bush, resplendent in a stylish gray pantsuit (despite the fact that this weekend she will celebrate the 21st anniversary of her 39th birthday), followed, then split off from her husband as he strode stridingly across the tarmac. The president made goo-goo eyes at one TV reporter (a favorite target) as he pretended to straighten an askew, make-believe pocket hanky (mocking the reporter’s gold-colored flourish). Frivolity ensued. Up, wave, in. Political genius Karl Rove followed up the stairs, and the reporter called out to him. Rove, perhaps testing the ’08 waters, turned and, with a broad smile, gave his own version of a presidential wave. It needs work.” — Curl

  • “On the plane and off. En route, Karl Rove appeared in the press cabin, brandishing a round tin filled with chocolate-covered pecans. Those who daintily took just one were admonished by the bearer to ‘take more, take more.’ He made a quick round of the cabin and paused on his way back out to declare, ‘Sweets for my sweets.'” — Julie Mason, Houston Chronicle

  • “President worked rope line across street from the Inn in Statesboro for a few minutes. Had better luck with a cute tyke here than at the rally, where you may have seen a little boy, handed to him, start bawling. This one folded into his hug a bit better and earned a big coo from the few score folks cramming in for a handshake or close-up photo. Nothing from the president. Shouts of four more years and ‘We think you’re the greatest’ from the crowd.” — Todd Gillman, Dallas Morning News

  • “One other note: As the pool entered the event, Sean Hannity was trailing us and the shrieks from the crowd gathered near the entrance were full rock-star worthy.” — Stephen Dinan, Washington Times

  • In front of the High School there were counter demos, one for Sodrel, the other for Hill, with signs that said ‘NO MORE BUSH TOADIES’ But inside the school gymnasium it is full-on Bush country, with ‘W’ signs, ‘We HEART LAURA’ signs, and red white and blue pom poms — a real political rally the likes of which we’ve yet to really see this campaign season on the road with the president. As I complete this pool report the crowd is changing ‘We Love Bush’ and ‘USA.’ Transcript to come, but it will not capture the actually deafening cheers of the crowd when Potus (no jacket, open collar, rolled up sleeeves, thick leather belt with western etching) walked out to the lectern.” — Jim Rutenberg, New York Times