White House Gives More Free Publicity to Joey Bada$$

obama malia

(Credit: Larry Downing/Reuters)

“Children are great imitators. So give them something great to imitate.” ~Anonymous

You would think that Malia Obama would have something great to imitate. Daddy is the president of the United States after all. Sure, he wears mom jeans, but the guy has some swag.

Perhaps that’s why the latest kerfuffle in the White House involves Obama’s 16-year-old daughter and a (relatively) unknown indie rap artist named Joey Bada$$.

It’s the leak heard ’round the world.

According to a report by FOX News, the White House is investigating a mysterious picture of Malia Obama that landed on the Internet, specifically on the website of said Mr. A$$. But it’s just a selfie!


It’s the shirt that connected her to the rapper, who is the lead muckety-muck of the Brooklyn consortium Pro Era.

The photo appears to be 16-year-old Malia Obama sporting a white shirt with the logo of Pro Era in green, red and black lettering. A representative for rapper Joey Bada$$ told Gawker that the New York-based rap collective received the photo from a “mutual friend.”


The authenticity of the photo has yet to be verified. Meanwhile, FOX News points to a 2013 interview with Barbara Walters in which First lady Michelle Obama said that both of the first daughters have strict limits on their social media use…which explains the high alarm at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

Free publicity for Pro Era? A little love from the White House? The International Business Times has a note:

Though the image has not yet been confirmed to be of Malia Obama, Pro Era has nonetheless taken advantage of the the free publicity. The rap collective tweeted the photo with a link to its Web shop, where merchandise featuring the logo in the image can be purchased. The white T-shirt in question did not appear to be on sale Tuesday morning, though earlier reports indicate it had been on sale for $40.

We’d be shocked if this is anything more than the common practice of young people sharing pictures on social media.

It’s hard out there for a first kid.