An invite prematurely sent to President Obama and GOP Presidential candidate, Mitt Romney to attend a traditional Al Smith Dinner hosted by the Archbishop of New York created quite a stir in the Catholic community this past week.
The Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner, or Al Smith Dinner for short, is an annual white-tie fundraiser for Catholic charities and usually involves inviting the standing President and his opponent to give keynote speeches at the dinner. The gala offers a comedic respite from the slings and arrows of an otherwise hotly contested Presidential campaign.
This year, however, the Catholics are finding very little to laugh about due to the uproar over President Obama’s mandate on birth control. The Catholic hierarchy is criticizing their leader, Cardinal Dolan, for sending the invitations out before first consulting with them. Upon hearing the news that President Obama accepted the invite, they were livid.
Fortunately, however, misconstructions by the Catholic Church and Obama have seen both parties scrambling to get out of the dinner, and today it was reported that Obama was extremely relieved when he was informed that the dinner invite had been withdrawn.
“Boy, this sure saves me a lot of embarrassment,” said Obama upon learning of the retraction.
Sources close to Obama claim that the President initially read the invitation wrong and thought the Catholic Church was throwing a dinner in honor of legendary soul singer Al Green.
“When I received the invitation, I about fell over,” said the President.
“I thought, now this is just too great. Who knew the Catholic Church and I had the same taste in music? I was already planning what song to sing with Al as a duet. Man, I couldn’t have been happier,” he said smiling.
“Unfortunately,” he said, “Michelle caught my mistake and hit me with the bad news. It was Al Smith, not Al Green, but not before I had already RSVP’d.”
Not wanting to give anyone the wrong idea about his obvious pleasure at being informed of the withdrawal, Obama was quick to say, “Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m sure this Al Smith guy, whoever he is, is one great fella, but I’m not sure he so special that I could spend a whole evening trying to make funny when my hosts are clearly not too pleased with me right now.”
Obama then added, “We all know how the Donald Trump thing went over at last year’s White House Correspondents Dinner.”
Meanwhile, when Mitt Romney was asked if he had received his invitation to the dinner and whether or not he would be accepting, his response was “Al who?”