NBC's Shawna Thomas
Cookies from Bethel Bakery in Pennsylvania, provided by the Obama campaign.
PITTSBURGH, Pa. -- Oh, it’s campaign season all right, and nothing is safe from the back-and-forth of the presidential election, not even the cookies at a presidential event.
While on the bus, en route to Carnegie Mellon University here for the president’s final event of his two-day bus tour, the traveling White House press received an email stating, “Waiting for you in the file in Pittsburgh. Cookies from Bethel Bakery of Bethel Park, PA.”
And just like that, Cookiegate was resurrected.
Back in April, before the Pennsylvania primary, when Romney held an event in Bethel Park, PA, he sat down at a picnic table with a tray of the aforementioned cookies in front of him and without taking a bite said, “I’m not sure about these cookies…They don’t look like you made them. Did you make those cookies? You didn’t, did you? No, no. They came from the local 7-Eleven, bakery, or whatever.”
He was making small talk, but local fans of the bakery took to the Internet to express their annoyance. The owner of the bakery went on MSNBC and said he was “shocked and dumbfounded” by the candidate’s comments. (But not so shocked and dumbfounded that he didn’t use the incident to run a special and sell more cookies.)
Almost instantly, the awkward situation was turned into a Democratic talking point about Romney being out-of-touch and a web video featuring Cookie Monster.
And, as promised, waiting for the press in the room where they write their stories and charge their phones was a variety platter of Bethel Bakery cookies bought by the Obama campaign (pictured above at right).
A short, buttery distraction from the far more serious topic of the day: the country’s stagnant employment numbers.