Obama Skeet-Shooting: Picture-Proof — JFK-Styled Video Next?

Photograph by Pete Souza/The White House

President Barack Obama shoots clay targets with a shotgun on the range on Aug. 4, 2012 at Camp David, Maryland.

 

The proof is in the picture.

After President Barack Obama allowed in a recent interview that he and friends shoot skeet “all the time” up at Camp David, cynics started to question why there are no photos of the clay-clobbering president at camp — Presidents from Dwight Eisenhower, who opened the skeet range at the camp named for his grandson, to John F. Kennedy and George H.W. Bush have been pictured plugging away at flying clay at the mountain retreat.

The White House today released a photograph of Obama skeet shooting at Camp David last August after some Republicans expressed doubts that the Democratic president had actually engaged in the activity revealed in that New Republic interview.

“Pull!” — the shotgun is smoking in this presidential photo by White House Photographer Pete Souza.

Obama, who is seeking a ban on assault weapons and other measures to reduce gun violence, told the magazine in its Feb. 11 issue that he shoots skeet “all the time” at Camp David and respects the nation’s hunting tradition. He was responding to a question about whether he had ever fired a gun.

The photo, sent to reporters via Twitter by White House spokesman Jay Carney and Obama adviser Dan Pfeiffer, shows Obama shooting clay targets on a range at Camp David Aug. 4.

Asked earlier this week about a photo of the president skeet shooting, Carney replied that when Obama “goes to Camp David, he goes to spend time with his family and friends and relax, not to produce photographs.

Thereafter, Rep. Marsha Blackburn, Republican of Tennessee, expressed doubt about the president’s skeet shooting.

“You know, if you don’t have the photos, if this is not something that’s a new hobby, then I think he should invite me out to Camp David and I’ll challenge him,” Blackburn said on CNN. Asked for a reaction to Blackburn’s challenge, Carney responded, “I have none.”

The president will continue his pressure on Congress to curb gun violence when he speaks Monday at the Minneapolis Police Department’s Special Operations Center.  Obama has responded to the Dec. 14 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting deaths of 20 children and six educators in Newtown, Connecticut, with proposals to mandate background checks for all gun buyers, a ban on high-capacity ammunition clips and reinstatement of a ban on the sale of assault weapons.

With the photo in, we’re still waiting for the video, like this one of JFK and Jackie Kennedy learning to shoot skeet.

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