President Obama Jokes About Ortega Rant

By Lee Speigel

Apr 17, 2009 8:02pm

PORT OF SPAIN, TRINIDAD — "To move forward, we cannot let ourselves be prisoners of past disagreements," President Obama said to the Summit of the Americas this evening. "I’m very grateful that President Ortega did not blame me for things that happened when I was 3 months old."

Mr. Obama was referring to the 52-minute airing of grievances by Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega, which ran through decades of what he saw as American imperialism. When discussing the Bay of Pigs invasion, which was launched 48 years ago, Mr. Ortega said he didn’t blame Mr. Obama for it, since according to Cuban President Raoul Castro, the invasion happened when Barack Obama was 3-and-a-half months old at the time.

"Obviously, he didn’t have any responsibility for that historic event," Ortega said.

Actually, President Obama was four months away from being born at the time, April 17, 1961 — 48 years ago today.

Mr. Obama’s birthday is in August.

In any case, the Ortega reference fit right into President Obama’s remarks.

"Too often, an opportunity to build a fresh partnership of the Americas has been undermined by stale debates," Mr. Obama continued. "We’ve all heard these arguments."

– Jake Tapper and Sunlen Miller

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