NEW YORK — Arrrrgh: Fox News Channel used a joke picture of President Barack Obama sitting with a man in full buccaneer regalia to suggest Thursday that the president was more interested in meeting with a pirate than in conducting foreign policy.
The network later tweeted a clarification to the blooper, made three times on the “Fox &Friends” morning show.
The picture depicted Obama sitting in the Oval Office with a man in a colorful pirate outfit, complete with a red hat, eye patch and hook for a right arm. It was taken as a punch line for a joke Obama delivered to the White House Correspondents Association dinner in 2009 about the administration talking to enemies as well as friends.
The picture resurfaced Wednesday when the Obama campaign tweeted it for International Talk Like a Pirate Day. The tweet linked to the picture with the message: “Arrr You In?”
Over an on-screen graphic that said “Arrrgh You Kidding?”, Fox ran the picture Thursday morning with host Brian Kilmeade saying, “The White House doesn’t have the time to meet with the prime minister of Israel, but this pirate got a sit-down in the Oval Office yesterday.”
Later, with “yo-ho-ho” music in the background, Fox showed the picture as its “Shot of the Morning,” with host Steve Doocy saying, “Here’s a quick look at what President Obama is up to, making sure he didn’t forget to mark International Talk Like a Pirate Day.”
“Fox &Friends” also showed the picture, along with others of the president meeting with Jay-Z and Beyonce and appearing on David Letterman’s “Late Show” on Tuesday. The headline was “Too busy for Israel” and Fox also showed twin pictures of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and an empty chair.
“He’s getting the Clint Eastwood treatment — the empty chair,” Doocy said.
Analyst Peter Johnson Jr., calling the president “Broadway Barack Obama,” said that “it seems like foreign policy is taking a back seat.”
After the show ended, the “Fox &Friends” Twitter feed noted that the pirate picture was from 2009.
Doocy also tweeted: “By the way, our picture of the president with the pirate was from 2009. How time flies!”
Fox had no additional comment.