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Obama's new word: Gobbledygook

11:51 AM, Mar 14, 2013   |    comments
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by David Jackson, USA TODAY


President Obama seems to be embracing a new word to reflect his frustration with Washington politics and gridlock.

Gobbledygook.

In his speech Wednesday to the support group known as Organizing For Action, Obama used the phrase while discussing his recent outreach to congressional Republicans.

"Over the last several weeks, the press here in Washington has been reporting about Obama's charm offensive," the president said. "Well, the truth of the matter is all I've been doing is just calling up folks and trying to see if we can break through some of the gobbledygook of our politics here."

The White House website reflects only one other Obama use of the term -- on March 1, the day the $85 billion in automatic budget cuts known as the sequester began to take effect.

In discussing his ongoing budget battles with Congress, Obama told reporters in a televised news conference: "I'll try for our viewing audience to make sure that we're not talking in Washington gobbledygook."

Gobbledygook is frequently used to deride bureaucratic Washington, and the term was first attributed to a politician: Rep. Maury Maverick, D-Tex., who in 1944 derided his colleagues for using unclear, obscure language.


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