Clint Eastwood talks to invisible Obama

The famous actor did something close to a standup routine at the RNC, asking questions of an imaginary President Obama in a chair next to the podium. 

After grilling invisible Obama on jobs, Afghanistan, and more, Eastwood responded to the (rather rude) president: "I'm not gonna shut up. Its my turn." And later, pretending that Obama had asked him to relay an unpleasant message to Romney, Eastwood said:  "I'm not going to tell him to do that, he can't do that to himself, you're absolutely crazy." 

He rambled from topic to topic, knocking Obama along the way for flying around in a big plane and running negative ads. He called Joe Biden "the intellect of the Democratic Party. Kind of a grin with a body behind it.”

"I just think that there's so much to be done," he said, "and I just think that Mr. Romney and Mr. Ryan are two guys to come along. See, I never thought it was a good idea for attorneys to be president anyway." (Romney, in fact, went to Harvard Law School). "I think it's time for a businessman," he added, "a stellar businessman." 

All in all it was one of the most surreal moments in convention history, but the crowd was welcoming, changing "Make my day!" enthusiastically at the close of Eastwood's performance.

"Judging an American icon like Clint Eastwood through a typical political lens doesn't work," a Romney campaign spokesperson said. "His ad libbing was a break from all the political speeches, and the crowd enjoyed it."

Obama campaign spokesman Ben LaBolt, for his part, offered this comment: "Referring all questions on this to Salvador Dali."

(Read the full text of Eastwood's RNC speech)

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Natalie Jennings | August 30, 2012