Mort Zuckerman Clarifies Claim That He 'Helped Write' An Obama Speech

07/14/2010 11:21 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

As you may recall, U.S. News And World Report editor-in-chief Mort Zuckerman recently caused a minor stir after he went on the air with Fox News's Neil Cavuto and said, "I voted for [President Barack] Obama. I, in fact, helped write one of his speeches."

This was a monumentally confusing thing to hear. In the first place, there are Zuckerman's wildly divergent, pro-Wall Street politics, which do not interject themselves into any of Obama's speeches. And then there's the whole matter of Obama's actual speechwriters never having met Zuckerman. And finally, while some people say Obama's speeches are too professorial and difficult to be understood by the public and other people say, "I, Mort Zuckerman, wrote one of Obama's speeches," they obviously cannot both be true.

As it turns out, neither are. Via Alex Pareene, here's a clarification from Mort Zuckerman, which further indicates that the only speeches he may be writing are for the translations of Eugene Ionesco plays:

Over the years I have been asked by various public officials, including those in Washington, for my perspectives and views on numerous issues. These conversations have always been considered confidential. My point in noting during a recent television interview that I had once "helped" contribute to one of Barack Obama's campaign speeches was to reflect the fact that my recent criticisms of the president came from someone who had been supportive of him, who had voted for him, and whose newspaper endorsed him. I continue to hope for his and the country's success.

Essentially, Mort Zuckerman is the sort of person who's become so inured to the belief that the world revolves around him, whenever he sees something in the world that he agrees with, he naturally assumes that he is the reason for its existence.

And that's the Mystery Of The Speech That Mort Zuckerman Helped Write For Obama.

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