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Jay Carney denies White House involvement with Jay-Z & Beyonce’s Cuba trip

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By Doug Powers  •  April 11, 2013 08:10 PM

**Written by Doug Powers

After it was reported that Jay-Z and Beyoncé traveled to Cuba to soak up some warm Havana weather and maybe get a chance to meet Jimmy Carter, even some of President Obama’s fellow Democrats, including Debbie Wasserman Schultz, were critical of the fact that somebody in the federal government gave the couple permission to make the trip (rumor has it Beyonce was asked to leave Cuba after being caught lip-syncing El Himno de Bayamo).

Thursday, Jay Carney insisted the person who ok’d the trip was from the Treasury Department, and not a certain White House resident who likes golf and just happens to be good friends with Jay-Z:

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney today denied the White House had any involvement with their trip, saying the Treasury Department handles all clearances for travel to Cuba.

“I guess nothing rhymes with Treasury,” Carney joked.

In the song, Jay-Z also recounts a conversation he had with President Obama about his trip. “Obama said, ‘Chill, you, gonna get me impeached… We don’t need this s-t anyway, chill with me on the beach,” he raps in the nearly three-minute song.

Carney dismissed the claim. “It’s a song,” he said. “The president did not communicate with Jay-Z over this trip.”

Carney said it was preposterous to think that the White House was involved in Jay-Z and Beyonce’s Cuba trip, which might be true. Jay-Z could have given himself permission from the Situation Room for all we know.

I haven’t seen anything like this since Marlin Fitzwater’s flat denial of reports that then-President Reagan gave Run DMC permission to perform in East Germany:

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nkAA7F4rsLc&w=420&h=315]

The blog Naked D.C. performs a more in-depth analysis of Jay-Z’s “Open Letter” here.

Oh, and North Korea might have nuclear weapons capable of being delivered by ballistic missiles. Hopefully at tomorrow’s presser Carney will be asked what Beyoncé thinks of that.

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

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Categories: Barack Obama, Health care, New York Times, Paul Krugman