May the president’s wife touch the queen?

It’s such a relief to have this issue settled!  Thank you, thank you, Buckingham Palace:

First lady Michelle Obama did not breach protocol by touching Queen Elizabeth II at a reception for world leaders attending the G-20 summit, Buckingham Palace told CNN Thursday.

“It was a mutual and spontaneous display of affection and appreciation between the Queen and Michelle Obama,” the Royal Press Office said in a statement Thursday. “The London Summit reception at Buckingham Palace was an informal occasion,” the statement also said.

No breach of protocol occurred, according to the Royal Press Office, because Buckingham Palace does not issue instructions about how to address the Queen.

7 thoughts on “May the president’s wife touch the queen?

  1. Nice of ole Lizzy.
    I am still horrified at the image of George Bush putting his paw on the shoulder of queen Beatrix of the Netherlands several years back at state visit. Now, THAT was a breach of protocol and a lack of good sense and manners.

  2. Did you see him try to give Merkle (sp?) a neck rub? The expression on her face was priceless.

  3. It’s Merkel, I see. Here’s a video of the encounter:

    It’s an old Texas custom, you know. They’re continually sneaking up on one another to give neck rubs. Just in case you think Bush may have been drunk or something, as has been suggested.

  4. jj that is so creeeepy. my grandmother used to do the sneaky neck rub thing to me. but she’s my granny! and i’m not chancellor of germany!

    i wonder about michelle obama’s hug. she seems a rather etiquette-savvy woman. (the circles she runs (successfully) in would seem to require it.) do you think she did it on purpose, as it were? i mean, i hear murmurs about michelle being quite anti-anglo-establishment. do you think the hug was meant to show her lack of respect, in a way? (i hope it was! it would be SO cool if it was.)

  5. It appears, in a video of the event, that the Queen first put her arm around Michelle’s back, and Michelle instinctively responded.

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