It’s a small thing. But as Noam Scheiber of the New Republic has pointed out, “This is not as irrational as it sounds.” Democrats confess to being more terrified of her than President Obama, himself. Republicans have been complaining of her seemingly limitless and Congressionally unconfirmed influence for years. So, maybe it’s not so strange to wonder why Ms. Jarrett has requisitioned the number ’44,’ which is the number of the 44th President of the United States, Barack Obama, for her own use? For example, her Twitter account, which has often taken on the role of Presidential mouthpiece, is @vj44. Isn’t that a little presumptuous?
For years, the “number of the President” has been a moniker used to identify the President, himself, personally. The two recent Bush Presidents, father and son, refer to each other as ’41’ and ’43,’ respectively. The current POTUS, Barack Obama, is 44. No advisor in either Bush administration, to my knowledge, ever called himself ‘TonySnow43’ or ‘PeggyNoonan41.’ That would have been a little weird.
And Ms. Jarrett is no minor presence. She has repeatedly been accused of being the real power behind the Presidency. Just recently, she was named the source of the Machiavellian leak that may well land former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in prison. And, as I write this, @vj44 is waging a fairly vast Twitter campaign to #StopGunViolence, which is the Administration’s attempt to cynically leverage the recent Oregon shooting.
In light of this, isn’t it a little strange that Valerie Jarrett identifies herself as #44? As if she were slyly bragging about being the de facto President that many of us consider her to be in reality? Maybe it’s just me.