Mind the Gaffe, Prez!

Word to Bush: It's APEC, not OPEC, and the troops are Australian, not Austrian
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Sep 9, 2007 7:44 AM CDT
President Bush arrives on the South Lawn of the White House yesterday.   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – As usual, President Bush didn't mind the gaffe and stumbled again—and again—this weekend on the eve of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation gathering in Sydney. He referred to Australian troops as Austrian troops and called the APEC summit the OPEC summit., Reuters reports. "Thank you for being such a fine host for the OPEC summit," Bush told Australian Prime Minister John Howard.

As the audience laughed, the president tried to recover. "He invited me to the OPEC summit next year," he said, though Australia has never been a member of OPEC. When Bush left the stage he went the wrong direction and had to be redirected by Howard. For a final act, the president stumbled as he left Marine One back at the White House.