Conservative bloggers are gleefully spreading this story, saying photos prove their claim that Obama always needs a script.
A few examples:
Gateway Pundit: Sad: Obama Brings Teleprompter to Speak to 6th Grade Class
Moonbattery: What Kind of Idiot Needs a Teleprompter to Talk to Sixth Graders?
Riehl World View: Is This Obama's Pet Goat Moment?
It's red meat for the president's critics. The only problem is, it's not true.
Here's what is true. Obama did bring teleprompters along for his Jan. 19 visit to Graham Road Elementary School in Falls Church, Va. They were set up in a classroom where the president made a statement to reporters about expanding his Race to the Top program to improve schools. That happened after he chatted with the sixth-graders in a separate classroom -- with no teleprompters.
The President and Secretary Duncan spent about 20 minutes taking questions from the children (out of pool's earshot). ... They then came into the brightly-decorated -- "Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, Look at the letters we know in this room!" -- classroom next door to make remarks on Race to the Top.
"You guys look really cute in those chairs," the president said when he entered the room to find the news photographers sitting in chairs meant for very small children.
Some bloggers posted updates backing off the original story slightly, but still ridiculed the president for using the teleprompter to make brief remarks to the media.
"We're talking about giving a prepared statement and answering a few questions here, not the Gettysburg Address," said a post on Ace of Spades HQ.
JammieWearing Fool, one of the blogs that helped spread the misleading picture, grudgingly acknowledged in an update that Obama used the teleprompter to speak to reporters, not kids -- but took this parting shot:
"What's the difference between a bunch of sixth-graders and his adoring White House press corps? Answer: Sixth-graders have more credibility."