White House Phones Not Working So Good


The new White House website looks great and has been enthusiastically reviewed. Unfortunately, when you call the phone number listed for “Comments” under “Contact Us” (202-456-1111), at this writing you’re told the new Administration is “unable to answer your call at this time.” If you try the switchboard and press “1” as prompted to leave a comment, you get the same result.

Environmental group CLEAN, which is engaged in a clean-energy White House call-athon, says it’s been trying to get through since 9:45 a.m. without success. We asked a White House operator what was going on, and he said it was a “staffing issue” and that the comments line will be up “later,” but he couldn’t say when.

We’ve heard various rumors — that the Bush team disabled the phones to get back at the Democrats for the missing W’s, that the White House has been taken over by aliens, etc. — but let us remember this is Washington we’re talking about: simple incompetence is the most likely explanation.


This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on January 21, 2009


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