President Barack Obama made an unscheduled visit on Tuesday to the second annual Kids' State Dinner, a healthy lunch children's event hosted by first lady Michelle Obama in the East Room of the White House. The president greeted the 54 kid guests and made a few brief remarks.
"Food can be fun, it can be healthy," Obama said, according to a White House pool report. "You are setting up habits that are going to be great your entire life."
As he left, Obama was asked what his favorite food is. His answer: "Broccoli."
Not surprisingly, Twitter erupted in mock scorn over the commander-in-chief's purported vegetable enthusiasm. Broccoli was soon trending on Twitter, and a full-on faux "Broccoligate" began to boil.
"Obama tells kid journalist his favorite food is broccoli. And his favorite activity is lying to children," Comedy Central's Indecision blog tweeted.
"Our first broccoli president," Buzzfeed's Andrew Kaczynski declared, linking to a photo mashup of Obama and a head of broccoli.
"What kind of POTUS says his fav food is Broccoli?" CNN's Ari Fleischer wrote on Twitter. "Same one who in 2008 complained about the price of arugula at Whole Foods."
"All GOP 2016ers will now have to pledge to never eat broccoli again," David Plouffe, President Obama's former campaign manager and senior adviser, tweeted. "Maybe a new angle for Grover [Norquist]."
"Baraccoli Obama v. Hillary Caulinton," Matt Separa quipped.
"BREAKING: Venezuela offers asylum to America's broccoli," Twitter user @LOLGOP wrote.
"All of us jokingly making a fuss about the broccoli comment is proof that we're all terrible," the Huffington Post's Elise Foley tweeted. "This town!"
Slate's Dave Weigel added: "This broccoli discussion is more proof that you could fire half the press corps at random and America would be fine."
There is a chance, however, that President Obama was not lying during his kid-grilling. In an interview with Yahoo News' Olivier Knox earlier this year, Michelle Obama said the first family is "a broccoli household."
"It is the one vegetable that my children will eat without creating chaos and havoc,” she said. “There’s never quite clear harmony at the dinner table over the vegetables, but broccoli is a unifier in our household.”