By Justin Sink
Already, top surrogate and former GOP presidential candidate Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) tweeted about the president's gaffe, citing the Etch A Sketch connection.
Pres Obama tells Medvedev he'll be more "flexible" on missile defense - that's a real "Etch A Sketch" leader!— John McCain (@SenJohnMcCain) March 26, 2012
The White House downplayed the conversation between Obama and Medvedev in a statement Monday.
"Since 2012 is an election year in both countries, with an election and leadership transition in Russia and an election in the United States, it is clearly not a year in which we are going to achieve a breakthrough," deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes said in a statement.
"Therefore, President Obama and President Medvedev agreed that it was best to instruct our technical experts to do the work of better understanding our respective positions, providing space for continued discussions on missile-defense cooperation going forward."