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Obama hit by Republicans for New York night on the town.

| 42 Comments


Updated Saturday night
WASHINGTON--The "personal" trip to New York President Obama and First Lady Michelle made Saturday became grist for the Republican National Committee.

The RNC hit the First Couple up for taking the trip--the RNC called it "a joyride"-- on Air Force One while the nation's economy is suffering.

(Update) The RNC left a misimpression. The Obama's did not take the jumbo jet commonly thought of as the president's plane. Instead, according to Mark Knoller of CBS News, the Obamas flew in an Air Force Gulfstream V (C-37A) for their flight to NYC. "Far less costly than the 747. It's a 12 passenger aircraft," Knoller said in a Twitter dispatch. Any aircraft flying the president is called Air Force One. Other points: the RNC never complained when former President George Bush flew to Texas to weekend at his ranch. I doubt the RNC would have dared criticized Obama if he flew to Chicago on weekends; the Obama's have been home once since the inauguration. (end Update)

The RNC put up a clip from the White House Correspondents Dinner on May 9 where Obama joked about daughters Malia and Sasha taking a ride on Air Force One.

(Update) For their date night, the Obama's ate at Blue Hill.

Then they took in a show at the Belasco Theatre "Joe Turner's Come and Gone," a play by August Wilson about the struggle of a man dealing with the historic scars of slavery. (end Update)

Below, release from the Republican National Committee...

PUTTING ON A SHOW
Obamas Wing Into The City For An Evening Out

While Another Iconic American Company

Prepares For Bankruptcy

______________________________________________________________________

Obama Says He Understands Americans' Economic Troubles

Obama: "There Are Still Too Many Americans Out Of Work, And Too Many Who Still Worry That Their Job May Be Next. There Are Still Too Many Families Struggling To Pay The Bills, And Too Many Businesses Struggling To Keep Their Doors Open." (President Barack Obama, Remarks At Nellis Air Force Base, Las Vegas, NV, 5/27/09)

Obama Said He Carried Stories Of Struggling Workers With Him To The White House. "We're talking about people who've lost their livelihood and don't know what will take its place. We're talking about parents who've lost their health care and lie awake at night praying their kids don't get sick. We're talking about families who've lost the home that was the corner, their foundation for their American dream, young people who put that college acceptance letter back in the envelope because they just can't afford it. That's what those numbers and statistics mean. That is the true measure of this economic crisis. Those are the stories I heard when I came to Elkhart six months ago, and those are the stories that I carried with me to the White House." (President Barack Obama, Remarks On The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Elkhart, IN, 2/9/09)

But Wings Off To New York City For Night On The Town

President and Mrs. Obama Make "Personal Visit To New York" Tonight. "President Obama and his wife, Michelle, plan to visit New York City on Saturday and take in a Broadway show, the August Wilson play 'Joe Turner's Come and Gone' at the Belasco Theater on West 44th Street, according to three theater executives who have been informed of the First Family's plans. ... 'The president and the first lady will be making a personal visit to New York tomorrow,' said Bill Burton, a spokesman for the president, who declined to elaborate on the schedule." (Patrick Healy, "First Couple To Hit Broadway This Weekend," The New York Times' "The Caucus" Blog , 5/29/09)

While GM Prepares For Bankruptcy And Jobs Keep Disappearing

"General Motors Corp. (GM) Is Expected To File For Bankruptcy Protection Monday, The Government-Imposed Deadline For The 100-Year- Old Auto Maker To Restructure Itself Into A Viable Company." ("US Equities Week Ahead: GM Bankruptcy Filing; Jobs Report," CNNMoney.com , 5/29/09)

"Meanwhile, Economists Expect The U.S. Unemployment Rate To Climb To 9.2% For May; That Report Is Due Next Friday." ("US Equities Week Ahead: GM Bankruptcy Filing; Jobs Report," CNNMoney.com , 5/29/09)

Since President Obama Took Office, The U.S. Economy Has Lost Over 1 Million Jobs. (Bureau Of Labor Statistics Website, http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.t01.htm, Accessed: 5/30/09)

Obama May Joke About Air Force One Joyrides

Obama: "Now Sasha And Malia Aren't Here Tonight Because They're Grounded. You Can't Just Take Air Force One On A Joy Ride To Manhattan. (Laughter.) I Don't Care Whose Kids You Are. (Laughter.)" (President Barack Obama, Remarks To The White House Correspondents Association Dinner, Washington, DC, 5/9/09)

* Click Here To Watch

But Americans Have Seen This Show Before

President Bill Clinton Blocked Two Runways At One Of World's Busiest Airports To Get His Hair Cut. "President Clinton got a full-blown $200 haircut from Beverly Hills' Monsieur Cristophe at Los Angeles International Airport while Air Force One idled for nearly an hour, blocking ground traffic a nd closing two runways." (Frank J. Murray, "Clinton Stops Traffic With Pricey New Cut," The Washington Times, 5/21/93)

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42 Comments

Best way to boos the economy is to be out partaking in it. Not hiding away in some RNC dug hole.

And who does the RNC think they are kidding?! Where was BabyBush when the preverbal waste was starting to hit the fan?? ON VACATION IN TEXAS! One word: PULEEEEASE!!!

And no. I am not a Democrat.

The Republicans are a miserable bunch.
The economy is in trouble mostly because of them not President Obama. Their selfishness, greed and lack of respect is hurting this country.
Misery is all they know.
Thank God our President is mature enough to set an example as to how we should all conduct ourselves in down times. Relax we should and not fret. It's better than complaining 24/7 like the Repugs who want us all to be afraid. The economy will heal quicker with patients.
The president and his wife are doing the right thing. God bless them!

I wish all this nitpicking would stop! It's begin-
ing to almost resemble a disagreement between two bratty children. The election is over, the new president is in office, give the man a chance. The same thing happened to Bill Clinton. It wasn't but only a day or two after his election that this ridiculous bashing started. Obama is in the White House, and the Bush is not. End of story!

Republicans are such hypocrites with selective memories. I don't remember them commenting on the vacation time records Dubya set.

The purpose of Air Force One is to provide an "Office" for the President while traveling on Presidential business; which by the way is a 24 -7 job for four years.
Not much noise from the repubs when GW made his regular runs to Crawford where he spent 65% of his time in office; or, out of the office.

Wow. The President takes the First Lady out on a date and the GOP suffers rising blood pressure. It's a good thing he didn't buy her flowers--they might've had a coronary.

Hey, Mr. President, please be careful what you do for the kids. We don't want a whole bunch of grouchy old senators to have strokes.

Where the heck were these people when GW was spending half of his term on vacation?

The Republicans have wanted GM to file bankruptcy for months.

Now that GM is going to do that, the Republicans suddenly find it upsetting.

Or is this just a rather convoluted (and confusing) press release from the Party of No?

I'm so confused. I thought the Republicans wanted the US auto industry to fail.

Oh, and the Broadway theater industry contributes over $5 billion a year to the economy of NYC, and touring shows over $3 billion to the nation.

And next weekend the Tony Awards are presented.

Thank you, President Obama, for spotlighting this important made-in-America industry.

What pathetic people these republicans are. This is just more of what they did during the election. They should remember THEY LOST. I can imagine the millions of wives & sweethearts who would love to be swept off to NYC for a Saturday date. These "white rethuglican men" have no idea how petty & out of touch with the American public they are. I am very proud of our President, his wife & family.

This country was in a resession way before President Obama took office. Give him a break .The country is still afraid of change. get over it.


I am a humble NY Manhattan resident worried about the economy but fortunate enough to have a job and woke up to this glorious Saturday for a run along the Hudson River at 6:55 am.

So Obama went to the theatre here. The security helicopters and Coast Guard were combing the Hudson since 6:55 am. With jet fuel probably costing more than the gas we common men pump at the gas station, they were roaring above my head still at 5pm when I ventured out to my butcher.He had a motorcade worthy of the most powerful man on earth. How much did it cost us?

It really is a shame. People don't have jobs.I understand the President has a nice home theatre at the White House. Can he make do and eat in with his chef and be more considerate and perhaps come to NY after his presidency at a fraction of the tax payer's cost? Are you compassionate?

So now the "family values" party has a problem with a President who loves his wife, and a First Couple who are committed to keeping their marriage strong. Okey dokey.

Hey, wasn't it the Republicans who were clamoring last fall to let the auto companies fail?

Yeah, I thought so. Sure would be nice if the Republican Party was interested in doing something to make the country stronger and healthier, but I guess that lying, hypocrisy and torture is about all they've got. Oh, yeah, and crashing the economy.

I hope President and First Lady Obama have a wonderful evening together.

What type of outings would the GOP approve for the Obama's? And why doesn't Lynn Sweet also include in her blog that other Presidents took their wives out to dinner and a movie also?

This nonsense of childish anger coming from the leaders of the Republican Party is yet another example on why their membership is declining.

I hope Mr. and Mrs. Obama enjoyed their night out on the town after a very busy work week.

And what about the trip to the Midwest, where he flew on AF1 there and back to pick up the Mrs. and the kids, then back again, all in one day!! How about taking the family with you the first time and save us some money. Arrogance at its very finest.

The peevish Party of NO is now whinning about the Obama's going to NYC. I beleive the smart guy left to straighten out their catastrophic mess may deserve a night out. While the intolerant Party of old angry white guys shrivels like rotten roadkill, the Democrat Party grows at warp speed with strong women, tolerant young people, suburbanites, smart college grads, and growing minorities. Adios old cranky white guys and good riddance.

Get over it. He is the president. What should he do? stay home and watch television.

Where were the cries (from either party) when Bush set the record for MVP (most vacationed president)? By the time he left office, Bush had made 149 trips to and spent 487 days at Camp David, plus 77 trips and 490 days at Crawford, plus 11 visits and 43 days at Kennebunkport. In total President Bush took 237 trips and spent 1,020 days (35% of his term) "getting away" from the White House.

Now I'm not slamming Obama (yet)... he's way off that insane pace. But this back & forth bickering between parties is old and tiresome. Be Independent... Be American!

You are so right GOP are hypocrites they are mad that the Prez is taking his wife out? give me a break! Just remember you GOPers that those who live in glass houses should not throw stones!

People need to quit taking sides. None are on our side. Over 1 million jobs have been lost since Obama took office. While he's out wasting money more jobs are being lost. The republicans are pointing it out. When GW was in office the democrats where doing all the complaining so dont act like the republicans are the only ones doing it. We have a Dem. Pres. and Dem. Congress and nothing is improving. Why? Why are the illinois democrats still asking for rediculous tax increases instead of cutting spending? Every one needs a night out now and then but not when it costs the tax payers a million bucks to do it

Go Obama!

First of all I'm a conservative and proud of it. All Presidents have traveled with their families and the first lady. However, during a time when many citizens are suffering financially, I think the President should have made a better decision. He and the first lady could have had a quiet dinner in Georgetown or at the White House. There are broadway cast shows in Washington, DC they could have attended and still had a quiet evening together as husband and wife. It's a matter of choices and the President made a poor choice once again. The cost to the taxpayer for the President to fly even a gulfstream jet, with the secret service, helicopters up and down the Hudson River, etc. is one real expensive night out on the town on taxpayer money. When he increases our taxes and it will happen when the timing is politically correct I hope all the liberals and Obama groupies remember how much he has traveled in his first 4 months of office at taxpayers expense. He appears to enjoy his new toys more than the previous Presidents. If the President is so concerned about the environment and putting the rest of us in Smart cars I wonder what his carbon footprint is since he has been in office traveling around the world apologizing for America. Give me a break!

Nothing he does will please the RNC. At least, he or Biden didn't shoot anybody on their "night out".

Nothing he does will please the RNC. At least, he or Biden didn't shoot anybody on their "night out".

I'M GLAD HE TOOK HIS WIFE OUT FOR A NIGHT ON THE
TOWN, HE IS A GREAT PRESIDENT AND HE AND HIS WIFE
DESERVE TO BE HAPPY, GOD KNOWS THEY ARE WORKING
AT THIS JOB MORE THAN ANY PRESIDENT AND FIRST
LADY IN RECENT MEMORY!

The right comparison for this trip is bush's "fly-over" of New Orleans following Hurricaine Katrina, as we undoubtedly have an economic crisis of shocking proportions.
Clearly Bush's fly-over was a mistake and, likewise, Obama's trip to NYC was a mistake.
On top of offending the out-of-work middle class, Obama rubs salt in the once affluent and increasingly taxed. You cant have a dinner and theatre like this if you make $350,000 living in NY with a family.
Whereas I might have once been able to enjoy a dinner at Blue Hill (one of my prior favorites), I now cook at home and brown bag it, so the UAW can continue to live a false life.

Please forgive me for interrupting the hatred with the truth. America persists in electing a President who brings his AARP card to office because the country has aged beyond the vitality and vigor of its' youth. Our 47 y.o. President took his wife to a American city, a American playwright's production, a American restaurant- (and to add owned by one of the most brilliant, hardest working chefs America has!) Need I remind you that the first lady, devoted considerable time and effort to his win...she deserves it! You can not expect the first lady to settle for twizzlers and a old DVD.

Please stop the Bush-bashing. 43 is not evil or bad, he just let himself be overtaken by people with stronger personalities and less-than-lofty motivations. During his time in office, he really needed us to be his human firewall and I feel we failed him.

Ed, go take your wife out to dinner! Then you won't be so busy complaining about the President spending a quality moment with his wife.

"...a quality moment with his wife." don't the obama's live in the white house? there is NO precedent for three planes, copters, the service, and the nypd, whom, by the way,are knee deep in a matter of one gunning down one of their own. gosh, they could have brought the cast and crew of the production to the district and shipped in the cook as well. 'he promised his wife'...lol...i didn't promise his wife...nothin'...lol!!

This is not about republican or democrat or Bush or Obama. It is about people like Bush (net worth 9 million) and Obama( net worth 7 million) that also collect a salary as president of $400,000 a year having people like me who cannot even afford to take my wife to diner and a movie because of the economy because the republican and democrat politicians screwed up this country and spent money that does and did not belong to them. When was the last time any of you just jumped on a private jet to NY and got into a limo and enjoyed the town on someone elses money when you had more then enough money of your own to pay for it. I have no problem with Bush or Obama's personal nights out or trips. My problem is they should pay for it. I work hard and nobody pays for my trips. Washington politicians just withdraw from our treasury account and spend while we keep trying to make ends meet. You all need to stop this child like behavior and demand that washington practices what they preach. You see, we are to tightend our belts and pitch in to help our country but that is so they can spend more of our money. I believe Mr and Mrs. Obama deserved the night out but not on the american peoples dime. They could have afforded it with the money they are worth...But that is why they have money because they only spend other peoples money...Your money......

Hey Bea, If you are married, when was the last time you flew to NY on a private jet,private limo, had diner and went to a show on taxpayers money( my money )for some quality time??

WHAT EVER PARTY YOUR FROM YOU HAVE TO SEE THAT THE COUNTRY CAN NOT STAND FOR THEIR LEADER TO MAKE BAD JUDGMENT CALLS DURING A DEPRESSION. YES A DEPRESSION, WE ARE HERE IN MICHIGAN AND SOUP LINES ARE BREAKING OUT EVERYWHERE, AND OUR LEADER PULLS THIS. BAD CALL MR PRESIDENT, WE NEED A LEADER, HAVE DINNER AT HOME AND A NET-FILX LIKE THE REST OF US. YOU SAID YOUR ONE OF US????

Truly the obamas feel that they're royalty. King and queen of America! And as rulers of America we deserve and will spend your money how we choose and we don't care if you like it or not! Get use to America, there's more to come! Or maybe they're just thinking "It's payback time! Now you guys are gonna pay!"

I agree Steve. The Obama's are part of that corrupt Chicago political machine. They are wannabe's. They want to be successful and wealthy. I know many are going to say they are. But look how they got here. The books he wrote are deceptive and the wife received income she never qualified for. Do you all know how much experience and know how it takes to get that kind of income? There are African Americans as well as other Americans who qualified to fit that bill. Yet they never received a large raised such as this. You people better wake up before it is too late. Look at Chicago: crime, job loss, homelessness, housing crisis, high tax, corruption, corruption, and more corruption.... The Obama's did nothing to help there own. Only to help themselves. They are no longer attorney's. The Chicago mob is in the White House. It will be a bumby ride. Yet we American's will survive. African Americans will be the next one's Obama will throw under the bus. He doesn't even communicate or visit with his own relatives. Don't respond. I have see this clown parade in motion. It is sickening how he has taken over companies, claiming he can revitalize. The man is brainless and clueless. They need to stop printing the Obama's pictures all over magazines. I could care less what they do. I do care about the American people and our future. Enough said.

It is totally wrong that the President used taxpayer's money and helicopters, jets, security etc. to take his wife to a Broadway show in NYC while the American taxpayer struggles through job losses, home losses and so much more.
President Obama and his wife need to use common sense.They are no longer a "regular" married couple. They reap many benefits and perks while living in the White House, including a getaway home at Camp David. It's time for them both to grow up and realize their lives are on hold until after they no longer live in the White House. They get first run movies, have a chef available, and can entertain anyone they wish at the White House.If they had to pay the bill for their "date" night in NYC, I'm certain they would have roughed at home in the White House or Camp David.This is a slap in the face of the American public, and it's time that the American Taxpayer on Main Street USA got the respect they deserve-REGARDLESS of their political party.

What's the big deal, really? Do you honestly think that but for this one trip, there would be some kind of rebate of "your" money, due to less fuel etc. used. It's already budgeted and would be in the budget no matter if it was used or not. Security for the president is a budgeted item no matter where he goes (or why he goes). the budget's the same if he uses the jet or not, he might as well

PRESIDENT OBAMA AND HIS WIFE AREN'T APART OF THE
CHICAGO MACHINE POLITICS, YOU ARE WAY OFF BASE!
THE MAN TOOK HIS WIFE TO DINNER, A SHOW, AND
BACK HOME, SECURITY WAS WARRANTED, HE IS THE
LEADER OF THE FREE WORLD!
SOME OF YOU WON'T TAKE THE GLOVES OFF, THE ELECTION IS OVER, TAKE EM OFF, AND RELAX AND WATCH GM BOUNCE BACK, THEY HAVE ALREADY SOLD THE
HUMMER TO ANOTHER COMPANY, THEY CAN THANK THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION FOR THEIR REBOUND AND YOU CAN
TOO!
THANK YOU TF FOR RUNNING DOWN THE BUDGET FOR ALL
OF US, WE NEEDED THAT!

The US gave over $50 Billion in aid to other countries. Yes I said $50,000,000,000. How much aid did you get from them lately? Aid is not paid back. It is not a loan. It is free money we give them. The money comes from us in all the taxes we pay. So ask yourself, as you struggle to make ends meet everyday why we are giving all this money to other countries while americans are ask to give more and are own people suffer hardship and despair. The Obama trip was as someone said "in the budget" but that does not mean you have to spend it. We need to unite as americans and stop the division that the republicans and democrats have us consumed with. As long as we are fighting among ourselves we will never be able to fight the real fight. TAKING AMERICA BACK FROM POLITICIANS THAT COULD CARE LESS ABOUT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. This was a country for the people by the people not for the government by the government. Both parties are to blame for the mess this country is in. Neither one is innocent.
Only a united american people defeat the corruption, lies and mis handling of our money. Yes OUR MONEY. I challenge all of you to take a stand and become the people of a free, just and fair country united for the good and prosperity of all, not just a few elite that we end up serving. Washington is suppose to serve us. Why have we allowed ourselves to serve them. Nothing will ever change as long as blogging is about beating up on each other and their political affiliates, Bush, Obama, Republican,Democrat. Either we are sheep or we become wolves. You decide how you want to live and take our country back. Maybe then you can take a private jet to NY and have some quality time like the rich do. You deserve it just as much as they do. They are no better then you. We were all created equal. It is just that some think they are better than the rest of us and we are only on this earth to serve them....Wake up america before it is too late and you become the slaves to the masters. Take your country back. It belong to you.

GWBs fly over New Orleans has been referred to as a "mistake" on one of these comments. Can I just set the record straight since he was never good about fully explaining some of his actions? The reason he flew over rather than landing was because it would require resources to be taken away from SAVING PEOPLE and getting power back on, etc. It was discussed whether or not to land but he was sensitive enough to realize what needed to get done and decided his presence would be more of a distraction - a hindrance not a help. Imagine that, a President who opted against the obligatory photo op. What an idiot . . .

HUMANS
This country is losing its credentials, stability, prestige, reliability, ethics and peace because Humans are selfish and greedy. We don’t care how far we go to get to what we want. Instead of working together we have to cut each other throats. Hatred and defamation is all we think of when it comes to survival and power. Who started the battle first Republicans? or Democrats? It does not matter because each one of us is going to suffer the same way anyways. Once there is no solution to safe the country or let me rephrase it, better yet the world, we Humans won’t stop. Humans will not stop until we see the world disappear. Perhaps a nuclear war will be the end of humankind. Isn’t this where everyone is heading? Oh but it is much easier to criticize another party or make public rallies to destroy the laws of the country (also applies to world), because it is our personal opinion, how we view or feel about ourselves, this is what matters. Again it is me, myself and I. Let’s make it difficult for who is running the country (also applies to world). Bush was despicable to many people, and who knows how this one is going to turn out. What law? What morality? An eye for an eye and anything is accepted. Who cares this is how we feel today and that is the end of it. Humans are selfish, thoughtless and again greedy, what! 90% of the world is dominated by the flesh. It is easy to accuse any president of the United States on decisions they make, whether they are good or bad. Humans always have to criticize, isn’t that what we do best. All Presidents and their organization make good and bad decisions. But we are here to complaint about it and make it difficult for them with a law-change or an accusation to suit someone. Better yet, let us use up all of our resources, let me see what benefits I could get my hands on or who could I step on. Anyways once I am gone, does it matter what happens to those who come after me, of course hoping that the world does not get destroy before I go. God knows? Who is God? At least does what 90% of Humans think of.

“Dedicated to each and every one of us”.

DON'T WORRY, AFTER THE SPEECH THE PRESIDENT GAVE
TODAY, AMERICA JUST REGAINED SOME OF ITS HUMANITY
BACK, THE PRESIDENT HAS SPOKEN, AND IT WAS GRAND!

Everyone has a right to take time off..even the president!

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on May 30, 2009 5:25 PM.

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