The Obamas just squeezed in a 27 hour trip to the Gulf Coast, between an ostentatious 5 day trip by Michelle and Sasha Obama to Spain, a three day campaign trip, and ten days in Martha’s Vineyard.
The first time claims for unemployment jumped to half a million on Thursday, August 19 in the Summer of Recovery. The President’s response is to recover on Martha Vineyard, while Congress leaves town.
27 hours in the Gulf for a photo op, compared to three days in California, Florida, Ohio, Washington, and Wisconsin. His fund raising trip to Los Angeles raised $1 million, and stalled traffic during rush hour on the 405 and Sepulveda Blvd for up to 4 hours. The commuters could use some vacation time.
The trip to the Gulf was squeezed in for political reasons. The vacations, especially to Spain as the Gulf was hurting, were playing poorly with the public.
The President in the Gulf once again managed to avoid meeting with some of the direct, economic victims of the Gulf – the 50,000 oil workers his Administration rendered unemployed by invoking a moratorium on off shore drilling. He gets to vacation on Martha’s Vineyard for 10 days while his Administration told them to apply for unemployment.
Personally, I don’t care how many vacations a President takes, where he vacations, or the duration of vacations by the President and the President’s family. I don’t care if he spends 365 days a year at Camp David, Martha’s Vineyard, Kennebunkport, Kalamazoo, or Mars. I don’t care if he plays 48 rounds or 48 holes of golf or mini golf, engages in pickup basketball games, or views concerts.
His effectiveness and success will be judged by what his accomplishments as President.
The Dog Days of August have not been good to the President, so he should get away. Either that or reassess his economic program. He’s a true believer, so that’s not going to happen.
Presidents need to decompress. The stress level in the White House may be immeasurable, especially as the polls head south.
One travel problem for President Obama is that he is missing greeters on several legs of his trips. He flew into Georgia a few weeks ago and the Democratic candidate for Governor was campaigning in a small town far away. He flew into Texas and was greeted by the Republican Governor. The Democratic candidate was nowhere to be found. He traveled to New York City a couple of weeks ago for two fundraisers. Wall Street concerns contributed $15 million to his 2008 Presidential campaign with Goldman Sachs leading the way with $1.1 million. Feeling betrayed by Obama, and horrified by his rhetoric, they've boycotted the President. One event was even canceled.
He should contact WalMart about hiring some of their greeters when he comes to town.
Obama is radioactive to many Democrats this election cycle. They’ll take his checks, but not his presence, so he might as well vacation wherever and whenever he wants.
He doesn’t like to travel to disasters though, unless it’s Haiti or he can send in the lawyers. He didn’t do Tennessee during the massive flooding last Spring and he’s ignored Iowa the past months as it’s been inundated.
Martha’s Vineyard is attractive as a Presidential vacation site because it is so isolated. He won’t see any unemployeds on the Island.