I have to admit that I’m puzzled by how the White House handled President Obama’s vacation plans for this week. Something just is odd about it.
Last week, the First Family was up in Martha’s Vineyard. We all know that a President doesn’t really ever vacation, and last week was prime evidence of that.
So it wasn’t much of a surprise when word leaked out that the Obamas would be going to Camp David on Wednesday for a long Labor Day weekend.
But a few hours after the President returned to the White House on Sunday evening, the press office put out this statement:
“The President will continue his vacation through the end of the week. Media will be informed if any public events are added to the schedule.”
Now I’m no dummy. Either Mr. Obama or his aides want to get some down time.
“POTUS begins part two of his vacation on the golf course,” read the report from the White House Pool, which dutifully sat outside the gates of the Army-Navy Club in Virginia while the President got in 18 holes on Monday.
But it wasn’t like the White House was trying to act like the President was on a stay-cation at the White House, as they talked up his meetings earlier in the day.
“The President did some meetings today that included discussions on health care,” said White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs.
“I think that just because the President just might be doing something else doesn’t mean he’s not focused on health care reform,” Gibbs added.
That “something else” was golf that had been asked about by CNN’s Ed Henry.
Today, the President will have an afternoon meeting on the H1N1 flu virus, and he’ll evidently do something on camera.
All of that fits into the idea of what the President could do this week. Have a few meetings, babble a little on the flu, and then jet up to Camp David.
So I will circle back now and ask, then why was that Sunday night statement needed?
“The President will continue his vacation through the end of the week.”
Someone at the White House clearly felt the need to explain what Mr. Obama was going to be doing this week. Why, I’m not quite sure.