President Barack Obama left the White House on Friday for a 10-day vacation, taking with him the beloved family dog and leaving behind an acrimonious debate about a proposed overhaul of the nation's health care system.From the Vineyard Gazette:
Obama left the White House's South Lawn by Marine helicopter early in the afternoon for the presidential retreat at Maryland's Camp David. He and his family then head on Sunday morning to Massachusetts' Martha's Vineyard, where they will stay at a private 28-acre estate that rents for $35,000 a week. They are expected to keep mostly to themselves.
The vacation will be a retreat from the contentious debate over Obama's health care overhaul, which has set back the White House's agenda. Aides say they don't expect Obama to wade into that controversy on vacation. Read more at MSNBC
In sharp contrast to previous Presidential visits, the public will be shut out when Barack Obama and his family arrive on the Vineyard somewhere in a five-hour window on Sunday afternoon.While the First Family vacations, everyone is hoping to get a piece of them, including the right wing trolls:
As the Martha’s Vineyard Airport and later a White House spokeswoman confirmed yesterday, there will be no chance for the media, or, more importantly, Islanders to see the First Family.
“It will be what’s called a closed arrival,” said the airport manager Sean Flynn.
“There will be no opportunity at all, really, for the public to view it. That’s the straight up, honest answer. You won’t catch a glimpse of anything.”
A presidential spokesman said later the First Family would land in Air Force One at Otis Air Base near Bourne on Cape Cod, where their arrival will be open to media, and then commute to the Island by helicopter, where it will not.
If, as appears to be the plan, the Obamas lie low for the duration of their vacation, they will leave a growing media circus with no headline act. It is understood most of the major networks and cable channels plan extensive coverage. Only yesterday it was revealed the Geraldo Rivera show, on Fox, plans to broadcast from the Island on Saturday evening.
There will be media briefings for the Washington media, but otherwise the news pickings look thin, something which may play to the advantage of certain Obama critics.
Cindy Sheehan, for example, the peace activist whose son Casey was killed in the Iraq War, plans a series of media events — among them a peace vigil in Ocean Park in Oak Bluffs and an event at the Katharine Cornell Theatre in Vineyard Haven.
“In addition,” said a press release put out by her handlers, “there will be impromptu gatherings during the week.”
Right-wing activists also are reportedly targeting the President during his time on the Vineyard. VG