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Obama Welcomes Tourists to the Lincoln Memorial

by Keith Koffler on April 9, 2011, 4:54 pm

President Obama had a little fun today claiming some credit for preventing a government shutdown, materializing at the Lincoln Memorial to highlight that the monuments are open for business.

Note Eric Whitaker, his Chicago pal, was along for the ride. I assume Whitaker is in town because he was going to head to WIlliamsburg with the Obamas.

Updated with better video 8:33 pm - thanks Janice.

From the pool reports:

The motorcade left the White House at 2:27 pm . . .

POTUS bounded up the Lincoln Memorial steps before a cheering crowd, shaking hands with tourists atop the monument . . . He descended slowly, shaking hands along the way, ignoring questions from the pool about the budget deal. POTUS was casually dressed in gray chinos and a black zip-up looking jacket.

The motorcade arrived back at the White House before 3:00 p.m. Riding with POTUS was Eric Whitaker, a longtime Chicago friend and golf companion of POTUS, and Marvin Nicholson, White House trip director and fellow golfer.

Ryan Grim
Huffington Post

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Granny Jan April 9, 2011 at 5:09 pm

Here’s the video. Nothing like inconvenienting everyone for your photo-op needs. I want to scream, too, like the Obambots in the crowd. “No More Years”.

srdem65 April 9, 2011 at 5:17 pm

The Prez’s security looked scared.
All in all, what he said was good by giving the credit for the budget deal to “Congress”.
Thanks for the video, GJ.

Keith Koffler April 9, 2011 at 8:42 pm

I’ve rarely seen the Secret Service look like that. Very uncontrolled circumstance.

Star April 10, 2011 at 11:40 am

The grandstanding wasn’t so grand, huh?

Over on NPR, they are crowing about how the Repubicans social agenda bombed–so sad, too bad…didn’t happen to mention that cutting them was part of it…Does anyone else get the creeps off that Mara Liaisson?

MaryOhSoContrary April 10, 2011 at 8:05 pm

Oh GJ…WON OF YOUR BEST!!! Love the slomo down the steps. The move of the day ‘high fiving little pale kids propped up on dad’s shoulders.’ Someone must think that is campaign gold.

Susan April 9, 2011 at 6:04 pm

Well he was planning on giving a little face time in Williamsburg, so he had to go somewhere to perform. Just doing a little glad-handing with the little people.

His secret service crew does look harried. He must be wearing them out, with his flits all over the country several times a week. It must be a tough job keeping up with a narcissist like him. He thinks everybody loves him…

Granny Jan April 9, 2011 at 6:31 pm

The crowd was not wanded but told to keep their hands out of their pockets. (from a You Tube video) That’s why the Secret Service looked so nervous.
I’m sure they were thrilled.

I bet that with Eric Whittaker there, tommorrow is number 63.
Another avatar redo?

Susan April 9, 2011 at 7:00 pm

Absolutely. It is supposed to be a beautiful day in DC tomorrow, so you know golf will be on the schedule. Bet you already have #63 waiting in the wings :)

Keith Koffler April 9, 2011 at 8:36 pm

If he doesn’t go golfing tomorrow I will eat my iMac.

William April 9, 2011 at 7:11 pm

To think, I spent today at Mount Vernon and missed the visit. At least I got a bottle of the Mount Vernon whiskey.

Keith Koffler April 9, 2011 at 8:34 pm

I’ll have to get some of that.

Star April 10, 2011 at 11:43 am

Did you know–apropos of nothing but my nonlinear brain–that descedents of GW are “allowed” to put their ashes around Mt Vernon? Under bushes or something. As long as they don’t make a big deal of it..

Holy Smoke April 9, 2011 at 7:46 pm

Do you think he had a bullet proof vest on underneath the jacket?

Granny Jan April 9, 2011 at 8:08 pm

You’re probably right. That’s why he didn’t look as thin as usual. He was wearing a loose jacket, too. There’s a photo of him bounding up the stairs a la Rocky.

We will be seeing these scenes in a campaign commercial. This is the opening salvo.

Shofar April 10, 2011 at 2:00 pm


He did have a vest on. You can see the outline of it towards the beginning of the vid (look at the area along his right shoulder when he is glad handing) and at the end of the vid when he is leaving (you can see the top of the vest’s outline as he shakes hands with the uniform).

I spent the better part of my adult life (15+ years) working in L/E and I was privileged(?) to work the protection detail (uniformed and plain clothes) for several mayors, a governor, and countless visiting dignitaries. It was always hell when your principal decided to go off the farm and wade into a crowd that was not screened.

Even in the friendliest of crowds there is always the potential for a threat, and without being able to do a prior threat assessment, it makes your job horrid.

I was glad to see that most of the S/S personnel were wearing vests. Since the Reagan attempted assassination I think most of them do now. I know I always did.

MaryOhSoContrary April 9, 2011 at 7:49 pm

“They love me, they really, really, love me.”

(And just how much did THIS motorcade photo op cost the US taxpayer??? Using Nancy Pelosi Economics…how many meals for seniors and/or mammograms were ‘wasted’ by this little sojourn?)

Granny Jan April 9, 2011 at 8:11 pm

They kicked people out of the memorial and closed it for the photo-op so he could announce that it was open. I’ve read remarks from people who were there. No one was wanded. Obviously, they did let some Obamabots stay to cheer him on.

Keith Koffler April 9, 2011 at 8:35 pm

Now that’s a little ironic . . .

Star April 10, 2011 at 11:45 am

One word for it…I would say STAGED.

Holy Smoke April 9, 2011 at 11:53 pm

Exactly how would the NPS close the Lincoln Memorial ? It is open 24/7. Would they put up a tacky orange construction fence? The President picked the wrong NPS site.

Granny Jan April 10, 2011 at 12:58 am

He is not a golf addict. I repeat, not a golf addict. He just likes to take long, leisurely walks holding a 7 iron.

Here’s the First Kvetch at his whiniest:

Granny Jan April 10, 2011 at 1:11 am

Isn’t Camp David just the secluded spot BO is looking for? Miles of trails…no pesky photographers. It must of slipped his mind.

Speaking of photographers, I was shocked to see Obama’s personal photographer, Pete Souza, try to push a secret service agent out of the way in the video of the Lincoln Memorial because he was blocking his view. He put his hand on him and tried to push. Really

Granny Jan April 10, 2011 at 1:44 am

I forget the best line. He wants to be “sqeezing fruit”. What if George Bush had said that?

Star April 10, 2011 at 3:15 pm

You mean like “got wood?”

Granny Jan April 10, 2011 at 5:54 am

The obligatory video

with two unrelated soundtracks. Whatever

@ 1:15 is the one of best clips I’ve ever done…the slo mo prance. Comedy gold. Thanks to some Marine’s camera phone.

srdem65 April 10, 2011 at 9:41 am

There seems to be something pathetic about that visit to the Memorial. It seems he went there for some adulation.
Second thought; he definitely went there for some adulation and photo facetime. Sad and creepy.

Susan April 10, 2011 at 9:52 am

Great work on the video Granny Jan. The Rocky theme music was so appropriate. What is so ironic is that he is taking credit for fixing the budget crisis that he instigated.

The article you linked to was so saccharin. Please, we want you to be anonymous again too. Not to worry, once we pry you out of office you can go back to the good old days of squeezing fruit with your girls on a Saturday morning run to the grocery store.

Star April 10, 2011 at 11:47 am

And then you can go “to the pump.”

w sterling April 10, 2011 at 2:08 pm

Just something else to claim credit for. You know, like gravity…

Star April 11, 2011 at 11:18 am

Was that his, too? I do count on gravity!

csd June 6, 2012 at 10:52 am

Doe she even know who Lincoln is ?