After relentlessly lashing Congress to race through his stimulus bill, which was passed Friday night of last week, President Barack Obama didn’t sign it, but rather left town for a three-day holiday, according to a report in the New York Post.
The frantic race to pass the bill and get it to the President’s desk before the holiday weekend made it all that more difficult for lawmakers to digest and debate the 1,071 pages of the massive $787 stimulus package, noted the Post.
“In a perfect world it would have been nice to have had more time to process it,” understated Ilan Kayatsky, a spokesman for Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-NY.
President Obama has attributed the delay in dealing with the signed emergency legislation to his desire to ceremoniously put his chop on the bill Tuesday in Denver, Colorado, a venue he promised to visit during his campaign.
But the NY Times suggests that there may have been an alterior motive in the President’s plan for dealing with the bill after the President’s Day holiday weekend – he and his family simply needed and wanted to get out of the White House.
“My Kennebunkport is on the South Side,” Obama told a group of children at a Washington elementary school, adding that he and his wife and two young daughters already needed a break from the official first residence. The Kennebunkport reference is to President George Bush’s favorite getaway place on Maine’s coast.
Furthermore, the President disclosed that he intended to make the same getaway every six to eight weeks.
On tap at home over the weekend was basketball with his buddies at the Chicago Laboratory School, a haircut from his favorite barber, Valentine’s dinner at a favorite eatery near Lake Shore Drive, some tube time watching the N.B.A. All-Star Game, and packing daughters, Malia and Sasha off to visit with Chicago friends.
“Part of his job is to stay in touch with the American people, and the White House can be a very suffocating place if you don’t get out and talk to people,” David Axelrod, a senior adviser to Mr. Obama, spun to Fox News on Sunday.
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