6th Graders' Video Begs White House for Tour Despite Sequester

Friday, 08 Mar 2013 03:45 PM

By Michael Mullins

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Some sixth-graders from Iowa want to reverse one of the most talked about consequences of the sequester —  the cancellation of all White House tours.

The class at St. Paul’s Lutheran school in Waverly sent a video to the White House, asking President Barack Obama to reinstate the tours. The class was scheduled to visit the White House March 16.

The video was posted on the school's Facebook page on Wednesday and went viral as networks like Fox and ABC to pick up the story.

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In the video, the children hold up signs to reiterate the message, "The White House is our house. Please let us visit."

Christi Line, the school's principal, insisted the video was not a political statement, rather just a plea for highly anticipated trip.

"This is our first White House trip and we’d hoped to make it an annual event," Line told Politicker. "Students had been hoping that we would be accepted for a tour. Our trip was coming up in just a couple of weeks and we knew based on when we applied for that that we would find out sort of at the last minute with just a little time left. So, we had been waiting every day to hear."

The principal said that on the same day the class was approved for the tour, all tours were canceled at the White House due to the sequester. The news brought widespread "disappointment" to the class of excited students.

"It was kind of a good news, bad news thing. We just found out that our tour had been approved and, of course, we were finding out at the same time that they were not doing White House tours now," Line said.

Several Fox News hosts and contributors offered to cover expenses for one week of White House tours so that children who were scheduled to go could still attend.

"Make you a deal. Jay Carney, grab a pencil. Let the families take the White House tours next week and I’ll cover the added expenses. The word is it’ll cost around $74,000. If I can get the White House doors open, I will pick up the tab. Mr. Carney, you know this is an offer you can’t refuse. Give me a call," Host Eric Bolling said Friday morning on "Fox & Friends."

Fox News Host Sean Hannity and conservative contributor Charles Krauthammer also expressed interest in picking up the tab for one week of tours.

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White House Press Secretary Jay Carney responded to the sixth graders’ video in a briefing with reporters Friday and described the situation as “extremely unfortunate,” but unavoidable, Politicker reported.

Related stories:

White House Tours Become Casualty of Automatic Budget Cuts

Rep. Gohmert to Obama: Restore White House Tours — Now!

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