December 12th, 2008
02:10 PM ET
5 years ago

Early Blair House check-in for Obamas unavailable

The Obamas had been hoping for an early Blair House check-in.
The Obamas had been hoping for an early Blair House check-in.

CHICAGO (CNN) – President-elect Barack Obama will not be moving his family across the street from the White House early, despite his request to do so. Blair House, which incoming presidents traditionally occupy 5 days before inauguration day on January 15, is apparently booked in the early part of January.

An Obama transition spokesperson says the family initially "explored the idea" of moving into Blair House early so that daughters Sasha and Malia could start school on schedule. But the family was told there were previously-scheduled events and guests that could not be displaced.

"The Blair House, the President's guest house for visiting dignitaries, is available to President-elect Obama and his family starting January 15, as is historically the case," said Sally McDonough, spokeswoman for First Lady Laura Bush.

"As for any conversation, I don't comment on specific conversations about transition details."

The Obama transition spokesperson emphasized the White House has been "extremely accommodating" to the Obama family, adding that the entire process has been "smooth and friendly."


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (1,230 Responses)
  1. Ms Jamaica

    No room in the Inn for the Messiah? this is totally UNACCEPTABLE

    December 12, 2008 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  2. Bart

    In all fairness, the is a special request that Obama is making, and someone else has already been told that they will be occupying the house. It WILL be available to him on the traditional day it normally would be. I'm sure Obama has plenty of other options for getting his kids in to school on schedule. There are many other places to stay, and he's not lacking money.

    Personally, though, I find it hard to wait until he takes up permanent residence at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave...

    December 12, 2008 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  3. charles

    Obama is making a reasonable request, one for his younger children. Bush is being reasonable to deny it. Partisans on both sides – get over yourselves and your egomanical view of politics!

    December 12, 2008 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  4. Joe

    Well Peggy – they are the leaders of the free world – that's who. Just because Obama thinks he is entitled to everything does not necessarily mean that he is...I'm sure that he can get a hotel room for 5 days...come on – gimme a friggin break! Tells you something about the character of our wannabe prez

    December 12, 2008 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  5. Joe

    Wow, you guys are not very bright are you. Obama isn't president yet, and he'll get access to the house when it's appropriate per standing tradition, and not a day sooner. Get over it.

    December 12, 2008 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  6. Los

    George Bush made the right decision, since everyone knows that Obama is totally working for a secret cabal headed Blagojevich, Rezko, and ACORN, and under the supervision of Saddam Hussein's ghost.

    December 12, 2008 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  7. Mike

    Read the story people. It is available on Jan 15th just as it always has been. Like it or not Bush is still President until Jan 20. I'm sure there are lovely hotels in the area for your new President.

    December 12, 2008 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  8. Anne E.

    So typical of W. As antsy as he was to get INTO the WH to begin with, I won't really believe he's leaving until we see clips of their stuff being moved OUT.
    Jan. 20th can't come soon enough!!!!

    December 12, 2008 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  9. Kbell

    Oh my heavens! Get over it already! Poor babies can't move in early – WOOPy do! I really don't give a hoot. It's their business – and the Bush's are being RUDE – hmm don't think that Laura Bush takes the reservations there!

    December 12, 2008 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  10. Matt

    Guys, chill out. I understand you want to make everything a federal case, but this is just a little filler story. Don't make everything into a slight on President-Elect Obama.

    These comments are what perpetrates the political culture of over-reacting blowhards who scream about things, rather than talk about them. In result, when there is actually something to scream about, nobody listens. Remember the boy who cried wolf?

    I proudly voted for Mr. Obama, but this just isn't that big of a deal. If he wants his girls to go to school on time, I bet he can find a place to stay!

    December 12, 2008 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  11. Tasha

    How is it that the Blair House is suddenly occupied the year that history is changed. If we had stuck this country with four more years of tourment , the Blair House would have been vacant months ago. Who is more important than the president, other than god. They are saying that these people can't be displaced, well i wonder what color they are because it seems like that's what this whole issue is gonna end up being about. Why can't this country play far.

    December 12, 2008 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  12. Regi

    Talk about a reality check. Obviously he is not the president yet. I think this is just rediculous.

    December 12, 2008 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  13. AdamR

    I think it is great, why should he get to move in early? 43 others had to play by rules, why shouldn't he?

    December 12, 2008 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  14. Tom

    You guys have to be kidding me? You're upset because he has to follow the same rules everyone else has followed through the years???

    No wonder this country is in the condition it is... look at these posts!!!! You guys are absolutely nuts! How did you guys get out of the nut house? How did you get computers and internet service????

    Wow

    December 12, 2008 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  15. Kbell

    Oh my heavens! Get over it already! Poor babies can't move in early – WOOPy do! I really don't give a hoot. It's their business – and the Bush's are NOT being RUDE – hmm don't think that Laura Bush takes the reservations there! They will just have to be just LIKE past president's and WAIT their turn. Good grief!

    December 12, 2008 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  16. pedro

    So, now they'll have to rent an expensive suite at the Ritz, or something, and charge back to the taxpayers. Thanks, George. Would want to put some Saudi prince out of Blair house for a few days. Ridiculous.

    December 12, 2008 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  17. Charles

    Linda 32,

    It WILL be available come January 15, as IT ALWAYS HAS BEEN FOR INCOMING PRESIDENTS...

    Jeeez, Obama asks for extra favors, and Bush gets blamed...

    December 12, 2008 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  18. Carl from Atlantic City

    It was the same story for the Bushs moving in after the Clintons and the Clintons after the Bushs and the Bushs after the Reagans.

    They should wait their turn like everybody else.

    December 12, 2008 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  19. SHARON-MN

    I think it was an appropriate request for the Obama's to make. They have and always will be trying to make this as easy as possible on the girls. This isn't a status request or anything to be seen as conceit. It was a question that was answered. It would have been nice for the Bush's to make other arrangements for their guests. But apparantly they didn't. Plain and simple. All this other garbage of POTUS and PE...is just crap. Get over it people. Please. This country needs to come togehter not continue to rip each other apart. The election is over, isn't it? YES!

    December 12, 2008 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  20. Kel in Auburn, AL

    Guests who could not be displaced? Who is it that can't be rescheduled for our next president?

    December 12, 2008 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  21. David

    I'm in favor of them using the Motel 6 close by. I'm sure they'll even leave the light on for them.

    December 12, 2008 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  22. Charlie in Maine

    Who booked it? I bet it was McCain. His other 11 houses were being renovated?

    December 12, 2008 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  23. Mike in Texas

    Ernie, why don't you get out of your house and let the Obama's stay there?

    Good grief, the Obama's seem to look like free-loaders. He took in millions during the campaign, has sold millions in books (fiction, mind you). I think they can afford to rent short term so their daughters can stay out of public school.

    December 12, 2008 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  24. pittsburgh

    Since there are young children for the first time since Kennedy, I believe it was Ok for President-elect to ask. However, if the rule is 5 days than that's the rule. Why are we attempting to put everything eles in the mix. For the Obama haters, you grap at every little thing to make your case. Get over it and move on with your life.

    December 12, 2008 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  25. Get over it

    At least Bush won't TRASH the White House and leave ove $38,000 worth of damage like the Clintons did!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    December 12, 2008 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
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