December 23rd, 2008
06:40 PM ET
6 years ago

Obama: Put the journalists' beer on my tab

Obama offered to pick up the tab for a group of journalists -- an offer few would make.
Obama offered to pick up the tab for a group of journalists - an offer few would make.

HONOLULU (CNN) – Many Republicans already believe President-elect Barack Obama has gotten a free ride from the national media, so they may not be happy to learn the incoming Commander-in-Chief offered to buy a round of drinks for reporters covering his working vacation on the sands of Hawaii's beaches and the greens of its lush golf courses.

Halfway through a round of golf on Sunday afternoon, Obama rolled up to the snack bar in his golf cart to find a small pool of reporters waiting to get more pictures of him enjoying a leisurely day. No doubt realizing these might not be the best images at a time of recession, Obama suggested the reporters seek some other recreation to pass the time - rather than snapping so many pics.

"Obama then told us we should be in the clubhouse at the bar having some beers," according to a pool report by Jamie Farnsworth of CBS News. "Someone asked if he would pick up the tab and he agreed before driving off to the next hole. Pool is still holding without beer.

In a separate pool report for print journalists, Jeff Zeleny of The New York Times added helpfully: "He chatted for a moment, telling the pool to have a beer and put it on his tab. No one took him up on the offer."

Aha! So the key here is reporters covering the President-elect are having more fun here in Hawaii than we had in Crawford, Texas - and 85 degrees in the middle of the afternoon here is way better than the cold winds blowing through Chicago too. But none of the journalists were corrupted by free beer - we pay our own tabs.

And just for the record: your faithful correspondent, while enjoying the wonders of Waikiki beach, never drinks - at least not on the job.

soundoff (264 Responses)
  1. nelson

    I'd rather hear about where the T.A.R.P (Bailout) money is going and what it is being used for. By the way, does anyone know how that money is being allocated? I surely haven't heard much news on it. Oh yeah, I'm sorry, that was so last week.

    December 23, 2008 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  2. mesa

    Forget the beer, Peggy the Moocher wants to know when he is going to start paying her mortgage.

    December 23, 2008 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  3. Lana, NY

    You people are PATHETIC! We are a nation of whiners. This is not news.

    December 23, 2008 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  4. Trasa

    Who cares if he offered them beers. People take too much into stuff. And he deserves a vacation before he takes over this **it most of the American people end up getting the whole country into. Take care Obama, enjoy it while you can cause it's going to be a long ride.

    December 23, 2008 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  5. Sherry

    What a non story. Who cares if he has a working vacation in his home state before he becomes president. Don't you guys have something else to report that's relevant?????

    December 23, 2008 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  6. Great

    I am a Conservative and I say GOOD for him!!! There is nothing wrong with playing golf or buying a beer. All U naysayers...Get a life!

    December 23, 2008 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  7. Oh boy

    Boy the kooks are out today. Jealous much? The guy has money. Get over it. I'd like some money too but I'm not going to hate on the people who have it. I'm pretty sure he's not the only person on a sweet vacation. Some people need to take their meds today.

    December 23, 2008 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  8. Ash Reddy

    Give Obama a break! He can only do his till 20th Jan...
    And Bush is quetly signing off on all those illegal executive orders or undoing some bans put in place previously – Bush, Cheny and their chorts are raking in the money while we are stuck to our unemployment and our financial mess!

    December 23, 2008 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  9. jim

    This is a stupid story. Obama is a millionaire on vacation; everybody knows that. If Bush had offered to buy the photogs a beer, I would have thought that was pretty cool of him; why should I think differently if Obama does it? What isn't cool is that the journalist asked him to pick up the tab in the first place. How could he snub them without being criticized? The media are jerks. Buying them a beer would be similar to buying a can of Off to get rid of bugs.

    December 23, 2008 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  10. The Dawg

    OK...I'm a McCain voter and I think I disagree with Obama on nearly every issue...BUT...let's get some perspective here. Let the guy take a break!! He isn't President yet and just completed the longest campaign in US history. Family time and relaxation are important and I can't imagine that once he's in office he's going to have a lot of time for either.

    December 23, 2008 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  11. John

    Yeh, lets all "pile on him"....after all it's Christmas (or what ever is your faith)

    December 23, 2008 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  12. readyfortheholidays

    So many of you are making comments about all his money and him offering to buy beer. Well you haven't heard any other celeberties offer to use there stash of money on anyone. It is a start whether in a recession or not and by the way a round of beers is not going to get anyone drunk and kill someone. Some of you people are never happy unless you are bashing someone. He is human and deserves a vacation too. There are other hot shots right now on vacation but you aren't hearing about it because they are the Prs-Elect.

    December 23, 2008 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  13. Mike

    Looks like most people still can't give Obama a chance to prove himself. You had 8 years of incompetence with the republicans, including 2 presidents, bush and cheny. My God, stop the insanity from the Obama haters! It's sickning.

    December 23, 2008 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  14. F.B.

    Didn't the Republicans run on the theme of Joe Six-Pack?

    Obama is just being bi-partisan bringing everyone together!!!

    December 23, 2008 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  15. 28 Days to Go!!

    Great post, Roy!!!

    December 23, 2008 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  16. So Sad

    CNN as usual. Scraping the bottom of the barrel

    December 23, 2008 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  17. FBI

    Bryan – You should get the GRAMMY for the stupidest comment!

    December 23, 2008 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  18. Jonathan

    "John McCain deserved the presidency". What kind of fruit loop ride are you on? Why did he deserve it? Because he is a vet and served in the Senate for 30 years...The American people were looking for change this year and there was no way McCain was going to deliver that. And choosing Palin as his running mate sure didn't help, that was our first taste at how bad his decision making was going to be.

    December 23, 2008 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  19. Blue in NC

    Pete,

    You might want to read the whole story before slamming the press. None of the press took him up on his offer.

    As to the symbolism of his playing golf while there is a recession going on, I hardly begrudge him some relaxation before the storm that he will be having to deal with come January 20th.

    Give the guy a break! He's a human being. Enough with (what ironically John McCain described as) "gotcha journalism"!!

    December 23, 2008 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  20. Polar Bears Against Palen

    You right-wingers suck. Poor losers. Your side lost....BIG! Deal with it.

    December 23, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  21. Trasa

    Last thing, of course the haters out there will have something to say about it, that he shouldn't be relaxing cause the country is in the state it's in, but maybe I missed something, he can't officially do anything until he's sworn in, for one. Another thing, Obama can't fix all this mess in a week, and considering he's moved at a better speed than past elected Presidents trying to have everything in order by that time in January, gives me the confidence that he'll take action when it's needed. Last, to the haters, just get over it cause no matter what you say, he's still the next President.

    December 23, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  22. Once you vote Black

    If you think Obama is not going to live up to his promise then you better hope you are wrong. Either way you are pulling for him.

    December 23, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  23. Silkee

    Give the guy a break. it's a working vacation.

    Bush has been playing golf for the last 8 years while the economy steadily plummets. Bush will go down as the worse president ever.

    December 23, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  24. Nelson Colorado Springs Co

    Give President Obama a break, There is only one President at a time he can't do anything until he take office. President Obama needs to have vacation, look at the mess this country is in buying beer for reporter so what. The world didn't stop because President is on vacation, also mite be his time to enjoy the family.

    December 23, 2008 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  25. Randy, San Francisco

    Obama should set up a basketballl game with the Prez/cabinet against the press corp. Losers buy the beer.

    December 23, 2008 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
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