June 21st, 2010
02:14 PM ET
4 years ago

Obama deserves a round of golf, White House says

'I don't think that there is a person in this country that doesn't think that their president ought to have a little time to clear his mind,' White House spokesman Bill Burton said Monday.
'I don't think that there is a person in this country that doesn't think that their president ought to have a little time to clear his mind,' White House spokesman Bill Burton said Monday.

(CNN) – The White House is beating back Republican charges that President Barack Obama is taking too many breaks during the ongoing oil disaster off the Gulf coast.

"I don't think that there is a person in this country that doesn't think that their president ought to have a little time to clear his mind," White House spokesman Bill Burton told reporters Monday.

The comments came a day after Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele issued a strongly worded statement condemning the president for playing a round of golf Sunday, attending a baseball game Friday, and recently hosting Paul McCartney at the White House.

"Until this problem is fixed, no more golf outings, no more baseball games, no more Beatle concerts, Mr. President," Steele said in the statement. "The stakes are too high for President Obama's lackadaisical approach to both his responsibilities and the challenges we face."


Burton instead suggested the president's BP response has been whole-hearted.

"After a week where the president was taking on the oil spill; got a historic agreement with BP to put aside $20 billion to pay claims; after a day on Friday when he strengthened lobbying and ethics rules in the White House; after going to Ohio to talk about the economy and see the progress that is being made in some of those stimulus projects that are happening around the country; all the different issues that the president is dealing with, I think that a little bit of time to himself on Father's Day weekend probably does us all good as American citizens that our president is taking that time," said Burton.


Filed under: Michael Steele • Popular Posts • President Obama • RNC
soundoff (297 Responses)
  1. Jason

    How dare he. He should personally go down there to the rig itself, in scuba gear and stick those golf balls into the ruptured well one at a time until this leak is fixed. That's really the only thing I'll accept.

    Get a grip. Steele. Bush spent more time at his stupid ranch than he did at the White House. This is a non-story.

    June 21, 2010 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  2. al in memphis

    Until this problem is fixed, no more golf outings, no more baseball games, no more Beatle concerts, Mr. President," Steele said in the statement.
    ____________________________________________________

    And no time with your family as well Mr. President. In fact, all those people a president would normally rely on to get things done are not needed by you Obama because we republicans think you should be doing it all.

    Coming for a group that believes government should stay out of private business matters and states rights, I would think that Steele should be focusing on BP and the governors of the gulf coast states. Once again, Steele must think we are fools to believe that BP would rather lose billions as opposed to finding a solution ASAP. Their is no government or technical expert that could have fix this 50 days ago. Their is a risky side to free markets, this is the risk and it does not come with a government has the answer card.

    June 21, 2010 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  3. Come On

    Exxon Valdez spill – neither party cared what was done or not done on the part of the president. The media didn't once blame the president for the private corporation's mess. George HW Bush never went to Alaska to survey the damage, and he never did anything to stand up for the small businesses affected by the oil spill.

    Now, everyone expects the president to put on a great show, the GOP defends the FOREIGN oil company and not AMERICANS, and the media is fueling anti-Obama rhetoric.

    I could care less if he takes in a round of golf – I believe he's working hard the rest of the time to help American citizens. I don't feel he's like the domestic do nothing president of the past administration who always went on vacay in Crawford to pull brush from his rental home.

    June 21, 2010 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  4. THE OBAMA TRUTH

    What Godly reason could he deserve anything except tar and feathering. This is the most worthless President this country has ever had. In fact he is in the Oval office under false pretenses. He is not even legally a citizen.

    June 21, 2010 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  5. Ricky

    Haven't seen Steele on the gulf coast yet.

    June 21, 2010 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  6. mir

    Mr. Steele get a real life and live in reality at least the president was not caught at the strip club. The oil spill should not be the end of the president's or anyone else's life. Please take care of your own party of NO. The Democrate have achieved more than the GOP. The republicans never speak the truth and strive on the fears of the American people. I am disgusted with the republican party of NO. There all idiots in that party the biggest one is Sarah Palin and yourself. Get a grip and move forward to changing America towards progress and not backward. Instead of minding the Presdent's and the Democratic party's lives you take a look at your own party of corruption. If Obama was white your party would have treated him better. I am glad the president is taking some time off he has worked too much to make your country a better place.

    June 21, 2010 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  7. Desperate Republicans

    When George Bush was President I thought the capital was Crawford, Texas. This was on top of 2 wars, a crappy economy. You didn't complain then so why the hypocrisy?

    June 21, 2010 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  8. Drake

    Yea, when Bush hung out at the ranch, he got hell for it. Yet another glassy eyed, snowed over Obamatron

    June 21, 2010 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  9. Bring it on!

    Whenever the GOP accuses or condems anything the President does or does not do they are guilty of the same, everytime. So, Mr. Steele, just how much "rest and relaxation" did W and Dick have during their 8 years? By the looks of the mess they left the United States of America after 8 years of their rule, maybe we should just count number of days worked. Sure would be a quicker to add those up wouldn't it Mr. Steele?

    June 21, 2010 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  10. Flipper

    To all the liberal sheep who are going to use this thread to a$$-kiss the president, just remember this fact: Obama played more rounds of golf in the first 15 months of his presidency than George W. Bush did in EIGHT years! Of course, the left, and their willing allies in the media, heaped scorn on Bush for playing golf.

    Yet Obama has received NO criticism for playing so much golf from those who criticized Bush for playing a lot less golf. CNN is only covering this b/c the RNC head leveled a complaint. If Steele had not brought up the issue, many libs would have been blissfully ignorant of Obama's excessive golf playing.

    It's also funny to hear Obama's spokesperson defend Obama's golf playing (CNN reported that the ex-CEO for BP went sailing that weekend but conveniently left out that Obama played yet another round of golf). Why didn't Dems use this reasoning when Bush played golf?

    June 21, 2010 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  11. NRP

    Would it be more acceptable to Steele and the Repubs if President Obama instead went to Crawford to clear some brush?

    June 21, 2010 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  12. Anonymous

    Michael Steele and the Repugs are idiots to think that the President doesn't need a break to clear his thoughts. These "holier than thou" repugs are the biggest hypocrits.

    June 21, 2010 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  13. GP

    And just how much time did the last guy in office spend on vacation? For 1/3 of his term he was officially on vacation.

    The petty vindictiveness of the repubs is stunning.

    June 21, 2010 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  14. AtlantaVoter

    Michael Steele giving advice to Barack Obama is laughable. The sad thing is some people actually listen to him. No one can keep up intellectually and physically intense work without some down time. Well, maybe Michael Steele can since the intellectual part does not apply.

    Typical Republican spin. I would think he would be embarrassed to say this. Oh, I forgot. Some get things done and others just complain. Steele is the latter.

    June 21, 2010 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  15. RR in AZ

    Does Michael Steele have a family? Does he spend time with his family? Does he even take time out to relax on Faher's Day?.....Or, does "Toby" always have to conduct politics on Father's Day....Relax Michael!

    June 21, 2010 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  16. ordinairy cirizen

    give him a break, even the president needs downtime

    June 21, 2010 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  17. Jim Taylor

    Steele is ridiculous. Everyone needs a break, otherwise one loses perspective. The President of the free world needs to approach issues with a refreshed mind.
    Also, I would love to see Steele's daily calendar. I hope he hasn't done anything other than work. He is simply trying to find anything that discredits the other party. This is the typical bipartisan view of the world that most Americans detest. JT

    June 21, 2010 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  18. GD

    What a joke!!!

    When politicians can't deliver substance, they point the finger at someone else. President doing it to BP, Steele doing it the president - republicans and democrats alike are a total sham.

    Signed - A conservative with few good candidates to vote for.

    June 21, 2010 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  19. Smart Human

    Remember when Bush took office and immediately went to Crawford, TX for like 8 weeks after he was sworn in? What a joke! Obama works 7 days a week and has barely taken ANY personal time. He more than deserves a day off.

    June 21, 2010 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  20. Jon

    Since there is absolutely nothing more the President can do about the oil leak, he might as well go golfing. When the going gets tough, the tough go golfing. Sounds great to me. See you on the first tee.
    And, of all people, Michael Steele needs to shut up.

    June 21, 2010 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  21. kjm

    Seems to me that the Republicans are getting increasingly desperate in their attempt to sabotage the Obama administration, now he shouldn´t have a few hours off? Maybe all the Republican represntatives should spend their Sundays down in the Gulf helping clean up the oil from their buddy BP´s spill..

    June 21, 2010 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  22. Donnatella

    Do these republicans ever think about how stupid they look always mocking the president, do they really think he cares what they have to say. He deserves a day off like everybody else, he has done all he can do. Michael Steele must get paid to critizize the president, I guess thats is his token job, maybe it won't sound so bad coming from another person of color. Idiots

    June 21, 2010 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  23. kimberly

    Does Michael steel actually still think he is relavant? Hes a JOKE, and is taken about as serious as sarah palin. YES the extreme LOONS love them, but 90% of the country thinks they are jokes!

    June 21, 2010 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  24. Video Guy

    Mr Steel How about the GO(B)P folks stay away from strip clubs using donor money for God knows what.

    June 21, 2010 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  25. Ron

    Yeah, what happens when you work non-stop with no breaks? You make poor decisions and cause even worse problems, and probably negatively affect your health as well leading to more problems.

    It's not patriotic or good leadership to work around the clock for months on end (because that's how long this will last, most likely). What are they going to do next, criticize him for sitting down for dinner instead of wolfing down a Big Mac while working on the Gulf spill?

    Effective use of time doesn't mean using all of your time on one problem.

    June 21, 2010 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
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