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. Bart

    Let's give this a break. I'm a Republican and Mr. Steele needs to get a life. Next, he will suggest we chain the President to his desk and not give him food and water. While I agree that the Obama administration and the President have done a lousy job in (1) admitting this is a crisis until day 55 or so, and (2) developing a managable response to it other than walking on the beach, he is allowed to play a round of golf, take in a game and listen to some music.

    June 21, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  2. GI Joe

    I don't think Mr. Steele is PRESIDENT Obama's boss.

    ha ha ha ha a ha ha ha hah

    June 21, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  3. Missy Tapley Poe

    And Mr. Steele.... just how did you spend YOUR
    Father's Day.

    June 21, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  4. dmac

    Right, because GW Bush never once went mountain bike riding, golfing, etc while sending thousands of Americans to their deaths. And I'm sure all the Repubs in congress haven't taken one second of break since they sent this country down the toilet from 2000-2008

    June 21, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  5. AG

    oh please. non-story.

    June 21, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  6. joe

    While I do not see antyhing wrong with the President taking time off, then I also think the News and other parties should not be crucifynig the BP Chairman for taking some time off also. Neith party sohould be taken to task for taking some time off.

    June 21, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  7. Living in America

    Wow the President is playing golf. Excuse me I thought that slave days were over. Where do people get off as to where he is NOT supposed to take a break. I guess he is suppose to sit at his desk for 10 years and not move. I bet some of the one's complaining about him playing golf are the main one's who taken 2/3 vacations a year.

    It is just amazing since President Obama has been in office folks are saying he hasn't done anything. He is one of the most hardworking President's that I have ever seen. First they say he is doing toooo much, he needs to stick to one thing at a time. Now he isn't doing enough. Where were they when President Bush kept taking all of his vacations to Camp David. Oh my bad they were all sleep at the wheel..

    June 21, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  8. KeithMN

    Steele, get a real job. If you don't have something constructive to offer up, keep your yap shut.

    June 21, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  9. James, Brooklyn

    What has Steele been doing about the leak? His party is apologizing to them for taking there money. What a hypocrite. Was he in the private jet paid for by the brain washed republicans who do not know any better?

    Steele GO TO HELL

    June 21, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  10. Lauren

    Let's see play golf...or be the President that took more vacations than any president during his 1st 100 days in office...

    Grow up!

    June 21, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  11. Thomas

    But at the same time we are villifying the CEO of BP for watching a boat race?

    Hypocricy?

    Gooses and ganders
    Pots and kettles

    June 21, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  12. ed fl

    I guess Steele would be happier if the President ,instead of golfing . had used the GOP Credit card and went off to California to watch/attend pornographic shows like his opposition does.

    June 21, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  13. Marge

    Ha ha ha Bush took more vacations, more bike rides than seven or eight presidents combined, and the GOP cheered him on. But heck let Obama go for a round of golf and you would think we were being attacked. Oh heck yes, we are being attacked by the petty little pus filled minds of the GOP.

    June 21, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  14. AGuest9

    Where was Michael Steele when the running joke of the amount of vacation time that Duh-bya spent on his ranch, that the White House staff started referring to it as the Western White House. The name actually stuck!

    Oh, BTW, Michael was doing NOTHING at the time as the Lt. Gov of Maryland.

    June 21, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  15. John Adkisson

    Did Michael Steele really say that the President should attend "no more Beatle concerts" until the Gulf oil emergency is under control? How did Steele get his job?

    June 21, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  16. Samantha

    It's a double standard to criticize BP execs for yachting while you are going golfing. What's good for the goose is good for the gander; so they say.

    June 21, 2010 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  17. Kanasuta

    Michael Steele is an idiot. Enough said.

    June 21, 2010 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  18. California Gary

    This kind of criticism coming from the party that gave us the "vacationer-in-chief" George Bush? You've got to be kidding me.

    June 21, 2010 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  19. Realistic

    Once again the republicans are acting like idiots. The GOP should grasp that the president is never really on vacation because he is the president. Yes, the GOp has been behind the times for a long time and they don't comprehend that due to technology, the president can be reached at a moments notice. He gets up to date information instantly and probably around the clock. The GOP wants americans to believe that the president has to be in the White House behind the desk in the oval office all the time. Too bad these idiots didn't take the same tune with G.Bush when he was president. The republicans are becoming the party of idiots and will attack the president for taking a pee break. What a bunch of idiots and if the republicans want to help, stop getting in the way of lifting the cap on liability for these oil companies.

    June 21, 2010 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  20. Anonymous

    I am OK with the president taking a break. Everyone needs a mental break when dealing with any kind of stress. Being out of the office even out of reach for a few hours can refresh the brain. I do not believe this oil issue or the war or the economy or any of Americas issues are ever out of the presidents mind completely and sometimes a little peace can help to see things from a different view.

    June 21, 2010 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  21. guestp

    Give the man a break! Are you for real? He needs a break from time to time just like anybody else Micheal Steele. What the hell are you doing besides running your mouth? By the way how are you doing with that issue of you going to some strip joint and spending tax payers dollars?

    June 21, 2010 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  22. Jackie

    Riiiiiiiiiight. Tell that to the cadre of nutroot crunchy hippies who blew up Twitter all weekend long about Hayward taking 24 hours off. Pot meet kettle.

    June 21, 2010 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  23. Alain Corona

    I'm so fed up with the Republican party. President Obama has the right to "clear his head". Let's face it guys, how many of us haven't worked long hours /weeks, and just wished for a little R&R here and there. I'm sure the President has all his key people on this, and is doing everything in his power to get this resolved. It's not like he is able to stop the oil spill on his own. I see no issues with him playing golf, or hosting Paul M. This disaster is as big as a problem for him as it is for all of us, and I'm sure that he is doing everything possible to get this resolved ASAP. Lighten up Steele, you and your Republican counterparts reek of desperation.

    June 21, 2010 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  24. Laurence Hobgood

    What a total twit!!

    After 8 years of Bush the absentee landlord Steele's got a lot of nerve–not to mention the opacity of his rearview mirror.

    And I'm fully aware that the GOP has loudly made it known that they're tired of having this particular bone thrown at them but 1) I'm sorry if it's inconvenient or counter to our OCD-driven state of insanity but the truth is it hasn't been, in the grand scheme of things, THAT long since Bush left office (Barack knows this better than anyone I'm sure) and 2) if the shoe fits . . .

    This is attention-seeking BS politics at its very lamest!

    Laurence Hobgood
    Patchogue, NY

    June 21, 2010 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  25. Oh Pleaseee!

    Mr. Steele, even you know your comments are silly!

    Let's try at least once a week to say something that helps the country and the situation.

    June 21, 2010 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
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