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. steven rigerl

    micheal steele needs to get a life . every president wheter in war or peace or whatever has taken some time off. i understand critisizing a presidents policies , actions whatever BUT this picking on every little thing he does is pure B.S .

    June 21, 2010 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  2. Frank Fodor

    Wow, Mr. Steele is really scraping the bottom of the barrel on this one. Of course, he's scraped most of the way through the bottom already, but ...

    So I guess Mr. Obama has to stop being a human being while he's confronted with crises. Is that what Mr. Steele is saying? It's not as if Obama is taking a week long golf holiday. Certainly he should also stop spending "quality time" with his girls, because that would also distract from the quality time he should be spending with BP. I'll bet he can eat faster too, if he tried. Don't suppose he could get by with an hour less sleep?

    I won't denigrate the party he represents, but Mr. Steele sure has a weak mind when it comes to political acumen. Is the barrel really that empty, Mr. Steele?

    June 21, 2010 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  3. Mickey, NY

    I wonder how long Steele had to practice saying the word "lackadaisical" before he got it right.

    Uh, Mr. Steele, please go back to your Uncle T role and STFU.

    June 21, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  4. Pat

    The Republicans must be hard up if they have to criticize the president for playing golf on Father'a Day. What are they all doing? Were they down helping clean the beaches Sunday? I doubt it.

    It's so easy to talk crap when you aren't in the drivers seat.

    June 21, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  5. Average Joe

    first of all I despise Obama he is the worst president in my lifetime, but he has a right to have time for himself if he wants to golf or have celebrities come to the white house so be it.

    June 21, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  6. Eric

    This is coming from the chairman of George W. Bush, who took more time on vacation than any president in recent memory. The President is always dealing with a crisis so to say that he cannot relax during a crisis is ridiculous.

    June 21, 2010 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  7. Colleen McPhail

    I totally agree with you Mr. Burton. President O'Bama has been working diligently on so many serious problems, and he needs time for some most deserved R&R.

    June 21, 2010 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  8. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    Republicans should just shut the hell up.... what a pack of anti-American MORONS....

    And who doesn't think RACISM is at the bottom of their endless whining?

    June 21, 2010 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  9. Barb

    This really ticks me off. The Republicans are now setting the Presidents schedule. Why the H- aren't they working on solving the oil crises, too. They claim to be the smartest and best thing that we have going for us. The Great Republican "NO PARTY" again showing their true colors. I'm so sick of the negativity that comes from this party and the fact that they are NOT doing anything but working against the President. Get off of your big fat butts and start thinking of the people of this country. Start working with and not against the President in absolutely everything possible. It's just plain idiotic some of the things that come out of the mouths of some Republicans. You have a job to do and that is not to bad mouth the President but to work for this country and to start solving problems like the oil, too. If you are all so smart and not golfing, going to baseball games and hosting famous people, too, then we should be hearing some great ideas from all of you. It's a joint responsibility.

    There isn't anyway possible that a President could be at the job 24 hours a day seven days a week, with the mental work load that he has and not have anytime to relax. I'd rather have a President that took a break once in awhile over a President that had a breakdown from not taking a break.

    Hey, you Repubs, .....when he's on a break why don't you take the opportunity to go to work for the people? We'd at least get a wee bit of work out of you.

    June 21, 2010 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  10. beth

    Leading this country is not an easy task. I think a little recreational distraction will allow him to come back to the table refreshed and better able to think and concentrate. We really don't have to examine his daily routines under a microscope.

    June 21, 2010 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  11. BlackBarbie

    When is Steele going to get his ?,!.

    June 21, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  12. M-AZ

    Michael Steele,

    Go to HELL!

    June 21, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  13. Dave

    Obama takes too many breaks? Are you people kidding me?!?!?!?!?

    This is coming from the party whose last President was on a perpetual break. Then again, Bush (and most Republicans) needed all of those breaks. It's tough being President and having to do things like think and cover up lies and incompetence all of the time...

    June 21, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  14. Timothy

    Correct me if I am wrong but didn't former President Bush break the record of most vacation days with approximatly 487 days.

    June 21, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  15. DIANA

    Where was this outrage when Bush kept taking vacations while America was going down the toilet?

    My God, everybody needs a day off once in awhile. For those of you who complain, I guess you work 365 a year without any time off.

    June 21, 2010 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  16. Clifford

    Oh how easy it is to forget George Bush playing a round of golf the week after September 11, 2001. The Democrats should fire back with a television ad(s) showing what Senators, Governor's, and what the former President was doing during and after a major crisis in this country. Both sides of the aisle are sick and tired of these typical games that both parties play. After 31 years as a Democrat, I've changed my party affiliation to Independent.

    June 21, 2010 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  17. justiceserved

    GW was the most absentee President in US history and still managed to get us into 2 wars, one strictly for oil, tank the economy, lower our image throughout the world, and never get OBL, rebuild the Gulf Coast, or come clean about torture or the yellowcake lie. Pres. Obama has done alot so far, and will do more to rebuild our middle class if we support him, and stop the knitpicking about how he spends his time. He is neither an oli exec., nor a scientist, and those that are were not working full-time to solve this problem on Father's Day. Give the guy a break!

    June 21, 2010 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  18. HeadOfSteele

    Mr. Steele,

    You're right. I mean who plays golf. He should have taken a page from the Republican notebook and blown a ton of money at a strip-club. Now that's how to relax like a Republican.

    June 21, 2010 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  19. Bob from MD

    I agree with Steele. This is a major crisis and he appears to be ignoring it. Everyone deserves and needs a little time off, but this is getting ridiculous. It's time for some leadership in time of crisis! The hanging with celebrities and golf rounds can wait!

    June 21, 2010 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  20. MEL

    Who is Steele??? and would like to asking what was he doing along with all the Republicans while our country was so drunk during the last administration. Thank you Steele for taking our country to the dump!!!!!! Thank you Barton, because one more time we all know what the party of NO represents. Rand Paul expressing that our President is to rough on BP. LIERS = GOP

    June 21, 2010 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  21. Jack

    Joe Q. Public is so fickle!

    I am just waiting to hear the comments on this one!

    June 21, 2010 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  22. vivaespana

    Maybe, just maybe, the self-righteous hypocrites in the White House should not have invited this legitimate question by going after Tony Hayward for taking Saturday off to attend a regatta.

    June 21, 2010 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  23. NC

    Steele needs to shut his stupid mouth. Who does he think he is, he is nothing but a token mouthpiece for the party of no. Why doesn't he tell Republicans no more lap dances, no more screwing around on your wives and no more taking money from banks, oil and health care lobbyists. What a joke and miserable group the republicans are. President Obama deserves a break from republican fools like Steele

    June 21, 2010 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  24. sonny chapman

    If he stayed locked up in the White House, he's Jimmy Carter during the Iran Hostage Crisis. If he takes too much vacation time, he's George W. the during the MANY crisis' he seemed to bring on himself. It's hard to please people who HATE you.

    June 21, 2010 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  25. Jon in Rochester NY

    He should have gone to clear brush in Crawford like Bush did during the Katrina disaster or maybe hit a strip club with Mr. Steele.

    June 21, 2010 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12