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

Early Blair House check-in for Obamas unavailable

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="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. matt

    It is amazing how many of you can't read...simply amazing. Linda32, Dr. T, Joe the Plumber, Mack...did any of you bother to read the article? Do any of you know how to read? It's scary how a person has teh right to vote when they don't even have the ability to read a short article. The article states the house is available on the 15th of Jan. like is has been for all previous President Elects. The White House didn't fail to plan for the situation. Obama wasn't being slighted when the White House informed him that the house is booked in advance...nor was it in any way arrogant to request the house. Next time, before getting hysterical why not take a breath and think...Sorry to the previously mentioned people who apparently don't know how to read and are unable to think rationally. Have a good day.

    December 12, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  2. Carl, NJ

    Kick the Bushes out early and let the Obamas stay there. He's the president anyway, because Bush checked out long ago.

    December 12, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  3. Coopforobama

    Bertha doucet , Gerda Edwards, Cindy I believe you guys should be on the Fox website and your racism is screaming out loud and clear.

    If the tradition is and has ALWAYS been that the President Elect moves into Blair house at least five days before inauguration, there is NO ONE and I mean NO ONE that is more important than OUR President , therefore THEY (who ever they maybe) should be placed SOME WHERE ELSE. End of discussion

    December 12, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  4. Sue


    How can you possibly expect to be taken seriously with your horrendous slaughter of proper English?

    December 12, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  5. TM

    The article clearly states "the family initially "explored the idea" of moving into Blair House early so that daughters Sasha and Malia could start school on schedule." It does not say they demanded the residence, they simply made an inquiry. It would have been nice to stay near the girls' new school if the Blair House had been available and would have greatly simplified the necessary security arrangements for an incoming President and his family.

    I see nothing presumptuous, arrogant, elitist or rude on anyone's part in this story. Some things are just as they seem.

    December 12, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  6. Sam

    Bertha –

    The level of your intelligence is showing, and so I can understand why someone who forms complete sentences and spells words correctly would be considered 'elitist' by someone like you.

    December 12, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  7. Chris in MI

    Who's the idiot that scheduled ANYTHING at Blair House during the month of January? Oh yeah, the idiot that's in the WH now. Who's so important that they "Can't be displaced?" I'm sure someone's going to be all over this to find out who the mystery guests are that trump the President-Elect and his family. Probably someone from Cheney's
    Rebekah: Get a grip! You're getting to the Pathetic Stage.

    December 12, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  8. O.G.

    Obama is a pompous jerk, prancing around like he owns the place. Wait your turn!

    December 12, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  9. Tara

    You all that hate and despise Obama so much... You will respect him!!. I don't like Bush but as the President I respect him. And for all of you who are angry becuase it seems like Obama is trying to be President before jan 20th... Well someone has to.. I mean where is Bush during all of these crisis.. Hiding out at Naval parties!!!. We need leadership during this crisis and unfortunatly for us Bush is MIA

    December 12, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  10. Pat

    To all the people who think like Cindy, let me share this. We have elections every 4 years. It's nothing new, accomodations should and have been made just as they are for every other President. His request is no different than someone wanting to move into an apartment or new home.

    December 12, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  11. Johnny the Boy

    Who's gonna play Obama the Pepsi Logo president elect on SNL for the next four years.

    Then again....

    ChicagoGate may bury him sooner than that.

    December 12, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  12. Baze

    This is Obama's commitment to education, and it's also this country's commitment to hypocricy. On one hand we want him to be President now, and on the other we criticize him for doing so. And then on top of it all, we'll criticize him if he doesn't do so. There's no winning for Obama, until he provides concrete evidence of progression.

    December 12, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  13. get over yourselves

    Why do you people think Obama should be treated differently than any other incoming president....and let's not forget that he's NOT YET THE PRESIDENT. Newsflash!!!!

    If it it standard practice to be available on Jan 15 and that is when it is available....get over it. For the Obama's to expect preferential treatment is a big double standard. Those of you who think they should get in early and "how dare they treat them that way" are the same ones drinking the kool-aid and "bowing at the Obama alter".

    And obviously Linda32 didn't even read the article correctly.

    And Dr. T - why is this humiliation? Get a life!

    December 12, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  14. Kpawlak

    This is all to telling of the arrogance we are about to endure.
    If Obama had it his way he would have moved in on November 5th.

    December 12, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  15. Meh

    Slow day at the Looney Bin, Rebekah?

    December 12, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  16. yeti

    For those who can read beyond the headline, HE IS GETTING INTO THE BLAIR HOUSE, but not before the 15th as is traditional. CNN makes Bush and the WH sound selfish by actually booking the house long before the last election. Would this be the case if McCain won? Yes. But because he is a Democrat and black, everyone is reading this a some sort of political or racial slam on him.

    This is akin to Oprah getting PO'd when a store didn't open up just for her and her groupies when they had a prior function for that evening. She saw it as racial issue and did a whole show on it. As far as I can tell, the Obama camp is not even making a big deal of it ("the WH has been more than accomodating"), it is the Obama groupies getting pissed off.

    Everyone, quit seeing the world through a racial prism and we will all be better for it.

    December 12, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  17. Kat

    No other President elect has moved into Blair House early why should Obama be any different. Until Obama actually takes office Bush is still president like it or not and there is still a country to run. We can't simply stop doing business, and yes, that includes the occupation of Blair House, to accomidate Obama. Some of you people need to get a grip. This isn't is the way that things go.

    December 12, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  18. Rebekah

    oh I'm sorry that I actually question things instead of blindly accepting them....I'm sorry I actually read, research and think for myself instead of being spoon fed by the media.

    December 12, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  19. Daniel

    The Bush's have spent the last 8 years allowing the country to be looted. I have no doubt they want to get every last chance to take more from this country. I'm not at all surprised.

    December 12, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  20. sglman4Obama

    I thought at least courtest would be extended to the Obama since they have small children and their education to consider. Since this present administration has pissed all over education and programs for small children I am not surprised. As for you bitter types who are still upset barack won get over it and get in line with the program because like it or not CHANG EIS COMING TO AMERICA!!! HALLELUJAH!

    December 12, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  21. Selena

    Yeah, so Obama is NOT the president yet, he's the president-elect. The president is still George W. Bush and if he has some VIP's coming in, then he has use of the Blair House. It doesn't matter if it's his freaking dog groomer, if he wants them there, that is his option. Get over it! The world does not revolve around Barack Hussein Obama, or anyone else for that matter, and it never will, he has to follow rules and regulations too. Some of you people are ridiculous. That's what's wrong with America, everyone thinks someone owes them something. Get over yourself.

    December 12, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  22. michael

    For those who say Obama should "follow protocol":

    Traditionally, past presidents didn't have school age children. The reason Obama asked to move in was because of his unique situation. Unique situations call for unique least that's my opinion where people are involved.

    Now, I understand that to some people 'tradition' and 'rules' are more important than people's circumstances. But for me, people come first – and that's the spirit Obama will finally bring to the White House. I thank God each day that those who believe in 'protocol over people' won't have their candidate for at least four years. It's going to be nice to have a presidency based on humanity – not mindless obedience to rules.

    December 12, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  23. KC

    If you read the article it states the family wanted to move in earlier than the 15th, but the residence was already booked. They will be able to move in on the 15th, just like each president elect and family before them.

    December 12, 2008 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  24. JV

    Rebekah, he IS a citizen you dolt. Seriously, can you people grab at any more straws? Give it up! You are wrong!

    I guess you have THAT little confidence in the government if you think they wouldn't have already been deep in the details. There are far more qualified people than yourself that know the answer.

    December 12, 2008 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  25. David

    I honestly can't tell whether some of these comments are serious or not...

    December 12, 2008 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
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