Obama, Romney put politics aside to mark holiday weekend
Mitt Romney decorating Easter eggs with his wife, Ann, and grandchildren, in a photo posted online by his campaign.
April 7th, 2012
06:00 AM ET
8 years ago

Obama, Romney put politics aside to mark holiday weekend

(CNN) – President Barack Obama and his chief Republican rival put politics aside this weekend to mark the Passover and Easter holidays.

Obama described Easter - when Christians celebrate the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus - as an inspiring occasion.

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For all of "the triumph of hope over despair. Of faith over doubt. The notion that there is something out there that is bigger than ourselves," he said.

Mitt Romney, the likely Republican nominee expected to face Obama in the November election, also issued a statement Friday recognizing the start of Passover, the week-long celebration of the anchient Jewish people's exodus from slavery.

"This ancient celebration of freedom reminds us that free people everywhere have a stake in ending oppression," he said. "Ann joins me in wishing everyone sitting down for a Passover Seder a joyous time with family and friends."

In a separate Easter statement, Romney recognized the religious significance of the day and commended those serving in the military.

“As we take time off of the campaign trail to gather with family and friends this Easter weekend, we celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ and the hope which he brought to all of mankind," he said. "We are thankful for our brave men and women in uniform who are serving our country in the armed forces and are away from their families on this special day and we pray for their safe return home. And may the hope and promise which we celebrate at Easter remain with all of us throughout the year.”

Obama hosted a Seder at the White House, and Romney posted online a photo of he, his wife, and several of their grandchildren decorating Easter eggs.

Romney and other GOP presidential contenders took the weekend off from the campaign trail.

"This is a very special tradition, and it's one that I'm proud to be taking part of tomorrow night at the fourth annual White House Seder," he said in an online video posted Thursday. "Led by Jewish members of my staff, we'll retell the story of the Exodus, listen to our youngest guests, ask the four questions, and, of course, look foward to a good bowl of Matzah Ball Soup."

In the Republican weekly address, Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin kept up pressure on Obama, saying she was "surprised to hear the president say he supports an 'all of the above' energy policy" during a recent visit to her state.

"The bottom line is this administration is taking credit for American energy production while it works to aggressively undermine it," she said.

She criticized him for blocking the northern stretch of the Keystone XL pipeline, claiming credit for the southern portion and restricting domestic oil drilling. The administration rejects all the claims.

But as energy and gas prices are economic issues, the presidential candidates are expected to continue addressing them on the campaign trail. Congress is in recess for a second consecutive week.

The president hosts the annual White House Easter Egg Roll on Monday and speaks on the so-called Buffett Rule on Tuesday in Florida. On Friday, he will head to the South American nation of Colombia for an international summit.

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Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. diridi

    Pres. Obama, All I say is this–GM=ALIVE, BIN LADEN=KILLED. (while stupid Bush left voluntarily Bin Laden from Tora Bora)
    poured Billions of tons of money in Pakistan. enough said, Enjoy your break. God bless. Yes, Obama2012.
    PS: Mitt needs to go home stashing money in Cayman Islands, and Please pay Taxes we see you some time in 2050.,Bain-capital...

    April 7, 2012 07:37 am at 7:37 am |
  2. Donkey Party

    From Romney's dog-whistle message about freedom, to Fallin's lie that she's "surprised" to hear President Obama say "all of the above energy policy", which he has said countless times, it is clear that the GOP the worst of America, they have the support of the worst Americans, and they nothing but domestic terrorists who salivate at the thought of our economy failing, and of our people struggling. The country is heading toward another civil war, but this time, the greedy will be wiped out along with the racists. Choose your side wisely, and happy Easter.

    April 7, 2012 08:00 am at 8:00 am |
  3. PJinChicago

    Now I'm convinced. This guy has a grade-school understanding of Christian faith. No surprise really. He's much more versed in his "Muslim faith –Obama, 2008."

    April 7, 2012 08:18 am at 8:18 am |
  4. Joseph Smith

    It should be noted that Mormons believe that Christ was simply a prophet, just like Joseph Smith, not God, like Christians believe. So "Easter" for LDS'...is a very different occasion.

    April 7, 2012 08:18 am at 8:18 am |
  5. E Green

    As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormon), I will simply say that Jesus Christ is in fact the Son of God, the Creator of the World, the Savior of all mankind. There is not a single doctrine in our faith that would ever claim He was anything less. There is also no doctrine that would denote that Joseph Smith was anything more than a prophet. Jesus Christ atoned for the sins of all mankind and died for us so that all may live again, both physically, and spiritually. We celebrate Easter fully as the day marking the resurrection of the Holy Messiah, Jesus Christ. Happy Easter everyone!

    April 8, 2012 09:02 am at 9:02 am |
  6. Mcd1994

    Poster j.smith....false...Mormons consider Jesus Christ the savior of the world and not a prophet. Read any sermon given by a modern-day prophet and learn the distinction.

    April 8, 2012 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  7. Marie MD

    Everyone's religion is full of what ifs but first you have to die. I don't care what religion my president is just as long as they don't try to shove it down my throat.
    Freedom of religions and separation of church and state!!

    April 8, 2012 09:26 am at 9:26 am |

    Are you really serious? Do you really think that we don't know that this a "set up" photo op? Easter, Christmas, Halloween, WHATEVER the occasion you have to make it look good to the voters. You really don't have to be a career politician to see this is an expedient way to appeal to clueless voters who have not figured out that YOU CANNOT RUN THIS COUNTRY!!! You have ill-gotten gains off the backs of thousands of hard working Americans, but along the way you forgot to pick up the SUBSTANCE AND INTELLIGENCE that is required to face head on all of the problems we need to fix because of non-professionals like yourself. Quit trying to run with the big dogs, but keep coloring the eggs with the kids. At the very least, you are needed somewhere!!!

    April 8, 2012 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  9. Anonymous

    Hey, CNN. I dug a bit deeper and guess what? President Obama's Easter message was actually a bit longer and much more detailed to his Christian faith than your reporter has given him credit for in this "Mitt Romney egg coloring article". Just saying....

    April 8, 2012 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  10. Anonymous

    @E GREEN:

    Kudos for trying to bring your faith into a positive light. However, I HAVE researched the Mormon ideology and find it extremely bizarre, including but not limited to the baptism by proxy of those souls who have already passed. I urge you, Mitt Romney, and all Mormon church leaders to allow God to decide who does or doesn't deserve eternal life - or punishment - as the case may be to those who have already died. I am comfortable in MY faith as it is in MY life and look forward to my death without interference to my eternal soul from the misguided Mormon practice of trying to control my after-life as a chit of honor for a Mormon's own special stepping stone to Mormon ideological after-life hierarchy.

    The Lord has Risen!

    April 8, 2012 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  11. Dave A.

    Keep religion out of government!!

    April 8, 2012 11:18 am at 11:18 am |