Obama tees off with Tiger Woods
President Obama hosted Tiger Woods at the White House in 2009.
February 17th, 2013
02:24 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama tees off with Tiger Woods

(CNN) - President Barack Obama hit the greens Sunday with famed golfer Tiger Woods, according to deputy White House press secretary Josh Earnest.

Obama is spending President's Day weekend at a sprawling resort in Palm City, Florida, where he's polishing his golf game. On Saturday, he worked on his swing with Woods' former coach, Butch Harmon.

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Along with Woods, Obama played with U.S Trade Representative Ron Kirk and Jim Crane, a Democratic donor who owns the resort and the Houston Astros. Obama played with Kirk and Crane on Saturday, as well.

Few other details about the outing, however, are known, as the White House did not grant press coverage of the event Sunday. But, curiously, Tim Rosaforte of Golf World/Golf Digest was reporting information about Obama and Woods from inside the private club perimeters. This prompted the White House Correspondents' Association to release a statement.

"I can say a broad cross section of our members from print, radio, online and TV have today expressed extreme frustration to me about having absolutely no access to the President of the United States this entire weekend," Ed Henry, the group's president, stated. "There is a very simple but important principle we will continue to fight for today and in the days ahead: transparency."

Earnest responded with a statement, saying: "The press access granted by the White House today is entirely consistent with the press access offered for previous presidential golf outings. It's also consistent with the press access promised to the White House Press Corps prior to arrival in Florida on Friday evening."

READ MORE: High profile but out of sight: Obama's golf outing with Tiger Woods 

The president met with Woods in April 2009, when the legendary athlete visited the White House. Woods was in town to promote his upcoming charity tournament in the Washington area.

Later that year, in November, Woods became embroiled in a scandal involving multiple accounts of infidelity, a controversy that ultimately derailed his marriage and reputation. Woods, however, still plays professionally. His next tournament is the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship in Arizona this week.

Asked in a January 2010 interview with People magazine whether Woods would be able to bounce back, Obama answered, "Absolutely."

"I don't want to comment on his personal relationship with his wife and family," Obama said, "but I'm a strong believer that anybody can look within themselves, find their flaws and fix them."

- CNN's Ashley Killough and Steve Brusk contributed to this report.

Filed under: President Obama • Tiger Woods
soundoff (93 Responses)
  1. komododr

    Hey guys, the job of POTUS is 24/7 so give him some slack. How many of you get that 3 a.m phone call, I don't. Yes the perks comes with the job but also a huge responsibility with the only super power left.

    February 17, 2013 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |
  2. Hugh Mann

    That is, indeed, humorous..."Transparency in Golf"...hilarious

    The "Press" suspects dirty dealings going on, on the fairways of America

    February 17, 2013 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  3. Joe

    Just in, Obama is going cycling tomorrow with Lance Armstrong and next week to the pistol range with Pistorius.

    February 17, 2013 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  4. Morgan Hill

    President Obama definately deserves a vacation. Just this year he has done a fantastic job at governing our country. He has put us back on the right direction, considering where the Repubs had taken us. The economy is looking much better and good things are happening. All you haters just get a life. Nothing Pres. Obama does will ever satisfy you. Live your life and ---

    February 17, 2013 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  5. I Am God

    Bill pike why don't you get an education in Mathematics. Better yet, why don't you look at past President's that have used money to go on vacations.

    February 17, 2013 09:50 pm at 9:50 pm |
  6. Carlin123

    Goodbye Barack. You turned out to be a real bad President. And I don't mean bad in a good way.

    February 17, 2013 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  7. Mack

    The haters are so worried about the taxpayers paying for the President's vacation, who is paying for the trip that Water Boy Rubio is currently on? But that trip is okay with you, huh!

    February 18, 2013 12:07 am at 12:07 am |
  8. rmm

    LETS ALL JUST GET ALONG. Pray for our president that he continues to have good health and make good decisions for our country.

    February 18, 2013 01:44 am at 1:44 am |
  9. Getoverit

    POTUS with the poster child for infidelity. Oh, it's ok, he's black....

    February 18, 2013 02:06 am at 2:06 am |
  10. Sari

    Ertome, um, Congress if off too...and the campaign's over...and you guys lost...

    February 18, 2013 06:25 am at 6:25 am |
  11. Marsally

    What is at issue here is that Obama seemed to be hiding the fact that he was playing golf with Tiger Woods. Or at the very least not reporting it.

    February 18, 2013 06:27 am at 6:27 am |
  12. Bob

    And after the game they're going to go cheat on their wives.

    February 18, 2013 06:49 am at 6:49 am |
  13. Rod

    I don't think President Obama was using tax dollars to play this weekend. If these knuckle heads would read the article instead of hating Obama so much then they would see that he played with the OWNER of the resort. That is not to mention that Obama is wealthy in his own right. I am sure Obama and Tiger can afford the weekend outing and the Owner didn't need Obama to pick up his tab. So lease be assured our tax dollars are safe. Why not worry about the extreme right wing agenda that the republican party is being rejected on across the country instead of Obama's golf game.

    February 18, 2013 06:52 am at 6:52 am |
  14. Thenextstep

    If there were ever a time to be politically incorrect this would be it........ but I won't..........

    February 18, 2013 06:57 am at 6:57 am |
  15. Jim Weix

    Thank you President Obama and Tiger Woods for showing Palm City, FL to the rest of the country.
    Jim Weix, Broker/Owner
    The Real Estate Company – Treasure Coast, Inc.

    February 18, 2013 07:01 am at 7:01 am |
  16. Anonymous

    I am a member of the Armed Forces. There are thousands of other members in the armed forces who have not been home in months. They don't get vacation time, they don't get days off, they are under stress worrying a lot of times about their very lives. The fact that the President feels he has free time enough, with everything else going on in the country, to go on a mini vacation to golf with Tiger Woods makes me upset and disappointed with his attitude and decision to do this. Clearly his priorities are not where they should be.

    February 18, 2013 07:04 am at 7:04 am |
  17. GodIsNotARepublican

    More childish fingerpointing from members of the Party Of Goons (POG) who forget that Republican president Dwight David Eisenhower had his own virtually private golf course built at the Naval Air Station at Patuxent River, Md. Rather than begrudge their precious little down time, we should admit to ourselves that we actually want our presidents to be mentally and physically rested. I mean, look at the goons (on both sides of the aisle) the president has to deal with on a daily basis. Can you imagine having to face Boehner regularly? Chewing on broken glass would be more pleasant.

    February 18, 2013 07:09 am at 7:09 am |
  18. Name lynn

    Obama you need a break from the white house but with a white man tiger woods, obama you admit that your mom white n your dad black, an your colors shows tiger woods colors show to he mom black, his dad is black but tiger woods says hes white.

    February 18, 2013 07:13 am at 7:13 am |
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