Back to Home

Active Questions

Obama vs. Bush on vacations, golf, etc. - is Obama "fiddling while Rome burns"?
Race, Religion & Politics / 8:41 AM - Wednesday August 11, 2010

Obama vs. Bush on vacations, golf, etc. - is Obama "fiddling while Rome burns"?

I was reading about Michelle Obama's trip to Spain, and that a lot of people were like, "Yeah, well Bush was on vacation a lot more", so I actually looked up Bush vacations...

When Bush was in office, Laura Bush took one vacation with her girlfriends every year - to a camping lodge in Washington state, where she and her friends went hiking. This is something they've apparently done for 15 years, so it was a tradition before she became First Lady. And, the cost to have your security detail at a camping lodge in Washington vs. the cost to have your security detail at a 5 star, $1000 a night resort in Spain... well, let's just say Laura's vacations were a lot cheaper. And she only took one per year - Michelle apparently has several this summer.

Then, in terms of family vacations - the Bushes went down to Crawford, Texas and spent their vacations at their ranch most of the time. So far the Obamas did a $100,000 weekend in Manhattan, an 11 day vacation in Hawaii, a weekend in Bar Harbor Maine (an expensive place), a week at Martha's Vineyard (which is quite expensive) and for which they flew their dog in a separate plane. I have no idea why they decided they needed a separate plane for their dog. Wasn't Air Force 1 big enough?? They are also planning to go back to Martha's Vineyard next week, I believe. They've also spent time at Yellowstone and the Grand Canyon, and a long weekend in Chicago.

Also, while Bush was in office, he did 24 rounds of golf in 8 years. So far, in less than 2 years, Obama has done over 40 rounds of golf, according to whitehousedossier. com. So Obama is spending about 8 times as much time on the golf course as Bush. Plus Obama's had celebrity b-ball games, etc., that Bush never had.

Bush did spend more time away from the White House than Obama did during his first two years, but most of that "off-time" was in Crawford, so the cost to taxpayers was a lot less, and Bush had an office in Crawford where he could hold "The Western White House".

I find this an interesting comparison, no?

Update: August 11, 2010.
uh, juan, of course the President requires security detail. So does the first lady, the kids, etc. and, you're right - they did need to add that to the Crawford ranch. However, are you telling me that putting up some additional security in Crawford cost a lot more than several trips to 5-star resorts? I saw something on CNN that said the cost to the taxpayer for the security detail for Mrs. Obama's trip was $240,000. This was CNN, Juan, not Fox. I would imagine you could build a pretty nice house in Crawford for that amount for the secret service boys and girls, plus throw in some more for the security system - and the cost is done since they re-use it every time they go to Crawford. So, the taxpayers paid ONCE for Bush to take several vacations to Crawford. Vs. with Mrs. Obama, every time she goes on an exotic vacation, they've got to spend it.

Update: August 11, 2010.
missy74, you are probably too young to remember this, but they complained about Jackie Kennedy's extravagant lifestyle and Nancy Reagan's expensive re-decoration of the White House, too. And Hillary Clinton - boy did people complain about her! So it's not racism, unless Jackie, Nancy and Hillary were black.

Update: August 11, 2010.
Also, curvy nailed it, I think. No one would care what the heck the Obamas did on vacation if we weren't in a recession. it's just sorta hard, when Obama was telling people to make sacrifices and not to blow money in Vegas, and when people are suffering from the recession, to then see the Obamas take 5 star vacations in Europe or Martha's Vineyard instead of a more modest vacation on the Gulf coast.

Update: August 11, 2010.
juandontbeg doesn't seem to understand that journalists dubbed Crawford "The Western White House" and that Bush already had an office at his home there before he became President. he's like the people who would see Bush walk on water and come up with the headline, "Bush can't swim", while, if he saw Obama swimming, he'd say, "Obama chooses not to show off that he can walk on water".

- Asked by frenchgirlred, A Trendsetter, Female, 26-28, Boston, Medical / Dental

Read more about the Rating System