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Finally, Obama Is a Man About Town

President-elect Barack Obama and his daughters Sasha, left, and Malia, right, head into the Honolulu Zoo on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Lawrence Jackson)

By Philip Rucker
HONOLULU -- For the 11th day of his Hawaii vacation, President-elect Barack Obama was unusually active today, playing pick-up basketball at his alma mater, visiting the Honolulu Zoo with his daughters and stopping by his late grandmother's apartment.

Obama skipped his usual workout at a local Marine Corps base gym, opting instead for an hour on the basketball court at Punahou School, the Honolulu private school where he attended fifth through 12th grades. Obama played ball with his former classmates Greg Orme and Mike Ramos, as well as Martin Nesbitt and Eric Whitaker, two close friends from Chicago who are accompanying him on vacation.

A pool of journalists was not allowed to observe the game, but Obama emerged from the Punahou gym looking freshly showered and wearing an off-white T-shirt, khaki shorts and brown sandals. It seems everywhere Obama goes on his native Oahu island he draws a crowd, and today was no different. About 200 students, parents and faculty gathered on the campus to meet Obama, and the president-elect spent several minutes posing for photographs and signing autographs.

Obama then took his daughters, Malia, 10, and Sasha, 7, and the families of several Chicago friends to the Honolulu Zoo in the tourist-heavy Waikiki Beach area. Reporters traveling with the Obamas did not see which exhibits the family visited, but the Honolulu Zoo boasts two new sun bears that arrived in November -- a mating pair of a male, named Blackie, and a female, Juwetta. The zoo also features a Sumatran tiger, Chrissie, that gave birth to three male cubs in September, the first litter of tigers at the seaside zoo in more than a quarter-century.

Later in the day, Obama stopped at the downtown Honolulu apartment building where his grandmother, Madelyn Dunham, lived for decades. Dunham helped raise Obama in the 12-story high-rise, and she lived there until she died of cancer at 86 on the eve of the presidential election. Last week, Obama and his half-sister, Maya Soetoro-Ng, attended a private memorial service for their grandmother.

By Post Editor  |  December 30, 2008; 9:27 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency , Barack Obama  
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Next: Obamas to Stay at the Hay-Adams Hotel


BTW: Bush was re-elected in 2004 as President of the United States by a CLEAR MAJORITY of American voters too -- no one had any legitimate question about his birthplace being in the USA -- regardless, I remain convinced that Barack HUSSEIN Obama Jr. (assuming that Sr. is even his real father) will NOT be sworn in as President on January 20, 2009.

Posted by: JakeD | January 2, 2009 6:54 PM | Report abuse


This is not a court of law, but YES I did try very hard to keep our next pResident from being elected (because legitimate questions remain unanswered -- his paternal grandmother has steted that Obama was born in what is now Kenya -- this is not completely tin-foil-hat conspiracy stuff ; )

Posted by: JakeD | January 2, 2009 6:51 PM | Report abuse


On the contrary, it IS your burden of proof! If everytime one of our public officials is faced with an allegation, ANY allegation no matter how unsubstantiated, of misfeasance, malfeasance, deception, or corruption, OR ineligibility, he or she were forced to DISPROVE such claim; then whenever any crackpot who wants to can bring the public's business to a standstill with whatever nonsense charge he or she can dream up. Despite your protestation that you would challenge Governor Schwarzenegger on the same grounds, your use of the phrase "The One" tells me that you are one of those folks who tried hard to keep our next President from being elected and, having failed, seeks any excuse to reverse the results of the election and deny him the White House. Too late, Jake. Barack Obama IS our next President, and MOST Americans are not only very happy about that, but wish him all success in dealing with the many challenges he faces. We do NOT see any need for him to waste his or our time on any such foolishness as your obsession with his birthplace.

Posted by: sailorashore | January 2, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse

1whocare and sailorashore:

It is not my "burden of proof" to provide concrete evidence that he was born outside the USA and this is a non-partisan Constitutional issue -- as I have stated repeatedly, I would be asking the same questions if a Republican like Arnold had been elected instead -- why won't The One simply provide his LONG FORM birth certicate to resolve all reasonable doubt?

Posted by: JakeD | January 1, 2009 10:18 AM | Report abuse

It was very good for President-elect Barack Obama to spend his Hawaii vacation
with his families.
I think that they could spend the very pleasnt times before inauguration.
Probably they will be unable to spend such
a pleasnt vacation in Hawaii in the future. Obama has to work hard for not only America but also the other countries
in the various fields to solve the hard

Posted by: kamekura | January 1, 2009 5:35 AM | Report abuse

EARTH TO JakeD... your one-track mind is literally OBSESSED with seeing a birth certificate belonging to someone else,no relation to you whatsoever. GIVE IT A REST aLREADY!!! As long as this tired argument has played, can you consider that minds greater than yours have posed this question, legally,morally, and constitutionally (other Americans are also familiar with the constitutional requirement, believe it or not)and that no concrete evidence exists to date to disprove Obama being American-born. The top Hawaiian officials have confirmed the actual birth certificate (after receiving multiple requests from repugs and indeps who wish beyond hope that BA simply isn't eligible; after all you have no argument left that he's unqualified). Welcome to the new millenium and a new political landscape where the old derogatory accusations and pronouncements mean nothing and takes up space needlessly.We heard you on the first post; no one chose to acknowledge it in any you post it again and again...pitiful.Stay tuned for the January 20th inauguration..birth certificates not required,EXCEPT for those having history in mental institutions.LOL

Posted by: 1whocare | December 31, 2008 8:20 PM | Report abuse

JakeD, you and your fellow wingnuts can flog the birth-certificate thing until you are blue in the face, but it will not change the facts that a) Barack Obama was born in Hawaii and has provided proof of that fact sufficient to satisfy anyone who isn't desperately seeking some way to deny him legitimacy, and b) Mr. Obama was, unlike his predecessor, convincingly and overwhelmingly elected to the office of President of the United States by a CLEAR MAJORITY of American voters. He will be sworn in three weeks from today. Live with it!

Posted by: sailorashore | December 31, 2008 7:51 PM | Report abuse

So did the Happa Haole bring da Keihkis(Sp?) to da Aquarium too?

Very nice Aquarium Folks! Ono Bra! ;~)

Posted by: SAINT---The | December 31, 2008 3:39 PM | Report abuse

suenaustin (are you related to Mark_In_Austin?):

The comparison of Obama with Arnold is apt if both of them were born outside the USA.

Posted by: JakeD | December 31, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

I agree with john"bs"mark -- there is something UNNATURAL with the weird people and their birth certificate fetish/obsession. I would be embarrassed if someone I knew started spouting that stuff around me. And the comparison of Obama with Arnold?? LOL

Posted by: suenaustin | December 31, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Oh you poor, poor R-E-P-U-G-N-A-N-T-S - -

Can't get over the fact that, you failed to steal a third presidential election ?

Well, you will get over it; just give your selves 'high' colonic enemas and get rid of all the CRAP you all are full of - -

Posted by: mewindows | December 31, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

I suspect the WaPo would have quickly gotten to the bottom of things had it been REPUBLICAN Gov. Schwarzenegger who had won instead.

Posted by: JakeD | December 31, 2008 1:20 PM | Report abuse


I am registered Independent -- if GOP Governor Arnold from here in California had been elected instead, I would still be asking the same exact questions -- I also do not believe that the earth is flat. So, who looks silly?

Posted by: JakeD | December 31, 2008 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: JakeD | December 31, 2008 7:34 AM |

I wonder if these birth certificate, flat earth dead enders have any idea of how truly silly they are. I liken them to some of these crazies you see wandering around pushing supermarket carts and shouting at passersby. Grow up guys you are making Republicans look ridiculous.

Posted by: johnbsmrk | December 31, 2008 8:18 AM | Report abuse

Did anyone else see "Frost / Nixon"? Maybe we need another foreigner to finally ask The One questions the MSM won't?

Posted by: JakeD | December 31, 2008 8:16 AM | Report abuse

What would be even better is if, finally, Obama would be man enough to release his LONG FORM birth certificate to prove he is a "natural born" citizen and therefore Constitutionally Qualified to become President of the United States. Will ANYONE from the WaPo ever ask him that question? If Woodward won't, maybe Bernstein can come back to the paper on special assignment?

Posted by: JakeD | December 31, 2008 7:34 AM | Report abuse

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