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Obama Throws a Backyard Party for the Fourth

By Washington Post Staff

President Obama celebrated his first Fourth of July at the White House with a festive backyard party that included games, an all-American menu of hot dogs and hamburgers, and a salute to U.S. servicemen and women.

Speaking from a balcony with 22 armed forces members behind him and his family by his side, according to a pool report, Obama thanked the military, noting the recent handover of security in Iraq's cities. "Because of what you did," he said, "a sovereign and united Iraq has taken control of its own destiny."

The president also mentioned the day's other significance for his family: It was daughter Malia's 11th birthday. Malia "is just thrilled that you are all here," Obama said. "When she was young, I used to say that all these fireworks were for her. I'm not sure she buys that" now.

The president likened the White House bash to parties in "backyards ... all across America." There was volleyball, face-painting and an Uncle Sam on stilts, and the fare included watermelon, potato salad and ice cream. Among the guests were members of all the military branches as well as senior administration officials.

The White House streamed live video of the evening's USO concert, featuring the Foo Fighters, Michelle Branch and Jimmy Fallon, on its Web site.

By Washington Post Editor  |  July 4, 2009; 10:44 PM ET
 
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Comments

And despite all of the silly rhetoric, the reality is there were many deserving military families in attendence at this event. One such family I've known nearly all of my life, and they certainly deserved the honor of being hosted at the White House to celebrate Independence Day. The father of this family served the the first Gulf War as well as the current war in Iraq. He came home injured both times and his family has suffered as a result of him being away for so long. It is only fitting that the POTUS gives something back, at a personal level to the men and women who truly sacrifice it all in the defense of this nation. If its a choice of being damned if you do and damned if you don't, I'd rather the president chose the former.

Posted by: Marquita29 | July 6, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Without a doubt this was more of a BIRTHDAY BASH for his daughter.

In typical fashion, the Messiah had to use the military to COVERUP the real reason.

Perhaps it would have been better if HE HAD only allowed COMBAT VETERANS and the wounded to attend. I am sure that the majority of the attendees were political cronies, and those that were in Iraq as a ticket punch to their careers.

It would be very interesting to SEE THE NAMES and ranks of those attending.

NEVER BELIEVE A LAIR.. and Obama is the greatest in our history.

Remember this was just smoke and mirrors.. real issue was a birthday bash for his daughter... AT TAXPAYER EXPENSE.

IMPEACH OBAMA AS A COWARD AND A TRAITOR.

Posted by: miller51550 | July 6, 2009 11:17 AM | Report abuse

WHAT IS SO INTERESTING TO ME IS THAT THIS PRESIDENT HAS ACCEPTED THE GARBAGE THAT CONGRESS HAS PRODUCED OVER THE PAST 25-30 YEARS. THEY HAVE LEGISLATED BY INTENT OR DEFAULT, 2 WARS. INTERNATIONAL DISRESPECT, ECONOMIC DISASTER AND ENVIRONMENTAL TOXICITY. NOW THEY ARE TRYING TO COVER THEIR ARSES.
THE LIES THEY TELL TO PROTECT THEIR CORPORATE INTEREST. I DO NOT HEAR ONE WORD ABOUT GIVING THE AMERICAN PEOPLE THE SAME BENEFITS THEY HAVE; ESPECIALLY IN HEALTH CARE AND PENTIONS AND BEING ON THE RIGHT CAREER TRACK TO BE REWARDED BY THE SAME COMPANIES THEY ARE RELIGIOUSLY WORKING FOR AT OUR EXPENSE.
WAKE UP. THE PRESIDENT HAS TO STAY ON TV. THERE IS NOT ENOUGH MONEY TO COUNTERACT CONGRESSES EFFORTS TO WATER DOWN OR DERAIL ANY POLICY THAT THE PRESIDENT HAS.
DON'T WORRY ABOUT LEAVING A DEBT TO YOUR CHILDREN OR GRAND CHILDREN. THEY MAY NOT BE HERE BECAUSE OF NO HEALTH CARE HOUSING.EDUCATION OR JOBS.
ASK YOUR ELECTED OFFICIAL WHERE HIS MONEY COMES FROM. ALL OF THE CONGRESSIONAL HEALTH COMMITTEE ARE INVESTED IN HEALTH CARE CORPORATIONS. THEY ONLY WORK FOR US IF WE GET BEHIND THE PRESIDENT TO GET LEGISLATION PASSED THAT BENEFIT US.

THE CONGRESS IS AWARE THAT ALL OF MR OBAMAS' PLANS CAN BE FUNDED BY CLOSING TAX LOOPHOLES AND TAXING LARGE CORPORATIONS THAT DISTROY THE ENVIORNMENT.

OBAMA HAS SHINED A LIGHT UNDER THE CONGRESSIONAL ROCK AND CONGRESSPEOPLE ARE SLITHERING IN ALL DIRECTIONS.

THEY ARE SMART ENOUGH TO TOSS OUT A CRUMB OR TWO AND KEEP US FIGHTING FOR CRUMBS WHILE THEY TAKE OUR TAX DOLLARS TO THE BANK.

LETS STOP FIGHTING EACH OTHER. CONGRESS IS SUPPOSE TO BE WORKING FOR THE PEOPLE, NOT THE LOBBYIST FOR CORPORATIONS.

TIME FOR TERM LIMITS.

Posted by: sm98yth | July 6, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

LARRYG SAID IT ALL....HE IS SO RIGHT ON!! EVERY THOUGHT BEHIND WHAT OBAMA DOES IS DUE TO HIS INFLATED EGO. IN ALL MY YEARS I'VE NEVER SEEN A PRESIDENT ON TV AS MUCH AS HIM. TALK ABOUT EGO!!!! HE IS STILL IN THE CAMPAIGN MODE AND WILL NEVER GET OFF OF IT.....IT IS BECAUSE OF BUSH'S POLICY THAT IRAQ IS MAKING PROGRESS AND BECAUSE OF OUR BRAVE MEN AND WOMEN.OBAMA HATES THE MILITARY AS DO MOST OF THE DEMOCRATS. GET REAL PEOPLE...FACE THE TRUTH ABOUT THIS GUY!! HE IS ANGRY ABOUT SOMETHING AND WE ARE GOING TO PAY FOR IT.

Posted by: Que755 | July 6, 2009 10:09 AM | Report abuse

All of the families on the south lawn have served in Iraq and Afghan--that was a prerequisite. He's doing everything right. I'm sure that McCain would have probably done the same if he were elected. All Presidents love the troops. Not sure why Bush never did this in his 8 years. But they are being recognized for their sacrifices now and that's all that matters.

Posted by: madstamina | July 5, 2009 10:09 PM | Report abuse

"to fight two wars that cannot be won."

Can't never could.

But our military is winning. Can you ever forgive them for doing what you think impossible?

Or would you hate them forever?

Posted by: GaryEMasters | July 5, 2009 8:58 PM | Report abuse

"Because of what you did," he said, "a sovereign and united Iraq has taken control of its own destiny."

Hey, Obama! Does this mean that the surge worked?
Iraq is now a free and democratic country?
It's about time you admitted it.
Now, just don't screw it up...

Posted by: parkbench | July 5, 2009 7:41 PM | Report abuse

The military was sent on a fools' errand by our politicians to fight two wars that cannot be won. There are thousands of children just like Obama's daughters, who have no father or mother in some cases.

Posted by: elsasands1 | July 5, 2009 4:58 PM | Report abuse

LarryG62, you are retarded, Sore Loser. Go run off a cliff.

What a great, patriotic President we have!

He has always and consistently thought about our troops. Keep it up Barack!

Bush, Cheney, neocons and the Republiban Party Of No, only know how to misuse the troops, religion, and family values to get to power and then abuse and neglect them. All while wrapping themselves up in the flag and proclaiming their "patriotism"! Such shameless hypocrites! Pharisees!

Posted by: frutambu | July 5, 2009 2:20 PM | Report abuse

So the slug gets good press now. I'm figuring he was trying to make up for undermining the military's mission against terrorists all during the campaign, as well as his sheer stupidity in proposing that themilitary members share in the cost of their well deserved health care.
They incompetent has no other goal than to make himself look good, and he sure wouldn't by having his ACORN goons over for the Fourth. Nothing happens with the Obama cabal without his political image in mind. If you think otherwise, you're probably one of the class envy weak minds who elected this disgrace.

Posted by: LarryG62 | July 5, 2009 1:11 PM | Report abuse

There were 1200 military families at the event. When he stood at the balcony 22 members of the military stood with him. I guess the balcony can only hold so many people. happy now?
Joe Biden was in Iraq.

Posted by: asja | July 5, 2009 7:02 AM | Report abuse

It's quiet here, because most of us, like the Obamas, have been having a bbq, watching fireworks, spending time with friends and family and celebrating the 4th....

Posted by: SusanGSMcGee | July 5, 2009 4:32 AM | Report abuse

...yes but why only 22 US servicemembers. Why not the entire Pentagon?

Or better yet, have the party in Iraq, or Afghanistan, and give a party for those guys humping packs around in the desert heat.

Posted by: dubya19391 | July 5, 2009 12:37 AM | Report abuse

I guess it's so quiet here because Limbaugh hasn't yet explained why all this means that Obama hates America.

Posted by: nodebris | July 4, 2009 11:58 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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