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On Respite from Health-Care Tour, Obama Visits Yellowstone, Calls Old Faithful 'Cool'

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By Michael D. Shear
President Obama and his family toured Yellowstone National Park Saturday afternoon, visiting the Old Faithful geyser on a day of majestic blue skies.

Having talked health care at a town hall in Montana Friday, the president, Michelle, Sasha and Malia boarded Marine One for a short flight across the border into Wyoming and into the park.

Along for the ride were Obama's sister, Maya Soetoro-Ng, and her family. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar also joined the president, who was led through the park by Yellowstone Superintendent Suzanne Lewis and ranger Katy Duffy.

The trip, which was described largely as a private, family event, started at the Black Sand Basin, a striking area where steam bubbling up through sand creates the appearance of an eerie, moonscape-like scene -- but with trees.

After walking along the sand on a wooden path for about 25 minutes, the First Family loaded back up in the motorcade for a 5-minute ride to Old Faithful. They soon arrived at an area behind the geyser.

A fair distance away, a crowd of about 100 or so people were gathered, and gave several cheers when they caught a glimpse of the party.

The president waited for 15 minutes for the inevitable to happen. At 12:16 p.m., the geyser erupted pretty much on schedule, sending steam and water high into the air.

People cheered. The president was heard to say: "Oh, that's pretty good. Cool. Look at that. That's a geyser there."

By Eric Rich  |  August 15, 2009; 3:35 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency , Barack Obama  
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My gosh! Some of you guys are stooping to a new low to criticize the Prez taking his family to one of our wonderful national parks. I've never been there myself and would probably say at least "Oh, that's pretty good. Cool. Look at that. That's a geyser there."

Posted by: rawreid | August 17, 2009 3:49 PM | Report abuse

Some poster stated that "THE ONE" and his family pay their own way when on vacation. WHO pays for all of the rest of the bill. YES, folks, IT is you and I. This POS has had FIVE, thats "5" vacations since January 20th
NOT including the FOUR HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLAR weekend escapade to NEW YORK for a date with MRS,OVERRATED. Millions out of work. millions trying to survive, millions not being able to take a weekend vacation and
this loser takes FIVE.

Posted by: otisplumber | August 17, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

profyle424: Taking a vacation assumes one has actually done any work. Again, how many days has Obama actually "worked"? Other than photo ops, staged events and travelling what else has he done? He has not read the health care plan or participated in drafting it. I had no problem with someone taking a deserved vacation, but we Obama seems to be on the never ending vacation.

Posted by: Bubbette1 | August 16, 2009 6:54 PM | Report abuse

dotty- not a nice name exactly, but certainly fitting,

Posted by: cmmerkel | August 16, 2009 6:46 PM | Report abuse

The children that "Obamaramble" has burdened with his inane folly's should be on these trips, not the con man elitist, stealing their rights to taxation with representation.
They can and should sign the Redress recall petitions of the Federal Government to be made "recorded Documents" at local Country recordaqtion offices, pooled within their State's, and entered into the Library of Congress.
Obama needs a Congress to place him on medical leave for NPD sociopathic dual profiles, null an voiding his entire venture.

Posted by: dottydo | August 16, 2009 6:28 PM | Report abuse

Wow, some of you are criticizing a man who is out on a vacation with his wife and two small children? Now he isn't spending "enough" time at the parks and is only "dropping in"? Are you kidding me? Most Americans have never been to Yellowstone and would love the chance to do so, even if it were just for a few minutes. How desperate and pathetic to pick at something so ridiculous. I guess some people really do have no lives of their own to tend to.

Posted by: profyle424 | August 16, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Any one have a count on how many days Obama has actually worked since being in office?

Posted by: Bubbette1 | August 16, 2009 5:52 PM | Report abuse

Look up There!

It's a Bird!

It's a Plane!


It's that Jetsetting Incompetent flying Airforce One around being a Campaigner-in-Chief, while leaving a Carbon Footprint Vapor-Trail even a Coal Burning Smelting Plant could envy!

Worst President EVER!

Posted by: SAINT---The | August 16, 2009 5:35 PM | Report abuse

The Latest Polls,including Rasmussen for
Sunday 8/16/2008,taken before Obama's New
Luxury Endless Vacation and Staged Town Halls on Obamacare,all show that Voter Disapproval Of Obama's Job Performance is
at an all time high and that Obama has had
Negative Approval Numbers for over seven
weeks in a row now. Hey Obama Resign!

Ramussen shows 39% Strongly Disapprove of
Obama's Job Performance and ONLY I Repeat
Only 32 % Strongly Approve of it and a lot
of Other Polls are now showing similiar
results. So watch how the drop even much
much lower with Obama doing more phony staged Obamacare Town Halls and off on yet
another expense month long $25,000 luxury
vacation. I repeat Obama Time To Resign!

And,Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid if Obama
Fails to Resign,then it is your own US
Constitutional Duty To Impeach and Remove
Barack Hussein Obama from Office or face
the complete total end of your own Socialist Democrat Liberal Party come 2010
and 2012. Obama,Pelosi,and Reid Must Go!

Posted by: redheadclaudine | August 16, 2009 4:31 PM | Report abuse

I don't begrudge him dropping in for the good stuff, but I think he is missing the best.

You gotta remember that he and his SO are urbanites. They never owned a dog before, have they camped, or spent some time with bugs and animals and natural beauty - the kind the you encounter after a few weeks of knocking around? The kind that doesn't come packaged as an educational experience?

After this they'll head off the Martha's Vineyard - a haven of elite types.

While the Obamas's are unique to America, they aren't like other people and never will be.

It's good their kids are getting out to see the Parks, but it's not the same being driven around in your SUV to your helocopter as it is driving 2-3 days in your Honda Accord, staying in North Platte Nebraska, getting a ticket while breezing through some small town.

I don't begrudge them their time it's a poor excuse for a real vacation. Public service does come with sacrfice.

Posted by: RedBird27 | August 16, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

He "visits" the national parks. He spent, what, 2 or 3 hours in each one? That's dropping in, at the expense of others who want to see the good stuff, seeing the main event and heading out again. That is not a visit.

Posted by: bethIllinois | August 16, 2009 8:23 AM | Report abuse

one would think that california has burned enough but yet it still does out of control...
why hasn't the secretary of the interior been arrested for negligence in controlling these outbreaks of fire...
they would rather have the trees burn down than have them used for other reasons...

Posted by: DwightCollins | August 16, 2009 5:55 AM | Report abuse

Obama recently compared the competition a Govt health insurance option would create against private insurance companies with the US Postal Service and UPS/Fedex. He said UPS and FEdex are "doing pretty good". Obama must not be aware of UPS and Fedex's history and WHY these two companies were created in the first place. Let me help him - They were created because the Govt run USPS could not deliver a package on time or to the correct address regularly enough for businesses to be able to rely on them. So, enter PRIVATE business to fill the void Govt created.
Fastforward to his misinformed and misdirected comment. - If the Govt can't deliver packages to the right address or on time - why in the world would anyone trust the Govt to run a healthcare system????

Posted by: NO-bama | August 15, 2009 11:32 PM | Report abuse

How many times does it need to be said? The President and his family pay for their own expenses when on personal trips. As for his vacation? It would not be much of a vacation to summer in hot August in his very pretty home in Chicago. And why shouldn't he go to Martha's Vineyard? I say he's earned it. Get a grip.

Posted by: nana4 | August 15, 2009 11:16 PM | Report abuse

"Oh, that's pretty good. Cool. Look at that. That's a geyser there."

what intelligence; what penetrating insight; what a cogent observation; what a moron!

Posted by: Common_Cents1 | August 15, 2009 10:57 PM | Report abuse

President Obama is sending the right message by visiting Yellowstone. His environmental policies should lead the way in addressing global warming. Those who criticize the President's health care reform, his travels,etc. are sore losers. Wake up!. The election is over and Barack Obama won. He is doing a heck of a job!... Let's get real health care reform!

Posted by: afc04 | August 15, 2009 8:45 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Obama...First help fix the economy and then start globetrotting all over the country and world, wining and dining, spending hard earned tax money. We have the technology to use go-to-meeting and or live television. You can still use your teleprompters.

Here's some suggestions: End your socialism policies. End your cap and trade stupid environmental wacko policies. Quit bashing white men, you know the men that invent and discover and create things that boom the economy. Quit your high taxes. Quit hurting military morale by showing an affinity to the enemy and blurring lines between right and wrong, good and bad. Quit bashing Christianity and the Christian protestant work ethic. Quit your adherence to bizarre cultic black liberation theology. Quit your policital correctness and post-modernism wordview beliefs. Quit being a hypocrite and liar. This is just some good advice.

Posted by: techsavvy777 | August 15, 2009 8:01 PM | Report abuse




Actually, given the climate of the times -- and the use of proletarian mercenaries to attack POTUS' agenda -- it probably wouldn't be a bad idea to do a one-eighty on Martha's Vineyard for more plebian environs.

For your consideration, MR. President: A Jersey Shore vacay:


cc: R. Emanuel, D. Axelrod, V. Jarrett

Remember John Kerry windsurfing gaffe.

Proletarian venue would ensure against "elitist" charge. Martha's Vinyard: HUGE political miscue!

And "down-a-shore," as the natives say, Jon Corzine needs help, big-time.


1. Atlantic City. Fading "gem" of the East Coast could use a boost; boardwalk sure to please Sasha and Melia. Casino industry: big contributors.

2. Wildwood. Adjacent to U.S. Coast Guard training center, military photo op, private beach. Near Cape May, historic Victorian village, lighthouse. Acceptably high-brow.

3. Ocean Grove. Far-right religious fundamentalists could benefit sociologically from having to open their accommodations to a more diverse clientele.

4. Asbury Park. Undergoing urban revival; would help generate positive media coverage of stimulus dollars at work. Nighttime double-date date with Michelle and Springsteens at famous "Stone Pony" shore bar. If Bruce is on tour, substitute Bon Jovi.

Again, Mr. President: A Martha's Vineyard excursion sends all the WRONG messages.

Keep it real down-a-shore in Jersey.


White ethnic minority's "Prof. Gates Moment":

Posted by: scrivener50 | August 15, 2009 7:00 PM | Report abuse

As a long time small business owner, board member, taxpayer, and United States citizen, I appreciate the almost daily briefings from our President. I think of him as the CEO reporting to the shareholders of the United States of America. I would much rather hear about what he's working on, what is important to him and his cabinet... than not hear anything at all, or hear from him once a month or once a year in the state of the union address. Good for Barack Obama in being so available to the press and to the American people!

Posted by: Louise618 | August 15, 2009 6:51 PM | Report abuse

I am glad that President Obama visited the world's first national park and spent time in Montana earlier. It is important that Presidents spend time in the country as well of course as spending time overseas. He needs to talk to different people around the country and not isolate himself like other Presidents unfortunately have. I hope that the President returns to the West on a annual basis over his 8 years in office. It was funny to read the first comment on here. It is the type of comment that I expect on blogs and local papers, but not on a national paper with an educated readership.

Posted by: Barnholes | August 15, 2009 5:36 PM | Report abuse

Had you rather him go "clear brush" in Crawford, TX and be ignorant about the entire world, not to mention his own country?

Posted by: debby2 | August 15, 2009 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Oh My God. How many trips is this guy and his family going to take. Foreign countries, Hawaii, all over the continental US, New York for dinner, Russia, France, lots more places. It's like these people never had a vacation, but now it's paid for by taxpayers why not take the entire family, the dogs, the staff, friends and neighbors, camera crews, media and anyone else who might be sympathetic to his stupid health care reform.

It's only been six months, and I've had quite enough - thank you.

Posted by: WindyCity | August 15, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

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