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Hey, Isn't That Resident Obama...

So much for presidential motorcades blocking streets and racing through red lights.

Motorist in Northwest had to be turning their heads along Connecticut Avenue this morning when "POTUS AND FLOTUS" traveled up the busy strip into Maryland to visit Sasha's school. That is the word from the White House pool report that said the driver obeyed the traffic lights as he transported the first couple to the lower campus of Sidwell Friends in Bethesda.

The driver obeyed all the traffic signals because "This was a non-official trip, the motorcade stopped at every traffic light," the White House told Malia Rulon of Gannett News, the journalist who filed the pool report.

From time to time, you'll find The Wire reporting on sightings of the First Family, who have already shown that they intend to actually live in the District---whether it's eating at Ben's Chili Bowl or the president cracking on area residents being winter weather wimps.

Here is part of Rulon's Report:

The motorcade pulled out at 7:39 a.m. The motorcade proceeded north on Connecticut Avenue. Since this was a non-official trip, the motorcade stopped at every traffic light. The motorcade arrived at the Sidwell Friends Lower School at 8:15 a.m.

POTUS and FLOTUS were seen walking on a path past a playground with a pink plastic slide toward the school. FLOTUS walked on the left and POTUS on the right. POTUS was wearing a dark suit with a white collared shirt and blue tie, no overcoat. FLOTUS was wearing the previously mentioned purple overcoat and lavender scarf.

POTUS and FLOTUS were not seen exiting the school or getting back into the vehicle for the return trip. They did not speak to the pool or make any comments. A small group of three adults and two young children on a corner waved and screamed "hi" as the motorcade passed. The motorcade returned to the White House via the southwest entrance at 9:51 a.m.

Hamil R. Harris

By Hamil Harris  |  January 29, 2009; 4:27 PM ET
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Hurray for a President who will venture into the everyday outsoors. Jack Kennedy was the last to play on the lawn and watch wife and daughter riding horses in Virginaia.

Feels good to see it once again.

Harvey Goolsby Glenwood

Posted by: hwgthrice | January 29, 2009 8:17 PM | Report abuse

Is this normal? It seems that whether the trip is official or not shouldn't have a bearing on whether the motorcade stops at traffic lights. I thought the whole point of not stopping was for security - keep moving so you're not a sitting duck. Official or no, he's still POTUS and still has the same security concerns.

Posted by: edwardaggie98 | January 30, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

I too am worried about security for POTUS and FLOTUS, given today's WaPo story about lax security at the inauguration. Now lots of bad guys know there are chinks in the armor; we want our prez and his family safe and secure so he can do his job, which is 24/7. Run the red lights, puhleez!

Posted by: heyokah | January 30, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

I agree with the two persons who cite safety as a concern: we don't want our President to be a sitting duck. However, I also agree with the first post about it being nice that the highest leader of our nation doesn't mind following policies and rules like the citizens he represents. It used to amuse me that people had to wait while D.C.s mayor and his motorcade ran red lights until this matter was exposed on WTOP...

Posted by: southyrndiva | January 30, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

What is wrong with you people? This "story" should not have seen the light of day!
All that was missing from this re-con report was "Dear Bin Ladin"..
The kids go where?
The route is what?
The car stops where?
They leave the base where?They return where?
Only one question remains..The Common Sense of the Washington Post is WHERE?

Posted by: aogbov | January 30, 2009 12:49 PM | Report abuse

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