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Eye Opener: Obama's Cabinet Golfing Partner

By Ed O'Keefe



President Obama steers a golf cart with his golfing partner, Vice President Joe Biden, left, as they finish 18 holes at the Fort Belvoir Golf Club together on Father's Day, June 21. (AP)

Eye Opener

Happy Wednesday! As Americans prepare to break away for the holiday weekend, The Eye has golf on his mind. (He's taking his parents and Almost Mrs. Eye to see Tiger Woods at the AT&T National in Bethesda this weekend.)

We also noticed from this past weekend's White House pool reports that Commerce Secretary Gary Locke has spent a significant amount of time with President Obama on the golf course. The president has managed to get in eight visits to the links since his Inauguration and the commerce secretary has joined him twice, making him the only Cabinet secretary we know of to earn the honor. (The White House isn't entirely forthcoming on the details of golf outings and who plays, but Locke's been mentioned twice.)

So is Locke good?

We're told he's played for at least the last 10 years and even started a golf tournament back in Washington State to benefit foster children. Last September's tournament attracted a few of the state's former governors to help raise $530,000 for a foster child college scholarship program.

No word on Locke's swing or handicap, thanks to tight-lipped aides (perhaps unwilling to upstage Obama's golfing skills?) but we know he's joined foursomes stacked with talented White House staffers and Obama friends Eugene Kang and Marvin Nicholson.

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Andrew Warren, 41, was released on personal recognizance after a brief appearance yesterday in the District's federal court. The sexual-abuse charge carries a maximum sentence of life in prison.

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FDA Advisers Urge Limits on Certain Painkillers: The prescription painkillers Percocet and Vicodin should be banned, and Tylenol, sold over the counter, should be taken in reduced doses, because one of the three medications' ingredients, acetaminophen, is linked to liver damage.

Obama Presents Bill to Create Consumer-Finance Watchdog: The White House sends a detailed proposal to Congress for creating an agency to oversee nearly all facets of consumer lending, but the breadth of its powers is setting the stage for a fierce clash on Capitol Hill.

EPA to Let Calif. Set Own Auto Emissions Limits: The decision grants the state a waiver to impose a limit on the emissions from new cars, when no such rules now exist in federal law.

SEC's Gaping Blind Spots Kept Madoff's Misdeeds Out of Sight: At least according to business columnist Steven Pearlstein.

FSIS: Follow Your Own Damn Rules: Criticism from the popular food safety blog Marler Blog about the agency's handling of an E. Coli strain.

McCaskill Aide Gets IG Job: An aide to the Missouri senator is nominated to serve as inspector general at the Small Business Administration.

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Officials will announce a plan today to forgive the student loans of people who work in the public and nonprofit sectors for 10 years.

The Food Drive and the Combined Federal Campaign: Employees can only donate edibles to this summer's federal employee food campaign.

By Ed O'Keefe  | July 1, 2009; 6:35 AM ET
Categories:  Administration  
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