Archive for Saturday, June 18, 2011

Can golf success carry over for Obama, Boehner?

June 18, 2011


— President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner put partisanship aside, at least on the golf course, and teamed up to triumph on the final hole Saturday in their long-awaited links outing.

The match pitted the political rivals against Vice President Joe Biden and Ohio’s Republican Gov. John Kasich. The match was won on the 18th hole, with the winning partners each pocketing a $2 prize.

The question now is whether a partnership forged on the tees, fairways and greens of a military base course can yield success in the policy arena. Obama and Boehner find themselves on opposite sides of everything from deficit reduction to the military campaign in Libya.

Aides to both men played down the chances of deals being struck on the par-72 East Course at Joint Base Andrews, but acknowledged the outing could improve a relationship that is respectful, but hardly close.

Tee time for the foursome was 9:30 a.m. at Obama’s home course at the base outside Washington.

The White House made a rare exception and allowed the press to watch Obama and his playing partners finish the first hole, a par 5.

Biden was cool under pressure, sinking a 15- to 20-foot putt.

“Did you all catch that?” Obama shouted to reporters gathered near the green.

The president, dressed in dark pants, a white polo shirt and a baseball cap, putted for par, tapping in a short shot after missing a 12-footer.

Kasich, a former congressman, missed a 30-footer, then tapped in for par. Boehner, one of the best golfers in Congress, gave a hearty “Oh yeah!” after draining a short putt.

Obama, who is not in Boehner’s links league, patted the speaker on the back as they headed toward the second hole, the president driving their cart.

After wrapping up the match, the foursome headed to the clubhouse, where they had a cold drink and talked with service members. They also caught some action at the U.S. Open, the professional tournament going on in suburban Maryland.

While Obama is an avid golfer, he rarely plays with anyone outside of his small cadre of close aides. His rounds run long, usually well over five hours, and those close to the president say he revels in the chance to get out of the spotlight.

Obama’s penchant for privacy extends to his social life. He surrounds himself with a tight inner circle of family and friends, and rarely socializing with other politicians in Washington. In fact, Saturday’s golf outing was one of the first time Obama and Boehner have gotten together for anything other than a policy meeting.

White House spokesman Jay Carney said earlier in the week that the outing was “meant to be an opportunity for the speaker and the president, as well as the vice president and Ohio governor, to have a conversation, to socialize in a way that so rarely happens in Washington.”

The Obama-Boehner golf outing coincided with White House and congressional negotiations on a long-term deficit reduction plan and raising the government’s borrowing authority. Republicans have insisted on significant cuts of about $2 trillion over 10 years or 12 years before agreeing to increase the current $14.3 debt ceiling, which the government says it will surpass Aug. 2.

While aides for both men tried to lower expectations that deal on the deficit — or anything else, for that matter — would be reached on the course. But it couldn’t hurt.

“It may move you a little bit closer toward the kind of compromise that we need to get the things done that the American people expect us to get done,” Carney said. “If it takes a few hours out on the golf course to help that process, I think it’s a worthwhile thing to do.”


Corey Williams 2 years, 9 months ago

Funny how Boehner wouldn't spare a minute for Obama before, how many invitations did he turn down? But when it comes to golf, I guess Boehner would do a quick 18 with long as you have power or money.

(And thanks to The Daily Show for pointing this out.)


PaladKik 2 years, 9 months ago

Pelosi's Obamacare mandate WILL take care of everyone. Even when they signed it before reading it. What luck.

Millions of middle-class people could get Medicaid

By RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR updated 6/22/2011 4:29:39 AM ET

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama's health care law would let several million middle-class people get nearly free insurance meant for the poor, a twist government number crunchers say they discovered only after the complex bill was signed.

The change would affect early retirees: A married couple could have an annual income of about $64,000 and still get Medicaid, said officials who make long-range cost estimates for the Health and Human Services department.

After initially downplaying any concern, the Obama administration said late Tuesday it would look for a fix.

Up to 3 million more people could qualify for Medicaid in 2014 as a result of the anomaly. That's because, in a major change from today, most of their Social Security benefits would no longer be counted as income for determining eligibility.


rockchalk1977 2 years, 9 months ago

Stressed U.S. Postal Service Suspends $800 Million In Pension Payments.

Facing a huge budget deficit and possible insolvency, the U.S. Postal Service is suspending its contributions to an employee retirement fund for the first time in its history. The Postal Service will stop paying employer contributions to the FERS, which covers about 85 percent of career postal workers. With 596,000 workers, the Postal Service is the nation’s second-largest civilian employer.

Let's make Obama a one term President.


rockchalk1977 2 years, 9 months ago

Federal Reserve Lowers Economic Outlook for Rest of Year.

The new statement acknowledged the slowdown that's occurred over the past two months. The economy added just 54,000 jobs in May, far fewer than in the previous two months. Consumer spending has weakened, too.

Let's make Obama a one term President.


rockchalk1977 2 years, 9 months ago

ObamaCare's New Waiver Policy Is a Real Job Killer.

Health and Human Services announced that they would stop accepting applications for waivers from ObamaCare's restrictions on insurance with annual spending limits after September 22, 2011 and that granted waivers would last for three years instead of the current one year. What does this mean to you? This new waiver policy is a job killer. Looks like 9.1% unemployment isn't high enough for this White House.

Let's make Obama a one term President.


PaladKik 2 years, 9 months ago

Boehner was probably giving him tips on how to get more approval in Egypt.

Obama versus Osama: guess who the Egyptians prefer?

Posted By Colum LynchTuesday, June 21, 2011 - 9:47 AM Share

First the good news: U.S. President Barack Obama is more than twice as popular in Egypt as Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadenijad.

Now, the bad news: the American president's standing has never been worse in Egypt, plummeting since 2008, when he received a 25 percent favorability rating, to 12 percent in 2011. Even Osama Bin Laden, the late al Qaeda leader, was more popular this year, with a 21 percent favorability ranking. The Iranian leader fared worse, dropping from 21 percent favorability rating in 2008 to a miserable 5 percent.

Did Egyptians like Bush. Everyone hated Bush.


rockchalk1977 2 years, 9 months ago

New Report Offers Grim Picture of Nation's Debt.

The CBO says, the debt has spiraled out of control in just three years. "At the end of 2008, that debt equaled 40 percent of the nation's annual economic output. Since then, the figure has shot upward: By the end of this year, the CBO projects, federal debt will reach roughly 70 percent of GDP, the highest percentage since shortly after World War II,".

Let's make Obama a one term President.


Commenting has been disabled for this item.