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May 31st, 2009
12:00 PM ET

The Obamas' night out

It was a campaign promise President Obama made to his wife.

From a White House statement on the President's date night with the First Lady: "I am taking my wife to New York City because I promised her during the campaign that I would take her to a Broadway show after it was all finished."

No sooner than date night was announced, the Republican National Committee sent out a statement of their own attacking the President for spending tax payer's money in hard economic times.

What are you thoughts? Was the President's date night a much needed break from the White House or a waste of money?

soundoff (35 Responses)
  1. Laka

    of course it was fine or him to take his wife out. Have the RNC ever heard of a good husband. He made a promise. I'm sure he could pay for it if it's that big of a deal. My gosh!

    May 31, 2009 at 2:25 pm |
  2. warren

    obama tells all the unemployed millions let them eat cake im sure the lavish lifestyle they are leading really sits well with people who are just trying to get by the american dream has died

    May 31, 2009 at 3:48 pm |
  3. JW

    I don't mind having a few tax dollars go towards a "date night" for such a reportedly positively proactive "First Couple". And, by virtue of the Obama's position they will have the coverage they have for quite some time. Some of us should try being as loyal to their wife/children or husband/children as Prez Obama appears to be to his.(Doing the right thing isn't always easy...)

    May 31, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  4. alice burnham

    I think it was wonderful of him to take his wife out for an evening away from the troubles of the world to an enchanted evening of make believe. Everyone needs a break.

    May 31, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  5. Bill Hicks

    Hooray for the Obamas! Not only was he honoring a promise to his wife but he was helping the economy of New York! More men should schedule date nights with their wives. It will make their marriages stronger and make the world a better place.

    May 31, 2009 at 5:04 pm |
  6. Bill Hicks

    Hooray for the Obamas! Not only was he honoring a promise to his wife but he was helping the economy of New York! More men should schedule date nights with their wives. It will make their marriages stronger and make the world a better place. Some of his Republican naysayers should follow his examples.

    May 31, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  7. liz

    What about the date night in Chicago for valentines day? What about flying the pizza guy from somewhere in the mid-west (a month ago) ? What is the taxpayer bill for all of these "date nights"? They are not royalty.

    May 31, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  8. M. Bullen

    The President and his wife are very much in love with each other. I guess it is unusual for a seating President to go on a date!! However, I firmly believe that they should be criticize for what they do to build their marriage.

    May God bless him and his family.

    May 31, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  9. M. bullen

    Correction: I firmly believe that they should NOT be criticize for what they do to build their marriage.

    May 31, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  10. AP in AZ

    The GOP is giving The Grinch and Ebenezer Scrooge lots of competition for being the most mean spirited!! 1) The man made and kept a promise to his wife. 2) The man has the most high pressure job in the world. I'd prefer he have some down time once in awhile to recharge himself. 3) All segments of the leisure and entertainment industry, with the exception of movies, are hurting. It's very positive for the President to do his part to support that industry. (Take that Vegas!! Your Gov. is just as small minded and mean as the rest of the GOP.)

    May 31, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  11. seeking the truth

    When talking about the President's date-night to NY with his wife, it might be helpful to discuss the number of trips President Bush made to the Crawford ranch, for perspective.


    1- According to the Washington Post's tabulations, by August 2003, Mr. Bush had spent 250 days – 21% of his presidency – on vacation (166 of those days ensconced at his Crawford ranch). This year's jaunt marks Bush's 49th trip to Crawford since he was handed the presidency.

    2- According to news reports, this latest trip home is Pres. Bush’s 77th visit to his ranch since taking office. And his 7-day stay will bring to 490 the number of full or partial days he has spent at the ranch as President.

    May 31, 2009 at 6:03 pm |
  12. Anita in NYC

    Why is everyone assuming that the President didn't pay for the tickets? What is wrong with them going out for the night? The last president flew to TX and Maine all the time. I don't remember the last first lady getting a date night. Good for the Obama's they deserve a night out.

    May 31, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  13. johnchristopher saskatchewan

    the Chicken Hawks Strike Back!

    What a pathetic gang of gutless wonders.

    If they pooled all their brain cells, they couldn't match Obama.

    It is obviously too late for the Regressive Republicans to get a life.

    Every time they open their mouths now, they reaffirm their acute smallness.

    They can't get a life and don't have the consciousness to even get lost.

    The smaller they are, the smaller they are...and now... they're microscopic.

    May 31, 2009 at 6:27 pm |
  14. Julieta

    Let's get real. Presidents, no matter their political party, work 24/7 until they leave office. So they travel for vacations, etc. big deal. Would you work 24/7, live in a "glass house" and always have people finding fault in your actions?

    May 31, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  15. Meowgirl

    America is acting as if they want Obama to come and flush their very toilet!

    He had a marriage, wife, family before presidency!

    His wife had a very well paid job!

    They have their own monies. Doe spresidency mean that he should neglect his wwife or marriage?!

    Does presidency mean that he should shut himself away in the oval office and stop living for the next 8 years?!

    has presidency now made it possible for him to fly jetblue to NYC and then take a yellow cab to broadway?

    What is the matter with you people? Live and let live.

    his job is not easy and you are all yapping an dnone of you could do a better job.

    Give Obama a break! darn!

    May 31, 2009 at 7:34 pm |
  16. Meowgirl

    America is acting as if they want Obama to come and flush their very toilets!

    Should he not enjoy time away with his wife and keep his marriage going?

    Think he wants to end up like most of America in a public pretend marriage but private seperate bedrooms with nothing happening?

    Give the man a break!

    May 31, 2009 at 7:36 pm |
  17. Meowgirl

    Warren, Obama's wife if not him was earnign a very, very good salary. they have their own monies unlike you. Ha haaaa!

    Do you expect him to fly jetblue and then a cabbie with no security?

    He need to continue to live. It is called balance duckie! He is a good husband who knows how to balance his family life with the heavy job that he has.

    He need the break now more than ever if you ask me. Good distraction will help him to focus on his job better. Sitting in the oval 24x7s will cause plenty mistakes

    May 31, 2009 at 7:39 pm |
  18. Kecia Dunn

    I think this is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard! Why in the world would anyone have a problem with President Obama and his wife going out for the evening? If he stayed at home, would it change the economy? Of course not! People should remember that he is earning a salary and I'm sure that he paid for the meal and the show tickets. In addition, I believe that as President of the U.S., President Obama is entitiled to some privileges (since people are complaining about the use of the helicopter). How do people expect him to travel for personal occasions? He is not the first president nor will he be the last to use the helicopter to travel on personal trips. He is the President, but he has a life outside of work!

    May 31, 2009 at 9:31 pm |
  19. Kristy Clemons

    how much did the taxpayers have to pay to bail the bush girls out of jail....please this is ridiculous. He has worked non stop since taking office to get the economoy back on track, they can take a break.

    May 31, 2009 at 11:15 pm |
  20. Jaycie

    A waste of money? Are you kidding? After Bush squandered BILLIONS of our tax dollars on an illegal war based on manufactured intelligence, and vastly enriched his buddies at Haliburton, KBR, Blackwater, etc. with no bid contracts, this expense is NOTHING by comparison. And how about all the vacations and time off that Bush took, flying back and forth to Crawford? Bush took MORE vacation time and spent more of OUR money on same than any other president in our history! I guess in our short attention span culture people can't even remember what happened over the past 8 years under Bush rule less than 6 months later. How ridiculous and apalling!

    June 1, 2009 at 1:06 am |
  21. marilyn woodison

    I think you Americans are angry people. That is the impression you give to the world. When you get a decent President who acts normal all you do is pick him apart. Shame on you! he just can't go to a show or have a quite date with his wife because of his statis. You news people and intertainers just can't find anything positive to talk about you attack the very people who are actually doing something to improve your lives, it is sad you have so little to talk about that is why I don't watch talk shows at night.They have nothing to say that is good about anything but tear apart people and make fun of them. I watch cnn but less and less because all you do is repeat, repeat, there is plenty of news, but you have to go out and talk to the citizens on the streets to find out what the palse of the country is . You tear apart everything with the same so called knowledgable people try talking to the man on the street. But I am a Canandian and we are not out to start arguments all the time we believe in peaceful postive talk listening to them tear apart just what we seen on TV is boring I turn you off so do others. Try something new you might like it.

    June 1, 2009 at 8:58 am |
  22. john hegarty germany

    hey all of you out there? mr obama needs a night out with his wife, all he has done since he took office work, work ,work, can you imagine what state your country would be in now had the other guy got the job, back off people. john in germany

    June 1, 2009 at 9:05 am |
  23. taka

    i like how the article didnt mention at all the jet, helicopter, and procession. taken from timesonline: "jet to New York, a helicopter and motorcade to a restaurant and then a procession of vehicles through Manhattan to a Broadway show." once again cnn giving fluff instead of details. anyways, yes bush was spending the exact same way on his vacations, but was the economy as bad then as it is now? and putting that aside as well, this is just one more great example of showing how immature and petty the right AND the left are. its a finger pointing game. "yea i did it, but HE did it too!" when are the people running this country going to stand up and be responsible, instead of justifying their bad actions by mentioning the other party's errors?

    June 1, 2009 at 12:22 pm |
  24. Diana

    News Flash:

    Yes, the economy is bad, but guess what we aren't destitue! My boyfriend and I aren't wealthy, but we planning a mini vacation for us to get away and enjoy ourselves. We've also been out to eat and have done entertainment things here and there despite our lack of wealth.

    Obama does get a salary, which he can spend however HE chooses. Plus, Obama is a man and needs a break from time to time. I'd rather he be well rested and happy leading the country, than tired and ill running the country. Get off his back...everyone wants him to walk on water...he's not Jesus!! He's a man!!

    June 1, 2009 at 12:26 pm |
  25. Michael Self

    I can under stand GM workers being up set over losing there jobs, But lets not forget that the southern part of the country lose all there jobs... Textile and Furntiure!!!! We lose ours to China with the Blessing of the Government.. You didn't see or hear or get CNN to cover it like the world had just ended. No, not a word ... I guess thats because we were just of DUMB SOUTHERNS what happens to us is not News because we didn't have unions like the northern companies nor the BIG PAY CHECKS TO GO ALONG WITH IT !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I Guess we're just tired of hearing about the poor auto workers how about the rest of Us!!! The town I grew up in has an unemployment rate of about 20.25% Highest in VA. ( Henry Co.)

    June 1, 2009 at 2:59 pm |
  26. gary Hughes

    He's the PRESIDENT, but he sleeps with Michelle. He had better keep Michelle happy or being Mr.President could become very, very, very, unpleasurable. How much did G.W.Bush Mission Accomplished statement cost the taxpayers. It seems as though the RNC (lost in it's way) is grappling for straws with anything. If Momma is HAPPY, Daddy usually has a smile.

    June 1, 2009 at 4:37 pm |
  27. bob

    Hey, he makes a paychheck. If he wishes to spend HIS money to fly somewhere it is his business. I do not think i should pay for his personal pleasure. sure, if he goes to N Korea, ya then america can pay.

    June 1, 2009 at 9:46 pm |
  28. Shelley

    It's been said before, but I do wonder how much taxpayer money went to Bush's trips to Crawford.

    Yeah, there are many Americans that are struggling to get by these days, but there were still Americans hurting financially and getting by on paycheck to paycheck during the last administration... that didn't stop President Bush from taking all that vacation time.

    Even people who aren't well off spend money on little luxuries from time to time... weather it's eating out at a restaurant or buying something nice for their kids. I think the little luxuries in life are what get us through hard times.

    June 1, 2009 at 11:34 pm |
  29. Maye Wentworth

    If President Obama promised his wife, to take her to see a Broadway Play, then that what he should have done. If more husbands would keep their promises to their wives and families then there would be less disharmony in families.

    Give the man a break.

    The Bible states "let him who is without sin cast the first stone". How many men are there out there that make promises that they never keep, and here comes one that kept his promise, I say "bully for him."

    President Obama didn't create the mess the US is in, he inherited from the Republicans.

    I'm not Republican nor Democrat, just a person who believes in doing what is right by all people, no matter rich or poor, black or white. God made us all.

    June 2, 2009 at 2:23 pm |
  30. taka

    planes, helicopters, cars, flying in all the personnel, wow, thats a big carbon footprint for one date. but funny i havent heard any liberals crying about the environment on this one.

    June 2, 2009 at 2:47 pm |
  31. REGINA

    The president made a promise to his wife just like he made to this country . So we know he keeps his promises right. It was probably a well needed date just to get some alone time.

    June 2, 2009 at 2:56 pm |
  32. Louise

    It's fine for Obama to take his wife out for a night but I think taking her to New York on tax payers money is a bit over the top. It costs all of us tax payers money and double for the tax papers of New York City. During these economic times, we are all giving up going out. I also was upset when they flew the Pizza man from St. Louis for Pizza. Michele may buy her clothes from J Crew but they are sure living the high life at tax papers expense. I'm an Obama Fan but this smells a bit imperialistic to me. The argument that he needs to get away from the White House is unfounded. I haven't counted but I believe he is away from the White House more than he has been in that oval office.

    June 2, 2009 at 3:58 pm |
  33. Mike Allen

    I am about to burn my Republican Voter Registration Card in disgust.
    Bush tok more time off than any other President. He went home to his Texas Ranch about every other week. Did Bush fly commercial?! Geez Republicans ! Get a life !

    June 2, 2009 at 6:40 pm |
  34. Robert

    Burn it Mike you ain't wanted anymore. Now go finish giving away the future.

    June 3, 2009 at 12:58 am |
  35. Melissa Holmvig-Wassen

    I think that our president certainly has the right to take his wife to a broadway show in New York. He has done more work and made more positive progress than Bush and Cheney did in 8 years!!!!

    The RNC will find anything to make Obama look bad, as they are mad that he is sooooooo GOOD and make them look soooooooo BAD!!!

    I am sure members of the RNC aren't sitting home eating popcorn and watching movies with their families because our citizens are broke and

    June 3, 2009 at 1:24 pm |

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