President Obama has become notorious for his wildly expensive and lavish Christmas vacations with his family. Naturally, his behavior has been compared with former President George W. Bush—who handled this break very differently.
“Here’s the thing: In December, we never left Washington, D.C., until the day after Christmas,” journalist Joseph Curl wrote in a 2013 column that resurfaced this year. “Never. Mr. Bush and his wife, Laura, would always depart the White House a few days before the holiday and hunker down at Camp David, the presidential retreat in Maryland.”
After a few years of being curious, Curl finally asked a low-level administration official why this was the case.
“I still remember what she said,” Curl wrote. “’So all of us can be with our families on Christmas.’”
“Who was ‘us’?” Curl asks in his writing. “Hundreds and hundreds of people, that’s who. Sure, the reporters who covered the president, but also dozens and dozens on his staff, 100 Secret Service agents, maybe more, and all of those city cops required whenever the president’s on the move in D.C.”
It’s clear that once Obama took office, that philosophy dramatically changed. He has never even considered delaying his vacation so his staff could be home with their families. Instead, hundreds of people are forced to come with him, leaving their families behind for a taxpayer-funded ‘retreat’ in Hawaii.