Published August 19, 2013
WASHINGTON – Vacation over, President Barack Obama returned to the White House late Sunday after a weeklong getaway to the Massachusetts island of Martha's Vineyard.
Before returning, the president squeezed in one final round of golf, his sixth of the vacation, before boarding Air Force One on Cape Cod, Mass., for the trip home with his wife, Michelle, and daughters Malia and Sasha. His golf foursome at Vineyard Golf Club in Edgartown included World Bank President Jim Kim, New York lawyer and Obama fundraiser Eunu Chun, and aide Mike Brush, the White House said.
Obama was on the picturesque island for all or part of nine days, spending most of it out of public view. He spoke out publicly just once, making a statement against violence in Egypt that left scores of people dead. National security adviser Susan Rice was on the island with the president, giving him regular updates on Egypt and other world affairs, the White House.
The political upheaval in that Middle Eastern country is one of several issues Obama will have to contend with in the coming weeks. Also competing for his attention will be negotiations with congressional Republicans to get a new spending plan in place by the Sept. 30 end of the federal budget year or risk a government shutdown, and to increase the government's borrowing authority.
Obama has a private meeting Monday with various financial regulators to discuss ongoing efforts to strengthen the financial system, including the implementation of the Dodd-Frank law revamping the nation's financial system and the Consumer Protection Act.
Obama also is considering whom to pick as his next chairman of the Federal Reserve.
The vacationing president devoted many hours to his golf game but also reserved time for date-night dinners out with the first lady before their daughters arrived late in the week. The entire family went for a bike ride, hit the beach and ate a couple of dinners away from their $7 million, four-bedroom rental in Chilmark. One family night out was spent at the Oak Bluffs vacation rental of White House senior adviser and family friend Valerie Jarrett. The first family had dinner and watched a neighborhood fireworks show.
Obama's week ahead includes a White House recognition ceremony Tuesday for the 1972 Miami Dolphins, the only NFL team to achieve a perfect season.
The Dolphins, who went 17-0, never made it to the White House after their Super Bowl win 40 years ago in 1973. President Richard Nixon was immersed in the Watergate scandal at the time and, back then, White House visits by victorious professional and collegiate sports teams were not as common as they are today.
Many Dolphins team members are expected to attend, including fullback Larry Csonka and Hall of Fame coach Don Shula.
Obama also hits the road again at the end of next week, this time on official business. He's scheduled a bus trip through upstate New York and Pennsylvania to talk about making a college education more affordable. Thursday's stops include the State University of New York at Buffalo and Henninger High School in Syracuse. On Friday, Obama planned to answer questions at a town hall-style event at SUNY-Binghamton before a stop at Lackawanna College in Scranton, Pa. He is to be joined there by Vice President Joe Biden, a native of the northeastern Pennsylvania city.
The stops are the latest on Obama's summertime tour to highlight his economic proposals for the middle class.