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Travels with POTUS, FLOTUS and the ‘Riddler’ ^ | March 27, 2014 | Michael Reagan

Posted on 03/27/2014 6:48:09 AM PDT by Kaslin

Come on guys, let’s start focusing on the important stuff like ObamaCare, Ukraine and winning the Senate.

All this outrage in the conservative media about how much money it’s costing for Barack Obama’s trip to Belgium and for Michelle Obama’s travels to China is just a waste of time.

Yes, the cost of their trips, whether they’re measured in millions of dollars or thousands of hotel-room nights, is outrageous.

But what POTUS (the president of the United States) and FLOTUS (the first lady of the United States) are doing on their travels is nothing new or abnormal.

Obama’s official overseas trips and family vacations seem extravagant and more expensive than they should be, but they’re not significantly higher in number than George W. Bush’s were.

According to a National Taxpayer Foundation study reported by, so far Obama has taken 31 trips and spent 119 days abroad. That compares to George W. Bush’s 28 trips and 116 days overseas in his first five years and Bill Clinton’s 27 trips and 113 days.

Let’s get real. Presidents and “protectees” like the first lady and the Obama kids travel differently than any other persons in the human race, except maybe Donald Trump.

I know because for the eight years my father was president I was a protectee – and so were each of my two kids.

Whether I was alone, with my family or with my father, I had a three-person Secret Service protection detail -- 24/7. So did each of my kids, Cameron and Ashley.

In the 1980s the media made a fuss about how much money was being spent on me when I traveled to Europe with my wife and kids.

I admit it was embarrassing. But I had no choice when it came to security. I was on the president’s protected list and the president gets to decide who’s on it.

Traveling with all that security was crazy, complicated and costly to taxpayers. Advance teams went ahead of us to Europe to contact local police.

We were a 12-car motorcade wherever we went. Along with our traveling Secret Service detail, when we were in Europe we were protected by national and local police forces. In London, Scotland Yard joined our parade.

Once when I flew into Genoa, Italy, I noticed the airport was surrounded by soldiers armed with Uzis.

I said to my Secret Service agent, “My God, what’s happening here?” He said, “You’re happening here. They’re all here for you.”

All that protection made sense then and still does: No foreign country wants to risk having a member of the family of the American president – or any visiting G-7 official -- kidnapped or killed.

At home in Los Angeles, it was the same deal. There were three agents per shift with me, three with Cameron and three with Ashley – again, 24/7.

The Secret Service drove my kids to school every day. You had a car and a driver, plus you had an agent in the right front seat and a backup car with one or two men.

We all had codenames. Mine was “Riddler.” The kids had codenames. Ashley already had her codename – “Raindrop” – before we knew whether she was a boy or a girl.

Since the Secret Service only protects blood relatives, my wife could go off by herself. It didn't make her feel so good, but as long as she had one of the kids in her arms she was protected. (By the way, if your marriage can survive eight years of constant Secret Service protection, it can survive anything.)

Yes, the cost of the Obamas’ travels is off the charts. Yes, it seems like they are traveling while Washington burns.

But should Michelle Obama not be allowed to take her kids and mom to China? Should I have not been allowed to travel because my father was president?

So let’s get over it. Protecting the president and his family is more expensive than ever, but it’s something we have to do. Conservatives need to get out of the weeds, focus on what’s important and stop complaining about things they don’t know anything about.

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS: china; michelle; moochelle0bama; obamavacation; potus; travel

1 posted on 03/27/2014 6:48:09 AM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin

There’s a difference between family traveling with the President on an official trip and family junketing around by themselves on extended and unnecessary vacations. The President’s wife and family are not diplomats or officially or constitutionally empowered to do anything, and they shouldn’t be spending our money this way.

2 posted on 03/27/2014 6:52:48 AM PDT by livius
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To: Kaslin
The difference was Reagan was never hypocritical about his travel and he never played the victim.

Reagan's family did not take personal travel junkets on the taxpayer nickel like the Obamas do.

Regardless, the press excoriated him for his travels regardless.

Criticism like this never stuck to Reagan, but it does to the Obamas because they act like hypocritical grifters who are mooching on the US taxpayers

3 posted on 03/27/2014 6:54:55 AM PDT by rdcbn
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To: Kaslin

The issue isn’t travel, the issue is spending taxpayer money lavishly as if it is their right to do so. The criticism shouldn’t be limited to travel, but to every aspect of their daily life. Lavish ‘unwinding’ parties, a now top secret wine price list, etc. Winning the White House is equated to winning the lottery - you can spend to your heart’s content, eat however you wish, throw all the parties you want for your friends and family, and your only cost is maybe a token amount when the rubes complain too bitterly.

I guess I better eat more ramen so that they can raise my taxes even more so that the Obama family, friends, and whomever else secures an invitation doesn’t have to go without a reserve wine at dinner tonight.

4 posted on 03/27/2014 7:15:50 AM PDT by kingu (Everything starts with slashing the size and scope of the federal government.)
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To: Kaslin
Good post again, K.

However, the MSM and FReepers share a blind spot. The real question about any foreign trip made by The MMF is

Where's Reggie?

Seems he is an indispensable traveling companion and play date for Barry.

5 posted on 03/27/2014 7:21:15 AM PDT by Kenny Bunk ( The Republican Party is very sick . Hold all contributions until we see who picks up the patient..)
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To: Kaslin
So let’s get over it.

The constant refrain of the GOP to conservatives. Sounds like a broken record and I am sick of hearing it.

6 posted on 03/27/2014 7:33:05 AM PDT by Count of Monte Fisto (The foundation of modern society is the denial of reality.)
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To: Count of Monte Fisto

Mr. Reagan needs to learn that two “wrongs” don’t make it “right”. I condemn him for doing the same thing. Why was it neccessary for him to go to Europe even once? Why was it neccessary for Hillary and Ugly #2 to go ride camels?Why is it neccessary for Michelle and her kids to go to China?

7 posted on 03/27/2014 8:17:48 AM PDT by VerySadAmerican (".....Barrack, and the horse Mohammed rode in on.")
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To: Kaslin

No, I will not get over it.

This stinking grifter, her mooching mother and entitled spawn are deserving of every word spoken against them.

To hell with all of them, and their little dogs too.

8 posted on 03/27/2014 9:37:26 AM PDT by mom4melody
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To: mom4melody

Just another free pass for the usurper.

9 posted on 03/27/2014 12:17:12 PM PDT by Cowgirl
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