Sunday, August 11, 2013

Obama's Martha's Vineyard Vacation

Obama isn't a rich, out of touch guy.

He just plays one when he's on vacation.

From Bloomberg:

President Barack Obama and his family fly this weekend to Martha’s Vineyard for a vacation at a rented multimillion-dollar modernist home owned by Chicago investment banker and Democratic Party donor David Schulte.

The 5,000-square-foot, four-bedroom house sits on nine-and a-half acres in Chilmark, Massachusetts, and includes an infinity pool, a half basketball court, gym, and tennis court, according to a person familiar with the arrangements, who asked for anonymity because the trip details haven’t been made public.

Located on the island’s south shore, a preferred destination for presidential retreats for security reasons, the property features floor-to-ceiling windows and overlooks the Atlantic Ocean. There’s also a two-bedroom guest house and, near the front entrance, a huge boulder dropped by an ancient retreating glacier, according to the website of architect Rick Sundberg, the lead designer for a 2006 renovation.

Schulte declined to comment. He bought the house in July 2000 for $3 million, according to public records. Current estimates put the property value at about $7.6 million.

...Schulte has given $90,350 to Democratic candidates and party committees since 1989, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a Washington-based research group. He contributed to Obama’s 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns as well as his earlier Senate run, and gave the maximum $28,500 to the Democratic National Committee in 2008.

Obama’s visit, from Aug. 10-18, will be his fourth family vacation on Martha’s Vineyard as president. He skipped going there last year during his re-election campaign. As in the past, the president is renting his vacation home. The costs typically are shared by the Obamas and taxpayers, and the rental selection is handled by a local broker, according to a White House aide who asked for anonymity because the details haven’t been made public.

White House press secretary Jay Carney declined to discuss the vacation’s cost.
Carney doesn't have to discuss the vacation's cost.

We know it's going to costs taxpayers millions of dollars.

That's not right when so many people are out of work or underemployed.

Staying at a $7.6 million estate is just a bit out of reach for most of us.

Photos of Obama's playhouse here.

Before jetting off to begin his multimillion dollar vacation, Obama had the audacity to tell disabled vets the sequester could put their benefits in jeopardy. While burning through at least $2 million in taxpayer dollars to fund his summer vacation, Obama addresses vets about the "staggering backlog of disability claims for compensation for illness and injury caused by military service."

The Obamas don't have to wait for American taxpayers to fund his 8-day vacation.

From FOX News:
President Obama took his case for ending the sequester to hundreds of disabled veterans Saturday, saying he protected their benefits from the “reckless” cuts to the federal budget but suggesting next year might be different.

“It’s hurting our military. I made it clear that your veteran’s benefits are exempt from this year’s sequester,” the president said to the applause of hundreds at the Disabled American Veterans' convention in Orlando, Fla. “But I want to tell you going forward the best way to protect the VA care you have earned is to get rid of this sequester altogether.”

The president but the blame squarely on Congress, which returns in about four weeks to work on a new federal budget and increasing the federal debt limit.

...The president also told the veterans the government is making progress in reducing the backlog of disability claims but acknowledged the slow pace.

"It hasn’t gone as fast as I’ve wanted,” he said.

The staggering backlog of disability claims for compensation for illness and injury caused by military service has been a main concern for veterans.

The number of claims waiting to be processed ballooned under Obama, largely because the administration made it easier for Vietnam veterans who were exposed to the Agent Orange defoliant to get benefits.

The backlog recently has begun to shrink due to steps by the Department of Veterans Affairs, including requiring claims processors to work overtime and transitioning to a new computer system to help speed the judgment of claims. About 780,000 claims are pending. Currently, about 500,000 are considered backlogged, down from about 611,000 in March.

A claim is deemed backlogged if it has been in the system for 125 days, or roughly four months.
Veterans are waiting for MONTHS to receive their benefits, but you go ahead and have a nice vacation, Obama!

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