Oh, rapture: White House to resume tours next month on a “limited basis”
posted at 6:41 pm on October 18, 2013 by Erika Johnsen
WASHINGTON, DC – The White House is pleased to announce the resumption of a limited schedule of East Wing and Executive Residence tours, beginning on November 5th. Additionally, the White House will be opening its gardens and grounds to visitors on October 26th and 27th.
Members of the public interested in scheduling a tour of the East Wing and Executive Residence should contact their Member of Congress.
For a tour of the gardens and grounds on Saturday, October 26th from 9:00 AM to 3:30 PM, and Sunday, October 27th from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM, members of the public can obtain a free, timed ticket at the Ellipse Visitor Pavilion located at 15th and E Streets on Saturday and Sunday beginning at 7:30 AM. Tickets will be distributed — one ticket per person (including small children) — on a first-come, first-served basis. …
And etcetera. The Washington Post has more:
Secret Service spokesman Robert Novy said the tours would continue through Jan. 15 and occur three days a week, on average, though the exact number of days would vary. Before the White House halted the tours in March, they had taken place five days a week.
“Last year’s sequestration came midway through the fiscal year, and we were unable to adjust or re-allocate remaining funding to continue tours while still ensuring enough funding remained to meet all operational needs and avoid furloughing our employees,” Novy said. “In light of the new fiscal year, the Secret Service is confident that through the Continuing Resolution tours can operate on a limited schedule while still meeting operational requirements.”
What do you suppose prompted this? Is it perhaps that they feel they have finally wrung any and all possible benefits out of their sequestration-inspired Washington Monument Strategery, or that the nation perked up its ears to this kind of errant behavior after the petty way in which they handled the shutdown in parks and even the tiniest scraps of government lands all across the country? Whatever the reason, it certainly took them long enough.