There is a lot of criticism raining down on Barack Obama’s head for taking a 10-day working vacation at Martha’s Vineyard this month while the American economy slides further towards a new recession. Considering that all Presidents take vacations — even FDR during wartime and the Great Depression — and the fact that modern Presidents are every bit as on the job as they are in Washington, Obama’s decision to spend some time with his family is rather easily defensible. Somehow, though, I don’t think the White House will consider Chris Cillizza’s strange argument here as helpful:
After an NBC reporter embedded with the Obama family during their vacation in Martha’s Vineyard gave her report that some are unhappy he has decided to go on such a lavish trip in such economic times, MSNBC guest host Chris Cillizza made sure to get a jab in at Sarah Palin. Cillizza, a political writer at the Washington Post, made sure to note “former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin (R) was someone who quit her job in the middle of it. Just noting in the interest of fairness.”
So what’s the argument here — that it’s OK to quit on the job? Or that Obama isn’t quite as bad as Palin in sticking around? Help me out here … how exactly is Palin’s resignation even germane to the debate over Obama’s vacation? In the interest of fairness, there are a lot better defenses to be made, unless one just wants to utter the name “Sarah Palin” as some sort of incantation for more attention.