File this in the too good to check category. As the Obamas trekked to Martha’s Vineyard for vacation at the multi-million dollar estate of a private equity mogul — not Mitt Romney, of course! — they must have run out of room for the First Dog, at least according to the Telegraph:
Rooms have to be found for dozens of Secret Service agents, someone has to carry a selection of presidential basketballs, and of course the family dog needs his own state-of-the-art aircraft.
Arriving in the idyllic coastal retreat of Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts, Mr Obama left behind him in Washington DC high profile debates over the budget, government surveillance and his health care reforms. Instead, he will spend the next eight days playing golf, going to the beach, and buying books from the Bunch of Grapes bookstore.
In the air he swapped his suit and tie for khakis and a blue shirt with rolled-up sleeves, while Mrs Obama wore a yellow-and-white summer dress.
Bo, the president’s Portuguese Water Dog, arrived separately on one of two MV-22 Ospreys, a hybrid aircraft which takes off like a helicopter but flies like a plane.
Color me highly skeptical on the spin applied to this rather mundane statement. The V-22 Osprey has enough capacity to carry as many as 24 troops seated or 32 without seats. The Obamas’ Secret Service details and the support communication equipment that has to accompany the President probably took up all of the room on one Osprey. If Bo traveled separately from the Obamas, he probably went with some of the support personnel who also traveled to Martha’s Vineyard on a second Osprey.
It seems doubtful in the extreme that the other V-22 Osprey would have gone empty to Martha’s Vineyard with just Bo and a bowl of Iams. The Telegraph certainly insinuates that Bo flew first class on his own in the first paragraph, but nowhere reports anything except that Bo went on the other Osprey, not that Bo was the reason for the second Osprey.
Presidents go on vacation all the time, and it’s always fun for a little class warfare no matter who’s in office at the time. Still, the choice of David Schulte’s residence provides a heaping helping of hypocrisy from Barack Obama, whose campaign demonized private-equity investment firms and Mitt Romney throughout all of last year:
Obama and his family arrived Saturday at the $7.6 million home of David Schulte, founder of the private equity firm Chilmark Partners. The four-bedroom, 5,000-square foot home sits on nine and a half acres in the Chilmark area of Martha’s Vineyard and boasts “floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the Atlantic.” According to Bloomberg’s Juliana Goldman, “While the First Family’s there, they can swim in the Infinity pool, they could shoot hoops on a half-basketball court, even hit the gym, they could also play tennis on the tennis court there.” …
Schulte, whose private equity firm specializes in mergers and acquisitions and corporate “restructuring,” was one of Obama’s 2013 inaugural donors. Before founding the Chicago-based Chilmark Partners in 1984, Schulte, a Yale Law School graduate, directed the Wall Street investment bank Salomon Brothers’ “Corporate Reorganization Group.”
Meanwhile, another private equity group founder, former Bain Capital CEO Mitt Romney, slammed President Obama’s job performance in a speech last week in the New England summer resort town of Wolfeboro, New Hampshire.
Private equity is now cool again, huh? Go figure.