Entries in Golf (15)


Obama's Birthday Weekend: Golf, Terror Updates and Camp David

Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama, who turns 52 on Sunday, spent Saturday playing golf with friends at Joint Base Andrews, but before he hit the links, he was briefed on the terrorist threat that will cause 21 U.S. embassies to close Sunday.

“Before departing this morning, the president was updated on the potential threat occurring in or emanating from the Arabian Peninsula by Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism Lisa Monaco. He will continue to be updated through the weekend,” a White House official told reporters.

The State Department has ordered all U.S. embassies to close Sunday. Most are closed anyway on Sundays, except those in Muslim countries, meaning the closures affect 21 embassies in the Muslim world. The State Department also issued a worldwide travel alert for Americans on Friday.

After the briefing, the president’s motorcade left the White House with golf clubs and at least one cooler in tow. Later, he planned to head to Camp David.

Three groups teed off at Andrews, according to a White House official, including a smattering of old friends and former colleagues. Among them were two Chicago friends, Marty Nesbitt and Eric Whitaker. Whitaker attended graduate school with Obama at Harvard. High school friends Mike Ramos and Bobby Titcomb, who was arrested in 2011 in Honolulu on suspicion of soliciting a prostitute, were also there.  Obama has played golf with him at least twice since the arrest.

Former aide Reggie Love and Chicago chef Sam Kass, who has also served as a White House chef, senior policy adviser on nutrition, and executive director of Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! campaign, also played.

Obama was expected to depart for Camp David in the afternoon, returning Sunday.

The presidential golf outing got cool-for-August morning temperatures accompanied by some intermittent, light drizzling rain.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Obama Golfs with ESPN Hosts Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) -- Able to play golf with pretty much anyone he wants, President Obama is spending his Saturday on a military course with ESPN’s Michael Wilbon and Tony Kornheiser, co-hosts of Pardon the Interruption.

Saturday is Kornheiser’s 65th birthday, as was mentioned on the ESPN show Friday.

They’re playing at Fort Belvoir, a military base off I-95 about 30 minutes south of the White House. Wilbon and Kornheiser did not ride with the president in his motorcade, which arrived at 10:15 a.m., according to pool reports.

On Friday, Wilbon, Kornheiser, and Tony Reali — host of ESPN’s Around the Horn and PTI’s longtime on-air fact-checker — ate lunch at the White House and visited with Obama in the Oval Office.

Reali described the visit in a YouTube video posted to the Around the Horn channel.

“Coolest experience of my life,” he said.

Two years ago, Obama told Reali and frequent guest Kevin Blackistone that Around the Horn is the only TV show he watches, Reali said.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


President Obama Golfing with Cabinet Secretaries

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) -- After a week of hearings in Washington and despite cloudy skies, President Obama is spending his Saturday afternoon on the golf course.

Obama's foursome included Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and Senior Policy Advisor Sam Kass.

Obama has frequented the golf course often this spring, but until Saturday always with male golfing partners. Sebelius is the first woman to join the president on the golf course this year.

Sebelius was seen getting into the president's SUV before the motorcade left the White House.

Kass is also the executive director of Let's Move! and an assistant chef at the White House.

The president’s golf outing comes after the White House spent a week dealing with a series of political scandals, from the IRS targeting conservative groups seeking tax exempt status for extra scrutiny, to the administration’s release of a trove of e-mails about the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, last year, to the Department of Justice obtaining phone records of Associated Press reporters.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Obama Golfs Ahead of WH Correspondents’ Dinner

Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama spent Saturday afternoon at the golf course, just a few hours before he is set to attend the White House Correspondents’ Dinner later in the evening.

The president golfed at Joint Base Andrews with former U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk and White House aides Marvin Nicholson and Michael Brush.

President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama will attend the annual dinner held by the White House Correspondents Association at the Washington Hilton hotel Saturday evening where journalists, politicians and celebrities will have the chance to see the president’s comedic side in action alongside comedian Conan O’Brien, who is the guest entertainer for tonight’s soiree.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Obama Plays Golf for Third Straight Weekend

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama is spending his third consecutive Saturday on the golf course at Joint Base Andrews, taking advantage of the warm spring weather.

The president was joined on the course by White House Trip Director Marvin Nicholson and White House aides Michael Brush and Joe Paulsen, the same three who accompanied the president last Saturday. Nicholson and Brush also joined Obama on the links two weeks ago.

While the president spent the day golfing, the White House opened its gates to the public for the annual spring White House garden tours.

Visitors who received free tickets through the National Park Service were able to roam through the Jacqueline Kennedy Garden, the Rose Garden, and the South Lawn of the White House.  They also caught a peek at the White House Kitchen Garden, the first vegetable garden at the White House since Eleanor Roosevelt’s Victory Garden.

But while visitors saw the tulips and roses blooming in the White House gardens, the White House itself is still off limits for tours.  White House tours were cancelled indefinitely on March 9th due to sequester cuts faced by the Secret Service.

The White House garden tours are operating today and Sunday only.

The president is an avid golfer. Interestingly, President Obama's recent budget proposal would close a tax loophole that currently allows golf course owners to claim a charitable tax deduction by donating some of the land the course sat on to a conservation land trust.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


President Obama Plays Golf for Second Weekend in a Row

iStockphoto(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama went out for a round of golf Saturday afternoon, his second weekend in a row to hit the links at a course at Joint Base Andrews.

The president golfed with White House aides Marvin Nicholson, Joe Paulsen, and Michael Brush.

Last Saturday, the president played golf at the same course with Nicholson, Brush, and friend and Chicago businessman Marty Nesbitt.  The outing marked his first time on the golf course since the sequester cuts went into place on March 1. The president also took in the Syracuse-Marquette NCAA tournament basketball game at the Verizon Center, where he spent time talking with Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III last weekend.

It's not known what the president shot.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Obama Plays First Round of Golf Since Sequester Cuts

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) --  President Obama spent his Saturday on the golf course at Andrews Air Force Base, his first trip to the links since the sequester cuts took effect on March 1.

Obama was joined on the course by friend and Chicago businessman, Marty Nesbitt, White House staffer Michael Brush, and body man Marvin Nicholson.

On his last golf outing, Obama played a round with Tiger Woods at a golf club in Palm City, Florida. That round drew heavy criticism from the White House press corps because the press was not allowed access.

Earlier this month, some Republicans attacked the president’s penchant for golfing after tours at the White House were cancelled due to the sequester cuts.

Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, introduced an amendment to the continuing resolution which would cut funding for the president’s transportation to and from golf games until the White House tours resumed, but the measure was not included in the final CR approved by Congress.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich joined in the criticism of the president’s golf hobby arguing that the trips require  costly Secret Service protection.

“The president will use up more Secret Service time guarding him while he golfs than it would take to keep the White House tours open all year,” Gingrich said in an interview with CNN.

But one prominent politician -  New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg – rose to the president’s defense, saying he should be golfing more to strengthen his relationships.

“I find it fascinating, people criticize him for taking people to dinner – he should be doing that every night. They criticize him for going and playing golf with people who he’s got to deal with. He should be doing that every weekend. You always can work better with somebody that you have a chance to build a social relationship with,” Bloomberg said on CBS’ Face the Nation earlier this month.

Since March 1, the president has attended his daughter’s basketball games and played hoops at a basketball court close to the White House on the weekends. Last week, he was traveling home from a trip to Israel and Jordan.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Tiger Woods: Obama Has 'Amazing Touch' on Golf Course

JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- When Tiger Woods is your teammate, it's hard to lose.  Still, President Obama has a pretty good game, according to the world's second-ranked golfer.

Obama and Woods played golf over Presidents' Day weekend, and Woods divulged on Tuesday that they teamed up to beat the other players in their foursome, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk and Houston Astros owner Jim Crane.

"He was my partner, and as I said, we won," Woods told reporters at a press conference after a practice round at the WGC-Accenture Matchplay Championship in Arizona.

"He hit the ball well, and he's got an amazing touch.  He can certainly chip and putt," Woods said of Obama.  "If he ... spends more time playing the game of golf, I'm sure he can get to where he's got pretty good stick" -- golf-aficionados' terminology for a talented game.

Asked how one gets an invitation to play with the president, Woods joked, "He calls up and says, 'Hey Tiger you wanna play?'  Obviously there is a process that's involved, and I was invited to play, and it was an invitation that certainly you don't turn down, especially [since] he's an avid golfer, and so am I.  So we went out there and we had just a great round of golf with Ron and Jim, and it was a good day."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


President Obama, Tiger Woods Play Golf Together

JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images(PALM CITY, Fla.) -- President Obama is in the middle of spending a three-day weekend at a posh Florida golf and yacht club. And if taking private training lessons on the links from Tiger Woods’ old coach Saturday wasn’t enough, on Sunday the Tiger himself joined Obama on the links. The meeting on the green is their first.

A White House official confirmed to the press that the president was playing with Woods, although media have not been allowed on the resort since the president’s Friday arrival to view any activity.

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk and the property’s owner, Jim Crane, were also on the course, according to the official. Crane is a former Obama donor and the owner of the Houston Astros baseball team.

Woods, who is among the world’s top professional golfers, was the first person to hold all four major championship titles simultaneously. By contrast, Obama, who only took up the sport in recent years, has previously described himself as only an average duffer. His love of the game is well known however, and he played more than a hundred rounds last summer.

Obama has occasionally drawn criticism from opponents for the amount of time he’s spent on golf courses, drawing complaints that it is time wasted away from the Oval Office. But he is far from the golf record holder among U.S. presidents. That goes to Woodrow Wilson, who historians note played 1,200 rounds during his presidency. Former President Dwight Eisenhower takes second place at 800, according to his memorial commission.

Woods is currently the second highest ranking golfer in the world, although his career suffered in 2009 when a messy extramarital affair came to the public eye.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


President Obama Gets Golf Lessons from Tiger Woods’ Old Coach

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(PALM CITY, Fla.) -- President Obama is spending his President’s Day weekend in an upscale coastal community for a golf getaway with friends. But he isn’t spending his three days in the Sunshine State idly teeing off: The president received golf lessons on Saturday from the former coach of none other than Tiger Woods himself: Butch Harmon.

A veteran of the PGA Tour, Harmon is renowned today for his series of Ultimate Golf training videos. He flew to the area with his son, Claude III, to give the president personal tips.

“I’ve played golf with Ike, Nixon, Ford and President Bush 41,” Harmon told Tim Rosaforte of Golf Digest. “I never played with President Clinton. I met him in the Oval Office. It’ll be interesting. I know the president is a real keen golfer. I’m looking forward to it. It should be fun.

“It’ll be fun to get him down in the learning center, show him stuff in his golf game and see how he takes it to the course,” Harmon told Rosaforte. “He’s just like all of us that play golf. He wants to get better.”

Obama is staying at the posh golf and yacht club known as “the Floridian,” which sports a recently-built training facility partially designed by Harmon, but the resort is secluded from view and was locked down by authorities on Saturday.

The White House has not allowed press to view the activities, but they did state his partners on Saturday included personal friend Dr. Eric Whitaker and U.S. Trade Rep. Ron Kirk. Harvard classmate and fundraiser Tony Chase was there as well as Milton Carroll, a Texas energy businessman who donated to the Obama campaign

The property’s owner, Jim Crane, was also on the course. Crane, who also owns the Houston Astros baseball team, was an Obama reelection campaign donor who put together a fundraising event at the team’s stadium last March. The appearance was one of two that evening that brought in a estimated $2.8 million combined, the campaign said at the time.

Local media reports the president is expected to migrate to another 18 holes on Sunday: Hobe Sound’s The Medalist, where Tiger Woods is also a member.

The president has not brought family along for the trip. His wife and daughters hit the slopes on their annual Presidents’ Day weekend ski trip. The Obamas’ holiday trips come after the president spent his week criss-crossing the country plugging his economic and education agendas, and a ceremony for victims of gun violence.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

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