Pictures of the Day: Obama's Interrupted Vacations

When it comes to vacations, President Obama can't seem to catch a break. Whenever he jets off for some relaxation, a catastrophe seems to happen.

That's the case today, as Obama cuts short his Martha's Vineyard vacation with Hurricane Irene approaching the mid-Atlantic coast.

There's a Murphy's Law of presidential vacations, dubbed the "August surprise." During the month when D.C. shuts down, when Congress is out of session and all the important people leave town, something will happen.

Here are the vacational inconveniences the president has encountered:

  • During his first summer vacation in August, 2009, Sen. Edward Kennedy died. Obama cut his vacation short to travel to Boston and deliver Kennedy's eulogy.
  • During his winter vacation that year, "Christmas bomber" Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab tried to blow up a plane bound for Detroit. Obama addressed the nation twice from Hawaii and ordered a review of the event.
  • This past week, as Obama vacationed in Martha's Vineyard, rebels seized Tripoli. After briefings from his national security team, Obama once again addressed the nation from his vacation spot.
  • Today, as cities and towns on the East Coast (including New York City) ordered evacuations in preparation of Hurrican Irene's arrival, Obama delivered a warning about evacuations and emergency readiness before curtailing his vacation to return to D.C.
Presented by

Chris Good is a political reporter for ABC News. He was previously an associate editor at The Atlantic and a reporter for The Hill.

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