Here is a reality check for Republicans who keep complaining over President Obama’s vacations. President Obama has had fewer vacation days in the last six years than Congress will have in 2014.
According to CBS News Correspondent Mark Knoller, President Obama has spent 129 days of presidency on vacation. The Republican led House of Representatives was scheduled to be in session for only 124 days in all of 2014. This means that John Boehner and company will spend fewer days at work this year than President Obama has spent on vacation in his entire presidency. The numbers are actually worse when one considers that the House is only scheduled to work for 97 days between January and Election day in November. Members of the Senate, like Ted Cruz, have had nearly as many days off this year as the president has had since taking office.
This is the point in any story about Republican hysterics about Obama’s vacations that George W. Bush needs to be used as a point of reference. During Bush’s presidency, he took four vacations that were longer than Obama’s longest vacation. Former President Bush took virtually the entire month of August 2001 off. Bush’s vacation was almost twice as long (27 days) as Obama’s current break (15 days). Ronald Reagan took a 25 day vacation in August 1983. Republicans never demanded that Bush and Reagan return to work, so why is it different for President Obama?
George W. Bush spent the month before the 9/11 terror attacks away from the White House. President Obama came back to the White House in the middle of his current vacation for meetings. Congressional Republicans don’t have a leg to stand on when they criticize the vacations of President Obama. Presidents from their own party took longer and more numerous vacations, while their own work schedule has become noticeably lighter in the last few years.
The reason why the Republican criticism of Obama’s vacations rings hollow is because they deliver their remarks, not on the House or Senate floor, but while they themselves are on vacation. When these Republicans throw vacation stones, they are shattering their own glass houses.