Obama heads to Hawaii for 10-day vacation, after payroll tax fight

Fresh off his political victory in the payroll tax cut fight, President Obama will head to Hono­lulu for a 10-day vacation with his family.

Obama delayed what had originally been scheduled as a 17-day jaunt to stay in Washington and pressure House Republicans to support a two-month extension to the tax holiday. That bill was approved Friday morning after House Speaker John A. Boehner told rank-and-file members a day earlier that it was time to make a deal.

First lady Michelle Obama and daughters Malia and Sasha decamped a week ago for Hono­lulu, where the president stays at a rented compound. Obama will join them in time for Christmas, having shopped for gifts for his daughters this week in Alexandria.

The president generally tries to keep a low public profile in his native Hawaii, playing golf, snorkeling and barbecuing with friends or going out for shaved ice. He is scheduled to return to Washington Jan. 2.

Obama’s arrival on the island will quench the thirst of some reporters who went there early to wait for him and, in his absence, have spent time filing stories about tangential matters such as a manufactured non-conspiracy involving Bo, the Obama family’s dog.

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David Nakamura covers the White House. He has previously covered sports, education and city government and reported from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Japan.
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