August 10th, 2010
09:42 AM ET
soundoff (23 Responses)
  1. Melissa

    This story isn't newsworthy. I don't remember hearing any outrage at Laura Bush when she took 89 trips overseas as first lady, including visits to Germany, Russia, France, Italy, the Czech Republic, Burma, Hungary, Haiti, Afghanistan and five trips to Africa.

    My guess is that many international vacations are being taken by many Americans this summer, including politicians–conservatives, liberals, republicans and democrats alike. Honestly, I'm not interested in hearing about any of them. Let's focus on real news.

    August 10, 2010 at 5:04 pm |
  2. Kathy

    I do not care about what was done in the past. Here and now America is suffering badly, and Ms. Obama should have taken a vacation in an area that is hurting to give some American's relief. A trip to Spain could have been done once she leaves the White house. When are the leaders of America going to get the reality of the economy.

    August 10, 2010 at 4:08 pm |
  3. Denise

    I'll bet it was a wonderful adventure for Mrs Obama and her daughter. I'm glad the Obama's give their daughters opportuniities most kids don't get. I'm more concerned with what our country is going through economically. So let's focus on that, shall we?

    August 10, 2010 at 3:02 pm |
  4. Su from Fort Lee, NJ

    The White House should now be called the "Spin Doctors"...another excuse, another blame game...so this time it was because of "Michelle's friend's need to be consoled due to her father's death?" I do not know of ANYONE who grieves by taking an extravagant vacation at taxpayer's expense with 40 other pals...but maybe that is the Obama's way!

    August 10, 2010 at 2:40 pm |
  5. Boomer in Mo

    She should have gone to New Orleans with her daughter instead. Anyone could foresee the criticism coming.

    August 10, 2010 at 2:24 pm |
  6. Tammy, Houma, LA

    The Marie Antoinette comparison is a bit over the top. Please consider that the First Family is "on" even in their "off" time. They represent this nation 24/5 no matter what they are doing. I personally think the First Lady and her daughter vacationing in Spain sends a message that America hasn't rolled up into a ball and died but is instead viable and strong.

    August 10, 2010 at 1:42 pm |
  7. Nora

    The "lock step" Reps and conservatives have to gripe about
    everything. Rember Bush being on vacation most of his term?

    I don't see any Republican breaking out from the "group" and really have a good dialogue about anything – they just gripe!

    August 10, 2010 at 1:14 pm |
  8. Lobo

    Don't you get it yet? No matter what Ms Obama or the President does, they will be put down for it. WHO CARES?

    August 10, 2010 at 12:59 pm |
  9. Pat Nesberg

    It is not right to say no more vacations to anyone. The president and his wife and their daughters probably have a small amount of family time. When the president takes a weekend, (which always has some element of work in it) we call it a vacation. How is a weekend a vacation? Everyone needs down time in order to function properly.
    Do we complain about expenses like The Blue Angels flying around the country for air shows? I bet that's a huge expense and is one of those things we are proud of. We can equally be proud of our first lady emanating what it is to be American. That is worth the expense, and so is her service to our country worth the expense of an appropriate vacation for our first lady.

    August 10, 2010 at 12:40 pm |
  10. Matt

    There will always be people complaining about this and that- the president gets paid approx $400,000 a year- is it unreasonable to think that his wife and kids can go on holiday?.

    Typical nay-sayers will also negate the economic benefits that can occur between the two countries such as increased exports, technological alliances etc that occur when representatives from one country visit another.

    If you continued the line of thought that they should not be living so lavishly in these tough economic time and instead they should be living like hermits?- get them to convert the rose garden to a veg. patch to save money?

    August 10, 2010 at 12:26 pm |
  11. Anna

    I did not read or hear those critisisms when Chelsea Clinton had that fancy wedding that required all that security and a non-fly-zone -:)

    August 10, 2010 at 12:04 pm |
  12. Sam

    40 GUESTS and 70 SECURITY MEN?

    August 10, 2010 at 11:54 am |
  13. Kim

    Tax payers spent for the trip to Spain $---? Mrs. Obama paid back $----out of her own pocket ? The plane was $11.500.00 an hour to get there. The Tax Dollars American citizens paid grand total for Mrs. Obama who Gibbs refers to as a private citizen is what ? I've never heard tell of a First Lady being called a private citizen when she's spending the American people's money. Straighten up and no more vacations !

    August 10, 2010 at 11:48 am |
  14. Atinuke

    Michelle took an exhuberant vacation at a wrong period.(What most mothers do).
    However, wisdom is profitable to direct.
    I think most pple are not letting this go easily because there are sensitive decisions to be made
    & the pressure is up.

    August 10, 2010 at 11:32 am |
  15. robinrmilam

    Give me a break! We live in a GLOBAL society. This is a very important time for our leaders to be connecting worldwide. Let her travel where she wants ... she deserves a break from us with loved ones. Leave her alone.

    Talk about all the NATURAL GAS in the Gulf that was released with the oil no one is talking about or the displacement of people around the world because of climate change and US global economic polocies that dry consumeristic lust and dependency on fosil fuels.

    I am insulted to think this topic is what you think Americans want to debate. You have lowered yourself ... even Palin's rolling her eyes is better than than this! I would rather have heard a supportive report on her trip. Get off it....

    August 10, 2010 at 11:21 am |
  16. Lorraine Hodgson

    Why can't the First Lady, who is also a mother, take 1 of her children on a trip outside the USA. How many Americans took trips out of the US this summer. Wherever she goes, so goes the Secret Service and the Obama's paid all other expenses. Yes, there are economic issues in the US but for all those Americans who have money (I encountered a lot of them on a recent cruise) and there are plenty of them vacationing in my Province of Quebec, why should she be judged by a different set of rules. The Obama's can afford first class flights and accommodations and she is spending money earned by them to take one of their children on a trip. Leave her alone.

    August 10, 2010 at 11:14 am |
  17. John

    I liked seeing her in Spain. We don't get to see enough of her. Besides it's good for International relations.

    August 10, 2010 at 11:10 am |
  18. Tammy Christine

    Great now the whole world is jealous of Michelle because she is on vacaction in Spain.. I forget what the Presidents salary is, but I am sure he can afford to send his wife and daughter is Spain, on the salary WE pay him! So there! If she is happy, I am happy. Love, tcc

    August 10, 2010 at 10:40 am |
  19. Kenneth Maye

    It is more of a necessity to take a trip during chaotic times because it temporarily provides relief in order for an individual to work through stress.

    August 10, 2010 at 10:28 am |
  20. PoliticolNews

    Just because she hasn't gone to Crawford Texas -doesn't mean she can't vacation in Spain. Bush was on vacation for most of his 8 years of employment. John McCain wanted to invade it in 2008.

    August 10, 2010 at 10:27 am |
  21. Pamela Porter

    First Ladies have always been taking their children and others on trips without the President. Mrs. Kennedy was always taking trips without her family. Everyone had a fit or at least a comment, now she is one of the most popular First Ladies in history.

    As I remember at that time First Lady Hillary Clinton took at least a few trips with their daughter. So what is the big deal. Peope get a life!

    Austin, TX

    August 10, 2010 at 10:24 am |
  22. Kim

    Ostentatious luxury in the face of major economic difficulties in the US and millions on food stampsthat never have been before,unemployed,homes in foreclosure and the Recovery Reinvestment Act in some serious question. However,the comparision to Marie Antoinette 'a la Rose" is a bit off the top rude. She was executed by guillotine and I'm thinking mow the White House lawn or take a picture with Bo by the dog house. I read Mrs. Obama paid for a lot as a private citizen herself. Private citizen ? She wished !

    August 10, 2010 at 10:23 am |
  23. Augsbee

    Leave this mother alone, she did what she believed is right for her kids regardless of how much it costs and regardless of what others have to say about it. This trip is a wonderful, educational experience for the kids. It's great for people, kids to step out of the U.S. and experience other cultures, food, art, music, language, see how different the world is from the U.S.

    August 10, 2010 at 9:59 am |