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Barack Obama Sightings in D.C.: The Where and the When

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Obama delivers most remarks while in D.C. from the White House's East Room; the plurality of the President's statements begin at the 11 o'clock hour

This report is the third in a series on a study of all the verbal statements Barack Obama has delivered since Inauguration Day. The first installment focused on the sharp decline in statements delivered by the President in 2010 while the second report observed how Obama has addressed audiences in states he won in 2008 by an eight-fold margin over those he lost.

Signing bills into law. Honoring sports championship teams. Presenting Medals of Freedom. Speaking before and after meetings with foreign dignitaries.

The President of the United States delivers hundreds of verbal remarks each year in Washington, D.C., with the vast majority originating from his home turf at the White House.

Obama has utilized more than a dozen venues to deliver verbal statements at the White House alone - with many locations hosting a wide variety of presidential remarks.

A Smart Politics analysis of over 300 verbal statements made by Barack Obama in Washington, D.C. since Inauguration Day finds the East Room at the White House to be the most prevalent backdrop from which the President has delivered his public statements, with 19 percent coming from that locale.

And while a President's day frequently begins early and ends late, 76 percent of Obama's public statements have been delivered between the 10 am and 4 o'clock hours, with the plurality occurring just before and after lunch.

A previous Smart Politics report found 63 percent (336) of President Obama's 531 verbal statements have been delivered within the District of Columbia through March 21, 2010 (note: excluding press conferences and interviews).

Of these 336 verbal statements, 235 (69.9 percent) have been delivered at the White House, with another 48 at cabinet and other executive branch offices (14.3 percent), 15 at D.C. area hotels (4.5 percent), and 12 from the U.S. Capitol (3.6 percent).

General Location of Barack Obama's Verbal Remarks within Washington, D.C, January 20, 2009 - March 21, 2010

Location
#
Percent
White House
235
69.9
Cabinet & other executive buildings
48
14.3
Hotels
15
4.5
U.S. Capitol
12
3.6
Convention centers
5
1.5
Museums
4
1.2
Schools / Universities
4
1.2
Theaters
3
0.9
Interest groups
2
0.6
Independent agencies
1
0.3
Other
7
2.1
Total
336
100.0
Data excludes formal media appearances (press conferences and interviews). Presidential statement data was culled from the Public Papers of the Presidents at The American Presidency Project. Compiled by Smart Politics.

The President has delivered remarks from 14 different locations at the White House to date, from the Library to the Ellipse, to the Grand Foyer, to the North and South Porticos.

But it is the East Room of the White House that has been the most common place from which the President has delivered verbal remarks, with 65 statements to date, or 19.3 percent of all his D.C.-area remarks.

Obama has delivered remarks after signing six bills into law from the East Room:

· The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 (January 29, 2009)
· The Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009 (February 4, 2009)
· The Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009 (March 30, 2009)
· The Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act of 2009 and Legislation To Prevent Mortgage Foreclosures and Enhance Mortgage Credit Availability (May 20, 2009)
· The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2010 (October 28, 2009)
· The Veterans Health Care Budget Reform and Transparency Act of 2009 (October 22, 2009)

On March 9th of last year the President also famously signed an executive order from the East Room: the Executive Order Removing Barriers to Responsible Scientific Research Involving Human Stem Cells and a Memorandum on Scientific Integrity.

The President also used the East Room to deliver remarks on the nominations of Kathleen Sebelius to be Secretary of HHS (March 2, 2009) and Sonia Sotomayor to be a Supreme Court Associate Justice (May 26, 2009).

The East Room has also been host to less high-brow activities, such as Honoring the 2008 NCAA Football Champion University of Florida Gators (April 23, 2009), the 2008 Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins (September 10, 2009), the 2009 NBA Champion Los Angeles Lakers (January 25, 2010), and the 2009 NCAA Football Champion University of Alabama Crimson Tide (March 8, 2010).

After the East Room, the Oval Office is the next most common place for Obama to deliver public remarks, with 44 such statements made over the past 14 months (13.1 percent of his D.C. statements).

Almost all of these remarks in the Oval Office (39 statements) were delivered before, during, or after high-profile meetings, particulary with heads of state, such as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel (May 18, 2009), Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada (September 16, 2009), and Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi of Italy (October 20, 2009).

The Rose Garden at the White House is the third most frequent venue for the President to speak to the American public, having delivered 27 statements from the garden bordering the Oval Office and West Wing.

The President has remarked while signing four bills into law from the Rose Garden:

· The Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure Act of 2009 (May 22, 2009)
· The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act of 2009 (May 22, 2009)
· The Weapons System Acquisition Reforms Act of 2009 (June 22, 2009)
· The Worker, Homeownership, and Business Assistance Act of 2009 (November 6, 2009)

Obama also delivered remarks on health care reform on five occasions from the Rose Garden last year: on July 15th, July 21st, October 5th, November 7th, and November 8th.

The other top sites for Obama to deliver verbal statements to the public are the Dwight D. Eisenhower Executive Office Building (26 statements, 7.7 percent of D.C. remarks), the Diplomatic Reception Room at the White House (25, 7.4 percent), and the Roosevelt Room at the White House (16, 4.8 percent).

Specific Location of Barack Obama's Verbal Remarks within Washington, D.C, January 20, 2009 - March 21, 2010

Location
#
Percent
East Room at the White House
65
19.3
Oval Office at the White House
44
13.1
Rose Garden at the White House
27
8.0
Dwight D. Eisenhower Executive Office Building
26
7.7
Diplomatic Reception Room at the White House
25
7.4
Roosevelt Room at the White House
16
4.8
South Drive at the White House
15
4.5
US Capitol
12
3.6
State Dining Room at the White House
12
3.6
Grand Foyer at the White House
11
3.3
Cabinet Room at the White House
9
2.7
Garden Room at the Blair House, front of Blair House
6
1.8
South Portico at the White House
5
1.5
Department of the Interior
3
0.9
Walter E. Washington Convention Center
3
0.9
St. Regis Hotel
3
0.9
Washington Hilton Hotel
3
0.9
James S. Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House
3
0.9
Department of Transportation
2
0.6
Capital Hilton Hotel
2
0.6
Mandarin Hotel
2
0.6
J. Edgar Hoover FBI Building
2
0.6
Abraham Lincoln Hall
1
0.3
Department of Education
1
0.3
Department of Energy
1
0.3
Department of the Treasury
1
0.3
Department of Veterans Affairs
1
0.3
State Department
1
0.3
Fort Lesley J. McNair
1
0.3
Vermont Avenue Baptist Church
1
0.3
Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center
1
0.3
Washington Convention Center
1
0.3
Children's National Medical Center
1
0.3
J.W. Marriott Hotel
1
0.3
Omni Shoreham Hotel
1
0.3
Ritz Carlton Hotel
1
0.3
Washington Court Hotel
1
0.3
Washington Marriott Metro Center
1
0.3
National Archives and Records Administration Rotunda
1
0.3
AARP headquarters
1
0.3
U.S. Chamber of Commerce
1
0.3
National Building Museum
1
0.3
National Museum of Women in the Arts
1
0.3
National Women in the Arts Museum
1
0.3
Newseum
1
0.3
National Academy of Sciences
1
0.3
Richard England Clubhouse #14
1
0.3
Unspecified
1
0.3
National Response Coordination Center at FEMA Headquarters
1
0.3
Pentagon
1
0.3
Democratic National Committee headquarters
1
0.3
Capital City Public Charter School
1
0.3
SEED school of Washington, DC
1
0.3
Ford Theatre
1
0.3
John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
1
0.3
Warner Theater
1
0.3
Brookings Institution
1
0.3
George Washington University
1
0.3
Georgetown University
1
0.3
Ellipse at the White House
1
0.3
Library at the White House
1
0.3
North Portico at the White House
1
0.3
Total
336
100.0
Data excludes formal media appearances (press conferences and interviews). Presidential statement data was culled from the Public Papers of the Presidents at The American Presidency Project. Compiled by Smart Politics.

And when is the best time of day to catch the President delivering verbal remarks?

Before and after lunch.

The President has delivered more statements in the 11 o'clock hour in the morning (53, 15.8 percent) while in D.C. than at any other time of the day, followed by the 1 o'clock hour in the afternoon (46 statements, 13.7 percent).

Overall, 76.4 percent of Obama's remarks in D.C. (255) have taken place between 10 am and 5 pm.

Thankfully for the White House press corps, only 4 statements have been delivered just after the crack of dawn at the 8 o'clock hour.

However, his earliest appearance delivering verbal remarks to date was an important one: on April 29, 2009 the President spoke on Senator Arlen Specter's decision to join the Senate Democratic Caucus at 8:00 am sharp in the Diplomatic Reception Room at the White House.

The latest starting time for Obama's verbal statements came on May 9, 2009, when he delivered a speech at the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton Hotel at 9:56 p.m.

Starting Time of Barack Obama's Verbal Remarks within Washington, D.C, January 20, 2009 - March 21, 2010

Time
#
%
8:00-8:59 AM
4
1.2
9:00-9:59 AM
18
5.4
10:00-10:59 AM
37
11.0
11:00-11:59 AM
53
15.8
12:00-12:59 PM
31
9.3
1:00-1:59 PM
46
13.7
2:00-2:59 PM
35
10.4
3:00-3:59 PM
32
9.6
4:00-4:59 PM
22
6.6
5:00-5:59 PM
15
4.5
6:00-6:59 PM
8
2.4
7:00-7:59 PM
18
5.4
8:00-8:59 PM
10
3.0
9:00-9:59 PM
6
1.8
N/A
1
0.3
Total
336
100.0
Data excludes formal media appearances (press conferences and interviews). Presidential statement data was culled from the Public Papers of the Presidents at The American Presidency Project. Compiled by Smart Politics.

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