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 Obama and golf: Slow Play

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Daztasiumz
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PostSubject: Obama and golf: Slow Play   Fri Jan 03, 2014 2:07 pm




President Warren Harding, left, gets ready to golf on the Piping Rock Golf Links on Long Island, New York, in 1921. He's with Howard Whitney, second from left, president of the U.S. Golf Association; financier Percy Pyne; and industrialist J. Leonard Replogle.



Arguably the president most associated with golf, Dwight D. Eisenhower lines up a shot in 1953. He often carried a club in the Oval Office and took swings while dictating to his secretary.


Editor's note: Martin Davis is the editor and publisher of The American Golfer and a regular contributor on golf history on the Golf Channel. He has written or edited more than 20 books on golf, including biographies on Ben Hogan, Bobby Jones, Byron Nelson and Jack Nicklaus. His latest book is "America's Gift to Golf: Herbert Warren Wind on the Masters," and for release in August, "The Ryder Cup: Golf's Grandest Event."

(CNN) -- Mitt Romney has made much of President Barack Obama playing what he considers an inordinate amount of golf. I've even read blogs likening it to Nero fiddling while Rome burned.
Perhaps, and then again, perhaps not.


Clearly, there has been a long association with the ancient game and the American presidency. In fact, Obama is the 15th of the last 18 presidents to play golf. Not only is he a hugely avid golfer, but a pretty fair one, too. As far as how much time he spends on the links, his annual rate of play is about the same as President Dwight D. Eisenhower, with President Bill Clinton right on their heels.
It's clear, the presidency and our great game have quite a thing going. And it seems the golf bug is bipartisan.
Martin Davis


Martin Davis
Many people fondly recall Eisenhower and his utter passion for the game. During his presidency, he played some 210 rounds at Augusta National, the home of the Masters, many with his good friend Arnold Palmer. Such was his fervor for the game, he even had a putting green installed on the White House lawn.
But Ike didn't play the most golf among our presidents, nor was he the best.
The honor for the most golf played goes to Woodrow Wilson. It's said that he played at least a few holes each day -- even in the snow -- reportedly logging more than 1,000 rounds in his two terms. Maybe that's why the League of Nations failed.


The best presidential golfer is widely acknowledged to be John F. Kennedy, usually shooting around 80. But suffering from Addison's disease and a bad back, Kennedy didn't play much while he was in office. He spent more time in his Oval Office rocking chair than on the links.


Clinton, a passionate golfer whose foundation is associated with the recent Humana Classic in Palm Springs, California, was best known for taking Mulligans, a somewhat extra-legal do-over shot in a friendly match. The press even coined a term for them -- "Billigans."


Franklin Delano Roosevelt often played at his family's summer home in Maine before he was stricken with polio. A good golfer who never played while in office, he nevertheless made his mark on the game with his public works projects that led to the development of many public access golf courses, including one of the very best in the country, the Black Course at Bethpage State Park on Long Island, New York, the site of two recent U.S. Opens. Roosevelt left quite a lasting legacy on the game.
Lyndon Johnson played the game, warning his playing partners that it wasn't proper to beat the president. Most significantly, he used his outings on the links to secure votes for the Civil Rights Act of 1964.


The best athlete as president? Easy: Gerald Ford, a former All-American football center at the University of Michigan. An avid golfer, right after Jimmy Carter was sworn in replacing him, Ford immediately flew to Palm Springs to play golf with Bob Hope in his Pro Am just hours later.


There's more: President William Howard Taft, our 27th president, was so obsessive about the game he played in exhibition matches with top-notch players after his term of office; President Calvin Coolidge, who never did get the hang of the game, left his clubs behind when he left the White House; President Richard Nixon, always seemingly politically motivated, was said to have taken up the game to cozy up to Eisenhower and remain on the ticket as his running mate for a second term; and President Ronald Reagan, who was known to putt down the aisle of Air Force One into the section reserved for the national press.


There is golf royalty associated with our presidents. George H.W. Bush's grandfather, George Herbert Walker, a former U.S. Golf Association president, donated the Walker Cup, the trophy for the prestigious international biannual amateur team matches. And Bush's father, Prescott, was also smitten with the game, serving as president of the golf association as well and officiating at a number of Bobby Jones' matches.


Continuing the family tradition, George W. Bush, our 43rd president, is also an avid player, currently sporting a 12 handicap. But in his presidency, as a sign of respect for the U.S. troops serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, he said he decided to stop playing golf while they were in harm's way.
After all, a president has to know his priorities.


While our game is compelling and can be all consuming, it is sometimes incorrectly perceived, more than other presidential leisure activities, as a rich man's game. So maybe, just maybe, the current occupant of the Oval Office should curtail his golf while our troops are still in harm's way and the national unemployment rate is more than 8.5%.


As with our other golfing presidents, there's plenty of time for golf later.
Besides, he'll never have to wait for a starting time



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Daztasiumz
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PostSubject: Re: Obama and golf: Slow Play   Fri Jan 03, 2014 2:08 pm

President George W. Bush jokes with reporters before teeing off at the Andrews Air Force Base Golf Course in Maryland in 2003.


Former President Bill Clinton tees off at the first hole during a World Celebrity Golf event in Beijing in 2005.


Presidents George H.W. Bush, left, and Gerald Ford pal around after their round of golf at the Bob Hope Classic Golf Tournament, joined by President Bill Clinton, in 1995.

President Woodrow Wilson, the 28th U.S. president, plays golf in 1916. He played more golf than any other president, before or since
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Daztasiumz
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PostSubject: Re: Obama and golf: Slow Play   Fri Jan 03, 2014 2:12 pm

President Obama takes a long time to finish a round of golf

By CHRIS CHASE @chaztopher





(Getty Images)
The New York Times says President Obama, who has played 158 rounds of golf while in office, routinely takes between five and six hours to play 18 holes, a glacial pace that the newspaper chalks up to the president’s “methodical” play.

The extent of Mr. Obama’s love of golf has been on display during his winter vacation in Hawaii, where he has played seven out of his 12 days here, for as much as six hours at a time. On one outing, he played so slowly he could get in only 17 holes before it became too dark to continue.
Six hours for a round of golf? That’s almost unheard of. Most courses are designed to be played in around four-and-a-half hours, though the general hope is to play a bit faster. Sometimes a round can stretch past five hours, but only when your group constantly has to wait over shots. Regularly playing in six hours though? It’s hard to fathom.





The Times offered a few suggestions as to why the president takes so long on the course: He’s methodical, he’s not very good at golf or he sees no reason to rush during some of his only leisure activities. The last reason makes the most sense. No matter what the opposition inevitably says, all presidents need a break from the stresses of the job. If lingering too long over a putt is the way to relax, so be it, even though that tactic might anger others on the course who gets backed up because of Obama’s leisurely pace of play.

The second reason — the president’s middling golfing abilities — shouldn’t matter. Don Van Natta Jr., an author of a book about presidential golf, told the Times that Obama “strives” to be an 18-handicap, which sounds like code for “but he’s really a 22.” Regardless, there are plenty of mediocre golfers who play fast and tons of great ones who play slowly. Golfing ability has no correlation to golfing speed.

Obama’s slow play is probably due to a combination of many factors, like methodical and poor play (a video on the site shows the president taking a number of practice swings — those add up when you’re shooting 95), no real need to hurry and the fact that it’s impossible to compare the average round of a duffer with one played by the President of the United States.



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Daztasiumz
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PostSubject: Re: Obama and golf: Slow Play   Fri Jan 03, 2014 2:13 pm

Apparently President Obama plays golf really slowly. Like, REALLY slowly.
THURSDAY, JANUARY 2, 2014
By Luke Kerr-Dineen

This isn't a typical New York Times exposé, per se, but in golfing terms it's downright scathing.

Among the many juicy tidbits in its recent mini-profile on presidential golf -- how Richard M. Nixon, for example, was a cheat, or Bill Clinton's liberal use of mulligans -- it highlighted two of President Barack Obama's traits: first, that he plays a lot of golf. And second, that he plays a lot of golf slowly.

Related: Eight ways golf influenced the 2012 presidential election

The article and corresponding video offers up a couple of possible explanations why. And on a side note: critics of the Obama administration will be happy to learn that his Republican predecessors, George H.W. and W. Bush, were renowned for playing golf at hyperspeed.

The first is that his slow play stems from his careful and methodical approach, "the way it's supposed to be played," says one of the President's defenders. Or maybe he's just purposefully using it as a time to relax. "The president's long hours on the course are one of his few chances to escape the demands of the White House and relax," The Times posits.

There's also a third, more damning explanation piece puts forward:




Reason?

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Daztasiumz
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PostSubject: Re: Obama and golf: Slow Play   Fri Jan 03, 2014 2:46 pm

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Lizsam
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PostSubject: Re: Obama and golf: Slow Play   Sat Jan 04, 2014 6:57 am

Wow he better not play in Singapore
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astroboy888
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PostSubject: Re: Obama and golf: Slow Play   Sat Jan 04, 2014 11:02 am

Lizsam, They would just close the course for him to play!
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Nam Flog
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PostSubject: Re: Obama and golf: Slow Play   Sat Jan 04, 2014 11:50 am

George Bush could have made a lot of money being a comedian if he was not president.
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PostSubject: Re: Obama and golf: Slow Play   Sat Feb 22, 2014 9:46 am



lol.. JF Kennedy doesnt want a hole in one
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PostSubject: Re: Obama and golf: Slow Play   Sat Feb 22, 2014 9:51 am

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