President Obama will spend the upcoming holiday weekend binging on HBO dramas and playing golf, according to a pair of reports in The New York Times.
The president’s Valentine’s Day trip to California initially raised eyebrows around the White House on Wednesday, after it was revealed that earlier in the day, Vice President Biden had met with King Abdullah II of Jordan in Washington, D.C.
A summit with the monarch was ostensibly why the president planned to travel to California on Friday. But Abdullah’s meetings with Biden as well as congressional leaders prompted questions of why he and Obama needed to travel to California to meet.
White House press secretary Jay Carney offered little insight after repeated questions on Wednesday, noting only that the president also planned to hold an event on California’s drought while in the state.
“I think we put out a schedule for California that includes the president is going to Fresno, where he is going to discuss the effects of this historic drought in California,” Carney said. “The king is also going to go out to California. The president and the king can meet there and will meet there as part of this trip.”
It turns out, according to the Times, that Obama has a relaxing bachelor’s weekend planned.
Aides told the paper that Obama plans to play on the newly refurbished nine-hole golf course at the Sunnylands estate, the site of his bilateral talks with the Jordanian king.
Separately, HBO chief executive Richard Plepler revealed to the paper that the president cornered him at Tuesday’s state dinner to ask for DVD copies of “True Detective” and “Game of Thrones” to watch during his trip.
Plepler said the president instructed aides to coordinate the DVD shipment, so they could make it through White House security.
Last year, Obama also spent Presidents Day weekend playing golf. During that trip to Florida, the president memorably played a round with PGA legend Tiger Woods.
Still, the decision to force the Jordanian monarch to travel to California could cause headaches for the White House. Jordanian officials conceded the king was only traveling to the West Coast to meet with Obama.
And first lady Michelle Obama will not join the trip — despite the Valentine’s Day holiday on Friday.
The president and first lady enjoyed a pre-Valentine’s date night at the Washington restaurant Oyamel last week.