- The Washington Times - Monday, August 12, 2013

Talk about disembarking.

The first family’s dog, Bo, reportedly joined the Obamas in style over the weekend for their weeklong vacation in Martha’s Vineyard, Mass.

Bo, a Portuguese water dog, hitched a ride on one of two Osprey MV-22 helicopters that landed with various personnel ahead of President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama, The Telegraph newspaper in Britain reported.

It was the first time the Ospreys — which take off like helicopters but fly like planes — were used in support of a presidential flight aboard Marine One.

The Obamas are scheduled to stay on the island through next weekend. The president kicked off the trip with a round of golf.

The Obamas are staying at Chilmark, on the western end of the tony Massachusetts island dotted with multimillion-dollar homes, including the vacation home owned by David Schulte at which Mr. Obama is staying. The Chicago specialist in corporate restructurings donated $2,000 to Mr. Obama’s 2012 presidential campaign.

The visit to Mr. Schulte’s home also is inconveniencing Chilmark residents because Mr. Schulte’s $7 million home is much closer to the main public roads than the home the Obamas used for previous Martha’s Vineyard vacations and thus is forcing one to be closed to vehicles. The Martha’s Vineyard Times said people can expect “extraordinary and lengthy” detours.

“Anyone aggrieved by this closing should email or call the White House,” local officials said in an email to residents.

Taxpayers foot the bill for Mr. Obama’s vacations, which can run in the millions of dollars. Quite apart from the costs of the Osprey flights or multivehicle armored-limousine motorcades between home and the golf course, just the incidental of nine days of lodging for dozens of White House staffers and Secret Service agents in a place such as Martha’s Vineyard can run into the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

The White House booked more than 70 hotel rooms at rates of up to $345 per night for Secret Service agents, who carried luggage that included two bags of basketballs.

One Hollywood actor thinks the pooch’s trip came off as a little excessive.

“This is the way Presidents behave during recessions. Right?” “Justified” actor Nick Searcy tweeted Monday, linking to The Telegraph story.

One Twitter user tried to argue with Mr. Searcy, claiming that former Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta always let his dog ride in style, prompting the actor to take a dig at Mr. Obama’s admission of having eaten dog as a boy in Indonesia.

“Not in Obamaville! The First Snack gets his own plane!” Mr. Searcy replied.

• Jessica Chasmar can be reached at jchasmar@washingtontimes.com.

• Tom Howell Jr. can be reached at thowell@washingtontimes.com.

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