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Does The President Wear A Seat Belt?

President Obama gets out of his limousine. i i

President Obama gets out of his limousine. Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images
President Obama gets out of his limousine.

President Obama gets out of his limousine.

Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

After a 2007 car accident left former New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine seriously injured, The Hill's Washington Scene asked the Secret Service if the president is required to wear a seat belt in his presidential limo. It took three years for them to respond to the Freedom of Information Act request and the simple answer is, yes:

In a heavily redacted eight-page response, the Secret Service states that it is the “driver’s responsibility to ensure that each occupant is provided with a functioning seat belt, and that the belts are securely fastened prior to moving the vehicle.”

But it’s hard to imagine a Secret Service agent ordering the commander in chief to put his belt on. And in a March 2010 photo released by the White House, Obama is clearly not wearing his seatbelt while he talks on the phone in the presidential limo.

The Hill points that in interview with NBC in 2009, the president seems to not be wearing a seat belt. NPR's Scott Hensley reported yesterday that buckling up has pretty much become "the social norm."

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