Checking Off Pre-Holiday Obama To-Do List

With the holidays coming, you're probably really busy these days. Maybe like a lot of us, you feel you're taking on a little too much. Spreading yourself too thin.

Well, rest assured, the president feels your pain.

After all, the guy who's still settling in at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. has quite a few calendar items of his own to check off this week. Imagine the notepad that says Oval Office at the top, just for the current week of December.

SUNDAY: Head up to the Hill. Drop by Senate Democratic caucus meeting midafternoon. Chat up health care bill. Major pep talk. No. 1 priority, key test of party's effectiveness, etc etc. No Dem turnout next winter if no bill this winter. Look into 60 pairs of eyes — need every one. Thank Reid. Baucus. And...? Seek out fence sitters and hard-core single payers. Evening to Kennedy Center for arts awards. Brubeck, Springsteen, Bumbry, guy who wrote The Producers.

MONDAY: Meet Turkish leader. Erdogan. New guy. Talk NATO. Also modern Islamic world culture. Support in Afghanistan. Big country, big vision. Work up new jobs speech for Tues. Use bank bailout $? Problem with statutory restriction. Check w/Rahm. See McChrystal and Eikenberry in p.m. for on-same-page check for Tues hearings. Brothers in arms. Speaking with one voice. Commander in chief. Game plan. All in.

TUESDAY: Economy speech morning at Brookings. Jobs x 3. Use SOME leftover bank bailout funds (not ALL). Use OTHER funds to supplement. Health care No. 1 but jobs America's top issue. Check in on McC-Eik hearings. McCain questions? Watch Senate on health care amendments. Abortion? Public option? How to get to 60? Call Reid. Thank Reid. What is Ben Nelson's bottom line? Blanche Lambert's deal? Joe Lieberman's problem? Remember to call Martha Coakley in Massachusetts, congrats on primary win for Teddy's seat.

WEDNESDAY: Meet leaders of Congress. Big group. Bipartisan. Talk jobs. One thing we all agree on — economy still disappointing. Need one more big push. More spending? More deficit? Rally mode. No Qs. P.M.: See biz guys about climate change. House debating Wall Street overhaul. New bank regs. Call Pelosi. Black caucus walked out in committee. Rebellion on floor? Make calls. See Axelrod. Fly Oslo overnight. Work on speech. Balance: Wartime president, peace symbol president. FDR and MLK with JFK in the middle.

THURSDAY: In Oslo. Peace Prize. King of Norway. Long ceremony. Speech in afternoon, Euro time. Dawn in Washington, oh-dark-30 in America. Major stage, major moment. Day to remember. Be humble. Shoulders of giants. Flight back to U.S. overnight. Side trip? Afghanistan? Iraq? Cross 'em up? Baghdad too hot? Bagram? Check w/ Hillary, Joe.

FRIDAY: Back to the grind. Jobs, health, climate, Wall Street. What's lagging? How to push all at once? What to show for first year? More polls coming. Need talk with Ax, Gibbs re: polls. Golf this weekend? Nix golf dates with Tiger. Report cards Sasha & Malia?

SATURDAY: Send Sabbath notes to Jewish leaders not invited to WH Hanukkah party — tell them it's not a dis and NOT about Middle East policy, just belt-tightening. Remind them we did the same with the media party. If in D.C., maybe go shopping. Buy for the Cabinet guys? Something special for Hillary? Something separate for Bill? Did anyone send congrats to Chelsea? Think Big Xmas for Biden? No gag gifts like last year! Staff? Make sure no WH Xmas card for Salahis.



Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

NPR thanks our sponsors

Become an NPR sponsor

Support comes from