By Paul Bedard, Washington Whispers
Anger over President Obama's decision to skip tradition and not pay his Memorial Day respects at Arlington National Cemetery or the Tomb of the Unknown is not going away now that the White House has announced he will visit the Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery for veterans an hour from Chicago. [See photos of the Obamas behind the scenes.]
Conservative bloggers like Rory Cooper of the Heritage Foundation writes that the event was added because it's close to where the Obama family will be vacationing, back home in Chicago. "It is true that the heroes laid to rest in this cemetery are equally deserving of presidential attention. However, is President Obama attending services here because of the honor of this particular location, or the geographical proximity to his other plans? The memorial at Arlington serves as a national celebration, which is why past presidents have made special efforts to attend, when possible."
Take our Washington Whispers Bobbles Poll on the issue and tell us if you think Obama is making a mistake by not going to Arlington.
Here are Obama's official Memorial Day plans sent to us from the White House:
The White House
Office of Media Affairs
For Immediate Release
May 27, 2010
NEW DETAILS: President Obama to Participate in Memorial Day Ceremony at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery
WASHINGTON- On Monday, May 31, 2010 President Obama will participate in a Memorial Day Ceremony at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery in Elwood, IL. This event is open to pre-credentialed media.
Monday, May 31, 2010
Remarks at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery
20953 W. Hoff Road
Elwood, IL 60421
Program Begins: 11:30 a.m.
President Obama Delivers Remarks: 12:15 p.m.