Obama and Romney Taking Summer Breaks

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By TOM RAUM, Associated Press

For the past few days, President Barack Obama and Republican rival Mitt Romney have been mostly out of sight if not exactly out of mind.

Romney has been a little more accessible than Obama. But the best way to find the Republican candidate seems to be from a boat.

Obama spent the weekend in complete isolation at the presidential retreat known as Camp David in the Catoctin Mountains of Maryland, about 60 miles northwest of Washington, D.C.

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He'll be there until Tuesday. Then he returns to the White House for Independence Day before embarking on a two-day bus tour of Pennsylvania and Ohio.

The Romney clan — including wife Ann, five sons, five daughters-in-law and 18 grandchildren — is spending this week at his $8 million estate on Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire.

The compounds where Obama and Romney are staying have similarities. They're both secluded, guarded by an entourage of Secret Service agents, and their nearest neighbors are some distance away.

If Romney wins in November, he's got a ready-made 13-acre vacation White House.

Romney and his family appeared briefly in public on Sunday as they attended worship services at a Mormon church in Wolfeboro, N.H.

His lakefront compound recalls President George W. Bush's ocean-front getaway in Kennebunkport, Maine. As with Romney's estate, photographers prowled offshore in rented boats seeking images of the Bushes, including shots of the president at the wheel of his powerboat.

Presidents Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush had their beloved ranches, Reagan's in Santa Barbara, Calif. and Bush's near Waco, Texas.

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President Bill Clinton didn't own a vacation retreat and neither does Obama. However, Clinton often vacationed at Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts. The Obamas also have vacationed there, as well as in the president's home state of Hawaii.

For sure, there won't be much vacationing in the days ahead for either Obama or Romney as the presidential campaign heads into its final months.

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