First Lady Michelle Obama arrives in Copenhagen Wednesday and U.S. President Barack Obama leaves for Copenhagen Thursday night in time for the International Olympic Committee’s vote Friday for the host city of the 2016 Summer Olympic Games.
Both the President and First Lady will make presentations on Chicago’s behalf to the IOC during Friday’s session. They will discuss why Chicago is best to host the 2016 Summer Games, and how the United States wants to bring the world together to celebrate the ideals of the Olympic movement, said the White House.
While in Denmark the President and First Lady will meet with Her Majesty the Queen and his Royal Highness, the Prince Consort.
Meanwhile Tokyo 2016’s head Ichiro Kono said Tuesday that the presence of Obama is good for the Olympic movement and a motivation for Tokyo’s candidacy.
Kono told Reuters, “we understand all of the cities have their heads of state. I am not surprised (Obama is attending). It is a good thing for the Olympic movement and it is good for the tough race”.
Obama’s visit to Copenhagen is being criticized in political circles. The Hill reports Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Michael Steele said, “I think that this trip, while nice, is not necessary for the President. I think the First Lady should have been the lead here, to let her go and sell Chicago. But the goal should be creating not job opportunities seven years from now, but today”.
Steele reportedly cited the economic troubles and the current health care debate as more pressing issues for the President to deal with.
He said, “if (health care) is that important, Mr. President, then stay home and get it done”.