President Obama rarely goes to the Capitol. So when he does, everyone pays attention!
So here is a first-person perspective of what it takes to MAKE THIS VISIT HAPPEN:
1. When the motorcade is en route, traffic around the Capitol is heavily diverted.
“Hey, Mt. Sinai Baptist Church, go away.”
2. If your office is in the Capitol: GOOD LUCK GETTING TO WORK.
You cannot cross the red line.
3. There is a gigantic perimeter line created around the building where armed Capitol police will SCARE YOUR CHILDREN.
4. 100 spooks gather on the roof to creep on you.
5. And if you are some girl with a paddle, you will be flatly denied entrance to the grounds.
6. COP STACHE IS HERE TO PROTECT.
He yells at me a few times to stop taking his picture.
7. There are many peculiar vehicles parked around the Capitol that are regularly not there, like these suicide vans.
8. In fact, the front of the Capitol turns into a car lot for hybrids and military-grade SUVs.
9. ALL THE TOURISTS GATHER ABOUT 500 FEET FROM THE HOUSE ENTRANCE.
With security guards barking at them the whole time.
10. And as you wait for a glimpse of the president, snipers stare back at you.
11. Then THE BEAST pulls up with the president inside and it sounds like a diesel semi truck.
And all the interns stop running and are like:
12. The standard presidential motorcade: ambulance, radar-jamming truck, and…
13. …my favorite: THE EXPENDABLES CAR!
14. But if you were looking to see the man, you were out of luck BECAUSE THE SECRET SERVICE ARE SPEED RACERS!
15. The whole procession wraps under an old ‘carriage entrance’ at the Capitol and you really can’t see anything.
And a guy from a major network covering the arrival snarks: “Wow, that five seconds was totally worth two hours of our time.”
16. And after the president is “all clear,” the Secret Service give THE BEAST a squeegee down!
17. NO SERIOUSLY. This is the most heavily guarded wax job on the planet.
Training for the Secret Service:
18. At this point, if you have a Hill badge, you can walk into the building and right by the BEAST. It is gigantic. You will get yelled at if you try to take a picture INSIDE it.
19. So with the outside now secured, Obama marches into the building and breezes through security checkpoints and blazes past staffers and press.
Bald Secret Service is the BEST Secret Service.
20. He is whisked (at almost a sprinting pace) into a room containing EVERY Democrat member of the House. This is about as close as one can get to the room, which is way back there:
21. A gaggle of reporters post up on the stairs outside the mysterious room. Some of them write furiously on their Wi-Fi cards but most are Snapchatting.
22. Some reporters took the occasion of a presidential visit to really dress up.
NICE! New York Times.