SALT LAKE CITY – The White House announced Monday that President Barack Obama will be visiting Utah Friday.
White House officials released the following statement Monday morning concerning the president’s upcoming travel plans:
On Thursday, April 2, the President will travel to Louisville, Kentucky for an event on the economy. Friday, April 3, the President will visit Hill Air Force Base in Utah for an event on the economy. Further details about the President’s travel to Kentucky and Utah will be available in the coming days.
It will be Obama’s first visit to Utah as president of the United States. After Utah, South Dakota remains the one state the president has yet to visit during his tenure in office.
“I hope to take the opportunity to talk to him about issues that are near and dear to our hearts,” Gov. Gary Herbert said, as reported by KUER.org. “Some of the health care issues that we’ve debated here in this past legislative session that I hope that we can maybe get some answers to on capping costs so we don’t have a program we buy today that we can’t afford tomorrow.”
“Always good to have a president in Utah,” Rep. Jason Chaffetz, who represents Utah’s 3rd congressional district, told the The Salt Lake Tribune.
The president has received various invitations to visit Utah.
Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker has invited the president to visit the state, The Salt Lake Tribune reported. The Utah Senate also passed a resolution, Senate Resolution 3, which invites the president and his family to visit and tour Utah’s “Mighty Five” national parks. A Facebook petition was also set up with the purpose of asking Obama to visit Utah.
Sen. Jim Dabakis, sponsor of SR 3, spoke for the Utah Senate Democrats concerning the pending presidential visit in the following statement:
Over the last several weeks we set up a Facebook petition which garnered over 10,000 signatures of Utahns. Additionally, the Utah Senate passed a resolution (SR3, the vote 21-5) inviting the President to come to Utah. Today, he graciously accepted and we are delighted!
We wish the President was coming for a longer stay with the First Family. More time is needed to explore the most beautiful scenery on earth, but apparently the demands of the job are prohibitive of a longer stay now. In the Resolution and Facebook petition, we chided the White House for visiting 48 other states and 48 countries (including India twice) before visiting Utah as President but we are thrilled he is coming and hope he will see our beautiful mountains and enjoy some green jello on his trip. The magnificent four (and me) Utah Democratic State Senators have asked to be allowed to ride on Air Force One when the President arrives in Utah Friday. The White House was unable to immediately respond to the request.
The president’s predecessor, Pres. George W. Bush, last visited Utah as president in 2006. He visited Utah three other times, including during the beginning of the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.
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