- A photo of the president getting his groove on was posted to Instagram by a fellow party goer, however it has now been deleted
- Reporters were not allowed into the private dinner but a White House spokesman said: ‘The Obamas danced nearly every song’
- Obama’s meet-up with Clinton was hotly anticipated after she criticized his approach to foreign policy in an interview
- As Obama and Clinton partied, it was revealed that U.S. and British troops were planning an emergency evacuation of Iraqis stranded on a mountain
- On Tuesday France’s foreign minister took a shot at Obama for continuing on with his two-week vacation while Iraqi refugees were dying
President Barack Obama appears to shrug-off his well-publicized spat with Hillary Clinton – joining the former Secretary of State on the dance floor to boogie the night away at a friend’s birthday party.
The President was photographed getting his groove on at the Martha’s Vineyard party on Wednesday night following a dinner where he sat next to Mrs Clinton days after she criticized his foreign policy.
In an interview last weekend, Clinton described U.S. policy in Syria as a failure and said Obama’s doctrine of “‘don’t do stupid stuff” is not an organising principle’ for a great nation.
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Reporters were not allowed into the private dinner celebration at the Farm Neck Golf Club, but White House spokesman Eric Schultz said afterward: ‘The Obamas danced nearly every song. A good time was had by all.’
Obama, Clinton and their spouses sat at the same table and the Obamas were ‘happy to have the chance to spend time with Secretary Clinton and former President Clinton.’
Approximately 150 people were at the celebration where both Obama and Clinton delivered 80th birthday toasts to guest of honor Ann Jordan, wife of Democratic adviser Vernon Jordan.
Mr Jordan, a civil rights leader and staunch Obama supporter, is a close friend of Bill Clinton who he served as a senior adviser.
In 2006, Jordan served as a member of the Iraq Study Group, making recommendations on the U.S. policy in Iraq.
A photo of the president dancing was posted to Instagram by a fellow party goer, however it has now been deleted. Reports he and Mrs Clinton hugged are yet to be confirmed.
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius took a shot at Obama on Tuesday for continuing on with his two-week vacation while Iraq burned.
‘I know it is the holiday period in our Western countries,’ Fabius said, ‘but when people are dying, you must come back from vacation.’
As the president enjoyed a meal of surf and turf and pasta as it was revealed that U.S. and British troops were about to be deployed to a mountain in northern Iraq to save refugees who had been stranded there for more than a week.
Approximately 5,000 Iraqis were still thought to be stuck on Sinjar Mountain as of yesterday evening, prompting the two countries to plan an international rescue mission. But special forces sent in by the U.S. to survey the situation discovered that most of the refugees had already escaped.
British Prime Minister David Cameron said his country would shift it’s focus to providing food and water to the hundreds of thousands of displaced Iraqis, many of whom are camped out in the independent region of Kurdistan, Syria and Turkey.
Cameron rushed back from vacation yesterday to oversee his country’s response to the humanitarian crisis while Obama stayed put at Martha’s Vineyard.
Obama is not scheduled to return to Washington until Sunday. He’ll spend two days at the White House attending meetings and then return to Martha’s Vineyard to finish out his vacation.
While the president has refused to cancel his holiday or come back early, he attempted to stay out of public the eye on Wednesday.
On the first four days of his trip Obama went golfing three times and took a trip to the beach with his family. Yesterday, he opted not to leave his vacation home except to attend Mrs. Jordan’s birthday party at Farm Neck Golf Club, where he was expected to rendezvous with Clinton.
The former rivals’ meet-up at last night’s party was hotly anticipated in the wake of Clinton’s criticisms of Obama’s approach to foreign policy in an interview with the Atlantic that was released over the weekend.
‘Great nations need organizing principles, and “don’t do stupid stuff” is not an organizing principle,’ she said, referring to a version of the phrase Obama and his advisers have used privately to describe his approach to foreign policy.
The former Secretary of State’s critique came at a particularly challenging time for Obama, with bombs falling on Iraq and disputes raging in Syria, the Mideast, Ukraine and elsewhere.
An Obama spokesman said yesterday that the White House ‘is looking onwards and upwards,’ while Clinton joked she was planning on hugging it off with her former boss.
‘We have disagreements as any partners and friends, as we are, might very well have,’ Clinton told reporters crowded into a bookstore signing of her memoir Hard Choices yesterday.
‘But I’m proud that I served with him and for him, and I’m looking forward to seeing him tonight.’
The media was not allowed in to see whether Clinton delivered her promised make-up hug after she tried to set herself apart from the unpopular Obama in a recent interview, but Schultz insisted yesterday that Clinton and Obama ‘have had many hugs over the years’ and the forthcoming one would be no different.
A former top Obama adviser, David Axelrod, took to Twitter to jab Clinton back: ‘Just to clarify: “Don’t do stupid stuff” means stuff like occupying Iraq in the first place, which was a tragically bad decision.’
Clinton voted in favor of the Iraq War in 2002, while Obama voiced opposition.
The very public foreign policy disagreement was Clinton’s biggest split with Obama since their 2008 presidential primary campaign when she questioned whether her younger Senate colleague was qualified to take a 3 a.m. phone call on an emergency.
Clinton took a more hawkish stance than Obama in that campaign, particularly on the Iraq War, but Obama put their bitter contest behind them by naming her his top diplomat.
Clinton loyally carried out Obama’s foreign policy agenda for four years but described some objections she raised internally in Hard Choices, which focuses on her time in the administration.
She expanded on those objections in her Atlantic interview, saying Obama’s ‘failure’ to fully support the rebels in Syria fueled the rise of Islamic State militants now the object of U.S. airstrikes in Iraq.
Reporters who crowded in front of a table set up for Clinton’s signing at the Bunch of Grapes bookstore yesterday asked her whether she disagreed with Obama’s Iraq policy.
‘I’m excited about signing books,’ she said, turning to a line of hundreds that snaked through the rainy streets near the ferry dock that brings summer visitors to the island.
About 1,000 copies of the book were bought in advance, and the store was open only for those who had made the purchases.
Schultz declined to say whether the president was upset over her critique of his performance as he juggles several crises overseas, although he acknowledged ‘an honest policy difference’ on the Syrian rebels.
The deputy press secretary said Obama appreciated that Clinton called the president Tuesday to say she was not trying to attack him.
‘They have a close and resilient relationship,’ Schultz said.