Pres. Obama arrives in Seattle for fundraisers


by KING 5 News

Posted on November 24, 2013 at 8:20 PM

Air Force One arrived at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport right on time for President Barack Obama to head off to two private Democratic Party events on Sunday evening.
The president waved and walked off the plane to a waiting limousine. He left the airport minutes after his plane touched down into a beautiful pink and purple sunset.
He was due for his first event around 5 p.m. in the Shoreline neighborhood north of Seattle and then was headed across Lake Washington to Seattle's eastern suburbs for a second fundraiser.

The first will be at the North Seattle home of Tom Campion, the co-founder of clothing chain Zumiez. The second fundraiser is at the Medina home of former Microsoft executive Jon Shirley.

No public events have been announced.

"Nothing charges people up like a presidential visit, it creates tremendous excitement," said Paul Berendt, who is a former chairman of the Washington State Democratic Party.

During his 12 years in that position, Berendt went through his share of presidential visits.  During this one, he expects a lot of talk about healthcare reform and The Affordable Care Act.

"This has really been a critical state for healthcare reform, we have a successful exchange in this state, and I suspect Obama is going to focus on the success of his program here," he said.

The president is scheduled to depart at 8:50 a.m. Monday, also from Sea-Tac.

The airspace above SeaTac was shut down during Air Force One's landing Sunday afternoon and will again be shut down for takeoff on Monday morning. That means about 20 commercial flights arriving and departing during those time periods could see delays.

The last time a President flew out of SeaTac Airport was President Bush, back in 2007.

The Seattle Monorail tweeted that the monorail will be shut down between 8 p.m. Sunday and 8:30 a.m. Monday due to security.

After leaving Puget Sound on Monday, the president will make stops in San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Closures in the area of the Westin Hotel 

  • Virginia Street will be closed from 4th Avenue to 6th Avenue, beginning early afternoon on Sunday and remaining closed until about mid-morning on Monday.
  • There will be no access to Virginia Street from any of the adjacent alleys.
  •  Access from Stewart Street on the south side is open, as is access from Lenora Street on the north, but there is no access to exit the alley to Virginia Street.
  • 5th Avenue will be closed from Lenora to Stewart Street, beginning early afternoon on Sunday and remaining closed until about mid-morning on Monday.
  • The parking lot on the west side of 5th Avenue, between Lenora and Virginia Streets, will be accessible from the alley off Lenora Street.
  • The parking garage on the SE corner of 5th Avenue and Lenora Street will be accessible from the alley off Lenora Street only.
  • The Westin Building Parking Garage will not be accessible during these hours unless arrangements have been made with the US Secret Service.
  • Avis Rent-A-Car has been contacted and arrangements have been made to enable their customer’s access.
  • Pedestrians will not be restricted with only 2 exceptions: The sidewalk on the south side of Virginia, between 5th and 6th Avenue will be closed the entire time of the visit. The sidewalk on the north side of Virginia, between 5th and 6th Avenue will be closed during arrival and departure only.
  • Metro Transit has been advised and will be rerouting their buses during the hours of the closure.

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