Obama Celebrates Debt Deal With ‘1,700’-Calorie Staff Lunch at Burger Joint

If you could guess how the president would celebrate passing a debt deal, what would you say he did? If you said golf, you’re wrong (although a good guess). How about treat his staff to a burger.

President Obama took some of his closest staff out for lunch on Wednesday to a popular D.C. burger joint. And the calorie count, it seems, rivaled the national debt.

The president rounded up a handful of staff members who have been working almost nonstop for months on the debt issue and headed to Good Stuff Eatery on Capitol Hill.

“It smells pretty good,” Obama said as he arrived at the restaurant. “Michelle eats here all the time.”

According to the Washington Times, in fact, she eats there so much she has a sandwich named after her: “The Michelle Melt Free Range Turkey Burger.”

So what did the President have? It wasn’t one of Michele’s sandwiches, but rather a burger, fries, and a shake. The Times calculated the calories in the meal (“about 1,700”), and it wouldn’t make Michele’s healthy eating menu:

According to MyFitnessPal.com, an Obama Burger has 825 calories and a toasted marshmallow shake is 456 calories.

An order of fries at most restaurants clocks in at 400-500 calories.

But that shouldn’t surprise those familiar with Obama’s eating habits. Apparently, he loves his burgers:

Despite Mrs. Obama’s push for healthy eating, burgers are a clear favorite of the president’s — or, more exactly, cheeseburgers. It’s been his most common order on campaign and official presidential stops.

It was his first meal on Air Force One, and since his appearance on the national stage as a presidential candidate it has been his most common order on campaign and official presidential stops.

Those who joined him at a rectangular wooden table included Jack Lew, the director of the Office of Management and Budget, and White House Legislative Affairs Director Rob Nabors. Others in the group were White House Deputy Chief of Staff Nancy Ann DeParle; Gene Sperling, the head of the National Economic Council; and Bruce Reed, chief of staff to Vice President Joe Biden.

Obama got some day-early 50th birthday wishes from restaurant patrons, and instructed them to get on with their meals.

“Finish your burgers,” he said. By the way, he also ordered a salad according to the Associated Press.

This being Washington, it turned out that there was also a congressman who was having lunch at another restaurant and stopped in to talk about the deficit battle and Monday’s vote.

Rep. G.K. Butterfield, D-N.C., called it a “difficult” one.

“I explained to him that I didn’t vote with him, but I’m glad that it passed,” Butterfield said. “He said that he understood.”

Laura Mengelkamp, who was eating lunch with friends, reported that a bunch of people wished the president happy birthday.

“He looked good for 50,” said Amber Moyerman.

Obama spent about an hour in the restaurant, then emerged to cheers from patrons at outdoor tables.

But he and the aides left behind a number of milkshakes. “Choose any,” he was quoted as saying by Andrew Parker, who sat nearby with his family. “I guarantee this table isn’t going to drink them all.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

207 Comments