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Is Barack Obama leaving the trail for the surf?

March 21, 2008 |  6:46 pm

Easter Sunday is the one time many Christians who only sporadically attend church make a point of planting themselves in a pew. But Barack Obama, whose regular attendance over many years at Trinity United Church of Christ in CSenator Barack Obama of Illinois Democrat presidential candidate is taking some time off from the Pennsylvania primary campaign and going to the Virgin Islands for some sun and surf time likely with his family including wife Michelle Obama. This will also mean he conveniently won't be at Easter services in his Chicago church with the controversial preacher Rev. Jeremiah Wrighthicago now has caused him an intense political headache, apparently will miss services there this weekend.

ABC News reports that, although his presidential campaign has not commented, Obama is expected to be headed off to warmer climes for a few days of R&R.

The story doesn't explicitly say that his wife and two daughters will be in tow, but we'd presume that will be the case. The ABC report, available here, does say that "the most likely bet" for a destination is St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands, where it's a little warmer than on Chicago's South Side.

That means Obama won't have to worry about carrying with him his suddenly in-the-news passport for the trip. And he's certainly earned a break from the campaign trail (especially after the week he's had).

Still, even though the now-retired Rev. Jeremiah Wright no longer is in the pulpit at Trinity, Obama's absence this weekend may be another way his campaign is trying to leave behind the furor sparked by the pastor's litany of inflammatory, often anti-white statements.

Hillary Clinton also will be kicking back Saturday and Sunday, but at a much less exotic locale. Her latest schedule has her at home in the tranquil burg of Chappaqua, N.Y., with no public events planned (but perhaps some strategizing with her husband).

-- Don Frederick

                                                                                Image from People Magazine