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President Obama was criticized last week for canceling tours at the White House, citing budget cuts that kicked in as part of the sequester. However, he’s now backing down from canceling all of them, saying that it is possible that tours for students might begin again.
The White House announced last Tuesday that because of the budget cuts, the government could no longer afford to keep the Secret Service officers around to oversee the tours. They said it would save approximately $75,000 a week.
However, spring break for students across the country starts soon and many groups are flocking to Washington D.C. in the hopes of seeing where the president lives. In a new interview with ABC News, Obama said that these students could still go on a tour.
“What I’m asking them is are there ways, for example, for us to accommodate school groups … who may have traveled here with some bake sales,” the president said. “Can we make sure that kids, potentially, can still come to tour?”
Obama also clarified how the decision was made, noting that it was the Secret Service that “explained to us was that they’re going to have to furlough some folks.”
A spokesperson from the White House also noted that the decision was not made by Obama personally, but by the White House staff.