To The Vineyard

With a three day bus trip in the Midwest over, President Obama will now turn his attention to a summer break, as the First Family now heads to Martha's Vineyard for a more than one week August vacation on that exclusive island.

These summer trips in August for a President often put a White House on the defensive, and this year is no different, as officials make the argument that no matter where their boss goes on vacation, he is still on the job.

"The presidency travels with you," said White House Press Secretary Jay Carney, telling reporters, "as anyone who has covered it in the past, either in this administration or others, there’s no such thing as a presidential vacation."

"Well, first of all, the President of the United States is President of the United States 24/7, wherever he may be."

While that first quote was from Jay Carney, the second one about 24/7 was not - that was actually said in a late July briefing in 2003 by White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan, as he was being showered with questions about President George W. Bush's trip to his Crawford ranch that year.

Bill Clinton also took flak for going to Martha's Vineyard. George H.W. Bush took some for his regular trips to Kennebunkport and Ronald Reagan got a lot of guff for going to his ranch in Santa Barbara.

It comes with the job.

If you don't work around government in Washington, D.C., all of this probably doesn't make much sense - but August is a time when this city likes to roll up the sidewalks and go on vacation.

Congress has been out of town for two weeks - and lawmakers won't be back until after Labor Day.

When the calendar finally clicks over to Labor Day, after that, the White House yesterday made clear that the President will unveil two separate plans in September - one on jobs and one on the budget deficit.

Officials say the jobs plan, which will be designed to spur new economic growth, won't be a warmed-over package of ideas that have already been offered up by the White House.

The White House says the plans will be laid out in a speech by the President after Labor Day.

"It is my hope the President will offer specific proposals that depart from his previous policies and allow us to find common ground and work together to put Americans back to work," said Speaker John Boehner.

In the meantime, the President will head off to the Blue Heron Farm on Martha's Vineyard, near Chilmark, Massachusetts.