Cliff Standoff Over, Obama Back in Hawaii

HONOLULU (AP) -

A week after rushing to Washington to help end a tense, end-of-year standoff with Congress, President Barack Obama is back in Hawaii for vacation.

The president’s annual visit to the state where he spent much of his childhood was interrupted as he and members of Congress contended with the unfinished business of the “fiscal cliff” crisis that threatened to throw the economy back into recession.

“I hope that everybody now gets at least a day off, I guess, or a few days off, so that people can refresh themselves, because we’re going to have a lot of work to do in 2013,” Obama said in his remarks following passage of the house bill.

A short time later, Obama was aboard the presidential helicopter, bound for a Maryland Air Force Base. Barely 30 minutes after he had finished his remarks he was in the sky on Air Force One, bound for Hawaii.

The president arrived in Honolulu before 5 a.m. local time and immediately rejoined his family in their rented beachside vacation home in Kailua, a picturesque Honolulu suburb on the east side of Oahu. Kailua Beach is a popular place for wind sports and paddle surfing.

The White House had no immediate update on when Obama would receive and sign the bill.