Another Seder at the White House
President Obama marking the beginning of Passover with a Seder with friends and staff at the White House on March 29, 2010.
April 18th, 2011
07:32 PM ET

Another Seder at the White House

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The Obamas will mark the beginning of Passover with a Seder at the White House Monday evening with family friends, White House employees and some of their family members.

Obama hosted his first Seder in Pennsylvania in 2008, when the presidential candidate gathered a group of Jewish and non-Jewish staffers for an impromptu Seder in Harrisburg after a long day on the campaign trail. The Seders that followed at the White House in 2009 and 2010 were held in the Old Family Dining Room and included the same group, plus other staffers and family.

Danielle Borrin, Associate Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement and liaison to the Jewish community, wrote Monday about the Jewish Passover tradition on the White House blog.  She said among the family recipes on the White House menu this year "are a traditional chicken soup with matzoh balls, braised beef brisket, potato kugel, carrot soufflé, and matzoh chocolate cake."

Guidance from the White House is that this year's dinner "will be not strictly kosher but kosher style," and they will again use the Maxwell House Passover Haggadah.

Topics: Michelle Obama • Passover • President Obama • The News

soundoff (70 Responses)
  1. Claudia, Houston

    I respect the Jewish Passover and we all need to learn and be tolerant of other ethnic groups and their practices.

    April 18, 2011 at 8:07 pm |
  2. regertz

    Not that this will stop a single racist from mumbling garbage about Muslim presidents and Kenya...Still, will be fun to see how they squirm, torn between dying to make an anti-Semitic crack and yet afraid it would cost them (ha, ha, ha, ha...) credibility...(Bww...ha, ha, ha...). Of course we can probably count on Rush to let racist instinct override (Bww...ha...ha...) judgement.

    April 18, 2011 at 8:48 pm |
    • Gaylon Barrow

      Who is the racist here in your comment or is it only a caucasion who can be a racist you bigot.

      April 19, 2011 at 12:34 am |
      • jt35

        sorry, i missed the reference to "caucasion"s in his post. guilty conscience?

        April 19, 2011 at 12:51 am |
      • Dulcimer

        Gaylon. Don't speak – ever. Or until you get a clue. regertz was right – the crazies will be so torn, wanting to make Obama out to be a Jew. But wanting to stay on focus & paint him to be a Muslim (even is he attends about as many Jewish as muslim events).

        There are a great many crazies, who ignore that the President's only religious celebrations are Christian and desparately want him to be a Muslim.

        As a Buddhist, I don't see much difference in the extreme fringe of any monotheistic religion.

        April 19, 2011 at 2:24 am |
  3. Robrob

    But wait, I thought he was a "secret Muslim!?" How can that be? My RW radio told me so!

    April 18, 2011 at 9:41 pm |
  4. David H

    Please excuse me. I have to vomit.

    April 18, 2011 at 10:21 pm |
    • myway8

      Puke, vomit, puke, vomit, puke, vomit, puke, vomit.

      April 27, 2011 at 10:48 pm |
  5. proof

    Proof that Obama is not a muslim. No muslim would ever sit down for seder with people of the Jewish faith.

    April 18, 2011 at 10:26 pm |
    • Jay in NC

      According to your logic, we can forget about the full body scanners and pat-down, just post a Rabi at the terminal.

      April 19, 2011 at 2:01 pm |
      • IzzisGirl

        That's good!!!! (Rabbi has 2 b's.)

        April 20, 2011 at 9:04 pm |
      • Dan

        We need a Rabbi with 2 B's for that task 🙂

        April 21, 2011 at 8:27 pm |
      • myway8

        You have to be politically correct, messiah follower head, or head of the synagogue of messiah followers. According to Obama, the only religion he would celebrate and respect, is the messiah followers religion because these are his financiers for his presidency and his reelection. Ooops, politically correct??????

        April 27, 2011 at 10:52 pm |
  6. Jean-Paul Sartre

    Frankly, I am very sick and tired of President Obama using OUR White House as a CHURCH, besides filling numerous offices in OUR White House with these creepy FAITH BASED ORGANIZATIONS and using OUR tax monies for the support of these FAITH BASED ORGANIZATIONS and PEOPLE!

    Much of this escalated under the previous King George administration, who never could find a RELIGION or FAITH BASED person or group that he either didn't want to give a job to – in the White House – or lend his support to, obviously, to get the votes...

    It isn't enough that we have IN GOD WE TRUST printed on all our currency – Thanks to (R) President Eisenhower and a very weak Congress in 1957. We have our Judicial System perverted with IN GOD WE TRUST on the walls of every court room in the land and we have to swear on the BIBLE in these court rooms. [That must mean we can throw away all perjury laws – RIGHT? We have taxpayer dollars paying for numerous White House offices full of and getting fuller of these FAITH BASED folks. We have both Houses of Congress PRAYING before each and every session – we all know how well that goes.

    When the rotunda for the Congress was renovated several years ago, largely to accommodate more visitors, they put up a marble plaque with the words E Pluribus Unum [Out of the many ONE] edged in it – that was until the FAITH BASED cretins saw it. Then for only $25,000 more of our taxpayer dollars, it was changed to IN GOD WE TRUST.

    Recently, we had President Obama proselyting about how much his FAITH in JESUS CHRIST has meant to him and his family... from the White House steps… this is not even to mention the closing of his many speeches with: GOD BLESS YOU AND GOD BLESS AMERICA!

    Does anyone remember or understand the separation of CHURCH & STATE?

    I care little for what the people in government have as their personal beliefs… mainly, because it is their personal belief and they can believe in UNICORNS if they want to; I care very much about having my government shoving RELIGION and GOD down my throat!

    Parenthetically, I gave up my imaginary friends at age 10.

    I do NOT pay taxes for this garbage!


    April 18, 2011 at 10:51 pm |
    • jw

      I would agree with you, meals like this are usually on the presidents dime, so what's the complaint? He's just reaching out to a constituency, nothing more...

      April 19, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
      • Howard

        Obama gets a lot of P.R., votes, and contributions for his reelection, for just a dime !!!

        April 19, 2011 at 11:54 pm |
    • James, AL

      you live in the USA and you have the right to worship or NOT, but it is ignorant of you to think that government will discriminate in hiring because of ones religion. After all "freedom of religion" is as integral a part of the constitution as the separation of church and state. The last statistic I checked showed our country was more than 3/4 Christian, and to ignore that fact is destructive. Our government is founded on christian principles despite the fact that it is not theocratic. Though there is a separation of church and state; Christians help guide the state in many ways. We, Christians, are contributors, citizens, and friends of the state.

      April 20, 2011 at 2:48 pm |
    • rationalist

      Your point is well taken, but take it from a fellow atheist, chill out. He is doing this for one reason, and one reason only, to score political points. There are some on the right who are trying to paint him as a Muslim (not that there is even anything wrong with that if he were), but ignorant uninformed people who are blinded by by their faith and have a prejudice against all Muslims because of what a small fanatical fraction halfway around the world was able to organize, eat that nonsense up. He is trying to play it safe, chill out.

      April 23, 2011 at 7:36 pm |
    • daliya robson

      Jesus your God was a jew so perhaps having a passover celebration brings Obama closer to Jesus the jewish radical left wing liberal rabbi. Also most of the deocrtic principals Obama believes in comes from the jewish books.

      April 23, 2011 at 8:47 pm |
  7. ThinkAgain

    If President Obama invited Eric Cantor, would he come or would he be too afraid the GOP would use against him a picture of him with the President?

    Just wondering ...

    April 18, 2011 at 11:09 pm |
    • Howard

      Well, if the G.O.P. didn't use it against him, I sure would !

      April 19, 2011 at 11:55 pm |
  8. Paul

    Why is this news! Don't we have enough crap to deal with. How about dealing with $4 a gallon fuel prices, the economy, homeless people here at home, our national debt, the 400 billion we give in foreign aid and not see crap for it. I have no problem with helping but it should start at home!

    April 18, 2011 at 11:13 pm |
    • Al

      Why is this news? Probably because Easter and Christmas are also news. Maybe these two holidays would also be a good time to instead talk about $4 a gallon fuel prices, the economy, homeless people here at home, our national debt, the 400 billion we give in foreign aid and not see crap for it.

      April 19, 2011 at 11:25 am |
    • IzzisGirl

      First, I don't get the "helping" part. Second, the President doesn't take care of business 24/7. He needs downtime just like the rest of us . . . more so.

      April 20, 2011 at 9:09 pm |
  9. Kenny

    I'm curious as to how those that think the President is a Muslim are going to spin this again this year.

    April 18, 2011 at 11:23 pm |
  10. Jay

    Give it break. The President has some Jewish staff and is showing his class by observing the Jewish holiday of Passover with them. The man really shows he's a "Man of the World". All faiths are sacred to their all individuals be they Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Buddist, Hindu, etc.

    If you don't get it then you don't get it and no amount of explaning will make you understand.

    April 18, 2011 at 11:29 pm |
    • Howard

      Give me a break ... Obama wants the Jewish vote, and campaign contributions from the Jewish community. Everything Obama does, is about projecting whatever image is necessary to get reelected. Obama panders to the Jewish people for their votes and contributions with one hand, while stabbing Israel in the back with his other hand.

      April 19, 2011 at 11:51 pm |
  11. El He




    April 19, 2011 at 12:01 am |
    • renee

      this is won't is wrong with this country now folks like you and the rest that is stereotypeing!

      April 19, 2011 at 11:27 am |
  12. Gaylon Barrow

    This is what you call a hyprocrite.

    April 19, 2011 at 12:27 am |
    • The Veteran

      On the contrary. Conservatives = Pharisees = Hypocrites. You folks are no where near Christian. Christians in name only. Chinos.

      April 19, 2011 at 1:57 am |
    • IzzisGirl

      How so?

      April 20, 2011 at 9:15 pm |
  13. Gaylon Barrow

    This is a simple answer. It is simply getting close to the election and all Obama is is shop and tell. He does not believe in what he does. In fact this is really a laughing joke one that I am sure the good Lord is not laughing about. He will receive a eternity of pain for his deceit.

    April 19, 2011 at 12:32 am |
  14. Gaylon Barrow

    What? Is he a Jew now. You know a fake must pratice with his acting ability to keep fooling the fools.

    April 19, 2011 at 12:38 am |
    • Dave

      You are a real idiot Gaylon! You don't have to be Jewish to take part in a Ceder. The ceder is a wonderful holiday celebrating freedom from slavery, something that you know nothing about.

      April 19, 2011 at 1:45 am |
    • IzzisGirl

      Thanks for the support, Dave . . . it's *s*eder and the seder is not the holiday. The *holiday* is Passover.

      April 20, 2011 at 9:16 pm |
  15. usualone

    ThinkAgain - your comment is precious. Gaylon Barrow, keep kidding yourself and talking to yourself on this blog and there is nothing hypocritical to this White House function.

    April 19, 2011 at 12:56 am |
  16. Paul

    It appears that many of the people who made some of the negative comments ar epossibly fans of the Tea party Brown shirt crowd of Americana Zombies.

    April 19, 2011 at 1:14 am |
  17. Dave

    You can always recognize a right wing fundamentalist Christian when they start with that "Eternity of pain" business. That's exactly how the church tries to control people: WITH FEAR. Hey Gaylon don't you guys believe: Judge not for ye may be judged? Oh that part we leave out...

    April 19, 2011 at 1:42 am |
  18. The Veteran

    @Gaylon Barrow: It says that he first did one in 2008 when he was a candidate, and continued. For the record, if you are a Christian, you know that you should participate in other customs to develop friendships that could eventually lead to them coming to know and understand Christ. But like most conservatives, it seems like you need Christianity 100. You're not even ready for 101 yet.

    April 19, 2011 at 1:53 am |
    • IzzisGirl

      Now THAT'S hypocritical. You don't participate in another's religious ritual in order to bring them to Christ . . . well, true . . . I guess that is what Christians do, because their religion is the epitome of "My way is the right way and everyone else is wrong".

      April 20, 2011 at 9:18 pm |
  19. Sue

    Read the Koran......Muslims such as Obama can use deceit, if it helps to advance Islam. In other words, Muslims can drink, eat pork, etc.--as long as it is used to fool the infidels and advance Islam.

    Remember when Obama went to speak at Georgetown Univ, and he required that all Christian religious pictures/symbols be covered with black cloth. And, for anyone who does not believe this, do a search through Yahoo.

    April 19, 2011 at 3:08 am |
    • azmary

      The White House asked that all the school's symbols, not just religious ones, behind where the president would stand be covered so as to provide a blank slate to place the United States flags and presidential seal. The other 2 dozen or so religious symbols in Gaston Hall were not covered. But hey, don't let your preconcieved ideas get in the way of facts. (That info comes from a search through Yahoo and Google)

      April 19, 2011 at 7:52 am |
  20. Sue

    As someone said on another site......."Obama would say that he was Norwegian on pickled fish day, if he thought that it would win him votes". Soon, the Jehovah Witnesses will be hiding from him.

    April 19, 2011 at 3:26 am |
  21. Erin Jaimes

    I'm just glad they're recognizing this holiday in the White House. Diversity.

    April 19, 2011 at 4:35 am |
  22. Mike Licht

    You forgot the mention the White House Matzoh Hunt on the front lawn. Children from all over the DC area participated.


    April 19, 2011 at 7:51 am |
  23. eugene

    Sue, I hate to assume but your probably in you late 50's or so and just can't seem to get the fact that America is not what you and your hate mongers think it is. Your problem with the President is the fact that he's black. If our president iis so disgusting to you, then please move back to Europe. You know what, death awaits us all. I hope you are ready to me Jesus with all this hate. God made him president and you can not handle that. A blackman is leading White America. God is so good!

    April 19, 2011 at 10:31 am |
  24. Sue

    Eugene: I sugges that YOU, Obama, and all of the rest of the loony left socialists/marxists move to Europe. This way, you will be able to live your socialist dreams, without destroying our country.

    April 19, 2011 at 10:49 am |
    • rouencraig

      I won't get into the "see it my way or you must be (add whatever term you want) " mentality. It is just infantile.

      Our country is big enough for diverse opinions. NONE of us has the complete answer. NONE of us has the right to tell others to get out because we just happen to disagree with an opinion expressed. Together, we might find a way, through some commonly agreed upon vision.

      Even the most left leaning American politicians in the public eye today are at best center/moderate compared to almost most european politicians. One would have to read outside the enveloppe to know that...

      American style Liberty is about being able to voice one's opinions without some "power", even that of the general concensus, dictating whether it "fits" into the way all Americans must think.

      April 19, 2011 at 11:17 am |
  25. gerald

    hell yeah. obama was just tryin to get his four cups of wine in!

    April 19, 2011 at 10:59 am |
  26. rouencraig

    Our country is big enough for diverse opinions. NONE of us has the complete answer. NONE of us has the right to tell others to get out because we just happen to disagree with an opinion expressed. Together, we might find a way, through some commonly agreed upon vision.

    Even the most left leaning American politicians in the public eye today are at best center/moderate compared to almost most european politicians. One would have to read outside the envelope to know that...

    American style Liberty is about being able to voice one's opinions without some "power", even that of the general concensus, dictating whether it "fits" into the way all Americans must think.

    April 19, 2011 at 11:18 am |
  27. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Eugene, You Go Boy! And these infidels arms are just too short to box with GOD! Psalm 20, verse 6: Now know I that the LORD saveth his annointed; he will hear him from his holy heaven with the saving strength of his right hand. Psalm 20, verse 8: They are brought down and fallen: but we are risen, and stand upright. Psalm 21, verses 8-9: Thine hand shall find out all thine enemies; thy right hand shall find out those that hate thee. Thou shalt make them as a fiery oven in the time of thine anger;.....!

    April 19, 2011 at 11:44 am |
    • Howard

      "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves."
      Matthew 7:15

      Obama has spent more American tax money in the first two years of his Presidency, than all the Presidents before him, COMBINED !!! ... and, he still is pushing to spend TRILLIONS more !!!

      Here are just a few examples of how Obama is ruining our economy:

      2009 GAS $1.83 per gallon TODAY $4.00 + per gallon
      2009 SOYBEANS $9.66 TODAY $13.75
      2009 SUGAR $$13.37 TODAY $35.39
      2009 NUMBER OF LONG TERM UNEMPLOYED 2,600,000 TODAY 6,400,000
      2009 PEOPLE IN POVERTY IN U.S. 39,800,000 TODAY 43,600,000
      2009 NATIONAL DEBT IN TRILLIONS $10,627 TODAY $14,052

      Just take this last item: In the last two years we have accumulated national debt at a rate more than 27 times as fast as during the rest of our entire nation's history. Over 27 times as fast! Metaphorically, speaking, if you are driving in the right lane doing 65 MPH and a car rockets past you in the left lane 27 times faster . . . it would be doing 1,755 MPH! This is a disaster!

      (1) U.S. Energy Information Administration; (2) Wall Street Journal; (3) Bureau of Labor Statistics; (4) Census Bureau; (5) USDA; (6) U.S. Dept. of Labor; (7) FHFA; (8) Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller; (9) RealtyTrac; (10) Heritage Foundation and WSJ; (11) The Conference Board; (12) FDIC; (13) Federal Reserve; (14) U.S. Treasury

      DUMP OBAMA IN 2012 !!!

      April 19, 2011 at 11:45 pm |
      • Briana the Art Director

        Gas was never below 2.00 in 2009 stop lying

        April 20, 2011 at 2:48 pm |
  28. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Sue, I'm sure MUSLIMS are sitting up watching, reading, wondering, and maybe even laughing at the idea of how pompous we are and how in the world can we be so antagonistic and hatefully questionable of their ways of life, and their methods or choices of serving and praising ALLAH; (GOD) while calling ourselves CHRISTIANS; claiming we are 'the' CHRISTIAN-based, founded, and established nation in the world; and yet they sit there and read comments like yours and Gaylon Barrows'! You folk are really ill!

    April 19, 2011 at 12:17 pm |
    • Howard

      Obama is pandering to the Jewish people for their votes and campaign contributions with one hand, while stabbing Israel in the back with his other hand !!!

      April 19, 2011 at 11:39 pm |
  29. Shwetha

    What a gentleman! there are really very few like these!

    April 19, 2011 at 12:48 pm |
  30. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Pandering for votes and money? You are one of those who despieses even the good things that he's doing to promote interelations in the American communities. President Obama had great support from JEWS the last time. They voted for him the last time. Since you were able to quote Matt 7:15, I'll venture to say that It was so-called CHRISTIAN gentiles like yourself who hated him for reasons unknown, other than because his skin was brown, who chose NOT to vote form him; and that's okay! He didn't need it! LOL!!

    April 20, 2011 at 8:22 am |
  31. Briana the Art Director

    If he was Muslim what would be illegal or wrong about it? He is the only president that has to scream over and over he's Christian. Why don't people take him at his word?

    April 20, 2011 at 2:51 pm |
  32. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Briana, he's the only PRESIDENT, who's had to keep campaigning ever since he won and was inaugurated! President Obama has been expected to work miracles on AMERICA and campaign at the same time. He not only has had to keep saying he's a CHRISTIAN, and these folk keep telling him he isn't; he's had to keep telling them he was born in HAWAII, and they keep saying he wasn't! He's the only POTUS, who's been expected to work 24/7! The only one who shouldn't take vacation, nor fly in AIRFORCE ONE! Too expensive!

    April 20, 2011 at 8:00 pm |
  33. Liz Carter in Georgia

    OBAMA's also an under-appreciated, hated 'only', who was able to step in when the chips were down for AMERICA! One foot was in the grave and the other on a banana peel; we were spiraling down at full speed into a very dark place; the fat lady was clearing her throat to sing, and he pulled us back by our coat-tails! Now, since we were grabbed in time, you'd think those same evil folk would be happy; willing to sit down and figure out how to pay this debt off! But NO! All they can do is say no and complain!

    April 20, 2011 at 8:30 pm |
  34. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Izzis Girl; the reason for my post is if you've read some of theses begrudging, belittling posts everytime it's announced that he and his family is taking some downtime, like watching the Super Bowl with friends, going to Hawaii on Christmas break, even 'shooting hoops' with his daughter or friends, or just taking his wife to dinner and a movie, OBAMA is villified by many, who've screamed right on this blog, things like 'get your ass back to work'! and much more hate! They want him 'behind that mule' 24/7.

    April 21, 2011 at 10:59 am |
    • Izzisgirl

      Liz, I think you've completely misunderstood the two posts you're responding to (and in this one, I don't think I was repsonding to one of your posts). I completely agree with you . . . I was *supporting* the president having downtime.

      April 21, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  35. Reality Check

    Fitting this picture was taken during the recitation of the 10 plagues brought upon the House of Egypt. Very fitting indeed.

    April 21, 2011 at 11:39 am |
  36. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Izzis Girl; Are we claiming to be a Christian based nation? Well that's what we started out being anyway. However, the more we became the 'melting pot' for all religions, and constitutionally claiming the right of freedom of religion, the WHITEHOUSE is doing the just thing in trying to open its' doors to them all! The President's only trying to show tolerance and welcome all traditional religions and ethnicities to the Capitol of the United States. It has nothing to do with 'My way is the right way and...'.

    April 21, 2011 at 12:34 pm |
    • Izzisgirl

      Liz, my post had nothing to do with being a Christian-based nation and we were not founded as a Christian-based nation. We were founded BY Christians, but specifically as a nation devoid of any "official religion".

      My comment was in response to the person above me who said that Christians are supposed to participate in other peoples' relgious activities in the hopes of one day bringing them to Christ. I think that's absolutely reprehensible. If I found out my Lutheran friend, who likes coming to my synagogue services and says she loves Judaism because she is a branch of a tree of which I am the trunk, was coming because she was hoping to one day convert me, I'd never speak to her again.

      April 21, 2011 at 5:42 pm |
  37. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Izzis Girl, I'm sorry that this is getting confusing, but I actually thought you were agreeing with me that Obama needed downtime. I was just setting forth examples as to how that wasn't agreed upon by many, judging by their angry posts! I was just conversing with you. However, I think The Veteran was only making a point of awareness and tolerance: He said it could 'lead to them coming to know and understand Christ'. I don't believe he/she meant it as a trick to draw anyone from their own personal faiths.

    April 22, 2011 at 12:19 pm |
  38. Liz Carter in Georgia

    When I said Christian based nation, that is what I meant. It was the basis of our nations establishmental founding. Our laws, rights and liberties were set up, based on Christian principles. I agree with your point that America was founded by Protestant Christians, and once upon a time, that was all it was. However, as other faiths, religious beliefs trickled into the quilt of AMERICA, she's been obliged to accomodate and welcome all faiths, including Aethism. That's a continuous mission of PRES OBAMA'S.

    April 22, 2011 at 12:51 pm |
  39. willard bullock

    Im strongest belived that trump and gov jan brewer are keep great job about birther certificate law bills let see me clear
    Im belived who have fraud birther certifcte in amercian with plot terroist cause untied state amercian have unless without fraud birther certificate with plot terroist in amercian

    April 23, 2011 at 2:05 am |
  40. willard bullock

    I was surpised about 3 state have false with birther certificate

    April 23, 2011 at 2:11 am |