Obamas Visit Oprah in Chicago Wednesday

Be alert for midday traffic tie-ups, especially if it continues to rain

Wednesday, Apr 27, 2011  |  Updated 7:14 AM CDT
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Viewers began lining up at 5:30 a.m. at Harpo Studios in the West Loop, excited to see the President on "The Oprah Winfrey Show."

Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama are headed home Wednesday morning to tape a segment for the show, scheduled to air Monday.

Air Force One is set to arrive at O'Hare Airport just after 11 a.m., tying up traffic in the late morning. From there, the presidential motorcade is expected to block or slow traffic around the Near West Side.

Morning commuters shouldn't be affected, but if the rain continues and Obama can't fly into Marine One, the motorcade will be rerouted to the Kennedy, likely jamming traffic in both directions. 

The president and first lady return to O'Hare at about 2:30 p.m. for a flight to New York City, where Obama will speak at three Democratic National Committee events. The couple returns to Washington, D.C. early Thursday morning.

Obama has said he considers Winfrey a friend and looks forward to being on the show. Some critics wonder who's paying for the trip, though, less than two weeks after the president flew to Chicago on April 14 for three campaign fundraisers.

Winfrey very publicly supported Obama during his 2008 campaign, but she recently said she would not do the same in 2012. Rumor is she fears alienating audiences for her fledgling OWN Network.

President Obama is the first U.S. President to actively participate in the daytime talk show circuit, having appeared on Oprah's show in 2006 as well as "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" and "The View."

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