Obama: “I Got the Corned Beef”

When you're president, even your lunch order becomes news

Even lunch at the Chicago institution, Manny's, doesn't allow for anonymity when you are president-elect Barack Obama.

Now that his every move is monitored by pool reporters, the mundane becomes news. So it went with his visit to the well-known cafeteria, Manny's with advisor  Valerie Jarrett (and security detail, and reporters, and cameras).

Today's dispatch #4 came from Carol Lee of Politico. Let's be honest, if you inserted your own name, no one would care. But now that Obama's about to be the leader of the free world, we must report it. So we've done some editing and leave you with the key excerpts from Lee's notes on an Obama's lunch:

Obama shook hands with Ken Raskin, the restaurant's owner. 

"Rahm Emanuel sends his regards. I ordered him his corned beef," Obama told Raskin.

Obama signed a photo of himself with Mayor Daley after he won his Senate election in 2006. The photo was for Raskin.

"Alright, let me get my food," Obama said.

Obama took someone's suggestion for the mayo and mustard mix on his corned beef. 

"What do you think about the auto industry?" asked a reporter.

"I got the corned beef," Obama said with a smile. 

People had cell phone cameras out. They swarmed the president-elect, congratulating him on the election.

Patrons abandoned their plates of macaroni and cheese, blueberry pie, corned beef, dill pickles and chocolate chip cheesecake to get near the president-elect.

"I love you," one of them said.

"I love you back," Obama said.

One woman hugged him. Obama left with 2 cherry pies and 3 corned beef sandwiches. The bill was $48.34. He paid cash.

Left Manny's at 12:45 p.m. Arrived at transition headquarters at 12:53 p.m.

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