Obama's first presidential visit to Baltimore next Friday
President Barack Obama will make his first visit to Baltimore since taking office next Friday, when he addresses a House Republican retreat at an Inner Harbor hotel.
The president's trip to Baltimore is his first appearance in the city since he spoke at War Memorial Plaza on Jan. 17, 2009, when his inaugural train stopped en route to Washington.
Unlike that speech, which attracted an estimated 40,000 people, Obama's upcoming visit will take place before an invited audience only.
The House Republican retreat is scheduled for Jan. 28 through Jan. 30 at the Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace Hotel.
"House Republicans chose Baltimore because it is a working class city that has a 10.8 % unemployment rate," said Mary Vought, a spokeswoman for the House Republican Conference.
Last year, the Republicans met at the Homestead resort in Hot Springs, Va. This year, sensitive to appearances in an election year when millions of Americans are out of work, House Democrats, who met last year at the Kingsmill Resort & Spa near Colonial Williamsburg, Va., did not even leave Washington for their recent retreat.