VINEYARD HAVE, Mass. (AP) — President Barack Obama plans to depart Friday evening from Martha's Vineyard, cutting his vacation short as Hurricane Irene strikes the eastern seaboard.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest said the president would leave a day early from the Massachusetts island retreat because it would be more prudent to be at the White House in the face of a storm the president himself described as potentially historic.
Earnest said the president told staff of his decision shortly after urging the millions of Americans in the path of the hurricane to heed instructions from state and local officials, especially if directed to evacuate.
"Don't wait, don't delay," Obama said.