Wednesday, November 12, 2008

What life will be like for the new president

Obama security detailBarack Obama - Secret Service codename Renegade - is now the most guarded man on the planet.

Even when he goes to the loo, bodyguards stand outside it.

And when he travels by motorcade there are a dozen identical cars - so potential assassins won’t know which one he is in.

The President-elect will also have to get used to handing his glass to a Secret Service agent every time he has a drink outside the White House. The agent carries a small bag in which to pop the glass and later he destroys it.

The idea is to ensure that no unauthorized person has access to the Presidential DNA, but it is not clear how an enemy would use it.

Obama will be given a set of panic buttons: One for his pocket, one on his desk and one beside his bed. They are credit card-shaped and simply have to be squeezed to summon a posse of agents.

At one time, the President and Vice-President were given three-inch-high models of the Washington Monument to put beside their beds. They had simply to knock them over to summon the guards.

But the models were abandoned after Vice-President Dan Quayle - noted for being clumsy - knocked his over late one night while making love to his wife.

In seconds, the door burst open, the lights went on and Mrs Quayle was thrown out of bed to the floor as bodyguards flocked around her husband to ensure his safety.

Read more about how life changes once a resident of the White House.

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