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President Obama's arrival ties up Westside traffic

President Barack Obama landed in Los Angeles Monday evening, which meant traffic backups for commuters.
November 25, 2013 12:00:00 AM PST
President Barack Obama landed in Los Angeles Monday evening, which meant some traffic backups for commuters.

The president arrived in Los Angeles behind schedule around 5:30 p.m., just in time for the evening commute.

The president's motorcade rolled through the streets of Beverly Hills. Several of the Westside's busiest streets came to complete standstills.

"Love the president, but does he really have to close down all the intersections at 6 p.m. at night when everyone has to come home from work?" said Linda Spiegel of Beverly Hills.

The president's motorcade drove right past protesters who are upset at a possible trade agreement called the TPP.

"It's bad for consumers, it's bad for workers, it's bad for the environment and it's bad for national sovereignty," said Laren Steiner of Beverly Hills.

Mr. Obama found friendlier audiences at several fundraisers, where top tickets cost around $15,000 a person. One fundraiser was at the home of basketball legend Magic Johnson and another at the home of media mogul Haim Saban.

But, it wasn't all fundraisers. Inside the Beverly Hilton, Mr. Obama met with the family of slain TSA agent Gerardo Hernandez and two other TSA agents hurt during the recent shooting at Los Angeles International Airport.

This is the president's 16th trip to L.A. since taking office. On Tuesday morning, the president is scheduled to speak about the economy at the studios of DreamWorks Animation in Glendale, which is headed by Jeffrey Katzenberg, a longtime and influential Obama supporter.

Earlier Monday, Mr. Obama spoke about immigration reform at a recreation center that serves the Chinese community in San Francisco. The president is calling on Congress to vote on the issue by the end of the year.

"There are plenty of leaders, Democrat and Republican, who don't think it's fair that we've got 11 million people in this country, including more than a million from Asia, with no real way to come forward and get on the right side of the law. It's not smart, it's not fair, it doesn't make sense," said the president.

The president also defended the nuclear agreement with Iran. The plan to temporarily freeze pieces of Iran's nuclear program was criticized in Washington and Israel.

"Now this progress, and the potential it offers, reminds us of what is possible when the United States has the courage to lead, not just with the force of arms, but with the strength of our diplomacy and our commitment to peace. That's what keeps us strong," he said.

The president kicked off his West Coast visit with a stop Sunday in Seattle to attend two fundraisers, including one for the Democratic National Committee. Tickets for the event were $32,400 per couple.

On Tuesday afternoon, Mr. Obama is set to head back to Los Angeles International Airport to return to Washington, meaning more potential traffic ties-ups for drivers.

Streets likely to be affected on Monday, Nov. 25, 2013:

  • 4 p.m. to 5 p.m.: streets surrounding LAX
  • 4:45 p.m. to 10 p.m.: streets surrounding Westwood area and the city of Beverly Hills:
    -- west to east: 405 Freeway to La Cienega Boulevard
    -- north to south: Santa Monica Boulevard to Venice Boulevard

Streets likely to be affected on Tuesday, Nov. 26, 2013:

  • 8 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.: streets surrounding the Wilshire area of Los Angeles:
    -- west to east: Fairfax Avenue to Western Avenue
    -- north to south: Beverly Boulevard to Pico Boulevard
  • 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.: streets within the city of Glendale:
    -- west to east: Riverside Drive, San Fernando Road and Grandview Avenue to North Pacific Avenue
    -- north to south: West Kenneth Road to Victory Boulevard, San Fernando Road, 5 and 134 freeways
  • 1:15 p.m. to 2 p.m.: streets surrounding LAX

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