Barack Obama departed for Hawaii today to kick off a week-long vacation with his family, Reuters reports. He’ll take part in a welcoming rally and fundraiser there, but will otherwise rest from campaign rigors. John McCain attacked his rival’s “beach vacation” in light of the hardships facing ordinary Americans. But Obama defended the trip as an important opportunity to see his grandmother.
"During the middle of a campaign you are always worried about taking some time off. That's the nature of the job,” Obama said. "It's been about 19 months since I saw my grandmother. And she is at an age where it's really important for me to see her. And those little girls need a little love—as does Michelle, I think. So we are going to take the time."