Black DC Vies for First Couple's Attention

By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Feb 9, 2009 10:47 AM CST
Members of the congregation at the Foundry United Methodist Church attend a service Sunday, Nov. 16, 2008, in Washington. Churches in the nation's capital have extended invitations to the Obamas.   (AP Photo/Luis M. Alvarez)
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(Newser) – From churches to hair salons, Washington’s black institutions are gunning for the Obamas’ patronage, the Washington Post reports. Many in the largely black city feel a sense of camaraderie with the first couple—and know that making a connection with the town's hottest celebrities would be “a tremendous social coup,” said Jackie Kennedy’s former chief of staff.

"He's one of the first big-city presidents, so he understands the urban environment," a DC councilman noted. Those interested in connecting with the Obamas aren’t just in it for themselves, said a Georgetown professor. Many are hoping to "nurture" the family, offering the "watch care" many black churches give. "It's like you may be a member of another church, but while you are in this city, we're going to watch out for you."