Prez May Skip Trip to Pitch Chicago Olympics

IOC chief says there's no clear favorite ahead of next month's vote on 2016
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 11, 2009 1:20 AM CDT
Chicago Alderman James A. Balcer holds up an "I Back The Bid" t-shirt as he speaks before the city council votes to approve the Olympic host city contrac in Chicago earlier this week.   (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)
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(Newser) – President Obama is keeping the team behind Chicago's bid for the 2016 Olympics guessing on whether he'll head to Copenhagen to personally address the International Olympic Committee before members make their choice next month, the Chicago Tribune reports. White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs says he isn't aware of any travel plans for the president, but aides stress no final decision has been made.

Madrid, Rio, and Tokyo are Chicago's rivals for the 2016 Games and their heads of state plan to travel to Copenhagen for the October 2 vote. "There is no favorite. There is no bid that is lagging behind," IOC president Jacques Rogge tells the AP. "All the scenarios are possible." The presence of national leaders isn't a factor in the voting, he added. Obama, a firm supporter of Chicago's bid, is expected to address the IOC by videolink if he can't make it in person.