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Obama and Tiger Woods Golfing Today, White House Says

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Elise Goulandris Chalet
The chalet belonging to Elise Goulandris. A Swiss court is examining the claim of her niece for a share of the inheritance. Source: Aspasia Zaimis via Bloomberg

Feb. 17 (Bloomberg) -- President Barack Obama played golf today with Tiger Woods, according to White House spokesman Josh Earnest.

Woods, who is working to rebuild his legacy after a 2009 scandal over extramarital affairs derailed his career, joined the president, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk and Jim Crane, an Obama supporter who owns the exclusive Florida golf course where they played, Earnest said.

Obama is spending the Presidents Day weekend at the Floridian National Golf Club in Palm City, playing golf with friends and donors. The White House didn’t permit reporters traveling in the president’s press pool to enter the club today or to watch the foursome play.

The Tom Fazio-designed private course and club is owned by Crane, who also owns the Houston Astros baseball team. Yesterday Obama played with Woods’ former coach Butch Harmon, who created the club’s instructional facility.

Crane, 59, an avid golfer and chairman and chief executive officer of Houston-based Crane Capital Group, and his wife, Franci, have donated $57,700 to Obama and to the Democratic National Committee since 2007, when Obama announced his candidacy for president, according to data compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics, a Washington group that examines the influence of money on politics.

Woods, the No. 2 player in the Official World Golf Ranking, holds 14 major titles and opened his U.S. PGA Tour season last month with his seventh win at the Farmers Insurance Open in La Jolla, California.

Obama arrived in Florida on Feb. 15 and is scheduled to return to Washington late tomorrow.

To contact the reporter on this story: Margaret Talev in Port St. Lucie, Florida, at mtalev@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steven Komarow at skomarow1@bloomberg.net

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