Anonymous Pro: Presidents are allowed to have lives, right? If playing golf is a president's hobby, that's his hobby. There are a lot worse hobbies for a president, if you know what I mean.
Garrity: It's a positive if a president is not that good a player. That shows a certain humility that a lot of independent voters might find attractive in a guy who is willing to go out and potentially look bad.
Shipnuck: Obama is playing mostly at Air Force base courses. He's in shorts and bad saddle shoes and really is the kind of player you see at your local muni. It makes him seem like a regular guy.
Van Sickle: I'm glad the President plays golf. He should suffer like the rest of us.
Van Sickle: What do you gentlemen remember about Congressional and the 1997 U.S. Open?
Garrity: I covered that Open and the three AT&T Nationals at Congressional hosted by Tiger—and I still don't remember the holes.
Hack: It's a tough spot on the Open calendar—in between Pebble Beach last year and Olympic Club in 2012. Congressional is kind of nondescript. I covered K.J. Choi's win at the AT&T, and I remember the old 17th hole. That was the only hole that really stuck out.
Van Sickle: It's like Pinehurst No. 2 in that all the holes blend together because it's one long par-4 through the trees after another. The old 17th hole in '97 is the new 18th, and Rees Jones told me a back tee has been added by the fence to make it a 520-yard downhill par-4 to a green dangerously ringed by water.
Shipnuck: That's really a great hole. It decided the last Open. Tom Lehman went in the water, Colin Montgomerie bailed out, and Ernie hit a shot at the stick. It'll be a fantastic finishing hole. The rest of the course will be the usual long, hard slog like any Open.