How has Obama been traveling for the past 24 hours?

Yesterday he was in Madison, WI, Ohio and Iowa. Today, I assume he’s spending the day in Chicago.

Air Force One has been parked right across the street from me since yesterday morning. Is he flying in something else? Driving all across the midwest? Helicopter?

At one point I even wondered if he decided it would be quicker to just get in something unmarked and not deal with the roadblocks, photos, crowds, motorcades and all that comes along with moving him, but that seems rather risky when you consider how much security he has.

Frankly, I was surprised to see his plane when I didn’t hear anything about him being in Milwaukee. I wasn’t sure why he didn’t just land in Madison. I guess the plan was to do this all on the road, end in Chicago and then Wednesday morning be able to drive back from Chicago to pick up his plane (it’s about 90 minutes away). I suppose they could just as easily bring the plane down to O’Hare to pick him up.

There are two planes called Air Force One.

Any US Airforce Aircraft the President flies in is called Air Force One. For the campaign , Obama has been taking many of his domestic flights on a C32A (Boeing 757) like this one:

That, I’m aware of. However, the plane commonly referred to as “Air Force One” is parked, more or less, across the street from me. Even if he was on one of the other ones, I probably would have seen the roads closed as he came back through town to the airport.

Though I suppose (now that I think about it), one of the other planes could have been in Madison waiting for him. But why not just land in Madison to begin with. To the best of my knowledge, he didn’t stop in Milwaukee at all.

Ah, I completely misread your post, sorry.

Yes, staging backup aircraft is SOP when the President travels. It would make sense for them to stage a backup craft in a location central to an area where the President is making multiple stops. The one you see in Milwaukee is probably staging there as a backup.

Schwinn One.

Obama is flying on one of the two planes known as “Air Force One,” according to news articles covering his appearances.

I was under the impression that he typically traveled from Andrews AFB to the White House on board a marine helicopter. Do they close the roads for some other reason?

It says he landed in Madison at 2:40 in the morning. During the day yesterday we had the police in full force just like we normally do when he lands at our airport so I’m guessing that this wasn’t just an empty ‘back-up’ plane unless it was a decoy and they wanted to give the entire city the appearance that he was in town.

What do you mean by “had the police in full force”?

Maybe that was poor wording. When he’s due to be in town, we have local (city) police, Sheriffs, motorcycle cops, foot patrol, coast guard helicopters, sometimes even state troopers in the area. You go from seeing a cop every few minutes to not being able to NOT see one on (literally) every intersection, bridge, all over the side of the road for any possible path he might take and then kinda scattered throughout the city in other areas.

If the president is coming to town (or about to leave town), it’s pretty obvious something’s going on.

What I was saying is that if this is just a back up plane, I don’t think they would be doing all that unless, for some reason, they needed a decoy.

OK, interesting. I can see the backup plane having a lot of security in and around the airport of course, but not as far as the huge presence of police as you described that’s typical during an actual visit.

I’m not sure about other airports, but at MKE (and likely whenever possible) it’s parked at the Airforce base, so the security is sort of built in. I mean, I’m sure they have people guarding it, but it’s far away from the passenger terminals, the private jets, while close (connected by a half mile or so vehicle access road), are probably kept on a short leash during this time and it’s hard enough for civilians to get on the base even when he’s not in town (you have to be on the list, it’s a real PITA if someone forgets to put your name on the list).

Also called Marine One, but you probably knew that.

Just got an official answer…or, at least, the most official answer I’m likely to get. It came from someone that works at a flight support group that must have handled Obama coming into town since he was one of the people that helped service* the plane.

Anyways, they brought Air Force One (the 747) into Milwaukee where he picked up a 757 to run to Madison, Ohio and Iowa. The reason being that the other airports can’t handle such a large plane. Logistically, it was easier to drop off the big plane here and switch to a smaller one. In the next day or so, he’ll come back to Milwaukee (it’s still here) or they’ll take it to Chicago to get him.

*Service as in adding fuel, water etc.

Madison’s Dane County Airport can. 2009 video.

I dunno. Maybe something to do with the other two airports, or scheduling to get it back to Chicago. Does Dane County have an Air Force base? Maybe they preferred to keep it parked for 2 days at a base. Maybe it was cheaper to keep it in Milwaukee then Madison or O’Hare. Maybe (if Dane county doesn’t have a AF Base) it was free to keep it at the base in MKE.

Also, given all the cops around Milwaukee the other day, maybe he did something in Milwaukee that I wasn’t aware of.

I suppose it’s one of those “they know better then I do” type things.

It also just took off about 5 minutes ago…sans the president.

Dane County Airport (MSN) used to be Truax Field. It still houses the Wisconsin Air National Guard, but not like it used to be in its heyday, as late as the 1960s. Milwaukee County Airport (MKE) is better suited for larger aircraft and “storing” Air Force One.

WAG - What sat on the tarmac at MKE was probably the AF1 backup. The President would have used AF1 when he left Chicago last night or this morning back to DC. When the President flies, much, much more than Air Force One is flying to accompany him.

There is no plane named “Air Force One,” nor a helicopter named “Marine One,” nor any other modes of transport named “… One.” (Insert B5 and Highlander jokes here.)

The vehicles have other designations UNTIL the President is on board, and then his presence makes it Air Force One, Marine One, etc.

nit: picked.

This was the plane with Tail Number 28000. I think that’s the normal Air Force One.

The President had no public itinerary from Sunday through today. Today, the President and his family departed O’Hare at 2:40p, local time, arriving at Andrews at 5:15p, local time.

WAG - Assuming SAM28000 was primary, and your earlier post time-stamp is accurate, SAM28000 departed MKE at 11:30a, local time, for O’Hare to pick up the President. That infers MKE was the remote parking/staging spot for SAM28000. Makes sense so it doesn’t remain on the tarmac at O’Hare for an extended period of time as ORD has no known active military presence as does MKE. MKE is more secure than ORD and it’s the home of the 128th Air Refueling Wing Mission. So SAM28000 was fueled, tires kicked, oil checked and windows washed waiting for the call to return to service. Plus, in an emergency, SAM2800 could take off much faster with the reduced traffic at MKE. The flight from MKE to ORD was probably less than 15-20 minutes wheels up to wheels down. Pick up the Boss and home to Andrews, and the White House.