After spending the night in Cedar Rapids, President Obama stopped in Riley’s Cafe around 9:30 a.m. today for some breakfast before he hit the road. The president’s motorcade blocked off parts of First Avenue for the 45 minutes he was there.
According to the pool report, “He ordered two eggs, hash browns, fruit and OJ and appeared to joke with the young waitress in a Riley’s t-shirt who took his order. ‘Don’t mind these people,’ Obama said, turning to the people sitting across from him. ‘Try to enjoy your breakfast.’”
All laughed, including a man in a red shirt who sat at the next table and appeared to use his cell phone to catch snippets of the conversation Obama was having with his table companions. President Obama has breakfast with three Iowa veterans: Amanda Irish, Jake Krapfl and Terry Philips.
The president’s visit was a surprise for John and Diane Hohnstein, who frequent the eatery usually on Sundays after church.
“We thought it was joke when they said they’d have to scan us.”
In the meantime, a group of a about 50 spectators gathered outside Riley’s with eyes, ears and phone cameras trained at the restaurant’s door.
The president is expected to talk about Medicare when he talks to a Dubuque crowd at the Star Brewery around 12:25 p.m. He spent the night at the Cedar Rapids Marriott. Large construction equipment and portable fencing circled the hotel for security reasons.