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Answer: This guy. 

Remember when the Bush administration denied the Obama family’s request to stay at the Blair House during early January? Well now we know why.  The Washington Post broke the news yesterday:

The only overnight visitor at the presidential guest manse is none other than John Howard, a former Australian prime minister and leading member of President Bush’s coalition of the willing in Iraq.

Howard and his entourage will be bunking at Blair House on Jan. 12, the night before he, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and Colombian President Alvaro Uribe are to be awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Bush, said Sally McDonough, a spokeswoman for first lady Laura Bush. The three current and former heads of state are longtime political allies of Bush, and Blair and Howard were key partners in the U.S.-led war in Iraq.

Blair and Uribe also were invited to stay at Blair House, but declined Bush’s invitation, a second White House official said today. 

Why the secrecy?

According to the New York Times, “The White House announced just yesterday that it had selected Mr. Howard and the others to receive the award, but such ceremonies are planned long before they are announced.”

Image courtesy of Wikimedia