The second couple settles in Washington after a stressful start to their lives



Earlier this month, movers in JK Moving Trucks rolled up to Blair House, packed the small number of goods that Harris and Ehmoff had brought there, and moved them to a residence two miles northwest, which Massachusetts Avenue Heights, a neighborhood of the nation’s capital, located on 73 private acres in leafy, upscale. The items from his California home were there to greet him, ending a three-month wait. A source of disappointment For the vice president. The building was delayed due to several updates, administration officials told CNN.

Another official told CNN that Harris is quite comfortable in the environment around his house, now between him and Ehmoff’s own furniture, with his art on the walls (he is a fan of contemporary works). Harris enjoyed the proximity to the White House that Blair House provided – walking down the street to work is not a bad situation – but the sacrifice was a small one. People who have been around them in their new setting say that it is much better for the other couple.

“They are happy to be there,” the official said.

Meanwhile, Ehmoff has also made dramatic changes. He left the high-octane Los Angeles law firm, where he often worked long hours to join the faculty at Georgetown Law School in DC. This semester he helmets one class per week, titled “Entertainment Law Controversy. He is not teaching a summer class,” an Amhoff staff official told CNN.

Ulta, Harris and Ehmoff now get the most time every day. Without his grueling schedule and his frequent visits from California to DC to serve in the Senate, Amhoff can see his wife in person. He can also visit the giant crocheted mural of his face in The Wharf, the hip, new-ish waterfront promenade; Or buy a candle with her likeness on the outside at a Washington boutique specialty store; Also eat “Madame VP’s Heritage Bowl” inspired by his wife’s Jamaican and Indian roots from a fast-casual restaurant near the White House. These are all things that Ehmoff has actually done within the last month.

“He’s liking it,” said a person familiar with the couple’s new life.

Harris and Ehmoff were not in town during the actual packing. Both were out of the West, first in California, then in Chicago, he insisted on the American rescue plan of the Biden administration, as well as the need for Americans to receive Kovid vaccinations, in Washington State. The other couple are now getting to know the staff (six to eight usually to meet their needs) in their new home, adjusting to the Secret Service right outside their door and navigating the floor of the residence.

The living quarters are dramatically different from what they are used to. The West End neighborhood that the couple built before Harris became vice president is externally a contrast to the beauty of their new home. Harris and Ehmoff’s two-bedroom, two-bathroom condos, which were listed for sale last week for $ 1.995 million, are sleek and minimal in style, and are quite modern. Home to vice presidents since Walter Mondley, the house at the Naval Observatory is a multi-story, cream-colored, Queen Anne-style mansion with wraparound verandahs, black shutters, and bastions.

Surrounded by trees and tall, wrought-iron fences, it is much more private than the White House, and in recent decades, at least two presidents have expressed regret for the staffing that it was their home rather than their number two’s No, according to two people familiar with the conversation. The grounds allow residents to go for a walk or bike ride, without people spying on them. In 2017 a large gym and a decent pool and pool house – homemade honey for harvesting, courtesy offering from former second lady Karen Pence.

Just to put it, the Vice President’s residence is more relaxed and home than the White House, with its many outposts, staff, and guards, and the natural diseases that come with all the semi-automatic weapons on site. The vibe in Harris and Amhoff’s new location is certainly not so. Although there is heavy security on the perimeter and dozens of armed secret service forces on the grounds, the sentiment is much more contingent on the interior.

“Being invited to the residence is especially special, because it doesn’t happen often,” says Philippe Dufour. “When you go in you feel right, you’re in the vice president’s house. It’s a different feeling.”

The basement level includes the main kitchen, as well as offices for employees. The first floor is made up of entertainment rooms – the grand foyer (where Tipper Gore has displayed his drum set), the dining room, the living room, and the living room.

The main bedroom is on the second floor, which also houses a den and family kitchen, which was used by Gore and the family to set up when they were not required to engage the staff. Cheney updated the kitchen during his tenure. Harris and Ehmoff are likely to enjoy that personal enjoyment. While living in the Blair House, they would sometimes give kitchen staff time to cook for themselves.

The third floor has other bedrooms, for the children of Gorus and Qualls, and the grandchildren of Cheney and Bidens. According to an administration official, Harris and Ehmoff, who have two adult children from their first marriage yet to visit the residence, will have plenty of space when the family arrives in the city. Both have mentioned that they enjoy dinner, likely to continue at the residence.

An official told CNN that Harris and Ehmoff do not come to work together most days, even though their office is in the West Wing and the executive office building next door. But their space has one feature that both can enjoy – a balcony that overlooks the White House.

Dufour says the key to having a successful second couple is to seize moments like this, finding a balance between political life and duties, and having a “normal” life. Duffer says that Tipper Gore used to go to local music festivals from time to time (singer Sean Colvin was a favorite) and was constantly told by other attendees that “he looked a lot like Tipper Gore,” in fact he There was never a tipper gore.

While the first and second spouse outings ceased after 9/11 due to the updated security protocol (Amhoff must have secret service security), the second couple has more opportunity to enjoy the serene atmosphere of the Vice President’s residence on their grounds. to leave. Joe and Jill Biden loved to eat at a nearby restaurant from time to time when he was vice president – and he was an early patron at Le Diplomat, and for a long time at the de rigueur power hub in Georgetown Be happy Cafe Milano – but they preferred to stay at home more.

It should be noted that the Vice President pays his meals for himself and the family. There is a common belief that taxpayers cover those costs, but they do not. The same is true for the White House; A budget is allocated from the family for personal groceries.

Dufour suggests that as Gores and others have done before him, Harris will use the house to entertain and trade. Her new home may be less formal than the White House, but it is no less impressive for visitors. Dufour recalls how he secretly helped the differently-abled, all-time candidate of then-Vice President Al Gore’s potential vice-president when he ran for the presidency on the 2000 Democratic ticket.

He also notes that Harris and Amhoff should know about every nook and cranny of the residence and its grounds, as there are many.

And if they set an alarm or two, it won’t cause hubbub that will trigger the same thing in the White House.

“One of the gore kids did,” he said. “Trust me, it’s happened before.”

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