The White House pool reporter says that President Obama has gone shopping at Gap in New York City:
At 4:08, the motorcade arrived at the Gap store at East 42nd and Third Avenue.
President Obama is doing a little shopping for his wife and daughters. More details to come shortly.
From a White House official:
In his State of the Union address, the President called for businesses to raise workers’ wages, and today the President will visit a Gap store to show his support for Gap Inc.’s decision to increase wages for their US based employees.
Mark Knoller has more:
UPDATE: More here:
Upon arriving at the nearly empty Gap store at East 42nd and Third Avenue, President Obama told a sales associate that he was doing some shopping for his wife, Michelle, and daughters Malia and Sasha. The employee offered a quick tour of some of the options, pointing out stacks of sweaters and some new spring arrivals.
Eventually, Obama and the sales associate delved into sweaters in a rainbow of colors, holding up each choice and assessing what his daughters might like. The employee recommended a V-neck sweater, but the president gravitated toward the slightly more modest round-neck options, saying, "I'm worried the V-neck is going to slip." Eventually, he settled on a gray and white striped sweater and a bright coral sweater for his daughters.
The sales associate suggested that perhaps the first lady might like a hoodie, but the president said she seldom wears hoodies. He said she would like athletic gear and quickly picked out a blue workout jacket.
"I think the ladies will be impressed by my style sense," Obama said.
"Who's going to ring me up?" he asked as he approached the counter.
A longtime Gap named Sonia volunteered, saying, "He's better looking in person."
Although the employees tried to sell Obama on signing up for a Gap card -- which would have made him eligible for a discount -- the president declined. "I've got one card," he said as he presented his credit card.
Obama said he doesn't always carry his wallet but made sure to bring it for this excursion. When Sonya told him that he could swipe his own card on the countertop card reader, Obama quipped, "Oh wow. So, you can sign the machine?" As the reporters in the pool started scribbling, he said he was teasing, adding, "They had these around the last time I shopped."
After paying for his purchases, the president spoke about the importance of raising the minimum wage and praised Gap for taking the initiative to bump up employees' salaries. He said he would continue to push Congress to take action, but the Gap already was helping thousands of employees by raising salaries.
"It's not only good for them and their families, it's also good for the entire economy," he said. "I want to congratulate the Gap for doing the right thing."
The pool was ushered out as the president offered to pose for pictures with employees.
The White House provided the names of the Gap employees who assisted the president:
Greeter: Susan Panariello
Cashier: Sonia Del Gatto