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Plugged In

Video games top Obama’s Christmas shopping list

Plugged In

He might be great at keeping state secrets, but when it comes to the holidays, Barack Obama does a pretty lousy job of maintaining gift-giving surprises.

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Photo credit: Reuters

The President did a little Christmas shopping Wednesday -- and brought the press corps along. And it looks like Sasha and Malia will find Just Dance 3 and The Sims 3: Pets under the tree this year.

"In case you all are wondering, Just Dance for the Wii," Obama told the gaggle. "The girls beat me every time on these various dance games. And you guys will never get a picture of me [playing] because I get graded F every time."

[Related: Obama squeezes Republicans in year-end showdown]

Of course, this being the land of divisive politics, plenty of game sites are jokingly taking Obama to task for buying a French-made dance game, instead of the U.S.-made Dance Central 2 for the 360, but maybe we should cut the guy a break. Obama has made it quite clear in the past that video games aren't his area of expertise. In fact, in video footage of his time in the Virginia Best Buy, he can be heard asking, "is this the hot one now?" There's also the matter that the First Family owns a Wii, not an Xbox 360.

The Sims 3:Pets may have gotten a little less attention from the media, but was also among Obama's purchases. Kotaku, sniffing a story, did some digging in Federal Elections Commission data and found that EA CEO John Riccitiello and his wife have given Obama's presidential campaign committee a combined $8,300 over two cycles. Conspiracy!

The president did the shopping while his family was in Hawaii preparing for a Christmas break. (He stayed in town to deal with the payroll tax extension.) So, in theory, this would have been the perfect time to buy the kids gifts without having to risk them learning about it on the evening news.

Next time, Mr. President, you might want to try shopping online.

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