KAILUA, Hi. -- President Obama has had the unlikeliest follower as he, the first lady and their daughters vacation in sunny Hawaii for the holiday season: Frostpaw the polar bear.
Spotted among the throngs of well-wishers on the golf course and among the fans at a college basketball game has been a giant furry polar bear, or at least a man dressed up like one.
Frostpaw, a creation of the Center for Biological Diversity, has been a quirky yet constant presence in Obama's domestic travels in recent months as the organization has used the furry creature to draw attention to the proposed construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline between Canada and the United States
The fate of the pipeline, strongly opposed by environmentalists who fear it would mean a step backward in addressing climate change, falls solely in Obama's hands. Proponents of the pipeline say its construction would mean jobs for Americans and greater energy independence.
Though the president has yet to make a decision about whether he'll allow it to be built, he did finally acknowledge Frostpaw, who, according to pool reports, carried an anti-Keystone sign.
"Hey Polar Bear!" Obama called out as he wrapped up 18 holes of golf in Kailua, Hawaii, Monday.
Frostpaw has been spotted at fundraisers, during the first family's vacation in Martha's Vineyard, and at presidential stops in Miami, L.A., and San Francisco. Most recently, the bear held a weeklong "vigil" outside the White House during Thanksgiving.
No word on whether the ploy is working, but with the Obamas in tropical Hawaii for 10 days, we'll undoubtedly see more of Frostpaw before it's over.