In a sit-down with the Today show taped before Monday's tragic bombings at the Boston Marathon, Savannah Guthrie asked the commander in chief whether he was aware of the superstar couple's controversial trip to Cuba earlier this month that coincided with their fifth wedding anniversary.
"I wasn't familiar that they were taking the trip," Obama answered. "My understanding is I think they went through a group that organizes these educational trips down to Cuba."
The president didn't address the Today co-anchor's other question: whether Obama had heard Hov's "Open Letter" in which he hit back at his critics and declared that he and the songstress got the administration's okay to travel to the communist Caribbean country.
He added: "This is not something the White House was involved in. We've got better things to do."
In his NSFW track, which was released on April 11, Jay-Z rapped that he's a "boy from the hood but got White House clearance," implying that Obama had given approval for the holiday to Havana. The hip-hop star also suggested in another lyric that he and the president may have talked about the brouhaha: "Obama said chill, you gonna get me impeached/You don't need this s--t anyway, chill with me on the beach."
Soon after, White House press secretary Jay Carney set the record straight at a press conference that the administration had nothing to do with the sojourn and noted the Treasury Department handles such travel requests.
In any case, Jay-Z and Beyoncé did obtain the proper authorization to go to Cuba as part of an educational exchange.
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