Schenectady Waits for Obama

ge Schenectady Waits for ObamaSCHENECTADY — The press has already packed into Building 273 of the General Electric plant in Schenectady, where President Obama is set to arrive shortly for a tour of the facility with the company’s C.E.O., Jeffrey Immelt.

The stop took on new significance this morning, when the president named Immelt the new head of a key economic advisory panel. Immelt will head a new panel called the Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, which replaces the less upbeat Economic Recovery Advisory Board. He’ll replace Paul Volcker, the former fed chief.

Reporters are milling around, looking for people to talk to, but most of the big-name elected officials are en route with President Obama on Air Force One. Expected to attend are Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, and Congressmen Paul Tonko, Richard Hanna, and Chris Gibson.

Governor Cuomo will also be making the jaunt over from Albany, but hasn’t been spotted yet.

According to one local cab driver, the town has been buzzing about the big visit, even though the president will only spend a couple of hours on the ground in the capital region.

“Only time we really had all the press here was the bomber–what’s his name?–his brother lived here,” he said. He was referring to Ted Kaczynski.