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Pictures | Thu Dec 6, 2012 | 9:23pm EST

Obama family presides over lighting of national Christmas tree

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) counts down as daughter Sasha (2nd L), prepares to light the National Christmas Tree next to her sister Malia (2nd R) and mother, Michelle Obama at the official lighting ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) counts down as daughter Sasha (2nd L), prepares to light the National Christmas Tree next to her sister Malia (2nd R) and mother, Michelle Obama at the official lighting ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December...more

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) counts down as daughter Sasha (2nd L), prepares to light the National Christmas Tree next to her sister Malia (2nd R) and mother, Michelle Obama at the official lighting ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing
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U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama (R) and their daughters Malia (3rd R) and Sasha (4th R) participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama (R) and their daughters Malia (3rd R) and Sasha (4th R) participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason...more

U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama (R) and their daughters Malia (3rd R) and Sasha (4th R) participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. President Barack Obama (L) gestures next to his daughters Sasha (2nd L) and Malia (2nd R) after they light the National Christmas Tree next to their mother, Michelle Obama (R) at the official lighting ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) gestures next to his daughters Sasha (2nd L) and Malia (2nd R) after they light the National Christmas Tree next to their mother, Michelle Obama (R) at the official lighting ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington,...more

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) gestures next to his daughters Sasha (2nd L) and Malia (2nd R) after they light the National Christmas Tree next to their mother, Michelle Obama (R) at the official lighting ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing
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U.S. President Barack Obama arrives on stage with his daughter Sasha (L) and is followed by his other daughter Malia to participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama arrives on stage with his daughter Sasha (L) and is followed by his other daughter Malia to participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012....more

U.S. President Barack Obama arrives on stage with his daughter Sasha (L) and is followed by his other daughter Malia to participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. President Barack Obama (C) is joined by his daughter Malia (R) and first lady, Michelle Obama (L) as they watch the show at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing

U.S. President Barack Obama (C) is joined by his daughter Malia (R) and first lady, Michelle Obama (L) as they watch the show at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012....more

U.S. President Barack Obama (C) is joined by his daughter Malia (R) and first lady, Michelle Obama (L) as they watch the show at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing
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U.S. President Barack Obama (2nd L), first lady Michelle Obama (R), and their daughters Malia (3rd R) and Sasha (3rd R) participate with host Neil Patrick Harris (L) in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama (2nd L), first lady Michelle Obama (R), and their daughters Malia (3rd R) and Sasha (3rd R) participate with host Neil Patrick Harris (L) in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in...more

U.S. President Barack Obama (2nd L), first lady Michelle Obama (R), and their daughters Malia (3rd R) and Sasha (3rd R) participate with host Neil Patrick Harris (L) in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. President Barack Obama (2nd L), first lady Michelle Obama (R), and their daughters Malia (3rd R) and Sasha (3rd R) participate with host Neil Patrick Harris (L) in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama (2nd L), first lady Michelle Obama (R), and their daughters Malia (3rd R) and Sasha (3rd R) participate with host Neil Patrick Harris (L) in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in...more

U.S. President Barack Obama (2nd L), first lady Michelle Obama (R), and their daughters Malia (3rd R) and Sasha (3rd R) participate with host Neil Patrick Harris (L) in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. President Barack Obama (2nd L), first lady Michelle Obama (R), and their daughters Malia (3rd R) and Sasha (3rd L) participate with host Neil Patrick Harris (L) in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama (2nd L), first lady Michelle Obama (R), and their daughters Malia (3rd R) and Sasha (3rd L) participate with host Neil Patrick Harris (L) in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in...more

U.S. President Barack Obama (2nd L), first lady Michelle Obama (R), and their daughters Malia (3rd R) and Sasha (3rd L) participate with host Neil Patrick Harris (L) in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. President Barack Obama, the first lady Michelle Obama and their daughters Malia and Sasha (L), and Michelle's mother Marian Robinson (R) participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama, the first lady Michelle Obama and their daughters Malia and Sasha (L), and Michelle's mother Marian Robinson (R) participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington,...more

U.S. President Barack Obama, the first lady Michelle Obama and their daughters Malia and Sasha (L), and Michelle's mother Marian Robinson (R) participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. President Barack Obama arrives on stage with his daughter Sasha to participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama arrives on stage with his daughter Sasha to participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama arrives on stage with his daughter Sasha to participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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First lady Michelle Obama and actor Rico Rodriguez (R) read a Christmas carol to children at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing

First lady Michelle Obama and actor Rico Rodriguez (R) read a Christmas carol to children at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing

First lady Michelle Obama and actor Rico Rodriguez (R) read a Christmas carol to children at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing
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U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and their daughters Malia and Sasha (2nd L) sing "Santa Claus is coming to town" as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and their daughters Malia and Sasha (2nd L) sing "Santa Claus is coming to town" as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington,...more

U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and their daughters Malia and Sasha (2nd L) sing "Santa Claus is coming to town" as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. President Barack Obama sings "Santa Claus is coming to town" with his daughters Malia and Sasha (L) as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama sings "Santa Claus is coming to town" with his daughters Malia and Sasha (L) as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012....more

U.S. President Barack Obama sings "Santa Claus is coming to town" with his daughters Malia and Sasha (L) as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama, their daughters Malia and Sasha (C) and Michelle's mother Marian Robinson (L) sing "Santa Claus is coming to town" as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama, their daughters Malia and Sasha (C) and Michelle's mother Marian Robinson (L) sing "Santa Claus is coming to town" as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in...more

U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama, their daughters Malia and Sasha (C) and Michelle's mother Marian Robinson (L) sing "Santa Claus is coming to town" as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. President Barack Obama is joined by his family, singer Neil Patrick Harris (2nd R) and actor Rico Rodriguez (R), as they sing at the end of the show at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. (From L - R) Mariam Robinson, Michelle Obama, Sasha Obama and Malia Obama. REUTERS/Larry Downing

U.S. President Barack Obama is joined by his family, singer Neil Patrick Harris (2nd R) and actor Rico Rodriguez (R), as they sing at the end of the show at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington,...more

U.S. President Barack Obama is joined by his family, singer Neil Patrick Harris (2nd R) and actor Rico Rodriguez (R), as they sing at the end of the show at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. (From L - R) Mariam Robinson, Michelle Obama, Sasha Obama and Malia Obama. REUTERS/Larry Downing
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U.S. President Barack Obama is joined by his family, singer Neil Patrick Harris (2nd R) and actor Rico Rodriguez (R), as they sing at the end of the show at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. (From L - R) Mariam Robinson, Michelle Obama, Sasha Obama and Malia Obama. REUTERS/Larry Downing

U.S. President Barack Obama is joined by his family, singer Neil Patrick Harris (2nd R) and actor Rico Rodriguez (R), as they sing at the end of the show at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington,...more

U.S. President Barack Obama is joined by his family, singer Neil Patrick Harris (2nd R) and actor Rico Rodriguez (R), as they sing at the end of the show at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. (From L - R) Mariam Robinson, Michelle Obama, Sasha Obama and Malia Obama. REUTERS/Larry Downing
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U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and their daughters Malia (2nd R) and Sasha sing "Santa Claus is coming to town" alongside an actor dressed as Santa as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and their daughters Malia (2nd R) and Sasha sing "Santa Claus is coming to town" alongside an actor dressed as Santa as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in...more

U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and their daughters Malia (2nd R) and Sasha sing "Santa Claus is coming to town" alongside an actor dressed as Santa as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. first lady Michelle Obama and actor Rico Rodriguez read "The night before Christmas" to children during the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama and actor Rico Rodriguez read "The night before Christmas" to children during the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama and actor Rico Rodriguez read "The night before Christmas" to children during the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. first lady Michelle Obama and actor Rico Rodriguez read "The night before Christmas" to children during the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama and actor Rico Rodriguez read "The night before Christmas" to children during the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama and actor Rico Rodriguez read "The night before Christmas" to children during the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. President Barack Obama (7th R), first lady Michelle Obama (9th L) and their daughters Malia and Sasha (C) gather with performers as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama (7th R), first lady Michelle Obama (9th L) and their daughters Malia and Sasha (C) gather with performers as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington,...more

U.S. President Barack Obama (7th R), first lady Michelle Obama (9th L) and their daughters Malia and Sasha (C) gather with performers as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama (2nd L), their daughters and an actor dressed as Santa Claus sing "Santa Claus is coming to town" as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama (2nd L), their daughters and an actor dressed as Santa Claus sing "Santa Claus is coming to town" as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White...more

U.S. President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama (2nd L), their daughters and an actor dressed as Santa Claus sing "Santa Claus is coming to town" as they participate in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. President Barack Obama delivers remarks as he participates in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama delivers remarks as he participates in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama delivers remarks as he participates in the 90th lighting of the National Christmas tree in front of the White House in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed
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U.S. President Barack Obama prays at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing

U.S. President Barack Obama prays at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing

U.S. President Barack Obama prays at the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree ceremony on the Ellipse in Washington, December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing
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