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White House treat handouts include M&Ms

Turns out, the White House did not get egged.

Trick-or-treaters marched up the White House driveway on a wet, snowy Saturday, past the spider-web-like gauze, the pumpkins and the costumed actors to the mansion's north portico, where President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama handed out treats, an annual tradition.

"What's this? Look at this guy," the president said at the sight of one costumed child. "A headless man. Terrifying!"

And yes, the sweets included signature boxes of White House M&Ms, signaling a temporary respite from the first lady's healthy eating campaign. Dried fruit and White House baked cookies rounded out the handouts.

Earlier this week, in an appearance on the "Tonight Show," Obama joked to host Jay Leno that he had warned his wife that if she wanted to avoid Halloween mischief she might want to dole out more than just fruit and raisins.

"I told her the White House is going to get egged if this keeps up," he said, suggesting that she might want to add "a couple of Reese's Pieces or something."

In the spirit of compromise, a trait the president often says is all too rare in Washington, the M&Ms made it into the goody bags. Not exactly Reese's Pieces, but close enough.

The orange lights bathed the north portico as the president in black fleece jacket and slacks and the first lady in an overcoat greeted the parade of children. The Obamas were joined by the first lady's mother, Marian Robinson.

All three wished their guests happy Halloween and marveled at their costumes.

Children from 17 elementary schools from Washington and nearby Virginia and Maryland school districts were invited. Children from the Boys and Girls Club of America and children from military families also participated. Later, the children of military families were invited to a Halloween party at the White House.

On a more serious note, earlier in the day Obama repeated the economic message he's been delivering all week in appearances nationwide.

In his weekly radio and Internet address, he said he would pay for his stalled jobs plan with an added tax on people who make at least $1 million a year.

"These are the same folks who have seen their incomes go up so much, and I believe this is a contribution they're willing to make," Obama said. "Unfortunately, Republicans in Congress aren't paying attention. They're not getting the message."

In their weekly GOP message, Illinois Rep. Bobby Schilling urged Obama to support bills that Republicans say would help create jobs by blocking various energy and environmental regulations and streamlining administrative procedures.

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