Obama's vacation has come under fire from Republicans, who argue that the trip was ill-timed considering troubling economic news and developments in Libya. The President has also had to grapple with the effects of an earthquake that shook the eastern seaboard Tuesday.
By leaving tonight, Obama should return to Washington before the storm hits the area. Although the capital is not expected to receive the brunt of the storm, the region is under a tropical storm warning. Some commercial flights and trains into D.C. have already been cancelled.
The president warned Americans to prepare for the looming storm as quickly as possible Friday morning.
"I cannot stress this highly enough: If you are in the projected path of this hurricane, you have to take precautions now. Don’t wait. Don’t delay," Obama said.
For more on Obama's speech click here.