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Unfortunately, there aren't really any good convenient spots for storing bags and other gear during a tour of the White House (which has some pretty restrictive rules, by all accounts). Some people get around this by taking turns to do the tour while the other waits outside, though that's hardly ideal! If you can, leave your stuff at your hotel and go back to collect after the tour. Union Station offers left-luggage lockers, though it's not that convenient to the White House (Metro or cab ride). They charge by the hour or day based in size of luggage, so could get pricey. faced between choice of returning to your hotel or schlepping over to Union Station, I'd take the former (again, assuming you have a hotel in town). Some of the Smithsonian museums down on the National Mall have lockers (http://www.si.edu/Visit/Security) for smaller items like lunch bags or handbags, though these are only meant for museum visitors. Posters on some other forum sites for this same question suggest going this route as nobody will see clock you in and out of the museum as you nip up the the White House, but this is officially frowned upon. However, just sayin' ;).......
Answer Dave's question