Archives for White House

Central American leaders called to White House

President Barack Obama is summoning Central American leaders to the White House to discuss the influx of young immigrants from their countries to the U.S., hoping to show presidential action even as Congress remains deeply split over proposals to stem the crisis on the border. The meeting comes as the administration is considering creating a pilot program giving refugee status to young people from Honduras, White House officials said Thursday. The plan would involve screening youths in their home country to determine whether they qualify for refugee status. The program would be limited and would start in Honduras but could
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President wants limits on overseas corporate mergers

President Barack Obama is tapping into growing misgivings about tax-driven overseas mergers by U.S. corporations, issuing a new call to end the practice quickly and questioning the patriotism and citizenship of those companies. The push comes amid a developing trend by companies to reorganize with foreign entities partly to reduce their tax payments in the U.S. But Obama’s election-year drive also coincides with increased attention to the issue by congressional Democrats, who are seeking to draw contrasts with Republicans and to portray them as too corporate-friendly. Obama was scheduled to address the issue in remarks Thursday at a technical college
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Obama hails rare Southeast Asia Indonesia democracy

President Barack Obama’s quick congratulation for Indonesia’s election victor Joko Widodo, even as the losing candidate rejected the result, underscores Washington’s intent to deepen ties with Jakarta and support democracy in Southeast Asia. A peaceful transfer of power in Indonesia would buck a worrying trend in a region marred by flawed elections and military meddling. It would also show that democracy thrives in the country with the world’s largest Muslim population. Over the past year, there have been disputed elections in Malaysia and Cambodia, where this week the opposition agreed to end a parliamentary boycott. Thailand, once an example of
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Obama wants cooperation from balky GOP Congress

As hopes dim for bipartisan action in Congress this summer, President Barack Obama is calling on Republican lawmakers to cooperate while complaining that they have “gone off the rails” and urging Democrats to get over their complacency and vote them out of office. The mixed messages aim to cast Obama as being above the fray even as he embarks on one of his most intense fundraising sprees for the Democratic Party. “I’m not overly partisan,” he insisted Tuesday before 250 donors in a well-to-do lakefront neighborhood in Seattle. “The problem is not the Republican Party per se. The problem is
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Obama getting heat from both sides on immigration

The White House is meeting growing resistance from both the left and the right as it pushes a multibillion-dollar emergency spending bill for the border, raising questions about chances for any action in Congress to address the crisis of tens of thousands of unaccompanied children crossing into South Texas. Democratic opposition is hardening to changing a 2008 anti-trafficking law to allow Central American children to be sent home more quickly, even as Republicans demand such changes as their price for supporting any part of President Barack Obama’s $3.7 billion spending request. “You wanted someone to stand up and say, ‘Hey
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White House defies Congressional subpoena

The White House is defying a congressional subpoena by keeping a top political aide to President Barack Obama from testifying at a hearing Wednesday, setting up a potential new legal battle in this midterm election year. The White House argued that Obama adviser David Simas is immune from the “extraordinary demand” of being forced to testify before the House Oversight Committee as part of its investigation into the White House Office of Political Strategy and Outreach, which he directs. White House counsel Neil Eggleston said in a letter Tuesday night to Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., that the Simas subpoena
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Obama wants subpoena of top aide quashed

The White House asked the Republican chairman of a congressional committee on Monday to lift a subpoena against President Barack Obama’s political adviser, who has been called to testify on Wednesday about his office’s operations. Representative Darrell Issa, chairman of the House of Representatives’ Oversight and Government Reform Committee, last week subpoenaed Obama political adviser David Simas to testify about how his office complies with the Hatch Act, a law that forbids most federal government employees from engaging in partisan political activity. Simas is director of the White House Office of Political Strategy and Outreach. Recent presidents, both Democratic and
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Obama may hold fix to immigration crisis

President Barack Obama can take action to relieve much of the crisis caused by tens of thousands of unaccompanied children crossing the southern U.S. border without waiting for what is likely to be a contentious and lengthy Congressional battle, say two key lawmakers, one a Democrat and the other, a Republican. At issue is a provision in a 2008 human trafficking law that puts the fate of young immigrants from countries that don’t border the United States in the hands of immigration judges. The Obama administration has expressed some interest in asking Congress to change the law to give the
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White House seeks governors’ help on immigration mess

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Matthews Burwell met privately with dozens of governors Sunday as the Obama administration tried to get support from the leaders of states that will host thousands of the Central American children who have crossed the Mexican border on their own since Oct. 1. Governors of both parties expressed concerns about the cost to states, including providing public education for the children, according to those who attended the meeting. Burwell left the meeting through a side door without talking to reporters. “Our citizens already feel burdened by all kinds of challenges. They don’t want to
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Obama’s roadshow didn’t help his troubled agenda

Welcome to Barack Obama’s split-screen presidency. On one side: a confident Obama making campaign-style stops around the country and ridiculing his political opponents to the delight of cheering supporters. On the other side: an increasingly unpopular president hobbled by gridlock on Capitol Hill and a steady stream of vexing foreign policy crises. Obama has long sought refuge outside of Washington when his frustrations with the nation’s capital reach a boiling point. But his ability to rally public support in a way that results in progress for his legislative agenda has perhaps never been weaker than it is as he nears
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