Archives for White House

Obama, Medvedev sign new nuke treaty

Reaching anew for peace, President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on Thursday signed a treaty to shrink their nations’ nuclear arsenals, the biggest such pact between the former Cold War foes in a generation. Tenaciously negotiated by even the leaders themselves, the treaty commits their nations to slash the number of strategic nuclear warheads by one-third and more than halve the number of missiles, submarines and bombers carrying them. In a lavish chamber within the Czech capital’s presidential castle complex, the two presidents put their names to history. The treaty must be now be ratified by Russia’s parliament
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Supreme Court: Obama’s next battleground

President Barack Obama, fresh off a bruising battle over healthcare, could face another tough fight in Congress to fill a U.S. Supreme Court vacancy if 89-year-old Justice John Paul Stevens retires as expected. A confirmation battle could sidetrack Democratic plans to focus on the economy and job creation ahead of November’s congressional elections in which Republicans are hoping to regain control of Congress. Obama secured Senate confirmation last year of Sonia Sotomayor, his first high court nominee, after a heated battle in which conservatives questioned her suitability for the job. Stevens, who leads the four-member liberal minority on the nation’s
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Obama looks to tone down ‘terrorist’ rhetoric

President Barack Obama’s advisers plan to remove terms such as “Islamic radicalism” from a document outlining national security strategy and will use the new version to emphasize that the U.S. does not view Muslim nations through the lens of terrorism, counterterrorism officials say. The change would be a significant shift in the National Security Strategy, a document that previously outlined the Bush Doctrine of preventive war. It currently states, “The struggle against militant Islamic radicalism is the great ideological conflict of the early years of the 21st century.” The officials described the changes on condition of anonymity because the document
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Obama unveils restrictive nuclear weapon use policy

The Obama administration is unveiling a new nuclear weapons policy that seeks to narrow the circumstances under which the United States would use such weapons while preserving long-standing assurances of nuclear protection for allies, U.S. officials said. It is a delicate balance that the administration will describe in a policy document, called a nuclear posture review, to be released Tuesday following a full year of deliberation led by the Pentagon in consultation with allied governments. The document is expected to include language reducing U.S. reliance on nuclear weapons for its national defense by narrowing potential U.S. nuclear targets. That reflects
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White House propaganda shades truth on slow job recovery

White House propagandists hit the talk show circuit Sunday to claim success in reversing the longest recession since the Great Recession but the glowing claims downplayed the economic reality of a slow recovery that will do little to help the millions of Americans who remain unemployed and have little hope of finding jobs in the near or distant future. The Obama administration claims of adding 162,000 new jobs in March downplays the fact that most of those jobs are temporary census workers who will soon be out of work again when the national count is complete. Most of the 8.4
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Obama offers offshore oil drilling program

President Barack Obama, who campaigned against offshore drilling for oil during his 2008 Presidential campaign, now wants to allow such drilling 50 miles off the Virginia coast and may open up other stretches of the Atlantic coast and areas off Alaska. Obama will offer a program that reverses the long-standing ban on coastal drilling outside the Gulf of Mexico, a move that will anger environmentalists and the left-wing of the Democratic Party. According to the Los Angeles Times, the plan would eventually open up two-thirds of the eastern Gulf’s existing resources for drilling, allow drilling off the Virginia coast, study
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Obama chooses politics over principle, forces White House Counsel out

President Barack Obama backtracked on yet another campaign promise for change by choosing political expediency over principle when he ignored his White House Counsel and forced him out so a political hack could take his place. Greg Craig, who served as Obama’s conscience and top lawyer for 11 months, resigned in late 2009 as part of a determined campaign by White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel to convince the President that politics should control legal decisions by the administration. Craig has argued that Obama should follow the principles he had promised during his historic campaign for President but Emanuel
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Obama caps big week with surprise visit for Afghanistan

After weeks dominated by health care, President Barack Obama‘s secret trip to Afghanistan turned attention back to another issue whose progress this year could help define the success of his presidency. By deciding in December to order a massive buildup to the war he inherited, Obama placed a big bet. Nearly tripling the U.S. presence with 30,000 more troops, he escalated an unpopular war that has seen few gains in its eight years. Those new forces are still flowing in, and the first major campaign under Obama’s new strategy was launched last month, in the south. Although Afghanistan has been
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Another TSA nominee bites the dust

President Barack Obama is back to square one — again — in finding a transportation security chief to shore up the nation’s defenses against terrorist threats from the air, road and rail. Retired Army Maj. Gen. Robert Harding took himself out of the running Friday night as head of the Transportation Security Administration, another setback for Obama after his first choice withdrew in January because he faced a tough confirmation struggle in Congress. The Obama administration has called the job the most important unfilled position on Obama’s team. Harding’s past as a defense contractor raised complications for his nomination. He
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New White House rules for help on mortgages

The White House plans to announce on Friday that it will require lenders to lower the mortgage payments of some unemployed workers and encourage lenders to eliminate some principal debt of homeowners who owe more than their home is worth, sources familiar with the plan said on Thursday. The plan comes as President Barack Obama is under increasing political pressure to change his strategy for helping struggling homeowners and stem the tide of rising foreclosures and is the second major housing initiative announced in as many months. Delinquencies on U.S. mortgages rose to nearly 14 percent in late 2009, led
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