President Barack Obama is using political tactics and rhetorical devices honed in his White House campaign to regain the upper hand in the health care debate over increasingly vocal and organized critics.
In person and over the Internet, Obama is trying to counter intense public skepticism over Democratic plans to overhaul the health care system. It's his top domestic priority and arguably his most challenging political fight yet.
They wish he'd done more in his first eight months, but the liberal bloggers who helped propel Barack Obama to the White House are far from giving up on him.
Gathered in Pittsburgh for the annual Netroots Nation convention, they say they're not disappointed. At least not too disappointed. Yet.
If politics is a meal being served up by the new president, they're just looking for something to at least sweeten the bland, sometimes bitter fare they've grown to expect in Washington.
President Barack Obama's push to revamp health care got a boost Thursday as a new coalition of drug makers, unions, hospitals and others launched a $12 million pro-overhaul ad campaign. Meanwhile, the administration sought to regain control of the health care debate by asking supporters to forward a chain e-mail to counter criticism that's circulating on the Internet.
There's a certain irony here.
The 20th century community organizer who used 21st century tools for his people-powered White House campaign now finds himself besieged by citizens airing their grievances at 19th century-inspired town hall style meetings.
Barack Obama's top legislative goal hangs in the balance and his popularity is suffering as critics co-opt his tech-savvy organizing methods, tag him as a boogyman and disrupt local gatherings on his proposed health care overhaul.
Is the groundbreaking campaigner, whose White House political arm is aptly called Organizing for America, being outmaneuvered?
"That's a fair summary of where things are at the moment," said Sanford Horwitt, a biographer of Saul Alinsky, the father of community organizing.
"The other side has the anger and the intensity, and Obama's side doesn't," Horwitt said. Harking back to the presidential campaign's tactics and success, Horwitt said, "This really first-rate community organizing has not revealed itself in the first months he's been in office, particularly when it comes to the health care issue."
The White House and its allies claim the protests are simply a fake grass-roots movement — "astroturfing" — but a USA Today/Gallup Poll this week found that most Americans believe the protesters' sentiments are genuine.
President Barack Obama is turning his eyes West and hitting the Web as he steps up his counteroffensive against critics of a proposed health care overhaul.
Obama assailed "wild misrepresentations" of his health care plan Tuesday during a town hall-style meeting in Portsmouth, N.H., taking on the role of fact-checker-in-chief for his top domestic priority. It's a strategy he will employ at two more town halls this week in Montana and Colorado, and on the White House Web site.
To that end, the Obama-aligned Democratic National Committee is running health care overhaul ads nationally on cable channels and in spots the president will visit, joining a chorus of ads that has become a cacophony over a problem that has vexed Washington for decades.
President Barack Obama is switching his message on his overhaul of the nation's health care system, readying a fresh pitch designed for those who already have insurance.
The White House is retooling its message amid polling that shows Americans — especially those who already have coverage — skeptical of the Democratic proposals to expand coverage to millions. Instead, Obama will use a potentially boisterous town hall-style meeting in New Hampshire to highlight how his proposals would affect workers whose employers provide their health insurance.
Less than six months before his self-imposed deadline to shut down Guantanamo, US President Barack Obama faces key fights over where to move detainees and how to prosecute them.
His administration has only had limited success in emptying the detention center of those considered its most low-risk inmates, sending them home or to third countries willing to provide them with asylum.
Hillary Clinton has a message for the world: It's not all about Bill.
The secretary of state bristled Monday when — as she heard it — a Congolese university student asked what her husband thought about an international financial matter.
She hadn't traveled to Africa to talk about her husband the ex-president. But even there, she couldn't escape his outsized shadow.
She abruptly reclaimed the stage for herself.
"My husband is not secretary of state, I am," she snapped. "I am not going to be channeling my husband."
President Barack Obama accused his critics on Saturday of resorting to "outlandish rumors" and "misleading information" aimed at derailing his efforts to overhaul the $2.5 trillion U.S. healthcare system.
Obama struck back at conservative opponents as lawmakers returned home for their August break facing an increasingly rancorous battle over his top domestic legislative priority. A deal on healthcare has yet to be struck in Congress.
"As we draw close to finalizing -- and passing -- real health insurance reform, the defenders of the status quo and political point-scorers in Washington are growing fiercer in their opposition," Obama said, without naming names, in his weekly radio and Internet address.
Sonia Sotomayor became the Supreme Court's newest justice Saturday, pledging during a brief ceremony at the high court to defend the Constitution and administer impartial justice.
Sotomayor, 55, is the first Hispanic justice and only the third woman in the court's 220-year history.
She took the second of two oaths of office from Chief Justice John Roberts in an ornate conference room, beneath a portrait of the legendary Chief Justice John Marshall. Her left hand resting on a Bible that was held by her mother, Celina, Sotomayor pledged to "do equal right to the poor and to the rich."
Minutes earlier, she swore a first oath in a private ceremony in the room where the justices hold their private conferences.