White House

Confidence in Obama? Maybe not

Barack Obama called for national confidence in his speech to Congress, and the exhortation was needed — the best friend a recession has is fearfulness.

But as persuasive, refreshing and even dazzling as this remarkable president continues to be, the question remains whether we should have confidence in him, or more precisely, in his policies.

Aug. 31, 2010: An end to Iraq war?

A "substantial" number of the roughly 100,000 U.S. combat troops to be pulled out of Iraq by Aug. 31, 2010, will remain in the war zone until at least December to ensure national elections there go smoothly, senior Obama administration officials say.

That pacing suggests that although Obama’s promised withdrawal will start soon, it will be backloaded, with larger numbers of troops returning later in the 18-month time frame.

Obama was to announce his strategy Friday at the sprawling Camp Lejeune in North Carolina, where thousands of Marines are soon heading to another war front, Afghanistan.

Can Obama govern as well as he speaks?

What President Obama delivered was technically not a State of the Union address. His first will be next January. This was an address to a joint session of Congress, but for all practical purposes it was a State of the Union address and that state is "economic crisis."

Obama is a gifted orator, perhaps the best presidential speaker in memory, and Tuesday night’s speech was a tour de force — bold, optimistic and certainly not lacking in big ideas.

Obama’s budget bloats deficit to $1.75 trillion

President Barack Obama is sending Congress a budget Thursday that projects the government’s deficit for this year will soar to $1.75 trillion, reflecting efforts to pull the nation out of a deep recession and a severe financial crisis.

A senior administration official told The Associated Press that Obama’s $3 trillion-plus spending blueprint also asks Congress to raise taxes on the wealthy in 2011 and cut Medicare costs to provide health care for the uninsured.

Obama revises Iraq withdrawal timetable

President Barack Obama is close to issuing an order to withdraw the bulk of US military forces from Iraq by August 2010, the New York Times reported Wednesday, citing senior administration officials.

The order would give the US military 19 months to pull out, three months more than the promise Obama made while campaigning for president in 2008.

Obama says it’s OK to hope once again

President Barack Obama gave America the audacity to hope again.

After describing the U.S. economy in nearly apocalyptic terms for weeks, pushing his $787 billion stimulus plan through Congress, the president used his address to Congress on Tuesday night to tap the deep well of American optimism — the never-say-die spirit that every president tries to capture in words. And great presidents embody.

Obama’s speech: Watch the video

Obama’s speech to a joint session of Congress Tuesday night.  Watch and tell us what you think.


Fact checking Obama’s speech

President Barack Obama knows Americans are unhappy that their taxes will be used to rescue people who bought mansions beyond their means.

But his assurance Tuesday night that only the deserving will get help rang hollow.

Even officials in his administration, many supporters of the plan in Congress and the Federal Reserve chairman expect some of that money will go to people who used lousy judgment.

Obama’s message: ‘We are not quitters’

To a nation reeling from recession and facing long-festering problems, President Barack Obama has a simple reminder: "We are not quitters."

Whatever the problems, the new president promised in the first prime-time speech of his term, "We will rebuild, we will recover and the United States of America will emerge stronger than before."

Obama still backs Geithner

The White House says President Barack Obama still has confidence in Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, despite the withering criticism that has come Geithner’s way over the government’s plan to rescue the financial industry.

Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said Tuesday that Obama "absolutely, 100 percent" has faith in his treasury secretary.