Archives for White House

Obama leaves himself a loophole

President Obama has undone another controversial initiative by his predecessor, George Bush, but, as in the case of other such repeals, not as fully or totally as his supporters had hoped.

This one concerns signing statements, which until the Bush administration was an obscure practice whereby a president appends instructions on how to carry out a bill's provisions -- or dissents from those he believes unconstitutional -- when he signs the measure into law.

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Biden: Things are looking bad in Afghanistan

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden urged NATO members to jointly confront al-Qaida and other extremist groups in Afghanistan where he said instability threatens all of the alliance's members equally.

Appearing before NATO's top decision making body, Biden solicited ideas to reverse a losing military strategy in Afghanistan as part of President Barack Obama's policy to bring more European allies on board to fight the Taliban-led insurgency.

He warned the situation in Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan was worsening, adding, "The deteriorating situation in the region poses a security threat from our respect not just to the United States, but to every single nation around this table."

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Time for some medical miracles

President Obama has signed an executive order overturning a signature initiative of the Bush administration -- an 8-year-old ban on federal funding for research on embryonic-stem-cell lines created after Aug. 9, 2001.

Public expectations for stem-cell research are high, perhaps impossibly high, and Obama began his White House announcement on a cautionary note: "At this moment, the full promise of stem-cell research remains unknown, and it should not be overstated."

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It’s just a jump to the left

In light of concerns about President Obama's budget -- in particular, that it will lead us down a slippery slope toward European-style, nanny-state socialism -- I considered the ways in which American citizens of a certain age were systematically trained to hate Soviet-style communism, as well as socialism and most ideas that lie toward the left end of the political spectrum.

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Health care reform fight will test Obama’s skills

Embarking on arguably his most complex political fight yet, President Barack Obama is using skills honed during his presidential campaign and lessons learned from past failures to try to overhaul the health care system.

It's a feat none before him has achieved. As such, it would pay monumental dividends for a popular new president looking for history-making accomplishments ahead of his likely 2012 re-election campaign.

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Lieberman sings a new tune on Obama

Sen. Joe Lieberman has changed his tune on Barack Obama.

After campaigning across the country for Republican John McCain in 2008 and attacking Obama as naive, untested and unwilling to take on powerful special interests, Lieberman now showers praise on the popular new Democratic president.

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To hell with the fruitcakes: Obama is an American

It is an article of faith in the loopier precincts of the Internet, impervious to evidence to the contrary, that Barack Obama is ineligible to be president of the United States because he is not a "natural born citizen" as the Constitution requires.

All this would be quite harmless, like believing in the Illuminati or alien abduction, except that the extra-chromosome true believers have taken to filing suit in the federal courts basically seeking to overturn the election.

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Obama on stimulus: ‘We did the right thing’

While aknowledging an "astounding" number of job losses in February, President Barack Obama told critics of his $787 billion economic recovery plan Friday that it is saving jobs and said, "I know we did the right thing." He suggested that critics talk to 25 police recruits in Ohio's capital city who owe their jobs to stimulus spending and "talk to the teachers who are still able to teach our children because we passed this plan."

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Contract reform: Welcome and overdue

President Obama seems to be announcing new initiatives at the rate of one a day, but this latest program is much needed and long overdue.

He has instructed his budget director, Peter Orszag, to conduct a governmentwide review, due to be completed in September, of federal contracting and procurement procedures with the goal of cutting down on fraud and waste by adding more competition and accountability.

The review will be supplemented by contract-reform legislation sponsored by Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Carl Levin, D-Mich.

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