Dec. 14, 2011: “During one of the Christmas Holiday receptions at the White House, I noticed the First Lady’s hands resting on the podium as the President made brief remarks.” (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
Sept. 21, 2011: “The First Lady reacts to something the President whispered to her at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in between events related to the United Nations General Assembly in New York, New York City.” (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
June 11, 2011: “The top photograph shows the President having a water gun fight with his daughter Sasha on her birthday weekend at Camp David. Unbeknownst to me, David Lienemann captured a similar photo of the Vice President on the very same day.” (Official White House Photos by Pete Souza and David Lienemann)
Feb. 5, 2011: “The two coaches for Sasha Obama’s basketball couldn’t make it to one of her games, so the President and his then personal aide, Reggie Love, filled in as coaches for this game one Saturday. Here they along with Sasha’s teammates react during the game.” (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
June 15, 2011: “Call him the baby soother. At the Congressional picnic on the South Lawn, the First Lady held a young baby who began crying (top photo). The President then came over to hold the same baby and was able to quiet her down as the First Lady reacted in astonishment in the background of the bottom photo.” (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
May 1, 2011: “The President was ready to announce the news about the mission against Osama bin Laden and was putting the finishing touches on his statement in the Outer Oval Office. As he did so, the networks broke in with bulletins confirming that bid Laden had been killed and a photograph of him appeared on the television screen in the background near the Vice President and Press Secretary Jay Carney.” (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
Oct. 14, 2011: “The Obama family made an unannounced visit to tour the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial in Washington, D.C. the night before the President made remarks at the official dedication of the memorial.” (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
“The President reacts jokingly after the First Lady in her remarks called Jill Biden, ‘my favorite person here,’ despite the fact that her husband was standing next to her. All in good fun, the President then spoke at the signing ceremony for the Veterans Opportunity to Work to Hire Heroes Act of 2011 in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building.” (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
Dec. 1, 2011: “The President with Malia and the First Lady with Sasha wait backstage before the lighting of the National Christmas Tree in Washington, D.C.” (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
Dec. 21, 2011: “The President and Bo, the Obama family dog, ride in the presidential motorcade en route to PetSmart in Alexandria, Va. The President bought Bo some Christmas gifts at the pet store then walked nearby to Best Buy to purchase gifts for his daughters. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
James Warren (The Atlantic): From his community organizing days to the Illinois State Senate, Barack Obama has always put pragmatic deal-making above ideology, even when it angered allies
As President Obama is pilloried by the left, including by bloggers and editorial writers, for supposedly selling them out during debt ceiling negotiations, a reality check is desperately needed.
Get over it, guys and gals, and remember whom you’re fuming over: a deal-making community organizer.
Recognize this man? In a showdown with ideological enemies, he fashioned compromises which made some Democratic allies apoplectic. Republicans weren’t happy, either, with what he wrought but grudgingly realized there were few alternatives.
Throughout he exhibited a preternatural calm, always seeking some common ground among disparate interests as if compromise was a goal in and of itself, not any diminution of principle as some Democrats thought.
Yes, that’s our president, the man at the center of the improbable Debt Debate of 2011. But it was also State Senator Barack Obama a decade ago. The equally rancorous issue back then was the death penalty and the setting was the Illinois legislature. Not much about him has changed.
“His ideological inclinations are liberal but, as far as being a politician, he’s about getting things done. He was always pragmatic and about getting things done,” said Peter Baroni, a Republican attorney-law professor-lobbyist in Chicago who had a bird’s eye view of Obama while serving as legal counsel to Republicans in the Illinois Senate and to its Judiciary Committee.
This a clip of the interview the President did yesterday with WFAA-TV of Texas
Does this Brad Watson creature usually treat Presidents with that much disrespect and contempt, if he’s ever interviewed one before, or might he have a particular problem with President Obama?
In his (written) report on the interview (here), Watson said: “After the interview, Obama pointed out that he doesn’t like an interviewer challenging his comments. “Let me finish my answers the next time we do an interview, all right?” he said.”
You can hear the exchange at the end of the interview – where does the President say “he doesn’t like an interviewer challenging his comments”? He doesn’t. Watson speaks over the start of the exchange, in which the President says “… let me finish my… questions”, then says: “Let me finish my answers the next time we do an interview, all right?”
So, Watson lied. The President did not object to his comments being challenged, only to not being extended the courtesy of the chance to finish his answers.
But Watson lies to give the impression that the President cannot handle being ‘challenged’ by hard-hitting, truth-seeking reporters of his magnificent quality. And, as we all know, the President has soooooo little experience of being challenged.🙄
I’m just surprised Watson didn’t ask: “Where’s your birth certificate, boy?”
There’s also an email address on the site for Watson (firstname.lastname@example.org) but I’m not sure there’s much point in contacting him directly – it would probably get lost in the avalanche of congratulations from Teabaggers.
The President also did interviews yesterday with WRAL Raleigh (see here – thank you Donna), WTHR Indianapolis and KCNC Denver.
David Leonhardt, New York Times: “… Congress and the White House have completed 16 months of activity that rival any other since the New Deal in scope or ambition… If there is a theme to all this, it has been to try to lift economic growth while also reducing income inequality.”
Norman Ornstein (Congressional Scholar at American Enterprise Institute): “This is one of the most productive Congresses in history.”
AMERICAN RECOVERY & REINVESTMENT ACT, enacted in the first month of President Obama’s term, to jumpstart our economy, create and save 3.5 million jobs, give a tax cut to small business and 95% of American workers, begin to rebuild America’s road, rail, and water infrastructure, and make a historic commitment to education, clean energy, and science and technology, with unprecedented accountability. (Signed into Law)
SMALL BUSINESS JOBS ACT, landmark legislation providing $12 billion in tax relief for small businesses by enacting 8 more small business tax cuts on top of the 8 already enacted by this Congress; creating up to 500,000 jobs, by leveraging up to $300 billion in private sector lending for small businesses through a $30 billion lending fund for community banks; fully paid for – doesn’t add a dime to the deficit. (Signed into Law)
TEACHER JOBS/STATE AID/CLOSING TAX LOOPHOLES, creating and saving nearly 320,000 jobs; providing $10 billion to save 161,000 teacher jobs and $16 billion in Medicaid aid, with the effect of creating/saving 158,000 jobs, including police officers, firefighters, nurses & private sector workers; fully paid for by closing loopholes that encourage companies to ship American jobs overseas; cutting deficit by $1.4 billion. (Signed into Law)
STUDENT AID & FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY ACT, making the largest investment in college aid in history – increasing Pell Grants, making college loans more affordable, and strengthening community colleges – while reducing the federal deficit by ending wasteful student loan subsidies to banks. (Signed into Law)
HIRE ACT, creating up to 300,000 jobs, by providing a payroll tax holiday for businesses that hire unemployed workers and a tax credit for businesses that retain these workers; also unleashes tens of billions of dollars to rebuild infrastructure; fully paid for by cracking down on offshore accounts for wealthy. (Signed into Law)
CASH FOR CLUNKERS, jump-starting the U.S. auto industry, providing consumers with up to $4,500 to trade in an old vehicle for one with higher fuel efficiency—spurring the sale of 700,000 vehicles. (Signed into Law)
WORKER, HOMEOWNERSHIP & BUSINESS ASSISTANCE ACT, boosting the economy and creating jobs with more unemployment benefits for Americans hit by the recession, an expanded 1st-time homebuyer tax credit, and enhanced small business tax relief—expanded to all struggling U.S. businesses. (Signed into Law)
UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS EXTENSION, extending unemployment benefits to millions of American families through November 30, 2010; every dollar of unemployment benefits creates at least $1.61 in economic activity. (Signed into Law)
AMERICAN JOBS AND CLOSING TAX LOOPHOLES ACT, to promote American jobs by restoring credit to small businesses, extending tax incentives for American R&D and tax relief for middle class American families, rebuilding American infrastructure, and expanding jobs for young people; and to close tax loopholes to make Wall Street billionaires pay their fair share of taxes. (Passed by House)
HOME STAR JOBS, to create 168,000 American jobs making energy efficiency products, by providing incentives for consumers to make their homes energy-efficient — cutting energy bills for 3 million families and reducing our dangerous dependence on foreign oil and dirty fuels. (Passed by House)
JOBS FOR MAIN STREET ACT, to boost small business and to rebuild highways and transit; paid for by redirecting TARP funds from Wall Street to Main Street. (Passed by House)
SMALL BUSINESS & INFRASTRUCTURE JOBS ACT, to extend Build America Bonds to help finance the rebuilding of schools, hospitals, roads and bridges; and target tax incentives to spur investment in small businesses and help entrepreneurs looking to start a new business. (Passed by House)
EDWARD M. KENNEDY SERVE AMERICA ACT, tripling volunteerism opportunities to 250,000 for national service for students to retirees; increased college financial awards. (Signed into Law)
WALL STREET REFORM, historic reforms to end taxpayer-funded bailouts and the idea of ‘too big to fail’, and protect and empower consumers to make the best decisions on mortgages, credit cards, and their own financial future. Lack of accountability for Wall Street and big banks cost 8 million jobs. (Signed into Law)
CREDIT CARDHOLDERS’ BILL OF RIGHTS, providing tough new protections already saving consumers money—like banning unfair rate hikes, abusive fees, and penalties—and strengthening enforcement. (Signed into Law)
FRAUD ENFORCEMENT & RECOVERY ACT, providing tools to prosecute mortgage scams and corporate fraud that contributed to financial crisis; creating an outside commission to examine its causes. (Signed into Law)
LILLY LEDBETTER FAIR PAY ACT, restoring the rights of women and other workers to challenge unfair pay—to help close the wage gap where women earn 78 cents for every $1 a man earns in America. (Signed into Law)
HELPING FAMILIES SAVE THEIR HOMES ACT, building on the President’s initiative to stem the foreclosure crisis, with significant incentives to lenders, servicers, and homeowners to modify loans. (Signed into Law)
HEALTH INSURANCE REFORM, landmark legislation putting American families and small business owners—not the insurance companies—in control of their own health care; lowering costs for middle class and small business; holding insurance companies accountable to prevent denials of care and coverage, including for pre-existing conditions; strengthening Medicare and lowering prescription drug costs; creating up to 4 million jobs; and reducing deficit by largest amount in almost two decades. (Signed into law)
HEALTH CARE FOR 11 MILLION CHILDREN, to finally provide cost-effective health coverage for 4 million more children and preserve coverage for 7 million children already enrolled. (Signed into Law)
ENSURING SENIORS’ ACCESS TO THEIR DOCTORS, by blocking scheduled 21% cut in Medicare physician payments through November 30, 2010 and also updating payments by 2.2%. (Signed into Law)
FOOD SAFETY, to fundamentally change the way we protect our food supply; close gaps exposed by recent food-borne illness outbreaks; give the FDA new authorities. (Passed by House)
RYAN WHITE HIV/AIDS TREATMENT EXTENSION ACT, guaranteeing access to lifesaving medical services, primary care, and medications for low-income patients with AIDS and HIV. (Signed into Law)
AMERICAN CLEAN ENERGY AND SECURITY ACT, historic legislation to create 1.7 million jobs (with the Recovery Act); help free us from funding terrorism with our dependence on foreign oil; reduce the carbon pollution causing climate change; keep costs low for Americans; will not increase the deficit. (Passed by House)
OMNIBUS PUBLIC LAND MANAGEMENT ACT, the most significant conservation bill in 15 years, strengthening tourism and rural economies with more than 2 million new acres of wilderness and parks. (Signed into Law)
DISCLOSE ACT, to fight a corporate takeover of our elections, requires them to disclose they are behind political ads; bans foreign-controlled corporations from putting money in U.S. elections. (Passed by House)
FY 2010 DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION, authorizing 3.4% troop pay raise, strengthening military readiness and military families support, focusing our strategy in Afghanistan and redeployment from Iraq. (Signed into Law)
REPEAL OF DON’T ASK, DON’T TELL, to provide for the repeal of this outdated policy, contingent on the certification that military review completed and that repeal would not impact readiness. (Passed by House)
VETERANS HEALTH CARE BUDGET REFORM & TRANSPARENCY ACT, a top priority of veterans’ groups, authorizing Congress to approve VA medical care appropriations one year in advance to ensure reliable and timely funding and prevent politics from ever delaying VA health care funding. (Signed into Law)
FY 2010 MILITARY CONSTRUCTION-VA APPROPRIATIONS, strengthening quality health care for 5 million veterans by investing 11% more for medical care, benefits claims processors, and facility improvements. (Signed into Law)
CAREGIVERS AND VETERANS OMNIBUS HEALTH SERVICES, landmark legislation providing help to caregivers of disabled, ill or injured veterans, and improving VA health services for women veterans. (Signed into Law)
HATE CRIMES PREVENTION ACT, giving law enforcement resources to prevent and prosecute hate crimes against Americans based on gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability. (Signed into Law)