By Jueseppi B.
West Wing Week: “Reach Out to New Horizons”
It’s been a busy week for President Obama. He visited the Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois, celebrated the luck of the Irish at the Capitol, honored leaders in STEM education and small business at the White House, filled out his NCAA tournament brackets on ESPN, and announced his nominee for the Secretary of Labor in the East Room. And that was all before Tuesday evening, when he embarked on a five day trip to Israel, the West Bank, and Jordan.
West Wing Week: 03/22/13 or “Reach Out to New Horizons”
Friday, March 15th
- The President traveled to Argonne National Laboratory’s Nanoscale Materials Center to talk about the progress from his all-of-the-above approach to energy independence and the risk that this important sector faces from the arbitrary cuts being imposed by the sequester.
Monday, March 18th
- The President made a personnel announcement in the East Room, introducing his nominee for Secretary of Labor, Thomas Perez.
- The President honored key supporters of STEM education programs — that means education in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math — in the Oval Office.
- In the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, the President spoke to 100 small business owners from across the country participating in a meeting of the National Small Business Association.
- The First Lady joined the President for a reception in honor of Women’s History Month.
Tuesday, March 19th
- The President welcomed Prime Minister Enda Kenny of Ireland to the White House who then joined him for the annual St. Patrick’s Day lunch at the U.S. Capitol.
- In another rite of Spring, the President presented his NCAA March Madness brackets to ESPN.
- The President and the First Lady hosted a reception to celebrate their fifth St. Patrick’s Day at the White House. During the reception, the President and Prime Minister Kenny participated in the annual Shamrock ceremony.
- Then it was time to head East for the President’s first trip, as President, to Israel, the West Bank, and Jordan.
In Case You Missed It
Here are some of the top stories from the White House blog:
President Obama Meets Young Israelis and Palestinians on Second Day of his Middle East Trip
On the second day of his Middle East trip, President Obama spent the morning at the Israel Museum before traveling to the West Bank for the first time since 2008, then returning to Israel to speak to young people.
President Obama Drops by a Meeting with Small Business Leaders
In a meeting with small business leaders, President Obama discussed the importance of a big deal — along the lines of what he offered the Republicans in Congress — to the overall economy and the success of our small businesses.
Being Biden Vol. 2: A Good Omen
In the latest installment of the audio series “Being Biden,” the Vice President takes you to St. Peter’s Basilica, just after the Inauguration Mass of Pope Francis.
All times are Eastern Daylight Time (EDT).
2:55 AM: The President participates in a wreath laying ceremony at the grave of Theodor Herzl.
3:10 AM: The President participates in a wreath laying ceremony at the grave of Yitzhak Rabin.
3:35 AM: The President tours the Hall of Names.
4:10 AM: The President lays a wreath in the Hall of Remembrance.
4:30 AM: The President signs a guest book and delivers remarks in the Hall of Children.
5:15 AM: The President has lunch with Prime Minister Netanyahu.
7:15 AM: The President tours the Church of the Nativity with President Abbas.
9:20 AM: The President departs Tel Aviv, Israel en route Amman, Jordan.
9:55 AM: The President arrives Amman, Jordan.
10:35 AM: The President arrives at Al Hummar, the official offices of His Majesty King Abdullah II of Jordan.
10:40 AM: The President is met by His Majesty King Abdullah II of Jordan with an official arrival ceremony.
10:55 AM: The President participates in a restricted bilateral meeting with His Majesty King Abdullah II of Jordan.
11:15 AM: The President participates in an expanded bilateral meeting with His Majesty King Abdullah II of Jordan.
11:45 AM: The President and His Majesty King Abdullah II host a press conference.
1:50 PM: The President attends a dinner with His Majesty King Abdullah II.
Secretary Kathleen Sebelius
11:55 AM EDT
Three years ago, the Affordable Care Act ushered in a new day for health care.
Since then, more than 6.3 million seniors and people with disabilities with Medicare have saved more than $6.1 billion dollars on prescription drugs. Nearly 71 million Americans got expanded access to preventive service at no charge through their private insurance plans, and 47 million women now have guaranteed access to additional preventive services without cost sharing. More than 3.1 million young adults who were uninsured were able to gain coverage by being able to stay on their parents’ insurance policies until they turned 26. And parents no longer have to worry about insurers denying coverage to their children because of a pre-existing condition.
Americans are getting more value for their health care dollars due to the health care law. Affordable Care Act initiatives are promoting coordinated care; paying for quality, not quantity; and dramatically reducing fraud and waste, contributing to the slowest growth in national health spending in 50 years.
Consumers also saved $2 billion in 2012, because of programs to review premium rates and to require insurers to provide rebates if they do not spend at least 80 percent of premiums on care, rather than overhead, such as executive pay and marketing. And the law’s initiatives have extended the life of the Medicare Trust Fund by eight years.
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