The White House Blog: The Weekly Wrap Up & The Weekly Address.


The Militant Negro

The Militant Negro

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The Weekly Address: Closing Corporate Tax Loopholes

 

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Published on Jul 26, 2014

In this week’s address, the President continued his call for our nation to rally around an economic patriotism that says rather than protecting wasteful tax loopholes for a few at the top, we should be investing in things like education and job training that grow the economy for everybody.

 

 

 

Mensaje De La Casa Blanca

 

Published on Jul 26, 2014

En el mensaje de esta semana, la Directora del Consejo de Política Nacional de la Casa Blanca Cecilia Muñoz destacó el progreso de nuestra economía, pero tambíen habló sobre como un grupo pequeño pero creciente de grandes corporaciones están fugándose del país para evitar pagar impuestos, a pesar de que las ganancias corporativas son más elevadas que nunca. Así como lo refleja el presupuesto del Presidente, la mejor manera de que todos estemos en igualdad de condicioneses a través de una reforma tributaria que reduzca la tasa impositiva corporativa, cierre las lagunas tributarias que representan un derroche y simplifique el código fiscal para todos.

 

 

 

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7/25/14: White House Press Briefing

 

Published on Jul 25, 2014

White House Press Briefings are conducted most weekdays from the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room in the West Wing

 

 

 

July 25th, 2014: Photo of the Day

 

President Barack Obama talks with Afghanistan presidential candidate Ashraf Ghani during a phone call in the Oval Office, July 25, 2014. The President also spoke by phone with the other presidential candidate in the election, Abullah Abullah. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama talks with Afghanistan presidential candidate Ashraf Ghani during a phone call in the Oval Office, July 25, 2014. The President also spoke by phone with the other presidential candidate in the election, Abullah Abullah. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

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Weekly Wrap Up: Astronauts, “Inversions,” and the VP and a White Board

 

This week, some astronauts stopped by the White House (hint: think 1969), we talked about “inversions” (more on that later), the President awarded the Medal of Honor, and the Vice President got a marker and white board and gave us a little bit of history on our nation’s infrastructure.

 

Check out what else you may have missed in this week’s wrap up.

 

West Wing Week 07/25/14 or, “The Irrefutable Rightness of Your Cause”

 

This week, the President introduced a historic Executive Action for LGBT rights, continued to address the ongoing conflicts in the Ukraine and Gaza, hosted a town hall in support of his My Brother’s Keeper Initiative, and traveled to California to deliver his response to some very striking letters he’d received … in person.

 

 

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“You Are Why I Ran for President in the First Place”

 

Yesterday, President Obama spoke under sunny skies at the Los Angeles Trade-Technical College. He talked about the progress that we’ve made since he took office and training our workers for a 21st-century economy.

 

 

The President called for a new sense of optimism and collective patriotism in this country: “Cynicism is a choice, and hope is a better choice. And if we can work together, I promise you there’s no holding America back.”

 

He also talked about something known as “inversions.” What’s an “inversion,” you ask? Learn more here.

 

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Apollo 11: 45 Years Later

 

Forty-five years ago, two American astronauts — Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong — landed on the moon’s Sea of Tranquility, and Neil Armstrong planted the first footprint on the surface of the moon.

On Tuesday, President Obama invited Buzz Aldrin, Michael Collins, the astronaut who piltoted the spacecraft that orbited the moon, and Neil Armstrong’s wife, Carol, to the White House. Armstrong passed away in 2012.

 

 

President Barack Obama meets with Apollo 11 astronauts President Barack Obama meets with Apollo 11 astronauts Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins, right, Carol Armstrong, widow of Apollo 11 commander Neil Armstrong, NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, and Patricia Falcone, OSTP Associate Director for National Security and International Affairs, left, in the Oval Office. This week marked the 45th anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing. July 22, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

To honor the anniversary, we spent a little time poring over archival footage of the Apollo 11 mission — and included some of the incredible work that NASA is doing today. We won’t spoil it all for you here, but it includes redirecting asteroids around the moon and going to Mars. So, that’s pretty cool.

 

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The Vice President Takes the Marker

 

The Vice President talked about an issue that’s very near and dear to him: the state of our infrastructure in this country. And to do that, he picked up a marker, and took to our “White House white board” to explain the crisis that our nation’s roads and bridges face today.

 

 

65% of our roads are in less than good condition. 25% of our bridges require significant require or can’t handle today’s traffic. And 45% of Americans lack access to transit. Watch the Vice President explain the history of our country’s infrastructure, and then be sure to pass this one on.

 

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“For Conspicuous Gallantry”

 

On Monday, President Obama presented the Medal of Honor to Staff Sergeant Ryan M. Pitts for his unwavering courage in one of the fiercest battles of the war in Afghanistan.

 

 

The President described Ryan’s heroic acts during his remarks:

 

As the insurgents moved in, Ryan picked up a grenade, pulled the pin, and held that live grenade—for a moment, then another, then another—finally hurling it so they couldn’t throw it back. Then he did it again. And again. Unable to stand, Ryan pulled himself up on his knees and manned a machine gun. Soldiers from the base below made a daring run—dodging bullets and explosions—and joined the defense. But now the enemy was inside the post—so close they were throwing rocks at the Americans; so close they came right up to the sandbags. Eight American soldiers had now fallen. And Ryan Pitts was the only living soldier at that post.

 

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“We’re All Heartbroken by What’s Happened”

 

On Tuesday morning, the President visited the Embassy of the Netherlands and signed a condolence book for those killed in the shoot-down of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 in Ukraine.

 

President Barack Obama visits the Embassy of the NetherlandsPresident Barack Obama visits the Embassy of the Netherlands in Washington, D.C., July 22, 2014, to sign a condolence book honoring those who were lost in the shoot-down of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 in Ukraine. Standing with President Obama is Peter Mollema, the deputy chief of mission for the Netherlands Embassy. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

In the condolence book, the President wrote:

 

On behalf of the American people, I extend our deepest condolences to the people of the Netherlands as they mourn the loss of so many family and friends. No words can adequately express the sorrow the world feels over this loss. It is made more acute by the deep ties of friendship between our two countries. Bound by that friendship, we will not rest until we are certain that justice is done.

 

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What You Missed: A Tumblr Q&A with Valerie Jarrett on Expanding Opportunity for the LGBT Community

 

A Call Answered: Unlocking America’s Cell Phones

 

Celebrating 24 Years of the Americans with Disabilities Act

 

Tomorrow marks the 24th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) — a landmark law that transformed American society for people with disabilities. It provided for full participation, independent living, and economic self-sufficiency for those of us living with disabilities, and also provided Americans with disabilities with legal remedies to safeguard all of those rights.

 

 

Read the President’s proclamation in support of the anniversary here.

 

This morning, Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to the President; Paulette Aniskoff, Director of the Office of Public Engagement; and I hosted a meeting with a small group of disability leaders to commemorate the 24th anniversary of the ADA. In the meeting, we discussed the critical efforts that federal agencies are leading to protect the rights of, and participation by, people with disabilities in our communities.

 

We also discussed ways in which we can all work together to ensure that all Americans with disabilities, including our veterans and wounded warriors, have the opportunity to be full and active members of our society, participants in our democracy, and self-sufficient contributors to our economy.

 

It’s also fitting that President Obama signed the bipartisan Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) into law during this anniversary week. WIOA, which reauthorizes the Workforce Investment Act, breaks down barriers and streamlines services with the goal of moving more individuals with disabilities into competitive, integrated employment.

 

WIOA expands career development and pre-employment services, and also modernizes and improves workforce development programs to help all individuals — including youth and adults with disabilities – attain the skills they need to be successful in today’s economy.

 

President Barack Obama signs H.R. 803President Barack Obama signs H.R. 803, the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act after delivering remarks on job training, in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building South Court Auditorium, July 22, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)

 

As the President said at the bill signing:

 

So the bill I’m about to sign will give communities more certainty to invest in job-training programs for the long run.  It will help us bring those programs into the 21st century by building on what we know works based on evidence, based on tracking what actually delivers on behalf of folks who enroll in these programs -– more partnerships with employers, more tools to measure performance, more flexibilities for states and cities to innovate and to run their workforce programs in ways that are best suited for their particular demographic and their particular industries.  And as we approach the 24th anniversary of the ADA, this bill takes new steps to support Americans with disabilities who want to live and work independently.  So there’s a lot of good stuff in here.

 

For more on WIOA and how it helps people with disabilities and our nation’s workforce, check out this fact sheet from the Department of Labor.

 

More than 3.81 Million Records Released

 

Making the Business Case for Rural America

 

A Day in the Life: Deric from Baltimore

 

Connecting African Leaders to U.S. Industry Beyond the Beltway

 

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Staff Sgt. Ryan Pitts Receives the Medal of Honor

 

 

 

The President Offers Condolences at the Dutch Embassy

 

 

 

The President Signs the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

 

 

 

Drink Up! with First Lady Michelle Obama

 

 

 

My Brother’s Keeper Town Hall

 

 

 

The President Gives an Update on Ukraine and Gaza

 

 

 

The President Signs an Executive Order on LGBT Workplace Discrimination

 

 

 

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Riders On The Storm – Snoop Dogg ft. The Doors

 

 

Riders On The Storm

“Into this house we’re born
Into this world we’re thrown
Like a dog without a bone
An actor out on loan
Riders on the storm”

 

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TheObamaCrat Potpourri™


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President Obama Delivers Remarks on the Economy in Los Angeles

 

 

Divided We Fall: The Border Crisis | Jesse Ventura Off The Grid

 

Published on Jul 24, 2014

Newsflash everyone! There’s an influx of migrant children crossing our border. But what will Congress do about it? ReBLOODlicans want to deport ‘em all! DemoCRIPS are crying for more taxpayer money! But these are child refugees from violent countries. So the Governor asks you, his vigilant viewers, do you really want to send them back? Go to ora.tv/offthegrid/askjesse and submit your questions and comments.

 

 

 

Democrat Tells Angry Right Wing Conspiracy Theorist to Stop Watching FOXNews

 

 

 

Extended interview with Medal of Honor recipient Sgt. Ryan Pitts

 

Published on Jul 24, 2014

Sgt. Ryan Pitts was nearing the end of his second tour in Afghanistan when his team began an operation that took a deadly turn. Hundreds of fighters initiated a large-scale attack on his unit and nine soldiers died. Pitts was hit with shrapnel in both legs and in his right arm, but he continued to fight and relay vital information before being airlifted out. Judy Woodruff talks to Medal of Honor recipient.

 

 

 

Astronaut tweets his ‘saddest photo yet’

 

Published on Jul 24, 2014

European astronaut Alexander Gerst tweeted a photo from space showing explosions over Gaza and Israel.

 

 

 

Senate Chairman on VA Talks: ‘Any 6th Grader’ Knows This is Not Negotiation

 

Published on Jul 24, 2014

Talks on a fix for the Department of Veterans Affairs’ health care crisis have collapsed, after the lead Senate Democratic negotiator accused the top House GOP negotiator of a “take-it-or-leave-it gambit.”

 

Senate Veterans’ Affairs Chairman Bernard Sanders, I-Vt., said House Veterans’ Affairs Chairman Jeff Miller, R-Fla., has signaled he has abandoned talks after calling a noon meeting of the conference committee in an effort to ram a GOP plan through.

 

 

 

Biden Talks Economy and Civil Rights

 

Published on Jul 24, 2014

Vice President Joe Biden says investment in infrastructure and job training is needed to increase economic opportunities in the nation’s cities. He also blasted what he called efforts around the country to repress minority voting. (July 24)

 

 

 

Bizarre Carjacking Spree Caught on Camera west of Denver

 

Published on Jul 24, 2014

A man armed with a rifle and a handgun carjacked two people on a highway west of Denver. – LoneWolf & The Three Muskadoggies “Please…. Remember Our Homeless, Hospitalized & Disabled Veterans & Fallen Heroes! Thank You….America!”

 

 

 

Momentum is Building to #RaiseTheWage

 

Published on Jul 24, 2014

It’s time to #RaiseTheWage for all hardworking Americans. Since 2013, 13 states and Washington, D.C. have taken action to raise their minimum wage. As of Jan. 1, 2015, 26 states and D.C. will have a minimum wage above $7.25.

For more information go to: dol.gov/minwage

 

 

 

OFFICIAL: Flight AH5017 to Algeria Has Crashed with 116 People on Board

 

Published on Jul 24, 2014

BREAKING: Missing Air Algerie plane from Burkina Faso has crashed: Algerian official
ALGIERS (Reuters) – An Air Algerie flight crashed on Thursday en route from Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso to Algiers with 110 passengers on board, an Algerian aviation official said.

 

There were few clear indications of what might of happened to the aircraft, or whether there were casualties, but Burkino Faso Transport Minister Jean Bertin Ouedrago said it asked to change route at 0138 GMT (9.38 p.m. EDT) because of a storm in the area.

 

“I can confirm that it has crashed,” the Algerian official told Reuters, declining to be identified or give any details about what had happened to the aircraft on its way north.

 

Almost half of the passengers were French citizens, an airline official said.

 

Two French fighter jets based in the region have been dispatched to try to locate the airliner along its probable route, a French army spokesman said. Niger security sources said planes were flying over the border region with Mali to search for the flight.

 

Algeria’s state news agency APS said authorities lost contact with flight AH 5017 an hour after it took off from Burkina Faso, but other officials gave differing accounts of the times of contact, adding to confusion about the plane’s fate.

 

Swiftair, the private Spanish company that owns the plane, confirmed it had lost contact with the MD-83 operated by Air Algerie, which it said was carrying 110 passengers and six crew.
A diplomat in the Malian capital Bamako said that the north of the country – which lies on the plane’s likely flight path – was struck by a powerful sandstorm overnight.

 

Whatever the cause, another plane crash is likely to add to nerves in the industry after a Malaysia Airlines plane was downed over Ukraine last week, a TransAsia Airways crashed off Taiwan during a thunderstorm on Wednesday and airlines canceled flights into Tel Aviv due to the conflict in Gaza.

 

An Air Algerie representative in Burkina Faso, Kara Terki, told a news conference that all the passengers on the plane were in transit, either for Europe, the Middle East or Canada.

 

He said the passenger list included 50 French, 24 Burkinabe, eight Lebanese, four Algerians, two from Luxembourg, one Belgian, one Swiss, one Nigerian, one Cameroonian, one Ukrainian and one Romanian. Lebanese officials said there were at least 10 Lebanese citizens on the flight.

 

A spokeswoman for SEPLA, Spain’s pilots union, said the six crew were from Spain. She could not give any further details.

 

REGIONAL SEARCH

Swiftair said on its website the aircraft took off from Burkina Faso at 0117 GMT (9.17 p.m. EDT) and was supposed to land in Algiers at 0510 GMT (1.10 a.m. EDT) but never reached its destination.
An Algerian aviation official said the last contact Algerian authorities had with the missing Air Algerie aircraft was at 0155 GMT (9.55 p.m. EDT) when it was flying over Gao, Mali.

 

Aviation authorities in Burkina say they handed the flight to the control tower in Niamey, Niger, at 1:38 a.m. (09.38 p.m. EDT). They said the last contact with the flight was just after 4:30 a.m. (11.30 p.m. EDT).

 

Burkina Faso minister Ouedrago said the flight asked the control tower in Niamey to change route at 0138 GMT (9.38 p.m. EDT) because of a storm in the Sahara.
However, a source in the control tower in Niamey, who declined to be identified, said it had not been contacted by the plane, which in theory should have flown over Mali.

 

Burkinabe authorities have set up a crisis unit in Ouagadougou airport to provide information to families.

 

Issa Saly Maiga, head of Mali’s National Civil Aviation Agency, said that a search was under way for the missing flight.

 

“We do not know if the plane is Malian territory,” he told Reuters. “Aviation authorities are mobilized in all the countries concerned – Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger, Algeria and even Spain.”

 

Aviation websites said the missing aircraft, one of four MD-83s owned by Swiftair, was 18-years-old. The aircraft’s two engines are made by Pratt & Whitney, a unit of United Technologies .

 

U.S. planemaker McDonnell Douglas, now part of Boeing , stopped producing the MD-80 airliner family in 1999 but it remains in widespread use. According to British consultancy Flightglobal Ascend, there are 482 MD-80 aircraft in operation, many of them in the United States.

 

“Boeing is aware of the report (on the missing aircraft). We are awaiting additional information,” a spokesman for the planemaker said.

 

Swiftair has a relatively clean safety record, with five accidents since 1977, two of which caused a total of eight deaths, according to the Washington-based Flight Safety Foundation.

 

Air Algerie’s last major accident was in 2003 when one of its planes crashed shortly after take-off from the southern city of Tamanrasset, killing 102 people. In February this year, 77 people died when an Algerian military transport plane crashed into a mountain in eastern Algeria.

 

 

 

Air Algerie Flight 5017 reported missing

 

Published on Jul 24, 2014

One hundred and sixteen people are missing after an Air Algerie flight disappeared from radar. Debora Patta reports from Johannesburg.

 

 

 

House Committee at Odds Over Obama Lawsuit

 

Published on Jul 24, 2014

Lawmakers from both sides debate the House Rules Committee’s ongoing efforts to pursue a lawsuit against the President. (July 24)

 

 

 

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Don’t Think Obama Has Reduced Inequality? These Numbers Prove That He Has.

 

Today, the average after-tax income of a member of the top 1 percent of earners is $1.12 million. The average after-tax income of someone in the bottom 20 percent is $13,300. That means the average person at the top takes home 84 times the income that the average person in the bottom takes home. Now, consider what it would be like if none of President Obama’s tax policy changes had happened: not the upper-income tax hikes negotiated at the beginning of last year, not the upper-income tax increases imposed by the Affordable Care Act, not the low-income tax credits enacted in the 2009 stimulus and later renewed.

 

In this alternative universe, the average member of the top 1 percent would take home $1.2 million, or 6.5 percent more in income, according to a new analysis. The average member of the bottom 20 percent would bring home $13,100, or 1.2 percent less in income. As a result, the average member of the 1 percent would take home 91 times what the average person in the bottom would bring home. If you’ve wondered whether Obama has made any headway at reducing income inequality, here’s evidence that he has. Based on tax policy alone, he has slightly increased the income of the poor and more significantly reduced the income of the rich.

 

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That’s according to a new, exclusive analysis by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, conducted at the request of The Washington Post, that compared today’s income distribution with what it would look like if President George W. Bush’s tax policies were still in place.

 

The new analysis — the first time anyone has published results showing the cumulative impact of Obama’s tax policy on income distribution — is an estimate based on the center’s widely-respected computer model. It makes vividly clear that one of the legacies of Obama’s presidency is a redistribution of income from the rich to the poor.

 

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As you can see in the chart above, the tax code already reduces inequality due to the very fact that it is progressive. Obama’s tax policies reduced inequality further. The gap between the rich and the poor narrowed the most. The gap between the rich and the middle class has also narrowed, albeit slightly. I’ve summarized post- and pre-tax income under the Bush and Obama policies here:

 

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But looking at tax policy is incomplete. In some ways, it overstates the reduction in inequality. In others, it understates it.

 

First, the overstatement. There’s no question that the tax code does more today than it used to do to reduce inequality. But that is after-tax inequality. To measure overall inequality, you have to think about both pre-tax and after-tax inequality. If the economy is dramatically boosting the incomes of the rich and leaving the incomes of the poor stagnant, then after-tax inequality will widen unless the tax code becomes more progressive.

 

This is illustrated in the following chart. It graphs the ratio of the average income of the top 1 percent to the average income of the bottom 20 percent over time, based on the Tax Policy Center’s historical tables. The higher the ratio, the more inequality. You see both pre- and post-tax inequality rise from 2004 to 2006, level off as the economy starts to weaken, and fall significantly when the economy enters recession. Inequality starts widening again after the shock of the financial crisis fades and the economy begins to recover.

 

Read More.

 

 

Michelle Obama headlines Chicago fundraiser today

 

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WASHINGTON — First Lady Michelle Obama headlines a fundraiser in hometown Chicago today to benefit the Democratic National Committee and Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn will be attending.

 

In June, White House political director David Simas told me the White House plans a sustained effort to help Quinn in his re-election battle with GOP nominee Bruce Rauner.

 

The event is at the Waldorf Astoria, 11 E. Walton and hosted by Chicagoans Amalia and William Mahoney, top Obama fundraisers for the 2012 re-election campaign.

 

About 150 are expected. The price points range from $500 to $20,000. The top donors get a photo with Mrs. Obama.

 

President Barack Obama is raising money for the DNC in Los Angeles today.

 

 

New White House White Board

Vice President Biden Has the White Board Marker: Here’s Why We Need to Invest in Our Roads and Bridges

 

Published on Jul 23, 2014

In this installment of the White House White Board series, Vice President Biden takes the pen and discusses the importance of transportation infrastructure investment in America. Learn more athttp://www.whitehouse.gov/rebuild-ame…

 

White House White Board: Vice President Biden on Rebuild America

 

 

 

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White House Schedule – July 24, 2014

 

In the morning, the President will attend a DNC event at a private residence in Los Angeles. This event is closed press. 

 

In the afternoon, the President will deliver remarks on the economy at Los Angeles Trade-Technical College. This event is open to pre-credentialed media. 

 

Later in the afternoon, the President will depart Los Angeles en route Washington, DC. The departure from Los Angeles International Airport is open to pre-credentialed media, and the arrival on the South Lawn is open press.

 

 

Thursday, July 24 2014 All Times ET

 

9:15 AM: The Vice President delivers remarks at the National Urban League’s Annual Conference, Duke Energy Convention Center – Cincinnati.

 

12:50 PM: The President attends a DNC event. Local Event Time:9:50 AM. Private Residence – Los Angeles.

 

4:25 PM: The President delivers remarks. Local Event Time:1:25 PM. Los Angeles Trade-Technical College.

 

6:05 PM: The President departs Los Angeles en route Washington, DC. Local Event Time:3:05 PM. Los Angeles International Airport.

 

10:35 PM: The President arrives Joint Base Andrews, Joint Base Andrews.

 

10:50 PM: The President arrives the White House, South Lawn.

 

 

Speeches and Remarks/Statements and Releases – July 24, 2014

 

Message to the Congress — Amendment Between the United States and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

 

FACT SHEET: Increasing Investment in Rural America

 

Presidential Nominations Sent to the Senate

 

Readout of the President’s Call with Indonesian President-Elect Widodo

 

Presidential Nomination Sent to the Senate

 

President Obama to Deliver Remarks at Young African Leaders Presidential Summit

 

Remarks by the President at a DNC Event — Los Angeles, California

 

Remarks by the President at DCCC Luncheon — CA

 

 

The 2014 Kids’ State Dinner Slide Show

 

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You Probably Don’t Know This Word:

 

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You might be seeing the word “inversions” in the news headlines a lot lately. It’s a specific kind of corporate merger deal — but it’s not exactly the most intuitive name for a corporate tax loophole.

 

So we’re going to break it down for you — because these loopholes could cost taxpayers nearly $20 billion over the next 10 years. And we could instead use this money to rebuild America, by investing in our roads and bridges, equipping our schools with the resources they need, and defending our country at home.

 

Learn more about “inversions” and how we can do away with them.

 

 

 

Join a Tumblr Q&A on the President’s New Executive Order to Protect LGBT Workers & Expanding Opportunity for the LGBT Community

 

This week, President Obama signed an Executive Order that prohibits federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. From the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” to ending the legal defense of the so-called Defense of Marriage Act, the Obama administration has made advancing equality and leveling the playing field for the LGBT community a priority.

 

On Friday, you’re invited to join a conversation on the new Executive Order and steps the Administration has taken to expand opportunity for the LGBT community. Join Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to the President, for a Tumblr Q&A this Friday, July 25 at 1:00 p.m. ET. Here’s how it works:

 

 

  • Follow along on Friday, July 25 at 1:00 p.m. ET, as Valerie Jarrett answers your questions on theWhite House Tumblr

 

The White House uses platforms like Tumblr to connect with people around the country on the issues they care the most about. Last month, the President joined his first-ever Tumblr Q&Alive from the White House focused on education. We’re excited to continue the White House Tumblr Q&A series this week, so ask away!

 

 

 

What Are “Inversions,” and Why Should You Care?

 

Today, President Obama is heading to Los Angeles Trade Technical College, where he’s calling for a kind of “economic patriotism” that’s based on investing in the things that we know grow the economy for everyone (like education and job training) — not protecting wasteful loopholes for a few at the top.

And he’s calling attention to one kind of corporate merger deal in particular — called an “inversion” — a word you might be seeing in a lot of news headlines lately.

It’s not the most intuitive name for a corporate tax loophole, so we’re going to break it down for you.

 

Q: So what exactly is an “inversion”?

 

A corporate “inversion” is what happens when a U.S.-based multinational with operations in other countries restructures itself so that the U.S. “parent” is replaced by a foreign corporation — and usually one that’s in a country with a lower tax rate than the United States. As a result, on the whole, this means that corporate income tax that would otherwise be paid to the United States ends up going overseas.

 

In other words, right now, our tax code allows any American company to merge with a foreign company (so long as that company’s shareholders own 20% of the combined firm) — and then “relocate” or “invert” to another country for tax purposes. This maneuver — which changes nothing about the actual operations that continue in the U.S. — allows companies to dramatically reduce the taxes they owe in the U.S. by taking advantage of loopholes in our tax system.

 

Meanwhile, they would continue enjoying the benefits and protections of the American economy — provided by our tax dollars. It’s a big loophole — and right now, it’s completely legal.

 

Read More.

 

 

The “80/20 Rule” Is Saving Americans a Lot of Money. But What Exactly Is It?

 

Chances are you’ve heard of the Affordable Care Act – President Obama’s landmark health reform law that’s holding insurance companies accountable, lowering health care costs, giving Americans more freedom and control in their health care choices, and improving the quality of care.

One part of the act that you may not be as familiar with, however, is the “80/20 rule” – also known as the Medical Loss Ratio (MLR) rule – which went into effect in 2011.

The rule generally requires health insurance companies in the individual and small group markets to spend at least 80% of the premium dollars they collect on medical care or activities to improve health care quality. And that increases to 85% for insurance companies in the large group market.

Today, the Department of Health and Human Services released some new numbers showing just how much this rule has saved consumers over the last few years.

 

 

Americans are getting big refunds.

Insurance companies that don’t meet or exceed the 80% (or 85%) standard have to pay their enrollees refunds to make up the difference. Since the 80/20 rule went into effect in 2011, individual and employer plan enrollees have received, or will receive, more than $1.9 billion in refunds.

This year alone, 6.8 million consumers across the country will get more than $330 million in refunds, with an average refund of $80 per family.

They’re also paying lower premiums.

While refunds serve as a stopgap measure to ensure that consumers receive the required value for their premium dollars, consumers are also saving money upfront because insurance companies are charging lower premiums and operating more efficiently under the 80/20 rule and other health care reforms.

In fact, without the 80/20 rule and other reforms, consumers would have likely paid anestimated $9 billion more in premiums since 2011.

That’s right. $9 billion.

Insurance companies are more efficient.

Another way to measure the value for consumers is to look at how insurance companies are spending money on expenses other than medical claims and quality improvement activities. A smaller portion of premium dollars directed to administrative costs and profit means that consumers are receiving a higher return on their premium dollars.

Since the 80/20 rule was introduced, the percent of premium dollars going toward administrative costs and profit has dropped in all markets. The largest decline is in the individual market, where profits and overhead spending as a percent of premium dropped from 15.3% in 2011 to 11.7% in 2013.

To put it very plainly: The Affordable Care Act – and the 80/20 rule in particular – is still saving Americans money.

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The Last 24™


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Why Job-Training Programs Matter:

 

In the President’s State of the Union address, he tasked Vice President Biden with leading a review of federal employment and training programs, with the goal of training workers with the skills that today’s economy demands.

 

The review is now complete, and we’ve identified what’s working around the country. The Vice President’s report highlights successful job-training programs, details executive actions by the federal government, and aims to help more Americans in getting and moving up in high-demand jobs and careers.

 

See how job-training programs across the country are making a difference.

 

 

President Obama Presents the Medal of Honor to Staff Sergeant Ryan M. Pitts

 

At a ceremony at the White House yesterday afternoon, President Obama presented the Medal of Honor to Staff Sergeant Ryan M. Pitts for his unwavering courage in one of the fiercest battles of the Afghanistan war.

 

READ MORE

 

 

A New Executive Order to Protect LGBT Workers

 

In the East Room of the White House this morning, the President signed an Executive Order prohibiting federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.

 

READ MORE

 

 

The President Gives an Update on the Situation in Ukraine

 

Yesterday, President Obama made a statement on the current situation in Ukraine, in the wake of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 being shot down last week over territory controlled by Russian-backed separatists in Ukraine.

 

READ MORE

 

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All times are Eastern Time (ET)

10:35 AM: The President meets with Apollo 11 representatives.

 

11:00 AM: Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest.

 

12:10 PM: The President signs H.R. 803, the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act; the Vice President also delivers remarks.

 

1:00 PM: The President departs the White House.

 

1:15 PM: The President departs Joint Base Andrews.

 

6:15 PM: The President arrives Seattle, Washington.

 

8:05 PM: The President attends a DNC event.

 

9:00 PM: The President attends a Senate Majority PAC roundtable.

 

10:25 PM: The President departs Seattle.

 

12:10 AM: The President arrives San Francisco.

 

The President will remain overnight in San Francisco.

 

 

"President Barack Obama in Denver, CO"

 

NEW REPORT: Ready to Work

If you’re ready to work, you should be able to find a job that fits your skills, or get the skills you need for a better job. Let’s help our workers compete in the 21st-century economy.

 

President Barack Obama signs the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act; a job-training legislation which aims to help job seekers gain valuable employment skills, as guests and members of Congress look on at the White House

President Barack Obama signs the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act; a job-training legislation which aims to help job seekers gain valuable employment skills, as guests and members of Congress look on at the White House

 

The First Significant Legislative Reform of Our Job-Training System in a Number of Years

 

 

The President Signs the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

 

Published on Jul 22, 2014

President Obama and Vice President Biden deliver remarks before the signing of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, July 22, 2014.

 

 

 

We need to make sure workers in America can find jobs that meet their skills, or get trained with the skills they need for a better job.

That’s why, in this year’s State of the Union address, President Obama tasked Vice President Biden with leading a review of our country’s job-training programs to make sure that they have one mission: training our workers with the skills employers need, and matching them to good jobs that need to be filled right now.

The effort to make our federal training programs more job-driven was also bolstered by the bipartisan passage of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), which President Obama signed into law this afternoon.

 

Read More.

 

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President Obama Visits the Dutch Embassy: “We’re All Heartbroken by What’s Happened”

 

President Barack Obama visits the Embassy of the NetherlandsPresident Barack Obama visits the Embassy of the Netherlands in Washington, D.C., July 22, 2014, to sign a condolence book honoring those who were lost in the shoot-down of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 in Ukraine. Standing with President Obama is Peter Mollema, the deputy chief of mission for the Netherlands Embassy. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

 

President Obama visited the Embassy of the Netherlands this morning, signing a condolence book for those killed in the shoot-down of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 in Ukraine. In the condolence book, the President wrote:

 

On behalf of the American people, I extend our deepest condolences to the people of the Netherlands as they mourn the loss of so many family and friends. No words can adequately express the sorrow the world feels over this loss. It is made more acute by the deep ties of friendship between our two countries. Bound by that friendship, we will not rest until we are certain that justice is done.

 

While there, the President expressed his deep sympathy over the lives lost last week:

 

Obviously, we’re all heartbroken by what’s happened. And this is an opportunity for me to extend on behalf of all the American people our deepest condolences over the loss of family and friends; to express our solidarity with the people of the Netherlands, with whom we’ve been friends and had the deepest ties for centuries; and to assure the Dutch people that we will work with them to make sure that loved ones are recovered, that a proper investigation is conducted, and that ultimately justice is done.

Peter Mollema, Deputy Chief of Mission for the Embassy, also thanked the President for being there today. “There’s been an outpouring of support from the American people,” Mollema said, “and I can only say that on behalf of the Dutch people, we’re deeply grateful. Thank you very much.”

The President Offers Condolences at the Dutch Embassy

 

Published on Jul 22, 2014

President Obama visits the Embassy of the Netherlands in Washington, D.C. and signs a condolence book for those killed in the shoot-down of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 in eastern Ukraine. July 22, 2014.

 

 

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The Apollo 11 Mission: 45 Years Later

 

Forty-five years ago today, two American astronauts — Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong — landed on the moon’s Sea of Tranquility, and Neil Armstrong planted the first footprint on the surface of the moon. As he made those first steps, Armstrong uttered that simple phrase we still remember today: “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”

 

Today, President Obama joined all Americans honoring that giant leap forward, by inviting Neil Armstrong’s wife, Carol, Michael Collins, the astronaut who piloted the spacecraft that orbited the moon, and Buzz Aldrin, to the White House. Armstrong passed away in 2012.

 

President Barack Obama meets with Apollo 11 astronauts President Barack Obama meets with Apollo 11 astronauts Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins, right, Carol Armstrong, widow of Apollo 11 commander Neil Armstrong, NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, and Patricia Falcone, OSTP Associate Director for National Security and International Affairs, left, in the Oval Office. This week marked the 45th anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing. July 22, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

In the President’s statement on today’s meeting, he honored the bravery and leadership that these heroes displayed, and acknowledged the influence that their mission has had on mankind:

 

The United States of America is stronger today thanks to the vision of President Kennedy, who set us on a course for the moon, the courage of Neil, Buzz, and Michael, who made the journey, and the spirit of service of all who’ve worked not only on the Apollo program, but who’ve dared to push the very boundaries of space and scientific discovery for all humankind.

As we commemorate that day, we take a look back at the Apollo 11 mission and the extraordinary influence of the U.S. space program.

 

President Barack Obama meets with Apollo 11 astronauts Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin and Michael Collins to commemorate the 45th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission

President Barack Obama meets with Apollo 11 astronauts Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin and Michael Collins to commemorate the 45th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission

 

Read More.

 

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When Climate Change Hits Home – A Partnership for the Future

 

Last week, we had the privilege of meeting with President Obama, members of his Cabinet, and 24 other state, local, and tribal leaders for the fourth and final meeting of the President’s Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience. It was an important milestone in a productive and collaborative process.

We discussed the Task Force’s draft recommendations, including many steps that we hope federal agencies will take to help states and communities like ours get ready for climate change, and the Administration announced bold new actions it is taking to support climate preparedness.

Sitting there together, we recalled how the partnership between Vermont and Fort Collins, Colorado, began in far less auspicious circumstances. In September 2013, floods devastated many Colorado communities along the front range. Vermont, having recently rebuilt hundreds of bridges, roads, and homes after the record-setting Tropical Storm Irene, sent a team led by Vermont’s former recovery officer and current transportation Deputy Sue Minter, to provide advice and support to Colorado leaders as they faced the epic challenge of organizing a swift recovery.

The experience of a severe disaster in both our jurisdictions, and our deep concern that the risk of such events is worsening with climate change, has galvanized our determination to strengthen the resilience of our state and city, and to work together with leaders across the country as we “bounce forward,” and make our communities safe and prosperous during a time of increased climate-related risks.

 

Read More.

 

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President Obama at My Brother’s Keeper Town Hall: “America Will Succeed If We Are Investing in Our Young People.”

 

President Obama Presents the Medal of Honor to Staff Sergeant Ryan M. Pitts

 

 

What They’re Saying: President Obama Signs Executive Order on LGBT Workplace Equality

 

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President Obama Signs a New Executive Order to Protect LGBT Workers

 

 

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Presidential Actions

 

Executive Order — Further Amendments to Executive Order 11478, Equal Employment Opportunity in the Federal Government, and Executive Order 11246, Equal Employment Opportunity

 

Presidential Proclamation — Captive Nations Week, 2014

 

Presidential Memorandum — Proposed Amendment to the 1958 Agreement Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

 

Presidential Memorandum — Expanding Public-Private Collaboration on Infrastructure Development and Financing

 

 

Statements and Releases

 

First Lady Michelle Obama Announces Seven Organizations Join Drink Up Effort to Encourage Americans to Drink More Water, More Often

 

Drink Up! with First Lady Michelle Obama

 

Published on Jul 22, 2014

First Lady Michelle Obama announces new supporters who have joined the Drink Up effort, and joins children from local YMCA and National Recreation and Parks Association centers on the South Lawn of the White House, July 22, 2014.

 

 

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7/21/14: White House Press Briefing

 

 

 

7/22/14: White House Press Briefing

 

 

 

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Raise the Wage Champions of Change

 

Published on Jul 22, 2014

The White House honors leaders and ordinary Americans taking action to raise wages for working women and men around the country, July 22, 2014.

 

 

 

Earnest: WH ‘Confident’ in Legal Basis for Health Care Law

 

Published on Jul 22, 2014

The White House doubled-down on its support for the 2010 health care law Tuesday, following a federal appeals court ruling that some say could derail the law’s success.

 

“You don’t need a fancy legal degree to understand that Congress intended for every eligible American to have access to tax credits that would lower their health care costs, regardless of whether it was state officials or federal officials who were running the marketplace,” White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said. “This will work its way through the legal process and we are confident in the legal case that the Department of Justice will be making.”

 

 

 

Painted fences bring Austin together

 

Published on Jul 22, 2014

Artists and citizens in North Austin collaborate to paint fences with the phrase “beauty will save the world” in various languages, reflecting the 30 languages spoken in the neighborhood. KLRU, Austin public television, went to North Lamar Boulevard to check out this effort to beautify the area and help build community spirit.

 

 

 

‘Putin is getting away with murder,’ McCain says

 

Published on Jul 22, 2014

Sen. John McCain directly blames Russia and President Vladimir Putin for the Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 crash.

 

 

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Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment

 

Published on Jul 21, 2014

As combat operations in Afghanistan wind down, tens of thousands of service members face a daunting reality – an unemployment rate for veterans that is higher than the national average. One Army veteran turned a hobby into an opportunity. (July 22)

 

 

 

Sen. Warren Says Happy Birthday to the CFPB

 

Published on Jul 22, 2014

Senator Warren gives a floor speech to mark the 3rd anniversary of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau opening its doors. Remarks delivered on July 22, 2014.

 

Warren for President

 

 

 

Anti Immigration Bigot Says Brutal Execution “Too Good” for Pres Obama

 

 

 

FAA bans flights to Israel for 24 hours

 

 

 

Hamas spokesman likens Netanyahu to Hitler

 

 

 

Jesse Uncensored: MH17 Disaster & the Gaza Crisis | Jesse Ventura Off The Grid – Ora TV

 

Published on Jul 22, 2014

If you’re keeping up with the news, it may seem like the world is coming to end. Jesse speaks out on the latest headlines taking over the nation, including the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 and the current turmoil in Gaza. Watch now for the Governor’s uncensored take on these headline-grabbing conflicts — agree or disagree with Jesse? Go to ora.tv/offthegrid/askjesse and tell him what you think!

 

 

 

Deputy National Security advisor on Hamas, Russia sanctions

 

Published on Jul 22, 2014

Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes says U.S. intelligence has confirmed that the missile that brought down Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 originated in Ukrainian territory controlled by pro-Russian rebels, but that Russia is not yet absolved of complicity. He joins Judy Woodruff to discuss coordination with Europe on potential sanctions against Russia and U.S. hopes for a Mideast cease-fire.

 

 

 

Dove of Peace

 

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What Did Barack Do Today™


By Jueseppi B. The Militant Negro

By Jueseppi B. The Militant Negro

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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President Barack Obama on Monday delivers a statement on the situation in Ukraine from the South Lawn. He also signs an executive order to protect LGBT’s at work. The president also visits the  Walker Jones Education Campus here for a town hall focusing on new or bolstered programs, including in Chicago that are part of his My Brother’s Keeper initiative. Later, Obama  will award Ryan M. Pitts, a former active duty Army Staff Sergeant, the Medal of Honor for conspicuous gallantry.

 

Later in the morning, the President will deliver a statement on the situation in Ukraine. The President’s statement will be on the South Lawn.

 

The President Gives an Update on Ukraine and Gaza

 

Published on Jul 21, 2014

President Obama makes a statement on the current situation in Ukraine, as well as the situation in Gaza, July 21, 2014.

 

 

The President Gives an Update on the Situation in Ukraine

 

This morning, President Obama made a statement on the current situation in Ukraine, in the wake of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 being shot down last week over territory controlled by Russian-backed separatists in Ukraine.

 

Following his press statement on Friday, the President restated today that “our immediate focus is on recovering those who were lost, investigating exactly what happened, and putting forward the facts. We have to make sure that the truth is out and that accountability exists.”

 

He also noted that international investigators are already on the ground, prepared and organized to conduct “the kinds of protocols and scouring and collecting of evidence that should follow any international incident like this.” President Obama then called on Russia — and President Vladimir Putin in particular — to “insist that the separatists stop tampering with the evidence, [and] grant investigators who are already on the ground immediate, full, and unimpeded access to the crash site.”

 

At the beginning of his statement, the President also took a moment to address the situation in Gaza. He reiterated that Israel has a right to defend itself against rocket and tunnel attacks from Hamas, but that we also have “serious concerns about the rising number of Palestinian civilian deaths and the loss of Israeli lives.”

 

“That is why it now has to be our focus, and the focus of the international community,” he said, “to bring about a ceasefire that ends the fighting and that can stop the deaths of innocent civilians — both in Gaza and in Israel.”

 

President Barack Obama delivers a statement on the situation in Ukraine, on the South Lawn of the White House, July 21, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama delivers a statement on the situation in Ukraine, on the South Lawn of the White House, July 21, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

 

White House Schedule – July 21, 2014

 

In the morning, the President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. This meeting is closed press.

 

Later in the morning, the President will deliver a statement on the situation in Ukraine. The President’s statement on the South Lawn is pooled press.

 

Later in the morning, the President will sign an Executive Order to protect LGBT employees from workplace discrimination. This event in the East Room is open press. Following this event, the President will visit the Walker Jones Education Campus in Washington, DC to participate in a town hall focusing on his My Brother’s Keeper initiative. This event is open to pre-credentialed media.

 

In the afternoon, the President will award Ryan M. Pitts, a former active duty Army Staff Sergeant, the Medal of Honor for conspicuous gallantry.  Staff Sergeant Pitts will receive the Medal of Honor for his courageous actions while serving as a Forward Observer with 2nd Platoon, Chosen Company, 2nd Battalion (Airborne), 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade, during combat operations at Vehicle Patrol Base Kahler, in the vicinity of Wanat Village in Kunar Province, Afghanistan on July 13, 2008. Staff Sergeant Pitts will be the ninth living recipient to be awarded the Medal of Honor for actions in Iraq or Afghanistan. This event in the East Room is open to pre-credentialed media.

 

THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday July 21st, 2014

 

DAILY GUIDANCE AND SCHEDULE FOR
MONDAY, JULY 21st, 2014

 

 

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Monday, July 21 2014  All Times ET

 

9:30 AM: The President receives the Presidential Daily Briefing, Oval Office.

 

10:15 AM: The President signs an Executive Order to protect LGBT employees from workplace discrimination, East Room.

 

10:50 AM: The President delivers a statement on the situation in Ukraine, South Lawn.

 

11:45 AM: The President participates in a town hall focusing on the importance of the My Brother’s Keeper Initiative, Walker Jones Education Campus – Washington.

 

12:00 PM: The Vice President delivers remarks to the Veterans of Foreign Wars Convention. Local Event Time: 11:00 AM. America’s Center Convention Complex – St. Louis.

 

1:00 PM: Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest, Brady Press Briefing Room.

 

3:05 PM: The President awards Ryan M. Pitts, U.S. Army, the Medal of Honor, East Room.

 

 

White House Week Ahead Schedule – July 22nd – July 25th, 2014

 

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On Tuesday, the President will deliver remarks and sign H.R. 803, Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, at an event at the White House; the Vice President will also attend. Afterward, the President will travel to Seattle, WA to attend a DNC event. Later in the day, the President will travel to San Francisco, CA, where he will remain overnight.

 

On Wednesday, the President will attend a DCCC event in the San Francisco area, and later in the day will travel to the Los Angeles area, where he will remain overnight.

 

On Thursday, the President will visit a community college in Los Angeles to deliver remarks on the importance of job-driven skills training, particularly for fast-growing sectors such as health care. Later, he will attend a DNC event. Further details about the President’s travel to Washington and California will be made available in the coming days.

 

On Friday, the President and the Vice President will welcome President Otto Perez Molina of Guatemala, President Juan Orlando Hernandez of Honduras, and President Salvador Sanchez Ceren of El Salvador to the White House. The four leaders and Vice President Biden will discuss how to reinforce our ongoing collaboration to stem the flow of undocumented migrants from Central America to Mexico and the United States.

 

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President Obama at My Brother’s Keeper Town Hall: “America Will Succeed If We Are Investing in Our Young People.”

 

 

This afternoon, President Obama visited the Walker Jones Education Campus in Washington, D.C. to participate in a town hall with youth, and to announce new commitments in support of the My Brother’s Keeper Initiative.

As the President said today, “We want fewer young men in jail; we want more of them in college. We want fewer young men on the streets; we want more in the boardrooms. We want everybody to have a chance to succeed in America. And it’s possible if we’ve got the kind of team that we set up today.”

Watch President Obama answer questions during today’s town hall:

 

My Brother’s Keeper Town Hall

 

Published on Jul 21, 2014

President Obama speaks at the My Brother’s Keeper town hall at the Walker Jones Education Campus in Washington, D.C., July 21, 2014.

 

 

 

President Obama: “Everything you do that’s worthwhile requires work.”

 

Published on Jul 21, 2014

President Obama participates in a My Brother’s Keeper town hall
on helping more young men of color succeed. July 21, 2014.

 

 

Read More.

 

 

President Obama Presents the Medal of Honor to Staff Sergeant Ryan M. Pitts

 

 

Staff Sgt. Ryan Pitts Receives the Medal of Honor

 

Published on Jul 21, 2014

President Obama presents the Medal of Honor to Staff Sgt. Ryan Pitts in the East Room of the White House, July 21, 2014.

 

 

At a ceremony at the White House this afternoon, President Obama presented the Medal of Honor to Staff Sergeant Ryan M. Pitts for his unwavering courage in one of the fiercest battles of the Afghanistan war.

In the summer of 2008, when our forces in Afghanistan were stretched thin across isolated outposts, Ryan was serving alongside 48 American soldiers charged with using little resources to defend a post with significant vulnerabilities. Mountains stood sky-high on every side of the village of Wanat, diverting aerial surveillance and delaying the heavy equipment they needed for their defense.

In the pre-dawn darkness of one fateful July morning, while manning this small, unfinished base, Ryan and his fellow soldiers were attacked by 200 assailants who were determined to take their post. “Those 200 insurgents were firing from ridges and from the village and from trees,” President Obama said. “Down at the base, a vehicle exploded—scattering its missiles, back at our soldiers. It was, said a soldier, ‘hell on earth.’”

 

Read More.

 

 

President Obama Signs a New Executive Order to Protect LGBT Workers

 

 

The President Signs an Executive Order on LGBT Workplace Discrimination

 

Published on Jul 21, 2014

President Obama signs an Executive Order prohibiting federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, July 21, 2014.

 

 

 

“Many of you have worked for a long time to see this day coming.”

 

Those were President Obama’s words to the audience in the East Room of the White House this morning, before he signed an Executive Order prohibiting federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.

 

At the signing, the President explained how, because of their “passionate advocacy and the irrefutable rightness of [their] cause, our government — government of the people, by the people, and for the people — will become just a little bit fairer.”

 

Read More.

 

 

What They’re Saying: President Obama Signs Executive Order on LGBT Workplace Equality

 

 

Earlier today, President Obama signed an Executive Order that prohibits federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. The Order also ensures that federal employees – who are already protected on the basis of sexual orientation – will now formally be protected from discrimination based on gender identity as well.

 

In response to the President’s actions today, many national organizations dedicated to LGBT equality, civil rights, and religious freedom expressed their support.

 

Anthony Romero, Executive Director, ACLU:

 

This is one of the most important actions ever taken by a president to eradicate LGBT discrimination from America’s workplaces. By signing this order, President Obama is building on a bipartisan tradition, dating back over 70 years, of barring discrimination without exception when taxpayer dollars are involved.

Barry Curtiss-Lusher, National Chair, and Abraham Foxman, National Director, Anti-Defamation League:

 

For nearly 50 years it has been illegal for federal contractors to discriminate in employment decisions on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. This action by President Obama continues his historic leadership in promoting LGBT rights and equality and moves our nation closer to full equality in the workplace.

 

Read More.

 

 

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President Obama’s Day In A Slide Show

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Emotional MH17 Crash Speech By Netherlands Delegate to UN

 

Published on Jul 21, 2014

The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands Frans Timmermans gives an emotional speech from the UN Security Council Meeting on Ukraine. The Netherlands lost the most lives of any country, 193 of the 298 people on board, when MH17 was shot down over Eastern Ukraine.

 

 

 

Rebels turn over MH17 black boxes, victims’ bodies

 

Published on Jul 21, 2014

Eastern Ukrainian rebel leaders Monday evening turned over to international investigators the black boxes belonging to downed Malaysian Airlines flight MH17. The move came shortly after the bodies of the victims were handed over and placed onto a train that will travel to the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv. A reported 298 individuals were on board the aircraft when it was reportedly shot down Thursday over the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine. After reaching Kharkiv, the victims’ remains will be transported to the Netherlands and other countries. RT’s Roman Kosarev reports from the Donetsk region with more details.

 

 

 

Lack of International Pressure Permits Endless Assault On Gaza

 

Published on Jul 21, 2014

Vijay Prashad says that without international pressure, Israel will not be held accountable for the crimes it commits against the Palestinians.

 

 

 

UN Security Council Calls for MH 17 Crash Probe

 

Published on Jul 21, 2014

Subscribe for more Breaking News: http://smarturl.it/AssociatedPress

The United States is blasting Moscow for its support of separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine where the Malaysia Airlines plane went down. But it’s welcoming Russia’s support of a U.N. resolution calling for an investigation of the crash site. (July 21)

 

 

 

U.S. decries ‘armed thugs’ at crash site

 

Published on Jul 21, 2014

The U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. says Russia must convince pro-Russian rebels to allow access to the MH17 crash site.

 

 

 

UN Security Council unanimously adopts resolution on MH17 crash

 

Published on Jul 21, 2014

The United Nations Security Council unanimously approved a resolution, introduced by Australia, demanding international access to the eastern Ukraine crash site of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17. RT’s Marina Portnaya has more.

 

 

 

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The White House Week Ahead.


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By Jueseppi B. The Militant Negro

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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President Barack Obama is spending the weekend at Camp David.

 

WEEKEND GUIDANCE AND SCHEDULE FOR
SATURDAY, JULY 19, 2014 AND SUNDAY, JULY 20, 2014

 

On Saturday, the President has no public events scheduled.

On Sunday, the President will return to the White House.

 

On Monday, the President will sign an Executive Order to protect LGBT employees from workplace discrimination.  In the afternoon the President will award Ryan M. Pitts, a former active duty Army Staff Sergeant, the Medal of Honor for conspicuous gallantry.

 

On Tuesday, the President will deliver remarks and sign H.R. 803, Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, at an event at the White House; the Vice President will also attend. Afterward, the President will travel to Seattle, WA to attend a DNC event. Later in the day, the President will travel to San Francisco, CA, where he will remain overnight.

 

On Wednesday, the President will attend a DCCC event in the San Francisco area, and later in the day will travel to the Los Angeles area, where he will remain overnight.

 

On Thursday, the President will visit a community college in Los Angeles to deliver remarks on the importance of job-driven skills training, particularly for fast-growing sectors such as health care. Later, he will attend a DNC event. Further details about the President’s travel to Washington and California will be made available in the coming days.

 

On Friday, the President and the Vice President will welcome President Otto Perez Molina of Guatemala, President Juan Orlando Hernandez of Honduras, and President Salvador Sanchez Ceren of El Salvador to the White House. The four leaders and Vice President Biden will discuss how to reinforce our ongoing collaboration to stem the flow of undocumented migrants from Central America to Mexico and the United States.

 

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ADVISORY: President Obama to Award the Medal of Honor

WASHINGTON – In the afternoon of July 21, 2014, President Barack Obama will award Ryan M. Pitts, a former active duty Army Staff Sergeant, the Medal of Honor for conspicuous gallantry.  Staff Sergeant Pitts will receive the Medal of Honor for his courageous actions while serving as a Forward Observer with 2nd Platoon, Chosen Company, 2nd Battalion (Airborne), 503rd Infantry Regiment173rd Airborne Brigade, during combat operations at Vehicle Patrol Base Kahler, in the vicinity of Wanat Village inKunar Province, Afghanistan on July 13, 2008.

 

Staff Sergeant Pitts will be the ninth living recipient to be awarded the Medal of Honor for actions in Iraq or Afghanistan.  He and his family will join the President at the White House to commemorate his example of selfless service.

 

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PERSONAL BACKGROUND: 

 

Staff Sergeant Pitts separated from the service on October 27, 2009 from Walter Reed Army Medical Center.  He currently lives in Nashua, New Hampshire, where he works in business development for the computer software industry.

 

Staff Sergeant Pitts enlisted in the Army in August 2003 as a Fire Support Specialist (13F), primarily responsible for the intelligence activities of the Army’s field artillery team.   After completion of training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and follow-on parachutist training at the U.S. Army Airborne School, Fort Benning, Georgia, he was assigned to Camp Ederle, Vicenza, Italy, as a radio operator with the 4th Battalion, 319th Field Artillery Regiment and 173rd Airborne Brigade where he deployed to Afghanistan.  His final assignment was with the 2nd Battalion (Airborne), 503rd Infantry Regiment “The Rock”, 173rd Airborne Brigade as a Forward Observer which included a second combat tour to Afghanistan.

 

At the time of the July 13, 2008 combat engagement, then-Sergeant Pitts was a Forward Observer in 2nd Platoon, Chosen Company, 2nd Battalion (Airborne), 503rd Infantry Regiment 173rd Airborne Brigade as part of Task Force Rock. His heroic actions were performed at Vehicle Patrol Base Kahler, in the vicinity of Wanat Village in Kunar Province, Afghanistan.

 

His personal awards include the Bronze Star Medal w/ “V” Device, Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal w/ three Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters, Army Achievement Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal with Bronze Clasp and two Loops, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Two Campaign Stars, Global War on Terrorism Medal, Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon with Numeral “4”,  NATO Medal, Presidential Unit Citation, Valorous Unit Award, Combat Action Badge, Pathfinder Badge and Parachutist Badge.

 

MOH-poster

 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

 

THE MEDAL OF HONOR:

 

The Medal of Honor is awarded to members of the Armed Forces who distinguish themselves conspicuously by gallantry above and beyond the call of duty while:

 

  • engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States;
  • engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force; or
  • serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party.

 

The meritorious conduct must involve great personal bravery or self-sacrifice so conspicuous as to clearly distinguish the individual above his or her comrades and must have involved risk of life. There must be incontestable proof of the performance of the meritorious conduct, and each recommendation for the award must be considered on the standard of extraordinary merit.

 

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