TheObamaCrat Wake-Up Call™ For July 14th, 2014: Ambassador Credentialing Ceremony. Iftar Dinner Celebrating Ramadan.


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President Barack Obama on Monday will host a ceremony to welcome new ambassadors to the United States from Cabo Verde, Sri Lanka, Armenia, Guinea and Somalia. Tonight, the president hosts an Iftar dinner celebrating Ramadan.

 

White House Schedule – July 14, 2014

 

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THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday July 14th, 2014

 

DAILY GUIDANCE AND SCHEDULE FOR
MONDAY, JULY 14th, 2014

 

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

 

In the afternoon, the President and the Vice President will meet for lunch in the Private Dining Room. This lunch is closed press.

 

Afterward, the President will participate in an Ambassador Credentialing Ceremony in the Oval Office. At this event, the President will receive the credentials from foreign Ambassadors recently posted in Washington. The presentation of credentials is a traditional ceremony that marks the formal beginning of an Ambassador’s service in Washington. This event is closed press. The following Ambassadors will attend:

 

His Excellency Jose Luis Fialho Rocha, Ambassador of the Republic of Cabo Verde

His Excellency Prasad Kariyawasam, Ambassador of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka

His Excellency Tigran Sargsyan, Ambassador of the Republic of Armenia

His Excellency Mamady Conde, Ambassador of the Republic of Guinea

His Excellency Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Somalia

 

Later in the afternoon, the President will meet with senior advisors in the Oval Office. This meeting is closed press.

 

In the evening, the President will host an Iftar dinner celebrating Ramadan in the State Dining Room. There will be pooled press coverage of the President’s remarks.

 

 

"President Barack Obama in Denver, CO"

 

Monday, July 14 2014  All Times ET

 

10:30 AM: THE PRESIDENT and VICE PRESIDENT receive the Presidential Daily Briefing, Oval Office.

 

 

12:30 PM: THE PRESIDENT and VICE PRESIDENT meet for lunch, Private Dining Room.

 

 

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

 

 

2:00 PM: THE PRESIDENT participates in an Ambassador Credentialing Ceremony, Oval Office.

 

 

3:15 PM: THE PRESIDENT meets with senior advisors, Oval Office.

 

 

8:55 PM: THE PRESIDENT hosts an Iftar dinner,   State Dining Room.

 

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The White House Week Ahead™

 

WASHINGTON : In the week ahead, President Barack Hussein Obama meets with new ambassadors on Monday; on Tuesday goes to the Washington suburb of McLean, Va. to talk about the economy and on Thursday heads to New York City for a Democratic National Committee fundraiser. Wednesday & Friday are meetings at The White House.

 

White House Schedule – July 14th, – July 18th, 2014

 

On Monday, the President will participate in an Ambassador Credentialing Ceremony in the Oval Office. At this event, the President will receive the credentials from foreign Ambassadors recently posted in Washington. The presentation of credentials is a traditional ceremony that marks the formal beginning of an Ambassador’s service in Washington. In the evening, the President will host an Iftar dinner celebrating Ramadan at the White House.

 

On Tuesday, the President will deliver remarks on the economy at the Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center in McLean, Virginia.

 

On Wednesday, the President will attend meetings at the White House.

 

On Thursday, the President will travel to New York City area to attend a DNC roundtable. Further details on the President’s travel to New York will be made available in the coming days.

 

On Friday, the President will attend meetings at the White House.

 

 

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White House Live

 

Next Up…
July 14, 2014 1:00 PM EDT

Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest

The White House, White House LIVE Streaming.

 

 

 

July 14, 2014 8:55 PM EDT

The White House, White House LIVE Streaming.

 

 

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At The Movies With TheObamaCrat™: “All Is By My Side”, Jimi Hendrix (film)

 

At The Movies With TheObamaCrat™: “Miles Ahead”, A Film About Miles Davis.

 

At The Movies With TheObamaCrat™: “Get On Up”, A Film About The Life Of James Brown.

 

Rick Perry And Sean Hannity Are Currently Patrolling The Border On A Boat With A Machine Gun…So Fuckin What?

 

Wrapping Up The Week That Was™

 

HOUSE GOP MOVES AHEAD ON SUING OBAMA: House Has No Legislation On JOBS, Immigration OR Gun Reform…BUTT Let’s Fuckin Sue The POTUSA.

 

AMBER ALERT: Iowa Amber Alert, Blackhawk County. Nevaeh Hogan (Infant), Brooklyn Anne-Marie Gaffney (Child), Mia Elaine Gaffney (Child).

 

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Republicans Have A New Love: Obamacare!

 

Published on Jul 14, 2014

“Republicans, still flailing in their efforts to come up with their own healthcare plan, are also going to be flailing when it comes to finding a coherent argument for getting rid of Obamacare in the first place. Their arguments against the law keep being shot down by the reality of its successes. Here’s another success: There are 9.5 million fewer uninsured people now, according to a new Commonwealth Fund study.

 

‘According to the survey, the proportion of working-aged adults without insurance dropped from 20 percent in the late summer of 2013 to 15 percent in the late spring of 2014, a period that corresponds roughly to the beginning and end of open enrollment in the Affordable Care Act’s marketplaces. To put that in more concrete terms, there are still a lot of Americans walking around without health insurance today. But there are about 9.5 million fewer of them than there were last fall, almost certainly because so many people have enrolled in the newly expanded Medicaid program or purchased subsidized insurance through the Obamacare marketplaces.’

 

 

 

The Coors Light Ad You WON’T See

 

Published on Jul 14, 2014

If you support what the Coors family supports, then Coors Light has a new beer just for you.

 

 

 

Headlines at 8:30: Santa Ana man reels in 482-pound halibut

 

Published on Jul 14, 2014

“CBS This Morning” takes a look at some of the headlines from around the globe.

 

 

 

Bergdahl returning to active duty

 

Published on Jul 14, 2014

Ex-captive Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl has finished undergoing therapy and counseling and may return to active duty soon.

 

 

 

Attorney General Eric Holder Challenges Republicans on Impeachment, Gridlock & Stands Firm on Statement about America’s Cowardice on RACE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The White House Week Ahead™


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By Jueseppi B…..The Militant Negro

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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WASHINGTON–President Barack Obama has no public events this weekend. In the week ahead, Obama meets with new ambassadors on Monday; on Tuesday goes to the Washington suburb of McLean, Va. to talk about the economy and on Thursday heads to New York City for a Democratic National Committee fundraiser.

 

White House Schedule – July 12th, – July 2014

 

THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Saturday July 12th, 2014

 

DAILY GUIDANCE AND SCHEDULE FOR
SATURDAY, JULY 12th, 2014

 

WEEKEND GUIDANCE AND SCHEDULE FOR
SATURDAY, JULY 12, 2014 AND SUNDAY, JULY 13, 2014

 

On Saturday, the President has no public events scheduled.

 

On Sunday, the President has no public events scheduled.

 

Schedule for the Week of July 14th, To July 18th, 2014

 

On Monday, the President will participate in an Ambassador Credentialing Ceremony in the Oval Office. At this event, the President will receive the credentials from foreign Ambassadors recently posted in Washington. The presentation of credentials is a traditional ceremony that marks the formal beginning of an Ambassador’s service in Washington. In the evening, the President will host an Iftar dinner celebrating Ramadan at the White House.

 

On Tuesday, the President will deliver remarks on the economy at the Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center in McLean, Virginia.

 

On Wednesday, the President will attend meetings at the White House.

 

On Thursday, the President will travel to New York City area to attend a DNC roundtable. Further details on the President’s travel to New York will be made available in the coming days.

 

On Friday, the President will attend meetings at the White House.

 

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From The Hill:

 

White House: Obama talks about gun violence when he can

By Justin Sink

President Obama has left little doubt about his views on gun violence, the White House said Friday amid questions on why the president hasn’t been more vocal on the issue amid recent tragedies in Texas and Chicago.

 

“When the president has the opportunity to talk about this issue, he does so, I think, you know, with a lot of conviction and with a lot of clarity,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters.

 

Earnest said it wasn’t “fair” to say Obama spoke about gun violence only when he was asked about the subject, and defended the president’s silence on the issue during an economic speech Thursday in Austin.

 

In Houston on Wednesday, a man allegedly killed his ex-wife and five members of her family, including four children. Over the July 4 holiday weekend, 82 people were shot in Obama’s hometown of Chicago.

 

“There are a lot of common-sense economic policies the president’s put forward that Congress is also blocking. Yesterday, the president chose in his remarks to highlight those,” Earnest said. “But the president feels strongly about some of the common-sense measures that Republicans have blocked related to gun safety, as well.”

 

Earnest said that kind of gun violence was “tragic” and that Obama would “continue to make the case” that lawmakers should adopt some gun controls.

 

Following the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in December 2012, Obama implemented a series of new administrative actions designed to help curb gun violence, and asked Congress to pass legislation implementing greater gun controls. That bill, which would have closed the loophole enabling the purchase of weapons without a background check at gun shows, stalled in the Senate.

 

Since then, Obama has not discussed the topic with the same frequency. During a White House town-hall event hosted by Tumblr last month, he acknowledged the political difficulties surrounding the issue.

 

“Most members of Congress — and I have to say, to some degree, this is bipartisan — are terrified of the NRA,” Obama said. “The combination of the NRA and gun manufacturers are very well financed and have the capacity to move votes in local elections and congressional elections. And so if you’re running for office right now, that’s where you feel the heat.”

 

 

Rubio: I can beat Hillary

 

By Rachel Huggins

 

Sen. Marco Rubio says he can beat Hillary –and so can many others

 

 

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) believes he can beat Hillary Clinton in the race for the 2016 presidency.

 

“Multiple people can beat her. Hillary Clinton is not unbeatable,” the GOP presidential hopeful told radio host Hugh Hewitt in an interview Friday.

 

When asked whether he’s concerned about Clinton’s extensive foreign policy background if he or another Republican candidate ran against her, Rubio quickly slammed the potential Democratic frontrunner.

 

“I’d ask her: You were the secretary of State during the first four years of the Obama administration, name one significant foreign policy achievement, now or after you left?”, he said.

 

“The reset with Russia has been a disaster, the Middle East is more unstable today than it’s been in I don’t know when, our relationships with Latin America and democracy have deteriorated…our partners around the world view us as less reliable.”

 

The Florida lawmaker also weighed in on Lebron James’ surprise move back to the Cleveland Cavaliers after four seasons with the Miami Heat.

 

“I read the article he wrote in Sports Illustrated and it’s actually very compelling. And I have a lot of respect,” he said.

 

“The way I view it, he gave us four extraordinary years in Miami, a very special experience and on a personal note he allowed me, along with his teammates, to share with my sons memories they’ll treasure for the rest of their lives.”

 

Thank you The Hill.

 
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From Politico:

 

The verdict is in: Obamacare lowers uninsured

 

By DAVID NATHER
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The evidence is piling up now: Obamacare really does seem to be helping the uninsured.

 

Survey after survey is showing that the number of uninsured people has been going down since the start of enrollment last fall. The numbers don’t all match, and health care experts say they’re not precise enough to give more than a general idea of the trend.

 

But by now, the trend is unmistakable: Millions of people who didn’t have health insurance before the Affordable Care Act have gained it since last fall. The law is not just covering people who already had health coverage, but adding new people to the ranks of the insured — which was the point of the law all along.

 

There’s still a lot of variation in the numbers, too much for health care experts to pin down an exact number with any confidence. But even health care analysts who think the law is a bad idea acknowledge that the evidence suggests the uninsured are being helped. Given the predictions of doom that accompanied the law’s passage and launch, that’s a sweet bit of vindication for the president and ACA supporters.

 

“It will be better when we’ve got a whole year behind us, so we can tell how much [in the surveys] was noise and how much was reality,” said Douglas Holtz-Eakin of the conservative American Action Forum, a frequent critic of the law. “Having said that, it sure looks like there are more people covered, and that’s a good thing.”

 

survey by the Commonwealth Fund found that 9.5 million fewer adults are uninsured now than at the beginning of the Obamacare enrollment season. The Urban Institute’s Health Reform Monitoring Survey found a similar drop, with 8 million adults gaining coverage. And Gallup-Healthways survey reported that the uninsured rate has fallen to 13.4 percent of adults, the lowest level since it began tracking health coverage in 2008.

 

That was all on Thursday. In recent months, other surveys in the Gallup series have consistently found the same downward trend, and a RAND survey in April estimated that the law extended health coverage to 9.3 million Americans.

 

That’s not going to end the fights over the health care law — not even close. Republicans say the debate isn’t just about whether the law has helped uninsured people, but about all the side effects, like canceled health plans, higher premiums for some people with individual health insurance, reduced work hours for part-time employees, and the long-term costs to the nation.

 

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), who led the battle to defund the law last fall and could fight it again on the presidential campaign trail in 2016, insists the new surveys don’t change the debate at all — because the real issue, in his view, is still the disruption of the canceled plans and higher premiums.

 

“Four years ago, before the law was implemented, it was possible to have good-faith disagreements about whether the law would work,” Cruz told POLITICO on Thursday. “Today, seeing the utter disaster that has played out … to me, it is the essence of pragmatism to realize that the law isn’t working, and to repeal it and start over.”

 

And even though the law’s performance has stabilized since the clumsy rollout last fall, there are plenty of ways the side effects could still flare up again — through big premium increases for next year (they’ve been modest so far), another possible round of canceled plans and the potential for angry customers next year if they’ve received too much in subsidies and have to pay them back.

 

“The Republican argument was never that a trillion or two dollars would never cover any more uninsured. It was that the cost of doing so in higher health care costs and premiums, cancelled policies, increased government control of health care, and a myriad other negatives—were not worth it,” said Republican pollster Whit Ayres.” That argument still holds.”

 

But the latest surveys have been a huge morale boost for the Obama administration and congressional Democrats, who now have armfuls of statistics to prove that the law is doing what it’s supposed to do: help the uninsured.

 

“No matter whose estimates you look at, the facts about the Marketplace’s first year are this: Millions of people have gained coverage because of the ACA, and millions more could if the remaining states did the right thing and expanded Medicaid,” said an Obama administration official.

 

Adam Jentleson, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, declared that “Republicans have constructed an alternate reality in which the sky is always falling on Obamacare, but the facts tell a different story.”

 

The new surveys have taken a lot of the uncertainty out of the Affordable Care Act’s impact on the uninsured. Earlier this year, it appeared that it could be months, if not years, before Americans would answer the most basic questions about whether the law had actually covered uninsured people, thanks to the lag time in official government surveys and the vague wording of the questions in Obamacare applications.

 

Health care experts still want to see the official government surveys, but they say there are now enough unofficial surveys to prove that the law is reaching uninsured people. There are some people who are replacing old health coverage with new coverage, but it’s now clear that millions of the law’s customers didn’t have health insurance before.

 

“One has to acknowledge that at this point, despite some continuing bumps in the road, the ACA is largely on track to accomplishing what it set out to do,” said Larry Levitt of the Kaiser Family Foundation. “That, of course, doesn’t mean that everyone is benefiting from it or agrees with it. The law wasn’t designed to create all winners and no losers.”

 

Because of the variation in the surveys’ numbers, “it could be a couple million more or less” than the Commonwealth estimates, Levitt said. And some of the reduction could be due to an improving economy, he added — but “the reductions we’re seeing clearly swamp any effect from lower unemployment.”

 

Still, Republicans aren’t likely to give the Obama administration a lot of credit. Lately, they’ve been minimizing the significance of the big enrollment numbers by saying, hey, of course people are signing up — they’ll have to pay fines under the individual mandate if they don’t. “They made it illegal for it not to work. You have to be covered,” Holtz-Eakin said.

 

But the Commonwealth Fund survey also suggested that most of the people who have signed up for the Affordable Care Act are happy with their coverage — and aren’t just disgruntled people who were already insured and liked their own coverage better.

 

According to the survey, 58 percent of the Obamacare customers said they were better off under their new health coverage, and only 9 percent said they were worse off than they were before. Even among people who previously had health insurance — the ones who might resent having to switch — 52 percent liked the new coverage, while 16 percent said they were worse off.

 

Republicans on Capitol Hill, however, insisted they hear more from people who have had their own health insurance disrupted by the health care law — not the ones who have gained coverage.

 

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“The White House wants everyone to forget about the people who lost their insurance” because of canceled health plans, Cruz said. Even if most of those people have been able to replace it since then, he said, there are still many other Americans who have had their work hours reduced so their employers won’t have to provide health coverage. And he predicted that “this fall, we’re going to see premiums skyrocket again.”

 

Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) dismissed the surveys, saying he is “hearing disproportionately from people who are unhappy with the way the law is affecting their own pocketbooks” — especially by “paying for more insurance than they need or want or will ever use.”

 

The unspoken political reality is that Republican base voters aren’t ready to let the GOP give up the fight, even if they wanted to. But there are also so many other issues in the fight — including the impact on other people’s coverage and the cost of the law — that it was never likely to just go away, no matter how many uninsured people have been helped.

 

“I don’t think it changes the debate, because the debate has so many dimensions,” said Holtz-Eakin.

 

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The Last 24™: Whats Barack Been Up To? West Wing Week. The Weekly Address.

 

White House Blog Updates™

 

HOUSE GOP MOVES AHEAD ON SUING OBAMA: House Has No Legislation On JOBS, Immigration OR Gun Reform…BUTT Let’s Fuckin Sue The POTUSA.

 

What Did Barack Do Today™

 

AMBER ALERT: Iowa Amber Alert, Blackhawk County. Nevaeh Hogan (Infant), Brooklyn Anne-Marie Gaffney (Child), Mia Elaine Gaffney (Child).

 

On The Road With Barack™, During A Twitter Storm™, While It’s Raining Videos™, All In The Last 24™.

 

On The Road With Barack™: Denver, Colorado. Dallas & Austin, TexASS.

 

It’s Raining Videos™

 

The Last 24™

 

Dumbfuckery Of The Day: Boehner: Why We Must Now Sue The President. {Cause We Can’t Beat Him Legally}

 

A Brand New Day™

 

Dispatches With Dr. Jill Biden: On The Road In The Democratic Republic Of Congo (DRC).

 

 

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Branford Marsalis & Others Buckshot LeFonque CD1 03 I Know Why The Caged Bird Sing

 

 

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White House Blog Updates™


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A Promising Glimpse at Washington’s Next Generation

 

 

Valerie Jarrett meets with Urban Alliance students and alumniValerie Jarrett meets with Urban Alliance students and alumni at their Washington, D.C. branch. From left to right: Brittney Mayo, Assima Raissa, David McIntosh-Peters, Akira Muse, Andre Williams.

 

I had the pleasure this week to meet with a small group of amazing young people at the Urban Alliance Foundation’s Washington branch. Urban Alliance is a program that provides high school seniors with a part-time job during the school year, full-time work experience in the summer, and wrap-around support throughout the year, including professional development, job training, financial literacy, mentorship, and post-high school planning services. Participants in the program receive real-world work experience – thanks largely to opportunities made available by the organization’s business partners and valuable contacts.

The two current program participants I met, along with the two alums who joined us on summer break from college, explained how their work experiences gave them a glimpse of their potential futures as successful career professionals. And the results of this approach have been tremendous: 100% of Urban Alliance interns graduate high school on time, 90% are accepted into college, and 80% persist in college.

The good news is that all around the country, there are similar, successful programs finding success, closing achievement gaps, strengthening our workforce, and giving every young person a chance to reach their dreams. It is our objective to take these outstanding models of success to scale so that every young person in America, regardless of his or her zip code, has the same opportunity to achieve.

 

It’s precisely this type of sharing of best practices and success stories which rests at the center of My Brother’s Keeper, an initiative launched by President Obama, and led in partnership with business, philanthropic, education, labor, and cultural leaders around the country to help boys and young men of color overcome often daunting odds.

Beyond changing the lives of individuals, it’s important to underscore the incredible potential we unlock in this country when we work together to build pathways of opportunity and success for all of our young people. We can transform neighborhoods, stem generational poverty, and build a brighter future for us all.

As is the case with the Urban Alliance, the best progress tends to be made when ordinary folks band together and commit to do extraordinary things. The fact is, this type of effort isn’t “charity.” Anyone concerned with the economic future of American families and our national economy knows that investing in the success of a segment of our population that otherwise would continue to fall behind is an investment in our collective future and our long-term prosperity.

To learn more and get involved with the “My Brother’s Keeper” initiative, please visit http://www.whitehouse.gov/my-brothers-keeper, where you can sign up to be a mentor in your community. You can also find additional resources and findings by reading through the President’s My Brother’s Keeper Task Force Report.

 

 

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President Obama capped off a three-day road trip with a visit to Austin, Texas, where he sat down for coffee with a letter writer, delivered a speech on the economy, and grabbed lunch at a local BBQ joint.

 

Relive the President’s day in Austin right here. (And, if you want to write the President yourself, you can always do that here.)

 


In the morning, the President grabbed coffee with Kinsey Button, who wrote him a few months ago.

Kinsey Button is a student at the University of Texas at Austin. She wrote the President talking about her family’s struggles, after both of her parents lost their jobs.

 

Kinsey said she’s always been passionate about politics and engaging with this country’s most important issues — but after the government shutdown last year, she wrote in her letter that she felt like Washington wasn’t listening.

 

 

 

After coffee, the President gave a speech in Austin.

 

The President delivered remarks on the economy at the historic Paramount Theatre

 

 

 

POTUS in Austin: I’m here to fight for middle class families who are working hard for shot @ the American Dream.

 

 

 

Then, the President stopped at a local BBQ joint.

 

President Barack Obama orders lunch during a local stop at Franklin Barbecue in Austin, Texas. July 10, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

President Barack Obama orders lunch during a local stop at Franklin Barbecue in Austin, Texas. July 10, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

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Smells amazing. It will be enjoyed aboard AF1 . Obama is en route to Air Force one with nearly $300 in barbecue in tow

Smells amazing. It will be enjoyed aboard AF1 . Obama is en route to Air Force one with nearly $300 in barbecue in tow

 

And then it was wheels up on Air Force One, back to Washington.

 

Check back in the next few weeks as the President continues traveling around the country to meet with working Americans and highlight the actions he’s taken to benefit them.

 

 

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Celebrating 5 Million @WhiteHouse Twitter Followers

 

 

Big news: the White House Twitter account just reached 5 million followers! If you’re one of them, thanks for following along.

The White House uses Twitter to connect with people around the country and keep our followers up-to-date on the latest news from President Obama and his Administration. From the President’s first-ever Twitter Town Hall held at the White House to launching the Twitter Q&A series “Office Hours,” we’re continually looking for new ways to connect with the public and answer their questions. We use Twitter, along with other social media sites including InstagramGoogle+, and Tumblr, to engage with citizens on issues from the economy to health care. For an inside look at the latest from the White House, you can follow all of our Twitter accounts here.

To celebrate reaching 5 million followers, we’ve put together a list of @WhiteHouse highlights from President Obama’s second term.

Have a favorite moment of your own or ideas about new ways we could use Twitter? We want to hear from you! Let us know by tweeting at @WhiteHouse and we’ll feature some of our favorite responses.

Here’s a look back at some of our top @WhiteHouse moments from the President’s second term.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Addressing the threat of Climate Change

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The First Lady Speaks At Naturalization Ceremony


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First Lady Michelle LaVaVaughn Obama At The Naturalization Ceremony

 

Published on Jun 18, 2014

First Lady Michelle Obama delivers remarks at Naturalization Ceremony for 50 new Americans at the National Archives, June 18, 2014.

 

The First Lady Speaks at Naturalization Ceremony

 

 

 

Remarks by the First Lady at a Naturalization Ceremony

 

The National Archives
Washington, D.C.

11:11 A.M. EDT

 

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MRS. OBAMA:  Well, let me join Jeh by saying good morning, my fellow Americans.  Sounds pretty good, huh?  (Laughter.)  You like that, right?  All right, I’m going to loosen you up if it takes all morning.  You’re now citizens!  It’s very cool.  (Laughter.)  And I am honored to be here.  This is an exciting day, and it’s just wonderful that I can be among the first to congratulate you on becoming American citizens.

 

And I also want to welcome your family and friends who are here — let’s see the family members who are here.  Where are they?  You guys are here, that’s good, that’s good.  Yes.  (Applause.)  I know how important these people are because I know that they’ve supported you every step of the way.  And I see that they are beaming with pride, so welcome.

 

I want to thank Secretary Johnson, Director Scialabba, for taking the time to be here today and for their tremendous work.  I also want to especially thank David and the incredible staff at the National Archives for making today’s event possible.  This is a beautiful setting.

 

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It’s amazing that just a few feet from here where I’m standing are the signatures of the 56 Founders who put their names on a Declaration that changed the course of history.  And like the 50 of you, none of them were born American — they became American.

 

Just like you’re about to pledge allegiance to our flag, they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor to this extraordinary idea that we now know as America -– the notion that we are all created equal, endowed with fundamental rights and freedoms that no one can ever take away from us.

 

People come from across the globe to see these documents, to read the names and signatures of the very first “Americans-by-choice,” because they know that this room holds the first chapter of our shared history.  And today, it holds the next chapter of our story, as well.

 

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As the newest “Americans-by-choice,” you, too, will play an important part in shaping our history.  Some of you were brought here as children.  Others came here to be with a loved one.  Some of you, like Parish Sapkota, have risked their lives for this country by serving overseas.  Others haven’t worn the uniform themselves, but have served America by supporting a spouse or a child who has.

 

Take Blue Star Mom Zlatka Stefanova.  Her son Marian was wounded in an ambush in Iraq.  He spent 18 months at Walter Reed recovering from his injuries.  And today, with the love and support of his mother, Marian is a proud officer in the Fairfax Police Department.

 

But no matter what your story, from this day forward, for the rest of your lives, you will always be able to say, “Yes, I am an American citizen.”  And I know this is an exciting, hopeful time for all of you, but it’s also an exciting, hopeful time for our country.  Because the fact is, America needs you.

 

Immigration is at the heart of how we developed as a nation.  In every generation, immigrants have earned their place as part of “We the People.”  With the exception of just a few ethnicities, every person in this country can trace their history back to a parent, or a grandparent, or a great-grandparent, or an ancestor who made that choice to be part of this country.

 

And today, much of our success is because we still very much are a nation of immigrants.  Immigrants start roughly one in four of our new businesses.  About 30,000 permanent residents serve in our military.  And according to one study, over the past 50 years, more than a quarter of our Nobel Laureates based in the U.S. have been foreign-born.

 

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So in many ways, it is because of, not in spite of, our immigrant population that we grow stronger every single day.  Yet today, here in Washington, folks are still debating whether or not to fix our immigration system even though just about everyone agrees that it is broken.  But I want you all to know that my husband has made this his top legislative priority, and he refuses to give up the fight.  Because at the end of the day, this fight isn’t just about abstract principles, it’s about real people.  People like you.  People like us — our fellow Americans.

 

That’s who you are.  You came here today as citizens of 44 different countries, and you’ll leave here as citizens of one great nation -– the United States of America.  And I hope that you never take that for granted, because I know how hard you worked for this.  You earned it.  And to be a citizen of this country is an incredible blessing.

 

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And what I hope you always remember is that, as citizens, we do not shut the doors of opportunity behind us.  We preserve the promise of America.  We renew it.  We extend it so that future generations of Americans -– Americans by birth and “Americans-by-choice” -– can do their part to form the more perfect union that our founders imagined so many years ago.

 

So I want to once again congratulate you on this important honor, this extraordinary honor.  And I wish you the very best of luck on your journey ahead as citizens of this great country.

 

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Thank you so much, and God bless.  (Applause.)

 

END
11:18 A.M. EDT

 

 

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Erica Lafferty, Everytown For Gun Safety: A Video Message From Richard Martinez.


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Erica Lafferty, Everytown For Gun Safety: A Video Message From Richard Martinez.

 

Santa Barbara victim’s father spoke and Americans responded

 

 

More than 600,000 supporters like you have helped spread Richard Martinez’s message to elected officialsNot One More person should have to die because leaders in Washington refuse to pass common-sense gun laws.

 

I joined Mr. Martinez and other survivors of gun violence to demand that our elected officials stop dragging their feet. It was powerful to stand alongside so many brave survivors and advocates – and we would not have been there without the support of people like you.

 

Mr. Martinez recorded this short thank you message to everyone who answered his call. Please watch and share his powerful message with your friends and family.

 

I know the pain of having a loved one murdered with a gun, and Mr. Martinez’s outspoken commitment to making sure no one else has to experience that same pain has moved a nation. It was inspiring to stand with him at this event, and to honor the commitment of supporters who have helped carry his message so far.

 

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Your support has helped us share our stories all over the country, and show elected officials that we’re not going away until they do something to stop these tragedies from happening in the future. All of us — survivors, parents, and supporters — have to come together and show our commitment by standing strong on this call to action.

 

Please watch and share Mr. Martinez’s message of thanks right now.

 

Thanks for sharing this message, and for being a part of this incredible campaign.

 

Sincerely,

Erica Lafferty
Everytown for Gun Safety

 

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Scenes from Everytown: 4:08pm

 

 

 

Gun Sense Voter: Momentum is building

 

 

 

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