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 Will Barack Do Today™, Tuesday The 22nd Of July, 2014……Everything.


By Jueseppi B. The Militant Negro

By Jueseppi B. The Militant Negro

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"President Barack Obama in Denver, CO"

 

 President Barack Obama on Tuesday honors the Apollo 11, the first manned mission to the moon 45 years ago. Later, Obama signs a jobs training bill and then heads to Seattle for a West Coast fundraising swing.

 

 

White House Schedule – July 22, 2014

 

THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday July 22nd, 2014

 

DAILY GUIDANCE AND SCHEDULE FOR
TUESDAY, JULY 22nd, 2014

 

 

In the morning, the President will meet representatives of Apollo 11 to recognize the 45th anniversary of the first mission to land on the Moon. There will be a stills only pool spray at the top of this meeting in the Oval Office.

 

In the afternoon, the President will deliver remarks about new efforts to help expand opportunity for more workers by ensuring they have access to the training and skills they need for the good jobs of today. The President will sign H.R. 803, the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, which will help improve employer engagement and accountability across federally funded job training programs. The Vice President will also deliver remarks. This event in South Court Auditorium is open press.

 

Later in the afternoon, the President will travel to Seattle, Washington. The departure from the South Lawn is open press, and the arrival at Boeing Field / King County International Airport is open to pre-credentialed media.

 

While in Seattle, the President will attend DNC and Senate Majority PAC events at private residences. There will be travel pool coverage of the President’s remarks at the DNC event, and the Senate Majority PAC roundtable is closed press.

 

In the evening, the President will depart Seattle en route San Francisco, California. The departure from Boeing Field / King County International Airport and arrival at San Francisco International Airport are open to pre-credentialed media.

 

The President will remain overnight in San Francisco.

 

 

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Tuesday, July 22 2014  All Times ET

 

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

 

11:00 AM: Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest, Brady Press Briefing Room.

 

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

 

1:00 PM: The President departs the White House, South Lawn.

 

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

 

3:30 PM: Drink Up! with First Lady Michelle Obama, The White House.

 

6:15 PM: The President arrives Seattle, Washington. Local Event Time: 3:15 PM. Boeing Field International Airport.

 

8:05 PM: The President attends a DNC event. Local Event Time: 5:05 PM. Private Residence – Seattle.

 

9:00 PM: The President attends a Senate Majority PAC roundtable. Local Event Time: 6:00 PM. Private Residence – Bellevue.

 

10:25 PM: The President departs Seattle. Local Event Time: 7:25 PM. Boeing Field International Airport.

 

12:10 PM:  Arrives San Francisco. Local Event Time: 9:10 PM. The President will remain overnight in San Francisco.

 

 

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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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White House Live

 

Next Up

 

July 22, 2014 11:00 AM EDT

Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest

The White House, White House LIVE Streaming

 

 

 

July 22, 2014 12:10 PM EDT

President Obama and Vice President Biden Deliver Remarks and Sign H.R. 803, the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

The White House, White House LIVE Streaming

 

 

 

July 22, 2014 1:00 PM EDT

White House Champions of Change for Raise the Wage

The White House, White House LIVE Streaming

 

 

 

July 22, 2014 3:30 PM EDT

Drink Up! with First Lady Michelle Obama

The White House, White House LIVE Streaming

 

 

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Speeches and Remarks/Statements and Releases – July 21st & 22nd, 2014

 

Remarks by the President at Presentation of the Medal of Honor to Staff Sergeant Ryan Pitts

 

Remarks by the President at My Brother’s Keeper Town Hall

 

Remarks by the President at Signing of Executive Order on LGBT Workplace Discrimination

 

Statement by the President on the Situation in Ukraine and Gaza

 

FACT SHEET: Ready to Work At a Glance: Job-Driven Training and American Opportunity

 

Readout of the President’s Homeland Security Council Meeting

 

Readout of the President’s Call with President Komorowski of Poland

 

Presidential Nominations Sent to the Senate

 

President Obama Signs Minnesota Disaster Declaration

 

Readout of National Security Advisor Susan E. Rice’s Meeting with Ed Miliband

 

Office of the Vice President Announces Staff Changes

 

FACT SHEET: The Vice President’s Address to the 115th National Conference of the Veterans of Foreign Wars

 

FACT SHEET: Taking Action to Support LGBT Workplace Equality is Good For Business

 

FACT SHEET: Taking Action to Support LGBT Workplace Equality is Good For Business

 

 

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‘Anything other than social media?’ State Dept’s MH17 evidence secret

 

Published on Jul 22, 2014

State Department Deputy Spokesperson Marie Harf described Russia’s statements on MH17 plane crash as “misinformation” – but when reporters asked her whether Washington would be releasing their intelligence and satellite data, Harf only replied “may be.” So far the US has been backing its statements by social media and “common sense.”

 

 

 

Train carrying remains of MH17 crash victims arrives in Kharkov, Ukraine

 

Published on Jul 22, 2014

Bodies of the victims of the MH17 plane crash arrived in Kharkov on a train bound for Amsterdam, Tuesday. The corpses had first been loaded onto refrigerated railway carriages at Torez railway station, and once they reach their final destination they will be transferred to Dutch authorities. So far 282 of the 298 bodies onboard the plane have been recovered

 

 

 

 

Simply a waste: Speaker Boehner’s latest stunt

 

Published on Jul 22, 2014

John Boehner and House leadership are on track for the least productive Congress in history—and now they want to waste even more time and money on a frivolous lawsuit against President Obama.

 

 

 

Thousands Of Palestinians Leave Their Homes In Gaza.

 

 

 

 American Citizen Who Was Beaten in Israel, Speaks.

 

Published on Jul 21, 2014

A 15-year-old Palestinian-American from Florida who was taken into custody by Israeli security forces during a family visit to the Middle East says he was beaten and kicked so much he lost consciousness. (July 21)

 

 

 

Earnest: White House is ‘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.”

 

 

 

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July 21st/22nd, 2014: Photo of the Day

 

President Barack Obama talks with Press Secretary Josh Earnest, Chief of Staff Denis McDonough, and John Podesta, Counselor to the President, in the Outer Oval Office before delivering a statement on the crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 and the situation in Ukraine, July 18, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama talks with Press Secretary Josh Earnest, Chief of Staff Denis McDonough, and John Podesta, Counselor to the President, in the Outer Oval Office before delivering a statement on the crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 and the situation in Ukraine, July 18, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama and Staff Sergeant Ryan M. Pitts bow their heads during the benediction at the Medal of Honor ceremony for SSG Pitts in the East Room of the White House, July 21, 2014. At left is SSG Pitt's wife Amy and one-year-old son Lucas. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama and Staff Sergeant Ryan M. Pitts bow their heads during the benediction at the Medal of Honor ceremony for SSG Pitts in the East Room of the White House, July 21, 2014. At left is SSG Pitt’s wife Amy and one-year-old son Lucas. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

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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.

 

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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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The President And The First Lady At The Kids State Dinner.


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First Lady Michelle Obama & her husband, hosts the “Kids State Dinner” in the East Room of the White House. The White House treated more than 50 kid chefs to a “state dinner.” The children earned a seat at the table by whipping up mouth-watering yet healthy meals as part of a nationwide contest sponsored by the food magazine Epicurious and the Education and Agriculture departments

First Lady Michelle Obama & her husband, hosts the “Kids State Dinner” in the East Room of the White House. The White House treated more than 50 kid chefs to a “state dinner.” The children earned a seat at the table by whipping up mouth-watering yet healthy meals as part of a nationwide contest sponsored by the food magazine Epicurious and the Education and Agriculture departments

 

Remarks by the President and the First Lady at the Kids State Dinner

 

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The President and First Lady at the 2014 Kids’ State Dinner

 

Published on Jul 18, 2014

President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama deliver remarks at the 2014 Kids’ State Dinner in the East Room of the White House, July 18, 2014.

 

 

 

East Room

12:17 P.M. EDT

 

MRS. OBAMA:  Okay, Braeden.  (Laughter.)  All right, it’s going to be hard.  All right, mister, you’re not supposed to make the First Lady cry.  (Laughter.)

 

Thanks so much.  You guys, let’s give Braeden a big round of applause.  (Applause.)  Well done, young man.  Well done.  And thank you so much, Christy.  Thank you.

 

Okay, this is cool, right?  You guys having a good time?

 

AUDIENCE:  Yes.

 

MRS. OBAMA:  Yes?  Has it been exciting from beginning to end?

 

AUDIENCE:  Yes.

 

MRS. OBAMA:  What’s been the best part so far?

 

AUDIENCE:  You.

 

MRS. OBAMA:  This?  All right, I didn’t cue them on that one.  (Laughter.)  That was a natural response.

 

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Well, I am just delighted to have you guys.  You guys look amazing.  You have dressed so appropriately for the event.  Doesn’t the room look beautiful?  They do such a great job.  And all this stuff was picked out especially for you guys.  It is really an honor to be here.

 

And I want to start by thanking Tanya and all the folks from Epicurious, the entire team, for, year after year, making this event possible.  It is truly the highlight of our lives, and I know that everyone involved really, really gets inspired from this event.

 

And I’m also thrilled about the new Kids and Chefs Cook for Success program that you guys are launching.  And with this effort, you guys are going to take this whole thing to another level.  So I love the fact that, Epicurious, you’re finding ways to step this up every single year.  So thank you, guys, and a big round of applause.  (Applause.)

 

And, of course, to our Delta Airlines team for flying everybody here.  Oh, let’s all go!  Yay!  (Applause.)

 

How many people was it your first trip on an airplane?  Or is everybody old flying pros?  You’ve been flown before, huh?  You haven’t flown before?  Well, that’s awesome.  So did Delta Airlines treat you well?

 

AUDIENCE:  Yes.  (Applause.)

 

MRS. OBAMA:  All right, there you go.  Bob was a little nervous on that question.  (Laughter.)

 

And I want to join Tanya in also thanking all of the family members, the parents, the moms, the dads.  I know we have an aunt or two here, as well.  Thank you all so much for supporting your kids in this passion, and for cooking with them and for putting up with those endless messes in the kitchen.  Who’s a messy cook here?  (Laughter.)  Me, too.  Me, too.  (Laughter.)

 

But I hope you all know that their success is because of your love and your constant encouragement for their creativity.  So we’re just so grateful to all of you grownups who are here with us today, and I hope you’re having a good time, too.

 

But, of course, most of all, I want to recognize our guest of honor, our 54 Healthy Lunchtime Challenge winners!  (Applause.)  Congratulations.  (Applause.)  Yes, whoop it up.  Party in the White House.  It’s exciting.  I am so proud of you. The President is so proud of you.  Oh, look at the room out there.  I missed the balloons.  (Laughter.)  We have been working so hard to make this event special for you.

 

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But these kids have been selected.  There were more than 1,500 kids that submitted their recipes for this year’s challenge, and it was not easy to choose just one winner from each state, so this was a competitive experience.  You had to claw your way to the finish line.  (Laughter.)  I hope you didn’t push and shove anyone on the way up to the top.  But you made it. But you’re all here because a panel of distinguished judges agreed that your recipes were the very best.

 

And I want to thank all the judges.  Sam was one of those judges.  (Applause.)  There’s a lot of eating.  Did you taste all 1,500 recipes?

 

MR. KASS:  110 dishes.

 

MRS. OBAMA:  110 dishes.

 

MR. KASS:  That’s a lot.

 

MRS. OBAMA:  Thank you, Sam.  (Laughter.)  Well done.

 

But yours were the most nutritious and the most delicious, all right?  So healthy and good, too, right?  And you guys took very different paths to get here.  Some of you started cooking as a way to bond with your families — and that was true for Genene Wedd.  Hey, Genene, how are you?  From California.  He said, “I love cooking with my mom.  It is fun spending time with her and talking about my day.”

 

And for some of you, cooking is how you celebrate your culture or other cultures you’re interested in.  Lucy Hickerson  — where’s Lucy?  I know I saw Lucy.  Where are you, Lucy?  Lucy is from Kentucky, and she made a pocket with sweet potatoes and kale.  And she describes her dish as a combination of an Indian samosa, a Spanish empanada and an Asian spring roll.  And what Lucy says, “It’s like going around the world in one bite.”  (Laughter.)

 

And some of you like to cook because you’re good at it and hope to make it a career.  That’s why Hannah Foley from Pennsylvania right here -– as she said — she said, “I love to cook and hope to one day be a chef with my own show on the Food Network.”  (Laughter.)  Wait, she’s got a title.  (Laughter.)  It’s called, “H to the F to the Hannah Foley Chef.”   (Laughter.) Yes, that’s been in my head for many days.  (Laughter.)  That’s why I knew it.  H to the F — okay.

 

But no matter how you got to the White House today, you’re all here for one simple reason.  And I think Adrianna Nelson from West Virginia — Adrianna, where are you?  Hi, you.  This is what she said.  She said, “I love to create healthy recipes because I feel great when I eat healthy.”  That’s why you’re here.  Like Adrianna, you all know that what you eat affects how you feel, and how much energy you have, and how well you do at school.

 

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And that’s really why I started Let’s Move.  I did it because I care deeply about the kids in this country.  I really do.  Not just as First Lady, but I’m a mom, I’ve got two kids.  I love them, and I love you all just as much.  So it’s important for me to make sure that the things I do for my girls are the same things that every kid in this country has access to.

 

And that’s why we’ve been working so hard to help families cook healthy meals at home, and to get more grocery stores into our communities, and to get companies to market healthier foods to kids.

 

And most of all, that’s why we’ve been fighting so hard for our new healthy school lunches.  And I have to tell you, and I said this to some of you in the photo line that you all are my inspiration.  Kids like you really do inspire me.  You all represent 54 reasons why we know that we can do so much better by our kids when it comes to eating healthy because the truth is, is that if 8-, 9- and 10-year-old kids can cook and happily eat a healthy, tasty meal, then there is absolutely no reason why we can’t get nutritious food into every school in this country that kids will actually enjoy.  You guys remind me of that every single day.

 

Now, I know that some of you might have friends who want to bring back the junk food in the schools, right?  Because there’s always those kids.  They’re like, give me my junk food back.  (Laughter.)  And I know that in recent months, we’ve even seen grownups, including folks in Congress, trying to undo some of the progress that we’ve made to get healthier food into our schools. And while the vast majority of the schools are doing just fine with these new standards, those few complaining voices happen to be the loudest voices and they’re getting the most attention right now.

 

So here’s what I’m going to ask you to do for this year.  I need you guys to make your voices heard, too.  It’s important.  And don’t be shy.  I want you to speak up, talk to your classmates and your teachers.  Share with them what you’ve learned about healthy eating and cooking, about how to craft interesting things.  Like, Braeden, you might even get your school to test your recipe in the lunchroom for other kids.  Teach them what you know about healthy eating.

 

And also, to the parents, parents play a really important role in what happens on the ground.  And in many instances, parents are way more powerful than people like us in the White House.  So I urge you guys to speak up as well, and to continue speaking up.  Go to those PTA meetings and those school board meetings and tell them what you know and what you’re learning, to make sure that they’re listening to all the voices on this issue.

 

There’s a lot of money involved in feeding our kids at school.  We are currently spending $10 billion a year — did you hear that, $10 billion a year — on our school lunch programs.  So it’s not surprising that there are certain interests that are resisting change and trying to take us back to the old ways of doing business, because for them there’s a lot of money is on the line.  But you all have a right to expect that your hard-earned tax dollars will be spent on food that meets basic nutrition standards.

 

It’s as simple as that.  Because when you are working so hard to prepare nutritious foods at home, I know that you don’t want all that work undone when you send your kids off to school and they’re eating in the lunchroom.  So we can’t afford to stay silent on this issue, because if we do we’re going to wind up right back where we started.  And that’s not acceptable.  Because I know that everyone in this room, at least, and many people around the country know that the food our kids are eating today will affect their health for decades.  We are laying an imprint on our kids with everything they put into their bodies today.  We know so much more about how nutrition and exercise impacts our children’s ability to focus and succeed both in school and in life.

 

And that’s why you guys, as parents, are so passionately supporting your kids on this issue — you know that this is real, this isn’t a joke.  So what I don’t want to have happen is that 20 years from now I don’t want us to be looking back and saying to ourselves, man, we were almost there, we were right on the brink of transforming our kids’ health, but then things got tough and expensive, and then we didn’t stand up and we didn’t speak up, and we gave up too soon.

 

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Our kids deserve better than that.  And they don’t know, but we know — we know better.  All of you kids, like kids across this country, deserve everything that we adults can muster up for you.  I have to tell my kids that every day — I still know more than they do.  (Laughter.)  So when we know better, we have to do better for you.

 

So I hope that you all will serve as ambassadors, okay?  And think about, as Braeden did, how you will pay this forward.  And there are many, many ways you’re going to pay it forward.  There’s no one right answer on how you’re going to do it.  But when you get a chance to do something this special and to come to the White House, and have all this press and all these special things going on, I know for me when I think about my advantages, I think, I have to give that back to somebody else.  That is my obligation.  That’s the price I pay for standing here and hanging out.

 

So I want you to think about what you’re going to do.  I want you to keep talking to other kids about eating healthy.  Help them learn.  Help them try new things.  And you’re going to run into bumps and bruises — I know, Braeden, it must have been hard work starting your new non-profit organization.  I’m sure it wasn’t easy every step of the way, but it was so worth it, right, for the thanks that you get and knowing that you impact the lives of others.

 

So I know each of you can do that in your own special way. And we’re going to do this again next year, so I hope that one of you will be standing here like Braeden, being able to share all the great things that you’ve done over the course of the year.  I can’t wait to see what you guys accomplish.  You all are pretty amazing young people.

 

So I think with that, it’s time to eat, don’t you think?  I’m a little hungry.  I just had fruit for breakfast so I’m really ready to try all these dishes.  (Applause.)  You guys, have a great time.  And I will see you after lunch.  Enjoy.  (Applause.)

 

Wait, wait.  We have a special guest — Braeden knew about this — but another person who likes this event just as much as me, who never gets invited to sit down is the President of the United States.  (Applause.)

 

THE PRESIDENT:  Hello, everybody!  I am not going to hold up the meal — everybody sit down.  (Laughter.)  I just wanted to come by because I love the event.  First of all, we have a lot of state dinners around here.

 

MRS. OBAMA:  We do.

 

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THE PRESIDENT:  They’re not always as cheerful and fun as this.  (Laughter.)  First of all, everybody is older and a little stodgier.  But this is a much hipper crowd.  More colorful outfits — so I like that.  But I also just love seeing young people who are doing wonderful things.  We are so proud of you.  To see the kind of leadership you’re taking and the way that you’ve really thrown yourselves into these projects is just really inspiring.

 

And sometimes people ask me, you know, Mr. President, you have this really tough job and there is always stuff happening all around the world, and how do you keep up with all of it and how do you keep your spirits up?  And my answer is, because I meet young people every day who I know are energetic and are full of great ideas and are going to be continuing to make this country better.  This is one way to do it.  You guys are leaders in your schools and in your communities, and you’re helping to teach folks the importance of good nutrition, the importance of putting good fuel in your bodies so that you’re living healthy, active lives.

 

And by the way, one thing — maybe I shouldn’t say this, but it’s not like our family — including me — don’t have some snacks once in a while — (laughter) — that may not be on the perfect nutrition chart.

 

MRS. OBAMA:  It’s true.  (Laughter.)

 

THE PRESIDENT:  Each of us have our weaknesses, so I’m going to reveal some right now.  Malia, ice cream.  I mean, basically, it’s very hard for her to turn down ice cream.  But she has learned to kind of control herself when it comes to ice cream.

 

MRS. OBAMA:  It’s hard.

 

THE PRESIDENT:  It’s hard, but she still has fun when she does have ice cream.  In fact, the fact that she doesn’t have ice cream every day means when she has it –

 

MRS. OBAMA:  It’s very special.

 

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THE PRESIDENT: — it’s like, hallelujah.  She starts — she is so happy.  (Laughter.)  Sasha — what would you say is Sasha’s pig-out indulgence food?

 

MRS. OBAMA:  She likes sushi.

 

THE PRESIDENT:  Oh, no.  (Laughter.)

 

MRS. OBAMA:  It’s what she’s into.

 

THE PRESIDENT:  She is kind of into sushi right now.  She’s a little — I love sushi, so maybe I had some influence there.  But let’s say — her pies.  She pretty much takes dessert whenever she can.

MRS. OBAMA:  Pie.

 

THE PRESIDENT:  Pie.  She’s like me.  My big thing — chips and guacamole.  (Laughter.)  Basically, if there is a bowl of good chips and guacamole –

 

MRS. OBAMA:  He loses it.

 

THE PRESIDENT:  — I lose my mind.  (Laughter.)  I lose my mind.  And the First Lady — French fries.  (Laughter.)

 

MRS. OBAMA:  But I’m going to say this.  I’m making a vow — I’m going to take a break from French fries.

 

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THE PRESIDENT:  Really?

 

MRS. OBAMA:  Yes.

 

THE PRESIDENT:  Wow, that’s big.  (Laughter and applause.)

 

Now, the reason I make this point is that the question is not can you never have anything — it’s, on a day-to-day basis, at lunches, at breakfast, at dinner, is your basic nutrition something that’s going to make you strong and make you healthy?  And if it is, then having fun food that may not be perfect for you, that’s okay, too.

 

But we’re just all trying to develop good habits.  And the one thing I know about all these young people is they’ve got great work habits, because, otherwise, they wouldn’t have been able to do everything that they’ve done.  They’ve got great habits of caring about other people, because they’re out there spreading the word about what they’re doing.  And as a consequence, I’m really optimistic about what all these great young leaders are going to achieve in the future.

 

First Lady Michelle Obama hugs last year’s winner from Delaware, Braeden Mannering

First Lady Michelle Obama hugs last year’s winner from Delaware, Braeden Mannering

 

So good luck.  Have a great Kids State Dinner — even though it’s technically lunch.  (Laughter.)  Calling it a state lunch — there was a debate about this and we thought –

 

MRS. OBAMA:  It doesn’t work.

 

THE PRESIDENT:  — it doesn’t make sense, because we have state dinners.  So it’s a Kids State Dinner, even though it’s noon.

 

And parents, good job, everybody.  You’ve got great kids.  (Applause.)

 

END
12:35 P.M. EDT

 

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Live from the 2014 Kids’ State Dinner

 

 

 

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Tune In: Watch the Kids’ State Dinner Live!

 

 

This morning at 11:25 a.m. ET, we’ll be streaming the 2014 Kids’ State Dinner live from the White House.

 

And you can watch it all right here.

 

More than 1,500 entries were submitted this year, featuring wholesome and tasty ingredients such as squash, ground turkey, salmon, and kale. Watch the winning recipes being selected for the 2014 Kids’ State Dinner below – and tune in to the Kids’ State Dinner live today at 11:25 a.m. ET.

 

 

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What Did Barack Do Today™


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White House Schedule – July 17, 2014

 

In the morning, the President will travel to Delaware. The departure from the South Lawn is open press and the arrival at the New Castle Air National Guard Base is open to pre-credentialed media.

 

The President will then travel to the Port of Wilmington, where he will announce a new initiative, using his pen and his phone, to increase private sector investment in our nation’s infrastructure.  The President’s remarks in front of the Interstate 495 Bridge are open to pre-credentialed media and streamed live on http://www.whitehouse.gov/live.

 

Afterward, the President will depart Delaware en route New York.  The President’s departure from New Castle Air National Guard Base and arrival at John F. Kennedy International Airport are open to pre-credentialed media.

 

While in New York, the President will attend two events, one for the DNC followed by a House Majority PAC roundtable event. Both events are closed press.

 

Following the roundtable, the President will depart New York City en route Washington, DC. The departure from John F. Kennedy International Airport is open to pre-credentialed media and the arrival on the South Lawn is open press.

 

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THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday July 17th, 2014

 

DAILY GUIDANCE AND SCHEDULE FOR
THURSDAY, JULY 17th, 2014

 

Thursday, July 17 2014 All Times ET

 

11:20 AM: The President departs the White House en route Joint Base Andrews, South Lawn.

 

11:35 AM: The President departs Joint Base Andrews, Joint Base Andrews.

 

12:15 PM: The President arrives Delaware, New Castle Air National Guard Base.

 

12:30 PM: The Vice President attends an event for the Michigan Democratic Coordinated Campaign Committee, Westin Book Cadillac -Detroit.

 

2:10 PM: The President delivers remarks on Infrastructure, Port of Wilmington.

 

2:15 PM: The Vice President visits the Step IT Up America program at Wayne County Community College with Mayor Michael Duggan, Wayne County Community College.

 

3:15 PM: The Vice President delivers remarks to the Netroots Nation Conference, Cobo Center.

 

4:00 PM: The President arrives New York, John F. Kennedy International Airport.

 

5:45 PM: The President attends a DNC event, Private Residence – New York.

 

7:30 PM: The President attends a House Majority PAC roundtable event, Private Residence – New York.

 

9:15 PM: The President departs New York, John F. Kennedy International Airport.

 

10:15 PM: The President arrives Joint Base Andrews, Joint Base Andrews.

 

10:30 PM: The President arrives at the White House, South Lawn.

 

 

"President Barack Obama in Denver, CO"

 

President Obama Responds to Malaysia Airlines Flight 17

 

 

President Obama calls to President Poroshenko of Ukraine aboard Air Force OnePresident Obama calls to President Poroshenko of Ukraine aboard Air Force One to discuss the tragic crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. July 17, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

This afternoon, aboard Air Force One, President Obama placed separate telephone calls to President Poroshenko of Ukraine and Prime Minister Najib of Malaysia to discuss the tragic crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17.

 

Here’s a readout of the President’s call with President Poroshenko of Ukraine:

 

President Obama spoke with Ukrainian President Poroshenko this afternoon to discuss the tragic crash of flight Malaysian Airlines 17. President Poroshenko welcomed the assistance of international investigators to ensure a thorough and transparent investigation of the crash site. President Obama assured him that U.S. experts will offer all possible assistance immediately. The Presidents emphasized that all evidence from the crash site must remain in place on the territory of Ukraine until international investigators are able to examine all aspects of the tragedy.

 

And a readout of President Obama’s call with Prime Minister Najib of Malaysia:

 

President Obama called Malaysian Prime Minister Najib today to express condolences to the people of Malaysia for the terrible loss of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 in Ukraine, as well as all the families who lost loved ones in this tragic event. The President told the Prime Minister that United States has offered immediate assistance to support a prompt international investigation. President Obama reaffirmed the strength of the friendship between the United States and Malaysia and underscored that the United States stands ready to provide any assistance or support necessary.

 

Bernadette Meehan is Deputy Spokesperson of the National Security Council

 

 

Readout of the President’s Call with Prime Minister Najib of Malaysia

 

Readout of the President’s Call with President Putin of Russia

 

Readout of the President’s Call with President Poroshenko of Ukraine

 

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President Obama: “Let’s Build Some Bridges. Let’s Build Some Roads.”

 

 

President Barack Obama delivers remarks near the Interstate 495 Bridge at the Port of Wilmington in Wilmington, DelawarePresident Barack Obama delivers remarks before he signs an executive action creating the Build America Investment Initiative during an event near the Interstate 495 Bridge at the Port of Wilmington in Wilmington, Del., July 17, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)

 

This afternoon, President Obama traveled to the Port of Wilmington in Delaware to talk about creating jobs, rebuilding America, and making our middle class stronger.

 

Before delivering his remarks, however, the President took a moment to discuss the tragic crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17:

 

Right now, we’re working to determine whether there were American citizens onboard. That is our first priority.  And I’ve directed my national security team to stay in close contact with the Ukrainian government.  The United States will offer any assistance we can to help determine what happened and why.  And as a country, our thoughts and prayers are with all the families of the passengers, wherever they call home.

 

The President Talks About the Economy in Delaware

 

Published on Jul 17, 2014

At the Port of Wilmington in Delaware, President Obama delivers remarks on the economy, July 17, 2014.

 

 

After acknowledging some of the officials in attendance — including Delaware Gov. Jack Markell, Sen. Chris Coons, Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, and Treasury Secretary Jack Lew — President Obama talked a bit about the nearby Interstate 495 Bridge.

 

Noting that the bridge used to carry 90,000 cars a day, the President explained that it’s been closed for repairs since last month — repairs that will make it safer, and more reliable for commuters and commerce. And TIGER Grants are enabling the Port of Wilmington to rebuild a wharf, which will allow it to compete with other ports for the largest cargo ships.

 

Today, the President delivered remarks at the Port of Wilmington in front of the I-495 Bridge in Delaware.

Today, the President delivered remarks at the Port of Wilmington in front of the I-495 Bridge in Delaware.

 

Discussing how much the economy has rebounded over the past few years, the President explained that we’ve got a “huge opportunity to keep this momentum going…but also to make sure that growth is broadly shared.” And one example is by creating those good jobs rebuilding America.

 

We know that in the 21st century economy, businesses are going to set up shop wherever they find the best roads, the best bridges, the fastest Internet connection, the fastest rail lines, the smartest airports, the best power grid. First-class infrastructure attracts investment and it creates first-class jobs. Unfortunately, right now, our investment in transportation lags behind a lot of other countries. China is doing more. Germany is doing more. They’re putting money back into building the infrastructure we need to grow over the long term.

 

And if Washington were working the way it was supposed to, Congress would be creating jobs right now … jobs like these guys in the hard hats are doing right now rebuilding bridges and roads and airports and ports all across the country. It helps us now and it helps us create jobs tomorrow. That’s what we should be doing.

 

Earlier this year, President Obama put together a plan to rebuild America’s transportation infrastructure over the long term. As he noted today, the plan would “support millions of jobs, [and] would give cities and states and private investors the certainty they need to hire more workers faster.” And it wouldn’t add to the deficit, as it would be paid for in part by closing tax loopholes for companies that are shipping their profits overseas.

 

President Barack Obama speaks about transportation and an initiative to increase private sector investment in national infrastructure, at the Port of Wilmington in Wilmington, Delaware, near the Interstate 495 Bridge. The federal government is helping pay for repairs to the bridge, which state officials ordered closed on an emergency basis last month because several supporting columns were tilting.

President Barack Obama speaks about transportation and an initiative to increase private sector investment in national infrastructure, at the Port of Wilmington in Wilmington, Delaware, near the Interstate 495 Bridge. The federal government is helping pay for repairs to the bridge, which state officials ordered closed on an emergency basis last month because several supporting columns were tilting.

 

We got $2 trillion worth of deferred maintenance in this country in roads and bridges and sewer systems and water mains. And we could put a lot of people back to work right now getting that done. And we’re going to have to do it eventually anyway.

 

But so far, Congress has refused to act on the idea — which is strange because infrastructure should not be a partisan issue. If you think about it, it was a Republican, Dwight Eisenhower, who built the Interstate Highway System. Lincoln built the Transcontinental Railroad. Both parties historically have understood that investing in this country for the long run pays off. When we invest in infrastructure we’re making sure that the economy is growing not just for the next five years, but for another century. That’s what right now Republicans in Congress don’t seem to be focused on. But until they do get focused on it, I’m going to do whatever I can to create jobs rebuilding America on my own.

 

The President also announced the launch of the Build America Investment Initiative, a government-wide initiative to increase infrastructure investment and economic growth:

 

As part of [the initiative], we’re creating a one-stop shop for cities and states looking to partner with the private sector to fund infrastructure projects.  There are lots of investors who want to back infrastructure projects because, when it’s done right, they then get a steady, long-term investment.  They get a steady return.

 

And lots of states and local governments would welcome more private investment, but they need a partner in the federal government to help do some matchmaking and work through some of the complexities of private financing of infrastructure.  So my administration is going to help states and cities apply for federal loans, get more public-private partnerships up and running, get more investment flowing into communities like Wilmington.

 

The President will sign a Presidential Memorandum to launch the Build America Investment Initiative, a government-wide initiative to increase infrastructure investment and economic growth by engaging with state and local governments and private sector investors.

The President will sign a Presidential Memorandum to launch the Build America Investment Initiative, a government-wide initiative to increase infrastructure investment and economic growth by engaging with state and local governments and private sector investors.

 

And this builds on other actions we’ve taken to speed up the permitting process for big projects, and attract new manufacturing jobs to America, and raise more workers’ wages, help women fight for fair pay, ease loan burdens for millions of students.  We’re taking steps on our own, still hoping that Congress at some point actually does something.

 

 

Remarks by the President on the Economy — Wilmington, DE ( Transcript)

 

A young girl greets President Obama as he arrives at the New Castle Air National Guard Base, in New Castle, Delaware.

A young girl greets President Obama as he arrives at the New Castle Air National Guard Base, in New Castle, Delaware.

As part of the Initiative, the Administration is launching the Build America Transportation Investment Center: Housed at the Department of Transportation, this center will serve as a one-stop shop for state and local governments, public and private developers and investors seeking to utilize innovative financing strategies for transportation infrastructure projects.

As part of the Initiative, the Administration is launching the Build America Transportation Investment Center: Housed at the Department of Transportation, this center will serve as a one-stop shop for state and local governments, public and private developers and investors seeking to utilize innovative financing strategies for transportation infrastructure projects.

President Obama is reflected through the window as he greets customers at the Charcoal Pit to in Wilmington, Del.

President Obama is reflected through the window as he greets customers at the Charcoal Pit to in Wilmington, Del.

President Barack Obama hugs Tanei Benjamin at the Charcoal Pit in Wilmington, Del., before speaking about transportation and infrastructure.

President Barack Obama hugs Tanei Benjamin at the Charcoal Pit in Wilmington, Del., before speaking about transportation and infrastructure.

President Barack Obama meets with Tanei Benjamin at the Charcoal Pit in Wilmington, Del., before speaking about transportation and infrastructure. Benjamin wrote the president a letter about her struggles as a working single mother.

President Barack Obama meets with Tanei Benjamin at the Charcoal Pit in Wilmington, Del., before speaking about transportation and infrastructure. Benjamin wrote the president a letter about her struggles as a working single mother.

Tanei Benjamin wipes tears from her eyes after receiving a hug from President Barack Obama

Tanei Benjamin wipes tears from her eyes after receiving a hug from President Barack Obama

President Obama holds Jaidyn Oates, 7 months, at the Charcoal Pit in Wilmington

President Obama holds Jaidyn Oates, 7 months, at the Charcoal Pit in Wilmington

President Barack Obama holds seven-month-old Jaidyn Oates, during a stop at the Charcoal Pit

President Barack Obama holds seven-month-old Jaidyn Oates, during a stop at the Charcoal Pit

Barack chatting with surprised patrons at the Charcoal Pit in Wilmington

Barack chatting with surprised patrons at the Charcoal Pit in Wilmington

 

And finally….the reason for the trip…..

 

President Barack Obama signs a initiative to increase private sector investment in the nation’s infrastructure after speaking in front of the Interstate 495 bridge over the Christina River near Wilmington, Delaware

President Barack Obama signs a initiative to increase private sector investment in the nation’s infrastructure after speaking in front of the Interstate 495 bridge over the Christina River near Wilmington, Delaware

 

Statements and Releases – July 17th, 2014.

 

President Obama Announces More Key Administration Posts

 

FACT SHEET: Building a 21st Century Infrastructure: Increasing Public and Private Collaboration with the Build America Investment Initiative

 

Conference Call by Senior Administration Officials on Ukraine

 

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Elizabeth Warren

Warren for President

President Obama is reflected through the window as he greets customers at the Charcoal Pit to in Wilmington, Del.

President Obama is reflected through the window as he greets customers at the Charcoal Pit to in Wilmington, Del.

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