Live blog from Obama's press conference
June 29th, 2011
01:00 PM ET
3 years ago

Live blog from Obama's press conference

(CNN) - President Barack Obama will hold a news conference Wednesday at 11:30 a.m. ET in the East Room of the White House. Follow live updates below. Read the full story on the presser here.

12:49 p.m. ET - @LisaDCNN: OBAMA DEADLINE: He told Congress if no progress on debt talks by end of this wk, "we'll have to cancel things". Like mid-July recess?

12:48 p.m. ET - Obama took 10 multi-layered questions over 66 minutes.

12:47 p.m. ET
@ReincePriebus: “Leaders are going to lead”? If Obama had been leading on fiscal responsibility, he wouldn’t have to raise taxes. http://bit.ly/jlEjse

12:47 p.m. ET
– Obama talked about getting letters from regular Americans and they are feeling some desperation. He said we know what to do, educate our kids, invest in infrastructure and we have to control our deficit. These folks want to think their leaders are not playing games. It requires us to get out of short term approach, he said we have to think long term.

12:45 p.m. ET
- @AWMooneyCNN: time for the 'i feel your pain' segment - 'these folks are counting on us'

12:43 p.m. ET – Obama said we could separate decision on debt ceiling and pay roll tax cuts. Don't need to decide together.

12:42 p.m. ET
- @christineromans: President Obama must walk the line between spooking global markets and also prodding Congress to avert a debt default.

12:40 p.m. ET - Tenth question from Reuters. Asking about debt limit again.

12:39 p.m. ET @LisaDCNN: OBAMA: I'm here. I've been dealing with Afghanistan, the debt crisis, Greece. I'm here. Congress is in one week, out the next.

12:38 p.m. ET - Obama said his kids finish their homework early. They are 13 and 10 they are not pulling all nighters. Congress can do the same thing.

12:37 p.m. ET - Obama on debt ceiling debate: "I am not engaging in scare tactics." He said I try to be responsible and somewhat restrained so folks don't get "spooked." August 2nd is a very important date, and there's no reason we can't get this done now.

12:36 p.m. ET - "The money has been spent. Obligations have been made," Obama said about the debt ceiling deadline. "This is urgent and it needs to get settled."

12:35 p.m. ET
@EWErickson: Funny how Obama would comment unequivocally about the constitutionality of DOMA, but not on Libya.

12:33 p.m. ET - Obama said Aug. 2 deadline to raise the debt ceiling is a "hard deadline." He stresseed this is a jobs issue ... we have run out of tools to make sure bills are paid. Obama said U.S. government can't pick and choose what bills to pay.

12:32 p.m. ET - Obama called on and congratulates CNN's new Chief White House correspondent @YellinCNN. She asked about debt ceiling – why should the America people believe the Aug. 2 deadline is the final deadline ... what will happen if the debt ceiling is not raised by that date?

12:31 p.m. ET - @CNNPolitics: Obama calls on CNN's @YellinCNN: "Congratulations. First question here? No pressure, you're gonna do great."

12:30 p.m. ET - Obama said e-verify needs to be a system that works. He said he wants Dream Act passed.

12:29 p.m. ET Shepherd: Obama's last press conference wrapped around this time -after the eighth question. Obama still has not called on CBS or CNN, of the major television networks.

12:28 p.m. ET - Eighth question on gun running in Mexico and e-verify, which deals with hiring practices of immigrants.

12:26 p.m. ET – Obama said we need to restore business confidence and confidence of the American people and we're on track. He said this is a "tough slog" but we're still moving forward.

12:25 p.m. ET - @AWMooneyCNN: how many more times can Obama politically afford dodging gay marriage question?

12:25 p.m. ET - Obama said he was not going to make news today on the same sex marriage question.

12:23 p.m. ET
- Seventh question from Wall Street Journal. They asked about deficit and debt talks and whether he supports same sex marriage?

12:23 p.m. ET
– Obama said he would accept Gadhafi stepping down in a way he would no longer be in charge of the Libyan military. "He needs to step down, he needs to go."



12:22 p.m. ET
- Obama on Libya: The initial phase would take days if not weeks ... "promise made, promise kept."

How Obama would define success in Libya ... He said Libyan regime has been compromised ... as long as Gadhafi is still presenting himself as the head of the Libyan government and as long as he controls a number of troops the Libyan people are going to be in danger. He said there is no doubt that Gadhafi stepping down from power is going to be the primary way to ensure that the Libyan people are protected.

12:19 p.m. ET
– Sixth question from Jim Sciutto of ABC News, on Libya: Are you prepared for this operation to last another year and what is success?

12:18 p.m. ET
@AWMooneyCNN: Websters: Victory =Defeat of an enemy or opponent; Successful =Having a favorable outcome #equivacation?

12:18 p.m. ET
- @rolandsmartin: Smart move by POTUS to make the argument that our Afghan policy is about beating Taliban/Al-Qaeda, not about building schools/roads

12:18 p.m. ET - Obama said he laid out a plan to draw down troops in a responsible way, adding that the U.S. understands Afghanistan is still a dangerous place. He again said "the tide of war is receding."

12:17 p.m. ET - What's an Afghanistan victory? Obama said he used the word "success" but not "victory." He said he laid out a plan in which we are going to draw down troops after "10 very long years" but we will draw them down in a responsible way that will allows Afghanistan to defend itself and give us the opportunity to continue to put operational pressure on al Qaeda.

12:15 p.m. ET
- Fifth question Mike Emanuel from Fox: Can you define what is "victory" in the war in Afghanistan, you haven't been using that word to describe the mission there?

12:14 p.m. ET – Obama said the goals are to apprehend those who attacked the U.S ... get all the intelligence we can that is consistent with due process of law and try them according to the rule of law. He said we do have a process to work through all the agencies – DoD, FBI, etc. – to think through on a case-by-case basis to figure out how a particular individual should be dealt with.

Their mission is to apprehend the individual, they do so safely – American people be assured that any time we initiate a mission like this, our priority to make sure this individual cannot carry out attacks on the U.S. and gather as much intelligence as possible.

12:11 p.m. ET - Fourth question: How to treat terror suspects?

12:11 p.m. ET - @rolandsmartin: POTUS didn't adequately make the connection as to why opening global markets means job creation in the U.S.

12:09 p.m. ET @LisaDCNN: OBAMA: business always complains about regs. I have obligation to uphold smart regs. We are reviewing all regs to look for bad ones.

12:08 p.m. ET
- Continuing on the economy, Obama said we can focus on jobs and focus on debt and deficit reduction. He said we "have to be able to walk and chew gum at same time"

12:08 p.m. ET
- Goldberg also asked about the National Labor Relations Board-Boeing fight -a big topic on the campaign trail for GOP presidential candidates. Obama appears to be waiting until the end of answer to comment.

12:06 p.m. ET – Obama said it's important to look at the tax code. A whole range of things we could be doing to create jobs, used the trade deal with Korea as an example.

12:05 p.m. ET - Third question from Julianna Goldberg from Bloomberg ... debt and deficits, is the debate keeping you from creating jobs?

12:03 p.m. ET @CNNPolitics: Obama: "We cannot defend the fed govt poking its nose into what states are doing & putting a thumb on the scale against same sex couples."

12:03 p.m. ET
- Obama on NY legalizing gay marriage: What happened last week "was a good thing" – we saw the people of New York having a debate, talking through issues, but ultimately they made a decision to recognize civil marriages. Obama said he thinks that's how it ought to work.


12:01 p.m. ET - Schultze: Twenty minutes and only two questions so far.

12:01 p.m. ET
- @rolandsmartin: POTUS turns around and says he doesn't think DOMA is constitutional. You can't have it both ways.

11:57 a.m. ET - On Libya: Obama said Gadhafi was responsible for more American deaths than just about anybody else on the planet – before Osama bin Laden. He said "we have done exactly what I said we were going to do" – have not put boots on the ground ... not seen a single U.S. casualty ... there's "no risk" in escalation. Obama added on Gadhafi: We've got him "pinned down and the noose is tightening around him."

11:55 a.m. ET
- Second question from NBC's Chuck Todd ... what is constitutional? Included bombing in Libya (War Powers), debt limit set by Congress and gay marriage.

11:54 a.m. ET – Obama said hopefully sooner rather than later Republicans will make "the right decisions for the country" ... everyone else has been willing to move from their maxims position and he's hoping Republicans will do the same.

11:53 a.m. ET – Obama said "we will reach a deal that will require our government to live within its means," while inspiring confidence in the business community.

11:52 a.m. ET - Schultze: Obama said everyone says we need a balanced approach. He said we are gonna have to look at entitlements and reduce costs. He said if everyone will give up something then Republicans should give up tax breaks for the wealthy. Obama said you can't reduce the deficit without revenue increase.

11:52 a.m. ET - Obama said any agreement on the deficit will include "tough decisions and balanced solutions." He said Democrats and Republicans can "bridge our differences" in "a way that does not hurt our economy right here, right now."


11:49 a.m. ET - Obama said what we've seen in negotiations is a lot of people say a lot of things to satisfy their base and get on cable news, but hopefully leaders rise to the occasion. He said that's what I expect to happen this time. "Call me naïve" ... but my expectation is that "leaders will lead."

11:49 a.m. ET White House Producer Emily Schultze: First question from Ben Feller of the Associated Press: Are tax increases a red line for you? This is in reference to raising the debt ceiling and the ongoing negotiations.

11:47 a.m. ET
- "We got to seize this moment," Obama said on debt talks – said Obama/Biden will continue negotiations with both parties "for as long as it takes."


11:46 a.m. ET - Obama said it's only fair to ask an oil company or corporate jet owner to give up a tax break that no other company enjoys ... said he doesn't think that's all that radical.

11:45 a.m. ET - Vice President Biden's debt talks ... can't get to the $4 trillion of savings we need by cutting just 12 percent of the budget ... going to need to look at the whole budget…eliminate waste wherever we find it ... trimming the defense budget ... tackle entitlements…reform the tax code. Obama said he spent the last two years cutting taxes for ordinary Americans ... said he wants to get rid of tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires.

11:43 a.m. ET
- Obama said there are things Congress can do right now to create more jobs ... there are pending bills in Congress that they can send to his desk, including Free Trade deals.

11:42 a.m. ET - @LisaDCNN: OBAMA: blasts Congresssional inaction by listing Jobs Bills Congress could pass "right now". #tlot #p2 #teaparty #tcot

11:41 a.m. ET @AWMooneyCNN: Obama's purple tie very bipartisaney

11:40 a.m. ET - Shepherd: Obama opened with remarks about the economy. Said a lot of folks still struggling with the effects of the recession ... struggles of the middle class families were a big problem before the recession hit in 2007 ... our economic challenges are not going to be solved overnight.

11:39 a.m. ET
- White House Producer Shawna Shepherd: The president's last press conference was on March 11 – 110 days ago

11:28 a.m. ET - @LisaDCNN: GET READY: Obama newser in two minutes (or so), GOP newser probably to start just a few minutes after that.

11:24 a.m. ET - @ReincePriebus: Would be curious to hear if Obama defends his labor board's job-killing actions. #NLRB #Boeing

11:17 a.m. ET @rolandsmartin: I expect Obama to be asked about gay marriage, Libya, debt ceiling, maybe even Gingrich, Bachmann saying he does nothing for blacks & jobs

11:07 a.m. ET - @MeganGrantCNN: Jessica @YellinCNN makes her debut as chief White House correspondent today covering Obama's 11:30am news conference. #CNN http://yfrog.com/h33t9vlj

11:05 a.m. ET - @SpeakerBoehner: Here are 7 questions about #jobs for President Obama’s news conference: http: http://j.mp/mBU1bg What are your Qs for POTUS?


Filed under: President Obama • White House
soundoff (85 Responses)
  1. whight_knight

    We should just get rid of obama he's nothing, but a war mongering terrorist...why else would he support and demand the injustices that he is currently demanding? There is no purpose to keep him around the job market has gotten worse, and all of the campaign promised he's made he's broken including the one that would have brought our troops home long ago. I oppose obama and the U.S. govt. both the president (puppet) and the govt (puppeteer) are nothing , but scum that only care about themselves...we must stop them and gather a govt. that will care about the people, and not their political wars and battles! Resist the govt. until they can no longer function! Fight back before it's too late!

    June 29, 2011 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  2. GI Joe

    SOOOOO – the HELL NO CAUCUS is STILL holding up things they could pass to help generate more or better jobs. FIRE EVERY MEMBER OF THE HOUSE THAT OBSTRUCTS progress for our citizens. 2012 is the year to do it. FIRE THEM.

    June 29, 2011 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  3. Max

    How is an individual who makes $200k a year a "millionaire or billionaire?" Assuming no taxes, no rent, no food, no nothing, wouldn't it still take them five years to become a millionaire? In a realistic world, wouldn't it take them three to four decades to become a millionaire? Why doesn't the rhetoric – "tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires" – match the actual policy being proposed?

    June 29, 2011 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  4. GI Joe

    Our best president in decades - definitely has the vote of my entire family.

    Obama/Biden 2012-2016

    June 29, 2011 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  5. GI Joe

    Executive Branch (President) does NOT make laws. They sign or veto laws sent by Congress.

    Legislative branch (Senate and House) make laws. They are the road-block to all progress right now. They are sitting on (holding up) EVERYTHING.

    It's Civics 101 folks – taught in most jr. high schools.

    June 29, 2011 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  6. Democrat Class Warfare - Destroying the economy, destroying the country

    No doubt this will be yet more divisive talk from the great uniter. Pitting one class against another. Pitting one race against another. All to cover his dismal failure as a President. Nearly 3 years into his "solutions" and the country is worse off economically and we're involved in a 3rd arab war. What a horrendous joke the Democrat Party has played on the country with this buffoon.

    June 29, 2011 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  7. Bob in Florida

    Let the "Chosen One" re-imburse the tax payers for the First Ladies recent personal family vacation to Africa.

    June 29, 2011 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  8. sonny chapman

    Talks like an adult instead of a cheerleader. Maybe the Repubs. leadership DNA can break through.

    June 29, 2011 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  9. Democrat Class Warfare - Destroying the economy, destroying the country

    "Call me naïve" ... but my expectation is that "leaders will lead."
    ===================================================
    Quite a remarkable statement from the inventor of "leading from behind". Mr. I-Vote-Present hasn't shown ANY leadership on ANY matter. He's got the UN and Arab League leading us into a Libyan war! This dolt is a farce.

    June 29, 2011 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  10. Four and The Door

    Obama said there are things Congress can do right now to create more jobs ... there are pending bills in Congress that they can send to his desk, including Free Trade deals.
    __________________________________________________________________________________________________
    But Obama already said he will not sign them. He is holding out for spending hundreds of millions in training programs to satisfy the demands of the AFL-CIO. He wants this tied to the trade agreements. The Republicans want to sign the Trade Agreements now. Obama is more interested in the support of big unions than creating American jobs.

    June 29, 2011 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  11. Jo Jo

    This guy is a snake. All he has done is lied and paid off his base/cronies/unions and spent money he doesn't have to satisfy his social agenda.

    People...THERE IS NO MONEY!!!!!. WAKE UP!!!

    CUTTING SPENDING IS THE ONLY WAY OUT.

    June 29, 2011 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  12. A True Centrist

    "Our best president in decades – definitely has the vote of my entire family."

    hahahahahahah...you were joking, right?

    June 29, 2011 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  13. tv22

    Enough with the blame game Mr. President. We're going to "live within our means", so that would mean no tax increases, right? And Republicans "need to make the right decisions for the country", like what exactly? If you control the White House and the Senate, what are the decisions that need to be made by the Republicans? Face it, most people want you to cut spending first, period. Do it and we can "live within our means", then do some meaningful tax reform. Maybe if everyone paid taxes that would be more interesting.

    June 29, 2011 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  14. Mikey

    @ max – Please!!! A single individual making $250K (taxable, not gross) would pay an extra $1,800 annually if the bracket for $200+K were increased by 3.6%. That's $35 per week.

    @ white_knight – Obama is doing better than Reagan did. Unemployment – Reagan 7.5% up to 10%. Obama 7.8% up to 9.1%. GDP – Reagan average 0.56% for first 7 quarters. Obama has averaged 1.6%. Stock market – Reagan – zero gain in first 29 months. Obama +48%.

    June 29, 2011 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  15. adam

    The President offers the notion that people who own corporate jets can afford to pay more. Then the President says the people who own corporate jets can still own them, just pay more taxes. So by the same logic, Mr. President, you would still have the same argument to tax corporate jet owners more, until they weren't in a position to have a corporate jet. Until the point arose that they didn't own a corporate jet, you could continue to argue they need to be taxed more.

    Thank you, I just proved the President's point was completely empty and void of logic.

    June 29, 2011 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  16. A True Centrist

    "we will reach a deal that will require our government to live within its means"

    ahahahah...first GI Joe and now President Obama. People are pretty funny today. The ratio of debt to GDP has grown almost 10% in his two years in office. GW started this nightmare and Obama has escalated it three-fold. President Obama and the current Congress has NO IDEA what within its means actually means. I'm not just assuming here, it's a fact. Look at the numbers. President Obama spent almost a trillion dollars to stimulate the economony and what happened? Unemployment has grown over 50%, more Americans now are living in homes that are underwater and he has added yet another war to our ever increasing list. He is a joke of a President, topped only by the joke of a Congress we have.

    June 29, 2011 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  17. exodus84

    11:43 a.m. ET – Obama said there are things Congress can do right now to create more jobs ... there are pending bills in Congress that they can send to his desk, including *Free Trade deals.*

    GOOD GOD NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Those free trade deals will create more jobs alright, in other freakin countries!! How many jobs did Americans gain from NAFTA and the China agreement? That went real well!

    June 29, 2011 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  18. Mike

    The solution to the economic problem is very very simple!! Impose a 100% TARIFF on all foreign goods and services. PROBLEM SOLVED!!

    June 29, 2011 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  19. Bob in Pa.

    remember Charlie Brown cartoons when the teacher is talking ... but never reallly says anything. The man hasn't got a clue. He thinks the government must control everything while the surfs should be happier with less.

    June 29, 2011 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  20. Mikey

    @ Jo Jo – "spent money he doesn't have to satisfy his social agenda."

    Please provide examples. Was saving the banking industry and our economy part of his "social agenda"? Was saving GM and Chrysler and our entire automotive industry part of his "social agenda"? Is achieving our objectives in Iraq and Afghanistan and then getting out part of his "social agenda"? Was repeatedly cutting taxes for small businesses and the middle class part of his "social agenda"?

    Are you saying Obama's agenda is pro-business, pro-capital, pro-middle class? Because that is where most of the money has gone.

    June 29, 2011 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  21. heerobya

    It's nice listening to an adult speak, telling the children in the Congress/Senate to play nice and actually do their work so we can move forward.

    The "Party of No!" is NOT going to win the White House by holding America hostage for another 17 months!

    June 29, 2011 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  22. Fair is Fair

    Amazing how much he hems, haws, and stammers when there's no canned words on TOTUS.

    June 29, 2011 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  23. you

    “The fact that we are here today to debate raising America's debt limit is a sign of leadership failure,” Obama said on March 16, 2006. “Leadership means that ‘the buck stops here.’ Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better. I therefore intend to oppose the effort to increase America's debt limit.”

    June 29, 2011 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  24. ConfucianScholar

    Obama has been a failure from the get go. He promised to bring democrats and republicans together only to join in the bickering once he was in office. He still doesn't take responsibility for the economy every time he says he inherited the slow down...even after 3 years of him in office.

    June 29, 2011 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  25. Padraig

    As Obama eloquently put it the other day with shovels in the ground. That failed then laughed. His plans are not working. Towards GI Joe, our best President. I would rate Clinton far better than Obama. I rank Obama with Carter – a near-do-well who has only driven our economy and the US as a leader in the world in to the dark abyss.

    June 29, 2011 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
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