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. Obama/Biden - 2012 - Four More years of Unemployment, Debt, Deficits, Leading-from-Behind, Golf Outings, Vacations and Celebrity Events

    Did ANYBODY ask about all the companies and unions getting exemptions from Obamacare and why that is happening??? Did anybody ask about the numerous reports showing as many as 80 million Americans will lose their medical coverage from Obamacare when employers decide to pay the fine instead of pay for medical benefits?

    June 29, 2011 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  2. XWngLady

    @tstranko: "so tired of hearing him say the economy is recovering when it isnt... I visit small businesses and review small business financial every day. It's not getting better at all."......Well if you are so finanically savvy, then you should know that there are specific finanicial and numerical indicators that determine when we are in a recession, depression, recovery etc., none of which are contingent upon how many of the small business owners that you know feel like things are back to normal....and btw, some small businesses have always been and continue to be poorly run. The recession only exacerbated things. But those same business owners will blame the government for all its worth.

    June 29, 2011 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  3. GOP = Greed Over People

    "Like mid-July recess?"

    That would be an excellent start, as would having Congress at least work 40 hours a week like the rest of America.

    June 29, 2011 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  4. Sniffit

    "Mikey....don't forget the democrats who controlled congress for much of that time. Remember, they write the laws and tax code..."

    Ummm, the very post you responded to clearly opints out the fact that the GOP controlled Congress for 20 of the 28 years referenced....then you post that the Dems had control most of that time? Could we ask for a better example of GOPers/conservatives simply making up whatever reality suits their predetermined consclusions?

    June 29, 2011 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  5. ryanrory

    Talking points by republican bloggers. Opinion gone mad. Blind to looking at facts, or researching information in order to put weight to their arguments against the President decision making. ie idiot boy four and the door. where did you get this info from? Rational with little substance. Pigeon hole opinions, sounds a lot like the repubs that won' give an inch in congress . The Dems are more than willing to cut but also want to close loopholes. The Repubs want to cut and only cut . Taxes and programs.

    June 29, 2011 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  6. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    There is no blame game here, it's President Obama speaking the facts of the job description the Republican Congress hasn't fulfilled because they don't have leadership. Cantor proved that by by-passing Boehner when he walked out and going directly to Obama for leadership.

    June 29, 2011 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  7. Nini

    Someone needs to ask this man why he hates successful people so much.
    The difference between my America and Obama's is that in my America we look up to successful people and admire them and learn from them in Obama's you drag them down, you envy them and you unleash class warfare on them.
    The next election is about what kind of America you wish to have the one that punishes Prosperity or the one the rewards.
    Further more, I like to know when demonizing a sector of society like he does, if they are attacked is the president responsible?

    June 29, 2011 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  8. w l jones

    G I Joe could give a lot of poster a history course on different between branches of our government an how they suppose to operate. Bless.

    June 29, 2011 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  9. worr

    Where's the American Flag behind this POTUS? I see only a yellow curtain with Arabic symbols..........

    June 29, 2011 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  10. GI Joe

    Dave IL

    I think that would be Boner's golf game interrupted. He plays a week, goes to DC and yells Hell No for a week and goes and plays a week - ad nauseum. Get real.

    June 29, 2011 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  11. joan

    God bless Obama...the republican will not help in anyways to bring the economy back. They want to be able to blame the
    bad economy on him so they can get back in POwer. Friends that is all that it is about. Wake up American they do not have an ounce of sympathy for the middle class who cannot pay their bills or eat. They are all rich, spoil hateful people and
    they want to stay the same way. All they talk about is the consitution, take America back....do you all stop to think what that means. They are afraid that Obama is going take from the rich and give to the poor. People it is upon us to let the Replubican knows that we are not stupid ad we are onto to their games. Stop them now... Michelle Bachman, Palenty, Ronney... they are all notoriuous liars. Anyone knows what are these people platform... all they talked about is Obama this and Obama that. What are their plans to bring the economy back... we do not want to hear anymore trash talk... we want to hear their plans. Are they every going to run against each other ..... the seems to all be running against Mr. Obama. Straight. Is this a Gang up on the President.....

    June 29, 2011 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  12. vic , nashville ,tn

    I got what president is saying
    This is my city is doing
    Water rates increased by 40%, increased sewer rates by 60% and doubled the city property tax.

    At the same time they give tax break $221,907 to create 50 jobs

    Republicans take wealth from seniors and giving to rich

    For me tax break and stimulus are same meaning president is working for us but republicans are working for big companies

    June 29, 2011 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  13. Max

    @ 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."

    When did I say I was opposed to the tax increase? I said the rhetoric should match the policy. A constant Obama-support fallback is "he talks to use like adults." Well, then talk to us like adults. Don't try and galvanize the public with talk of private jets when I don't know a single individual making $200k (or a family making $250k) with a private jet. Or access to a corporate jet. I'm willing to bet most still fly coach on American Airlines. But those are the people we're lumping in with "millionaires and billionaires." It's a cheap shot made in an attempt to demonize the Republican opposition, but it's a transparent one.

    This is one particular area where we know, unconditionally and without opposition, that Obama is dramatically exaggerating the policy. This isn't a birther thing, this isn't a "Obama is a communist" thing. This is plain: Obama's policy increases taxes for individuals making $200k, or families making $250k, but Obama would rather focus the rhetoric on billionaires. Why?

    June 29, 2011 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  14. maikl

    The most lair i ever see. Now Congress is guilty. Bush before now Congress. What about Obama.?I can wait 2012.

    June 29, 2011 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  15. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    stevegee should do some fat checking, as he is incorrect in all of his Fox talking points.

    June 29, 2011 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  16. Let's get rational now

    Fine. Let's cut spending. Let's cut farm subsidies. Let's cut small business subsidies. Let's cut all subsidies to the districts of all congressmen and women who are screaming that spending should be cut and taxes should be cut. Heck, eliminate all government spending to those districts altogether. That should save a whole bunch of money. Let's also cut all government subsidized flood insurance.

    Here is my reasoning:

    Flood insurance: If you are stupid enough to build your house in a flood plain my tax dollars should not go to rebuild your house when you get flooded out eventually. THAT IS WHY IT IS CALLED A FLOOD PLAIN IDIOT! Don't build there and don't hold the taxpayer hostage for the bill.
    Small business subsidies: small businesses fail because of poor management plain and simple. They don't fail due to government regulation or taxes or government red tape. Quite the opposite. If it wasn't for government regulations or taxes most small businesses would never even keep a set of accounting ledgers. I know; I have been a CPA for 26+ years and have witnessed this repeatedly. The subsidies the government gives small businesses is like pouring money into a sinkhole 90% of the time.
    Farming subsidies: Another misused sinkhole. Farmers (my wife's family is all farmers) complain about government regulations and taxes are killing them (just like all of their farming buddies) but the real reason they are going under is because they treat farming like a hobby or a job instead of a business. The truly successful farmers treat farming like it is a business and don't depend on farming subsidies to stay afloat (or use them very wisely). The lazy farmers take every subsidy they can get, complain when they can't get them, join the tea party to protest the government and whine about everything under the sun. And then they still go belly up.

    June 29, 2011 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  17. Mikey

    @ Jo Jo – "don't forget the democrats who controlled congress for much of that time. Remember, they write the laws and tax code..."
    Are you saying that Reagan and W weren't able to implement their agendas? Because that would be incorrect – they did.
    Under W, the GOP had control of both houses of Congress for 6 years and we got two wars and the wheels came off the economy. When the Dems took over congress we got a record number of filibusters, so the Dems couldn't get things through Congress. Still happening now.

    Also, based on your point – What is the GOP doing now that the have control of the House? Nothing much worthwhile, eh?

    June 29, 2011 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  18. Tom Simon

    "providing loans to private companies for infrastructure development," good move – increase taxes on wealthy – BUT give tax breaks to them for investing high risk capital in start-ups and fledgling companies... we need to take away all the advantages of hoarding wealth – with high penalties in taxes and increase incentives for risk capital in capital gains, depreciation acceleration and other similar instruments.. problem with economy is no access to capital for the little guy. Take away advantages of big cap stocks and bonds and increase incentives for small caps and private equity financing.

    June 29, 2011 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  19. Mikey

    @Jo Jo – "$14T in debt. Increased more under Obama than last 3 presidents combined."

    ABSOLUTELY WRONG AGAIN. Reagan tripled the debt from $1T to $3T. GHWB added another $1T in 4 years. Clinton added $1T in 8 years. GWB doubled it to about $10 1/2 T. Obama has added about $3.5T so far. Not good, but low tax revenues due to recession, two wars (thank GWB), and costs of cleaning up GWB/GOP messes are the primary reasons.

    Obama = $3.5T Last 3 Presidents = $7T. Factually challenged? And the best in that regard in the last 4 POTUS was the only Democrat.

    June 29, 2011 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  20. jrt1098

    Note to All Liberal Elites: This guy is a rank amateur and he shows it more every time he is in front of a camera ! Can he answer answer a question without twisting 9 different ways ??? That way all of us Simpson's out in the heartland will be able to comprehend !!!
    What a clown !

    June 29, 2011 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  21. bill

    This guy is in way over his head.

    June 29, 2011 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  22. Nicole

    The politicians of this great country do not care about any of us anymore. They are too busy trying to keep their jobs that they have completely forgotten how to do them.

    June 29, 2011 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  23. S.positive

    By God's grace, this President is sure to WIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINNNNNNNNNNNNNN in 2012 as the haters and the other side they support are just to weak and wicked to taste anything good in this country. You plant hate and wickedness, you reap it. Thats just the LAW folks...

    June 29, 2011 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  24. jj

    Regarding gay marriage and gay rights, Mr. Obama is saying as a President he wants ALL gays to have ALL rights just as all human beings. And we must agree he has done a LOT to let that happen. As a man of God he may believe that marriage is between a man and woman. So what is wrong with that. Does he not have his right too as well as the Gays. Is like people keep forcing gay marriage on everyone Please stop. Live and let others live too. At one time we Christains did the gays wrong by totally hated on them and treat them unkind. God loves us all and so we must also but that does not mean that we have to change what is true. IThe gays are making the same errors as well by bullying everyone to accept gay marriage. If they want to be married go and have it done but I do not have to agree with it bottom line... thanks but no thanks.

    June 29, 2011 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  25. S.positive

    The Republicans do not have the vote to win but they do have the mouth to be noisy....
    The Republicans do not have the vote to win but they do have the mouth to be noisy....
    The Republicans do not have the vote to win but they do have the mouth to be noisy....
    The Republicans do not have the vote to win but they do have the mouth to be noisy....

    June 29, 2011 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
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