August 31st, 2010
01:21 PM ET
8 years ago

White House keeps lid on Obama, Bush talk

 President Obama called former President George W. Bush on Tuesday ahead of his Oval Office address.

President Obama called former President George W. Bush on Tuesday ahead of his Oval Office address.

Fort Bliss, Texas (CNN) - President Obama telephoned former President George W. Bush from Air Force One in advance of Tuesday night's prime time speech regarding the end of the combat mission in Iraq - but the White House isn't saying what the two men discussed.

Related: Obama to tip his hat to Bush?

Obama called his predecessor while flying to Fort Bliss to meet with military personnel Tuesday morning ahead of his Oval Office address. The two spoke for several minutes according to Deputy Press Secretary Bill Burton. There were no details about the subject of their conversation and Burton said no read out of the phone call would be provided.


Filed under: George W. Bush • President Obama
July 20th, 2010
06:01 PM ET
8 years ago

The 'special relationship'

Washington (CNN) - Like a couple renewing their vows, President Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron once again reaffirmed the "special relationship" between the US and UK during a joint press conference at the White House on Tuesday.

Calling it an "opportunity to renew the relationship with my partner, Prime Minister Cameron," President Obama also claimed the US has "no closer ally, no stronger partner."

But there has been a rough patch recently; while the US and UK relationship goes back to the founding of America, the tension between the two allies has been palpable.


Filed under: David Cameron • President Obama • United Kingdom
July 17th, 2010
04:13 PM ET
8 years ago

Maine residents abuzz with first family visit

Bar Harbor, Maine (CNN) – President Obama has spent his weekend vacation taking in Maine’s famous coastline, enjoying downtime at a local pool, and eating ice cream.

During their first day, the Obama’s took in some of the state’s attractions - including a hike through Acadia National Park, and a boat ride in the harbor.  The first family also capped off the day with a stop for ice cream.

On Saturday, the president and Mrs. Obama took their daughters on a lighthouse tour overlooking Bass Harbor after a morning filled with working out and enjoying a pool. FULL POST

Filed under: Popular Posts • President Obama
July 15th, 2010
01:37 PM ET
8 years ago

Activists: Stigma fuels HIV/AIDS rates in African-American community

Washington (CNN) - As President Obama announced the first national HIV/AIDS strategy earlier this week, outside the gates of the White House, 3 percent of the District of Columbia's population continues to live with the disease.

HIV/AIDS rates in the district are "on par with Uganda and some parts of Kenya" where the disease has raged for years, says Shannon Hader, Washington's former HIV/AIDS administration director.

Three percent of Washingtonians live with HIV/AIDS, according to a study released by the district in 2009. The accepted threshold for a "generalized and severe epidemic," according to the study, is 1 percent.

Full story

Filed under: President Obama
June 27th, 2010
10:16 AM ET
8 years ago

Obama, Cameron settle World Cup beer bet

Toronto, Canada (CNN) - Who says there's no accountability at the G-20 summit?

President Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron kept their word Saturday and fulfilled a recent bet made on the World Cup match between the United States and England.

The wager, made two weeks earlier, had the leader of the losing country owing beer to the leader of the winning country. But the two teams tied so both men brought beers to the summit and exchanged the items during their bilateral meeting.

Obama presented Cameron with Goose Island 312 beer from Chicago while Cameron gave the President 5.2 percent Hobb Goblin beer.

After clinking bottles, both men made statements reaffirming the "special relationship" between the two countries.

Filed under: David Cameron • Popular Posts • President Obama
June 25th, 2010
05:00 PM ET
8 years ago

Is a billion-dollar summit worth it?

Washington (CNN) - Like Dr. Evil learned in the Austin Powers movies, a billion dollars isn't quite what it used to be.

This weekend's G8 and G-20 summits are expected to top $1 billion in costs. At such a large price tag, it's reasonable to ask if the meetings are worth it. But according to former top White House aides, even with the hefty price the meetings more than pay for themselves in both tangible and intangible ways.

According to David Gergen, who worked for five presidents and has participated in several of these summits, the world has already seen a return on the current $1 billion investment.

Full story

Filed under: G-20 • G-8
June 23rd, 2010
02:31 PM ET
8 years ago

Kumar escapes from Washington, D.C.

 Kal Penn has left his position with the White House Office of Public Engagement.

Kal Penn has left his position with the White House Office of Public Engagement.

Washington (CNN) - Just in time to escape from the hot and humid Washington summer, actor turned White House staffer Kal Penn has left his position with the White House Office of Public Engagement.

Penn, whose real name is Kalpen Modi, left his post as associate director in the White House Office of Public Engagement on June 1 because of prior obligations.

"In order to fulfill a commitment he made prior to the start of his employ here, Mr. Modi resigned his post on June 1," White House spokesman Shin Inouye told CNN. "We deeply appreciate his service and wish him the best in his future endeavors."

According to reports, Penn is scheduled to film another installment of his "Harold and Kumar" movies.

During his time in DC, he was robbed at gunpoint. His wallet and cell phone were stolen, but he was not seriously injured.

Penn was a vocal supporter of then candidate-Obama and often appeared on the campaign trail on Obama's behalf.

Filed under: Kal Penn • Popular Posts
June 18th, 2010
12:48 PM ET
8 years ago

White House keeps hitting Barton

Columbus, Ohio (CNN) - The White House on Friday continued its assault on controversial comments made by Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas.

At a hearing on Capital Hill Thursday, Barton apologized to BP executives and said that the White House was trying to "shakedown" the company for a $20 billion fund to help with the aftermath of the Gulf oil spill. Barton later issued an apology for the statement.

During a gaggle aboard Air Force One Friday, Deputy Press Secretary Bill Burton said he "saw the tourtured construction" of Barton's apology for his initial statement, calling it "an example of what some folks in the Republican party truly believe."

Burton then warned of the consequences of a Republican controlled Congress, pointing out that Barton would be chairman of the powerful House Energy and Commerce Committee.

"This is something people should be considering" during the upcoming midterm elections, he said.

Filed under: BP • Joe Barton • Obama administration
June 2nd, 2010
02:27 PM ET
8 years ago

Obama gives campaign-style speech

'For much of the last ten years, we tried it their way,' President Obama said on the GOP Wednesday.

'For much of the last ten years, we tried it their way,' President Obama said on the GOP Wednesday.

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (CNN) – With five months to go until Election Day, President Obama spoke about the economy, the Gulf oil spill and the Republican Party in a speech Wednesday that sounded remarkably like a midterm campaign speech.

Obama told a gathering in Pittsburgh that Republicans "said no to tax cuts for small businesses; no to tax credits for college tuition; no to investments in clean energy. They said no to protecting patients from insurance companies and consumers from big banks."

"But to be fair, a good deal of the other party's opposition to our agenda has also been rooted in their sincere and fundamental belief about government," Obama continued. "It's an agenda that basically offers two answers to every problem we face: more tax breaks for the wealthy and fewer rules for corporations."

In a dig at the GOP, which is aspiring to take a significant number of congressional seats from Democrats this November, Obama also said "for much of the last ten years, we tried it their way. So we already know where their ideas led us... I don't know about you, but I want to move forward."

Obama visited Pennsylvania with Sen. Arlen Specter, who lost his Democratic primary bid just two weeks earlier after leaving the GOP last year in part because he thought it would increase his re-election prospects this year.

Filed under: 2010 • Pennsylvania • President Obama
May 17th, 2010
12:50 PM ET
8 years ago

Obama doesn't take questions at Freedom of Press Act signing

Obama declined to answer questions at bill signing for the Freedom of Press Act.

Obama declined to answer questions at bill signing for the Freedom of Press Act.

Washington (CNN) - After the signing of the Freedom of Press Act on Monday, President Obama declined to take any questions from the press.

During a pooled press event in the Oval Office, President Obama was asked if he would take a couple questions.

"You're certainly free to ask the question," Obama told the reporters in the room. "I won't be answering, I'm not doing a press conference today, but we'll be seeing you in the course of the week."

President Obama was referring to the press availability he will likely hold following his meeting with Mexican President Felipe Calderon. Traditionally, these events are known as "two and two's" referring to the number of questions each country's group of reporters will be allowed to ask.

Filed under: Popular Posts • President Obama
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