The White House Blog: The President

  • The President Commemorates the 70th Anniversary of D-Day

    Ed. note: This is cross-posted on the White House Blog. See the original post here.

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    Earlier today — the last day of his current trip across Europe — President Obama traveled to Normandy, France to commemorate the 70th anniversary of D-Day.

    After meeting with World War II and post-9/11 U.S. veterans, the President attended the 70th French-American Commemoration D-Day Ceremony at the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial at Omaha Beach. In his remarks, he paid tribute to the American and Allied forces who fought during the D-Day landings in June of 1944.

    "I’m honored to return here today to pay tribute to the men and women of a generation who defied every danger -- among them, our veterans of D-Day," President Obama said. He went on to thank the people of France for their generosity to Americans who have come "over the generations — to these beaches, and to this sacred place of rest for 9,387 Americans."


  • Day 4: The President Commemorates the 70th Anniversary of D-Day

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    Earlier today — the last day of his current trip across Europe — President Obama traveled to Normandy, France to commemorate the 70th anniversary of D-Day.

    After meeting with World War II and post-9/11 U.S. veterans, the President attended the 70th French-American Commemoration D-Day Ceremony at the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial at Omaha Beach. In his remarks, he paid tribute to the American and Allied forces who fought during the D-Day landings in June of 1944.

    "I’m honored to return here today to pay tribute to the men and women of a generation who defied every danger -- among them, our veterans of D-Day," President Obama said. He went on to thank the people of France for their generosity to Americans who have come "over the generations — to these beaches, and to this sacred place of rest for 9,387 Americans."


  • West Wing Week: 6/6/14 or, "Dispatches: Europe"

    This week, the President embarked on a three country tour which took him to Poland, the G7 Summit in Brussels, Belgium and then onto France where the President reaffirmed the United States commitment of support for the people and government of Ukraine, announced broader efforts to strengthen and modernize NATO, highlighted our work to diversify European energy security, and deepened our negotiations around the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

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  • The Employment Situation in May

    Job growth exceeded 200,000 for the fourth straight month in May, and businesses have now added over a million jobs so far this year. This month’s report continued the trend of steady job growth. While the consistent pace of job gains means the economy has come a long way in recovering from the Great Recession, the President believes that more can and should be done to strengthen economic growth and expand economic opportunity. Continuing to press ahead using his executive authority wherever possible, the President will hold events next week focused on ways to take action to improve college affordability and support working families.

    FIVE KEY POINTS IN TODAY’S REPORT FROM THE BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS

    1. The private sector has added 9.4 million jobs over 51 straight months of job growth. Today we learned that total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 217,000 in May, mainly reflecting a 216,000 increase in private employment, slightly above the 197,000 average pace over the last twelve months. The three-month moving average of 229,000 is the highest in over a year.


  • Day 3: The President Attends the G-7 Summit

    President Obama With Other G7 Summit Leaders

    President Barack Obama talks with other G7 Summit leaders before the start of their plenary session on the global economy, in Brussels, Belgium. June 5, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

    On the third day of President Obama's four-day European tour, he attended the 2014 G-7 Summit in Brussels, Belgium. The summit brought together like-minded, advanced industrial economies to discuss a number of key issues, including energy security, climate change, the global economy, development, and the situation in Ukraine.


  • Senate Confirms Sylvia Mathews Burwell as Secretary of Health and Human Services

    President Barack Obama, with Vice President Joe Biden, announces Sylvia Mathews Burwell as his nominee to succeed Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebeliu

    President Barack Obama, with Vice President Joe Biden, announces Sylvia Mathews Burwell as his nominee to succeed Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, in the Rose Garden of the White House, April 11, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)

    Today, a bipartisan majority of Senators confirmed Sylvia Mathews Burwell as the new Secretary of Health and Human Services. In a statement released this afternoon, President Obama commended the group of Senators and reiterated his confidence in Burwell's leadership.

    I applaud the strong, bipartisan majority of Senators who today confirmed Sylvia Mathews Burwell as America’s next Secretary of Health and Human Services. Sylvia is a proven manager who knows how to deliver results, and over her career she has built deep relationships with Democrats and Republicans alike.  I’m confident Sylvia’s unparalleled experience will serve her well in her new role as she works to ensure the safety of our food and drug supply, protect our nation from outbreaks or bioterror attacks, keep America at the forefront of medical research, and make sure every American has access to quality, affordable healthcare. 


  • Announcing the President's First-Ever Tumblr Q&A

    Update: This live event has concluded. Watch the full Tumblr Q&A here.

    We’re excited to announce that on Tuesday, June 10, at 4:00pm ET President Obama will take to Tumblr to answer your questions about education, college affordability, and reducing student loan debt.

    Getting a higher education is the single-most important investment students can make in their own futures. At the same time, it’s never been more expensive. That’s why since taking office, the President has made historic investments to make college more affordable – and it's why he's inviting you to join a conversation about the issue. Starting today, you can submit questions for the President at ObamaIRL.tumblr.com.


  • Day 2: The President Wraps Up His Visit to Poland

    President Barack Obama meets with President-elect Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine during a bilateral meeting in Warsaw

    President Barack Obama meets with President-elect Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine during a bilateral meeting in Warsaw, Poland, June 4, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

    Kicking off the second day of his trip to Europe, President Obama took part in a bilateral meeting with Ukrainian President-elect Petro Poroshenko in Warsaw, Poland.

    In remarks following the meeting, President Obama said that they discussed the President-elect's plans to bring "peace and order to the east," along with the need for the international community to step up and support Poroshenko's efforts:

    The challenge now for the international community is to make sure that we are supporting Petro’s efforts. And the United States has already stepped up in a number of ways. We’re supplementing the assistance that the IMF is providing with $1 billion in additional loan guarantees, and we’ve discussed additional steps that we might take to help during this reform and transition process. We’ve discussed additional steps that we can take to help train and professionalize the Ukrainian law enforcement and military so they can deal with some of the challenges that are still taking place in certain portions of the country. And, in fact, today we announced some additional non-lethal assistance that we can provide -- things like night vision goggles that will help a professional Ukrainian military force do its job.


  • What They're Saying Around the Country: Support for Commonsense, Responsible Steps to Curb Carbon Pollution

    On Monday, as part of the President’s Climate Action Plan, the EPA proposed the first-ever carbon pollution guidelines for power plants. We already regulate pollution like sulfur, arsenic, mercury, and lead, but we let power plants release as much carbon pollution as they want.

    The EPA’s proposal will prevent as many as 150,000 asthma attacks in kids each year while helping combat the impacts of global warming, which are already being felt in communities across the country. It provides states the flexibility to meet the standards using the energy sources that work best for them.

    These commonsense, responsible steps to curb carbon pollution are already being hailed by editorial boards across the country. Here’s a sample of what they’re saying:

    Maryland — Baltimore Sun: "Carbon rules can work: Obama administration unveils a climate change plan already proven effective by Maryland and other states with cap-and-trade policies"

    Make no mistake, this is not anti-business. A lot of folks in the utility industry will be pleased to see the regulations move forward, chiefly because it will finally bring some consistency to the market and create new opportunities for renewable power. Meanwhile, burning less coal will also mean reducing harmful and potentially cancer-causing byproducts like mercury and sulfuric acid that are a threat to human health and the environment as well.


  • Day 1: The President Touches Down in Poland, Starting Four-Day Trip to Europe

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    Early this morning, President Obama landed in Warsaw, Poland — his first stop on a four-day trip to Europe in which he will also visit Belgium and France.

    Shortly after he landed, the President took part in an arrival ceremony at Warsaw Chopin Airport with President Bronisław Komorowski of Poland. "It is wonderful to be back in Poland," President Obama said, adding that the country is "one of our great friends and one of our strongest allies in the world."

    It is a special honor to be here as Poles celebrate the 25th anniversary of the rebirth of Polish democracy. And this year also marks the 15th anniversary of Poland’s membership in NATO. I’m starting the visit here because our commitment to Poland’s security, as well as the security of our allies in Central and Eastern Europe, is a cornerstone of our own security and it is sacrosanct.