The White House Blog: The President

  • Weekly Wrap-Up: Act On Climate Change

    This week, President Obama addressed the United Nations General Assembly on issues that demand the attention of the global community -- including climate change and violent extremism. We celebrated the third birthday of We the People, wished the Jewish community a Happy New Year, and said goodbye to Attorney General Eric Holder.

    Interested in seeing what happened this week at the White House? Check out this week’s Weekly Wrap Up.

    President Obama on Climate Change: “We Have to Answer the Call”

    On Tuesday, at the U.N. Climate Summit, the President highlighted the ambitious clean energy investments and carbon emission reductions the United States has made. And while we’ve stepped up to act on climate change, President Obama made it clear that it’s time for our global partners to stand up too, because “no nation is immune to climate change”.

    “We have to answer the call. We know what we have to do to avoid irreparable harm. We have to cut carbon pollution in our own countries to prevent the worst effects of climate change. We have to adapt to the impacts that, unfortunately, we can no longer avoid. And we have to work together as a global community to tackle this global threat before it is too late.”

    Check out the chart below and see why we can’t wait to act on climate change:

  • West Wing Week: 09/26/14, or "Stronger When We Stand United"

    Welcome to the West Wing Week, your guide to everything that's happening at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

    This week, the President unveiled the "It's on Us" campaign, signed the America's Promise Summit Declaration, and headed to New York City for the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly. That's September 19 to September 25, or "Stronger When We Stand United."

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  • Ebola Requires the World’s United Action

    The nations of the world, along with key international organizations, gather at the White House today to advance a Global Health Security Agenda that will help keep the world safe from infectious disease threats.

    This meeting is a critical opportunity to increase international commitment and, more importantly, action to stop the Ebola epidemic in West Africa and the infectious disease threats to come.

    Ebola is a critical issue for the world community. There’s a real risk to the stability and security of societies, as governments are increasingly challenged to not only control Ebola but to provide basic health services and other government functions. The stability of these countries and their economies, as well as those of their neighbors and of others, is at increasing risk.

    Ebola is the most recent tragic example of why it is imperative to work together to make the world safer from infectious disease outbreaks. Ebola is precisely the kind of health threat the Global Health Security Agenda could have prevented. We and our partner countries have agreed to work together so that effective prevention, detection, and response mechanisms are present in every country around the world.

  • U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Is Stepping Down After Six-Year Tenure

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    In remarks from the White House State Dining Room this afternoon, President Obama announced that Eric Holder will be stepping down from his current position as U.S. Attorney General.

    Assuming office in February 2009, Holder's nearly six-year tenure makes him one of the longest-serving Attorney Generals in U.S. history. He will continue to serve as Attorney General until the President nominates his successor, and the successor is confirmed by the Senate.

  • President Obama to the International Community: We Must Do More to Fight Ebola

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    The Ebola outbreak afflicting West African countries is now an epidemic of unprecedented proportions. President Obama has made combating this terrible disease a top national security priority and today, at the United Nations, he called on the world to join the United States in this effort.

  • Looking Back on My White House Internship:

    Ed. note: Applications are now being accepted for the Summer 2015 White House Internship Program. This blog post introduces readers to Larry Hailsham, a former intern who worked in the Office of Presidential Correspondence in the summer of 2014. When asked about his internship experience, here's what Larry wrote.

    I remember starting my application to apply for the White House Internship Program and the hesitations that I had. I wondered if I should even apply. But the moment I hit submit, there was no going back. A few short weeks later, I was interviewed and accepted into the program, something I would have never expected.

  • President Obama Chairs the U.N. Security Council Meeting on Foreign Terrorist Fighters

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    Today, President Obama led the United Nations Security Council in unanimously passing a binding resolution to stem the flow of foreign terrorist fighters into -- and out of -- Iraq and Syria.

    In its nearly 70-year history, the United Nations Security Council has only met six times at the Head of State level. "We convene such sessions to address the most urgent threats to peace and security," the President said, who called the meeting to specifically address this growing threat: 

    Our intelligence agencies estimate that more than 15,000 foreign fighters from more than 80 nations have traveled to Syria in recent years. Many have joined terrorist organizations such as al Qaeda’s affiliate, the Nusrah Front, and ISIL, which now threatens people across Syria and Iraq. And I want to acknowledge and thank Prime Minister Abadi of Iraq for being here today. 

    In the Middle East and elsewhere, these terrorists exacerbate conflicts; they pose an immediate threat to people in these regions; and as we’ve already seen in several cases, they may try to return to their home countries to carry out deadly attacks.

  • Choosing Hope: President Obama’s Address to the United Nations

    President Obama at the UN General Assembly 2014

    President Barack Obama addresses the United Nations General Assembly in New York, N.Y. September 24, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

    "We choose hope over fear. We see the future not as something out of our control, but as something we can shape for the better through concerted and collective effort. We reject fatalism or cynicism when it comes to human affairs; we choose to work for the world as it should be, as our children deserve it to be." 

    -- President Obama to the United Nations General Assembly, September 24, 2014

  • "The Most Important Title is 'Citizen'": President Obama on the Significance of a Civil Society

    President Obama Delivers Remarks at the Clinton Global Initiative 2014

    President Obama delivers remarks at the Clinton Global Initiative in New York, N.Y. September 23, 2014. (by Paul Morse / Clinton Global Initiative)

    The courage of Berta Soler, the leader of Cuba's Ladies in White who endure harassment and arrest to win freedom for the Cuban people.

    The determination of Russians in Moscow and St. Petersburg, speaking up for the rule of law and human rights in their country. 

    The hope of young Palestinians in Ramallah, dreaming of building their future in a free and independent state. 

    "It is the civil society leaders who, in many ways, are going to have the more lasting impact," President Obama said. "Because as the saying goes, the most important title is not 'president' or 'prime minister'; the most important title is 'citizen.'"  

  • President Obama: "No Nation Is Immune" to Climate Change

    President Barack Obama delivers remarks at the United Nations General Assembly Climate Summit 2014

    President Barack Obama delivers remarks at the United Nations General Assembly Climate Summit 2014 in the General Assembly Hall at the United Nations in New York, N.Y., Sept. 23, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

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    "For all the immediate challenges that we gather to address this week -- terrorism, instability, inequality, disease -- there’s one issue that will define the contours of this century more dramatically than any other, and that is the urgent and growing threat of a changing climate."

    Those were President Obama's words at today's U.N. Climate Summit -- a meeting of world leaders that showcased climate action commitments from governments, local leaders, and the private sector. In his remarks, the President detailed the ambitious clean energy investments and carbon emission reductions the U.S. has made, but made clear that all of the world's major economies also need to step up in order to protect our planet.