The White House Blog: The President

  • President Obama Wraps Up Visit to China, Heads to Burma for Second Leg of His Trip

    President Obama and President Xi hold a press conference at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing

    President Barack Obama and President Xi Jinping of China hold a press conference at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, Nov. 12, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

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    President Obama is traveling to China, Burma, and Australia this week, underscoring his commitment to our Asia rebalancing strategy, and his firm belief that our country's trade and investment ties to Asia play a critical role in our future economic growth and generating American jobs.

    The President started off his Tuesday in Beijing, attending events for this year's Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders' Meeting. APEC -- a forum consisting of 21 member economies that works to promote trade, investment, and cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region.

    In his remarks at the first APEC plenary session, President Obama called APEC "an extraordinarily important forum for generating ideas that boost regional and then global integration," and said that the forum "has helped to provide jobs and support growth in all of our economies."


  • Letters to the President: Kristy and the Affordable Care Act

    Every day, thousands of Americans write the President about the issues that matter most to them -- and my job is to help sort through them. This post is part of a series that will help highlight the stories of Americans who have written the President about the Affordable Care Act and what it means to them. Starting November 15, you can visit HealthCare.gov to shop for and enroll in a plan that works for you.

    The voices of people across America inform the President and give him invaluable perspective on the progress we've made -- as well as the work we've got left to do. If you want to write the President yourself, you can do that here.


    Last November, Kristy Borum of Canyon Lake, Texas sat down to write a letter to President Obama about the Affordable Care Act.

    For years, Kristy explained in her letter, she had supported herself and her children by driving 18-wheeler trucks throughout the U.S. This job allowed her to provide for her family, but did not provide health insurance. And unfortunately for Kristy, private insurance on the open market was not in the budget. Kristy is on Medicare now, but she wasn't a couple of years ago, before the ACA took full effect -- when she became seriously ill and spent 27 days in the hospital. Kristy had been without insurance coverage for decades—and by the time she returned home from the hospital she owed almost $100,000 in medical bills.


  • The U.S. and China Just Announced Important New Actions to Reduce Carbon Pollution

    Today in Beijing, President Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping made history by jointly announcing the United States’ and China’s respective targets for reducing the greenhouse gas emissions driving climate change in the post-2020 period.

    This announcement is a unique development in the U.S.-China relationship. The world’s two largest economies, energy consumers, and carbon emitters are reaching across traditional divides and working together to demonstrate leadership on an issue that affects the entire world.

    By making this announcement well in advance of the deadline set out in the UNFCCC negotiations, the two leaders demonstrated their commitment to reducing the harmful emissions warming our planet, and urged other world leaders to follow suit in offering strong national targets ahead of next year’s final negotiations in Paris.


  • President Obama Heads to Beijing, Kicking Off Trip to Asia and Australia

    President Barack Obama steps off Air Force One to a red carpet welcome on arrival at Capital International Airport in Beijing

    President Barack Obama steps off Air Force One to a red carpet welcome on arrival at Capital International Airport in Beijing, China, Nov. 10, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

    Over the weekend, President Obama headed to Beijing to kick off his sixth trip to Asia as President -- and his second trip to Asia this year.

    The trip -- which will also include stops in Burma and Australia -- will underscore the President's deep commitment to his Asia rebalancing strategy, and will reiterate his firm belief that America's trade and investment ties to Asia are critical to our future economic growth and the creation of American jobs.


  • A Free and Open Internet: What You Need to Know About Net Neutrality

    The Internet is the cornerstone of innovation. It should be open and free -- an equal playing field for entrepreneurs, writers, activists, businesses, for all of us to share ideas and unlock new possibilities that will define our future. President Obama is committed to preserving that freedom, and that is why he laid out a new plan to protect it.

    So what’s the plan and what’s the principle behind it? Here are some answers to key questions about net neutrality and what the President is doing to ensure a free and open Internet:  

    What is net neutrality?

    As a consumer, you can access the Internet by subscribing to an Internet service provider (ISP), such as a phone or cable company. Net neutrality is the principle that says these companies must treat all Internet traffic equally, no matter the website or service. It prevents Internet providers from restricting access to websites and services you use or giving faster Internet speeds -- or “fast lanes” -- to websites and services that are commercially affiliated with them. Essentially, net neutrality makes sure there are no gatekeepers deciding which sites you get to access in the online world.  


  • President Obama Announces the Presidential Medal of Freedom Recipients

    President Barack Obama delivers remarks and awards the 2013 Presidential Medal of Freedom to honorees during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House

    President Barack Obama delivers remarks and awards the 2013 Presidential Medal of Freedom to honorees during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House, Nov. 20, 2013. Honorees are: Ernie Banks, Ben Bradlee, former President Bill Clinton, Daniel Inouye (posthumous), Daniel Kahneman, Richard Lugar, Loretta Lynn, Mario Molina, Sally Ride (posthumous), Bayard Rustin (posthumous), Arturo Sandoval, Dean Smith, Gloria Steinem, Cordy Tindell "C.T." Vivian, Patricia Wald, and Oprah Winfrey. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

    Today, President Obama named nineteen recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. "I look forward to presenting these nineteen bold, inspiring Americans with our Nation’s highest civilian honor," said the President.

    "From activists who fought for change to artists who explored the furthest reaches of our imagination; from scientists who kept America on the cutting edge to public servants who help write new chapters in our American story, these citizens have made extraordinary contributions to our country and the world."

    The following individuals will be awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in a ceremony at the White House on November 24th, 2014:


  • Reddit 'Ask Me Anything' on Net Neutrality

    This afternoon, Senior Advisor for Technology and Economic Policy David Edelman took to Reddit to answer questions about President Obama's plan to keep the Internet open and free.

    The "Ask Me Anything" session followed today's statement by President Obama urging the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to take up stronger rules protecting net neutrality. During the Q&A session, David answered a range of questions on this important issue. You can see all of the responses on Reddit, or check out the full Q&A below.

    And for more about President Obama's plan, check out WhiteHouse.gov/Net-Neutrality.

    David Edelman answers questions for a Reddit AMA


  • President Obama Urges FCC to Implement Stronger Net Neutrality Rules

    President Obama today asked the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to take up the strongest possible rules to protect net neutrality, the principle that says Internet service providers (ISPs) should treat all internet traffic equally.

    The President has been a strong and consistent advocate of net neutrality since his first presidential campaign.

    President Obama’s plan would reclassify consumer broadband services under what’s known as Title II of the Telecommunications Act. It would serve as a “basic acknowledgement of the services ISPs provide to American homes and businesses, and the straightforward obligations necessary to ensure the network works for everyone - not just one or two companies.”


  • The People's Lawyer: President Obama Nominates Loretta Lynch to Be the Next Attorney General

    "The Department of Justice is the only Cabinet Department named for an ideal. And this is actually appropriate," U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch said. "Because our work is both aspirational, and grounded in gritty reality."

    Today, President Obama nominated U.S. Attorney Lynch to replace Eric Holder as the next Attorney General of the United States, or "the people's lawyer." As the President said: 

    The person in this position is responsible for enforcing our federal laws, including protecting our civil rights. Working with the remarkable men and women of the Justice Department, the Attorney General oversees the vast portfolio of cases, including counterterrorism and voting rights; public corruption and white-collar crime; judicial recommendations and policy reviews -- all of which impact on the lives of every American, and shape the life of our nation.


  • Weekly Address: This Veterans' Day, Let's Honor Our Veterans

    Weekly Address: President Obama on November 7

    President Barack Obama tapes the Weekly Address in the Roosevelt Room of the White House. November 6, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)

    In this week’s address, in advance of Veterans' Day, the President paid tribute to the men and women in uniform who have given so much in service of America.

    Veterans have risked their lives to protect our freedom, and we need to be there for them when they return from duty by ensuring they get the care they need and the opportunities they deserve. The President asked every American to thank and welcome home the veterans in their lives who, like all who fight for our country, are heroes worthy of our constant gratitude and support.

    Transcript | mp4 | mp3