October 9, 2011 |
As a senior staff meeting broke up one recent morning, President Obama pulled a few aides aside in the Oval Office for a pep talk. The chatter around Washington was fixated on the president's sluggish poll numbers, which prompted speculation that Obama might shake up his White House staff. Obama's advice: Tune it out. The blame ultimately belongs on him, Obama told the staffers, and he had no plans to cast any of them aside. "He was saying we should pull together and focus on what's important," recalled one senior staff member who was present and agreed to discuss the private meeting on the condition of anonymity.
September 20, 2011 |
He likes President Obama's jobs package, but Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa wants to see a sales pitch that isn't aimed solely at Washington politicians. Villaraigosa, president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, was in town Tuesday to press for passage of a substantial jobs package that would cut into the nation's 9.1% unemployment rate. He and fellow mayors met with senior White House advisors David Plouffe and Gene Sperling, both of whom are working to pass the $447-billion jobs plan that Obama rolled out early this month.
July 31, 2011 |
The Senate's top-ranking Republican said Sunday that lawmakers are "very, very close" to an agreement to raise the nation's debt limit, as Congress works to meet an imminent deadline to stave off an unprecedented federal default. In separate interviews, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) indicated that progress had been made late Saturday in conversations between the White House and congressional leaders on a debt-ceiling plan that could meet with enough support from both parties to move to President Obama's desk by Aug. 2. McConnell, on CNN's "State of the Union," described a $3-trillion package that included cuts in discretionary spending, caps on future spending and a vote on a balanced budget amendment.
July 7, 2011 |
Thursday will mark another round of deficit reduction talks at the White House. But the burden for advancing the talks and averting a fiscal crisis increasingly has fallen on two key negotiators: President Obama and House Speaker John A. Boehner. As a deadline nears, top aides for Obama and Boehner have privately been exchanging views about budget proposals, a sign of efforts underway to work through key issues that have separated the two sides for more than two months. Meanwhile, Obama and Boehner have held a pair of secret meetings at the White House, sessions coming after their golf outing last month.
July 7, 2011 |
President Obama faces an uphill struggle in his campaign for reelection next year. His job approval rating is stuck just below 50%. The unemployment rate appears likely to remain above 8% until election day. And, though it's too soon to mean much, early polling puts the nominal Republican front-runner, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, within striking distance. Even Obama's staff acknowledges the obstacles. "It's going to be a very close, competitive election … a street fight for the presidency," White House aide David Plouffe, the strategist who managed Obama's 2008 victory, told reporters cheerfully on Wednesday.
July 6, 2011 |
Congressional leaders will converge on the White House for Thursday's summit on deficit reduction, but the burden for advancing the talks and averting a fiscal crisis increasingly has fallen on two key negotiators: President Obama and House Speaker John A. Boehner. As a deadline nears, top aides for Obama and Boehner have privately been exchanging views about budget proposals, a sign of efforts underway to work through key issues that have separated the two sides for more than two months.
May 1, 2011 |
Long after midnight, after the president had announced the death of Osama bin Laden, a pair of White House officials left their West Wing offices and strode onto the grounds for a look at the jubilant scene unfolding beyond the north gates. The crowd was celebrating, but the team that had directed the capture and killing of the world’s most infamous terrorist had no wish to join in. “We’re not going to gloat,’’ said one official, who was not authorized to speak publicly.
April 9, 2011
SATURDAY Good Morning America (N) 7 a.m. KABC The Chris Matthews Show Politics and the budget; Donald Trump in 2012: John F. Harris, Politico; Gloria Borger, CNN; Cynthia Tucker, Atlanta Journal-Constitution; Michael Gerson, the Washington Post. (N) 5 p.m. KNBC McLaughlin Group (N)6:30 p.m. KCET SUNDAY Today (N) 6 a.m. KNBC Good Morning America (N) 6 a.m. KABC State of the Union With Candy Crowley David Plouffe, White House senior advisor. Budget battle: Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill)
April 6, 2011 |
For much of President Obama's term, White House aides were convinced the main barrier to his reelection was the worrisome unemployment rate. But even as the economy bounces back, a new political obstacle has emerged: rising gas prices. Trying to defuse the issue, the White House has arranged a slew of speeches and public events to reassure Americans that Obama has a plan for cutting gas prices. On Wednesday, Obama flew to Pennsylvania — a perennial swing state — for a town-hall-style meeting devoted to energy.
January 30, 2011 |
A changing of the senior guard takes place Monday at the White House as a new management team takes over and David Axelrod, President Obama's confidant and longtime political strategist, returns home to Chicago. Axelrod's next assignment is to crank up Obama's reelection operation, which will be run from their shared hometown -- and, significantly, outside the Washington Beltway. The Obama team thinks that will reduce Washington's influence on campaign decisions and focus the operation on voters' values.