September 3, 2011 |
To secure an audience with the Obama family matriarch at her farmhouse in western Kenya, you are told to pay respects at the local seat of power. This is a run-down government building where the district commissioner, a scowling man in a black suit, receives you without warmth. You've come to see Sarah Onyango, you explain, the woman referred to as "Granny" by the president of the United States. You are coming with the blessing of the president's half brother Malik Obama, you quickly add. District Commissioner Boaz Cherutich, who controls the woman's 24-hour security detail, dismisses you brusquely, saying: With the family's permission, you don't need mine.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 11, 2013 |
Using a method similar to California's to fund early-childhood education, President Obama is proposing a tax hike for his "Preschool for All" plan in the budget presented to Congress. The proposed 94-cent hike on cigarettes is projected to generate more than $78 billion over 10 years. Some Los Angeles-based early-childhood education providers praised the proposal for its plan to fund education for preschoolers across all types of socioeconomic backgrounds. “The president's plan falls right in line with what [Los Angeles Universal Preschool]
May 11, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Sen. Dianne Feinstein made headlines recently by demanding a forceful U.S. response to Syria's use of chemical weapons against its population. Less noticed was that the California Democrat wasn't urging deeper military involvement or other dramatic steps, but only a new push for action by the United Nations Security Council, which has already rejected Western-backed resolutions on Syria three times. In this cautious approach, Feinstein, who is chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, is not alone.
November 13, 2012 |
CHICAGO - Early on election day, in two tight, tucked-away rooms at Obama headquarters known as the Cave and the Alley, the campaign's data-crunching team awaited the nation's first results, from Dixville Notch, a New Hampshire hamlet that traditionally votes at midnight. Dixville Notch split 5-5. It did not seem an auspicious outcome for the president. But for the math geeks and data wizards who spent more than a year devising sophisticated models to predict which voters would back the president, Dixville Notch was a victory.
May 15, 2013 |
In requiring the U.S. Senate to confirm presidential appointments, the Constitution aims to ensure a second level of scrutiny of the qualifications of government officials. But Senate Republicans have hijacked the confirmation process, not only to thwart individual nominees but to undermine laws they don't agree with. If they continue in their obstructionism, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) should revisit the possibility of doing away with the filibuster for nominations. The most immediate test case involves the National Labor Relations Board, the federal agency that moderates disputes between labor and management.
March 15, 2012 |
President Obama coined a new campaign line on Thursday when he said Republican presidential candidates' views on energy policy qualifies them as members of the "Flat Earth Society. " Speaking to a crowd in the Maryland suburbs of Washington, Obama charged that the GOP contenders are dismissive of alternative energy and compared them to those who thought Columbus shouldn't set sail. "We've heard these folks in the past," Obama said. "'Television won't last. It's a flash in the pan.' ... 'The horse is here to stay but the automobile is only a fad.'" While the president riffed on the idea in a joking tone, his speech at Prince George's Community College revealed a very serious undercurrent running through his White House right now. The president has few tools to check the rising cost of gasoline in the short term, and his advisors are acutely aware of the effect this could have on voters.
July 18, 2012 |
Arizona's Sheriff Joe Arpaio says that volunteer investigators working for him have concluded that President Obama's birth certificate is not legitimate. The Maricopa County sheriff made his remarks Tuesday at a news conference, saying: “At the very least, I can tell you this, based on all of the evidence presented and investigated, I cannot in good faith report to you that these documents are authentic.” He added: “My investigators believe that the long-form birth certificate was manufactured electronically and that it did not originate in a paper format as claimed by the White House.” The latest pronouncements are a return to the issue for Arpaio, who is seeking reelection in November.
April 12, 2013 |
WASHINGTON -- President Obama's proposal to trim Social Security's cost-of-living adjustments has sparked not only Democratic outrage, but Republican confusion. In the days since Obama put the idea in his 2014 budget, Republicans' reactions have included support, opposition and refusal to commit. The proposal was once a mainstay of the GOP's deficit-reduction overtures to the White House. House Speaker John A. Boehner said Thursday that the idea, the so-called chained Consumer Price Index, “is the least we must do to begin to solve the problems in Social Security.” DOCUMENT: President Obama's 2014 budget But the chairman of the House Republican Congressional Committee, who is trying to preserve the party's majority in the House in the next election, called it a “shocking attack on seniors.” “You're trying to balance this budget on the backs of seniors and I just think it's not the right way to go,” Rep. Greg Walden of Oregon told CNN. That potentially off-message comment provoked swift rebuke from the powerful Club for Growth, the conservative advocacy group that supports the measure as a starting point for reining in spending on government entitlement programs.
September 15, 2011 |
Reporting from Washington -- For more than a year, as conservative states have battled President Obama's sweeping healthcare law, California was supposed to be a model that showed the law's promise. But the state is emerging as one of the biggest headaches for the White House in its bid to help states bring millions of Americans into the healthcare system starting in 2014. Though still outpacing much of the nation, cash-strapped California is cutting its healthcare safety net more aggressively than almost any other state, despite billions of dollars in special aid from Washington.
May 27, 2011 |
Acting with minutes to spare, President Obama approved a four-year extension of expiring provisions of the Patriot Act, after Congress overcame mounting opposition from both parties to narrowly avoid a lapse in the terrorist surveillance law. Obama, attending an international summit in France, awoke early Friday to review and approve the bill, directing that it be signed in Washington by automatic pen before the provisions expired at midnight Thursday...