The Last 24™










The President Makes a Statement on Foreign Policy

July 16, 2014 | 7:30 | Public Domain


President Obama delivers a statement to the press on foreign policy.




The President Meets with His Climate Task Force

July 16, 2014 | 4:11 | Public Domain


President Obama meets with his State, Local, and Tribal Leaders Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience.




Press Briefing

July 16, 2014 | 01:04:12 | Public Domain


White House Press Briefings are conducted most weekdays from the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room in the West Wing.




President Obama Hosts an Iftar Dinner

July 14, 2014 | Public Domain


President Obama hosts an Iftar dinner celebrating Ramadan in the State Dining Room. This is the sixth Iftar that President Obama has hosted, continuing the tradition of hosting Iftars that began annually under President Clinton and was continued by President George W. Bush. The invited guests include elected officials, religious and grassroots leaders in the Muslim American community, and leaders of diverse faiths and members of the diplomatic corps.




Preparing Communities for the Impacts of Climate Change



We’ve been talking a lot recently about the need to rebuild and strengthen our nation’s infrastructure. As the President has made clear, a world-class infrastructure system is a vital part of a top-performing economy.


But there’s another important reason why we need to rebuild our infrastructure: climate change.


Communities across America need more resilient infrastructure that can withstand the impacts of climate change — like more extreme weather and increased flooding. That’s part of the reason why the President established the State, Local, and Tribal Leaders Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience last November.


The Task Force, made up of 26 governors, mayors, and county and tribal officials from across the country, advises the President on how the federal government can best help American communities dealing with the effects of climate change. Today, the Task Force came to the White House for their fourth and final meeting, and will give the President final recommendations this fall.


“These leaders are here because states and communities that they represent are already dealing with the effects of climate change,” the President said at today’s meeting. “They’re seeing rising sea levels, more powerful hurricanes, more intense heatwaves, severe droughts, and wildfires out west. So this is already happening, and these leaders understand that climate change is a threat to public safety, it’s a threat to public health, and to something that we want to emphasize today — the infrastructure upon which our economy depends.”


More severe storms and increased flooding threaten roads and bridges and businesses.  Rising sea levels threaten coastal communities and ports.


So climate change poses a direct threat to the infrastructure of America that we need to stay competitive in this 21st-century economy.  That means that we should see this as an opportunity to do what we should be doing anyway, and that’s modernizing our infrastructure, modernizing our roads, modernizing our bridges, power grids, our transit systems, and making sure that they’re more resilient.  That’s going to be good for commerce and it’s obviously going to be good for communities.


During his remarks, the President also announced a series of actions in response to early feedback from the Task Force. These actions will help state, local, and tribal leaders prepare their communities for climate change by building more resilient infrastructure and rebuilding existing infrastructure in a stronger and smarter way.


We’re going to do more, including new data and 3D maps to help state, local officials in communities understand which areas and which infrastructure are at risk as a consequence of climate change.  We’re going to help communities improve their electric grids, build stronger seawalls and natural barriers, and protect their water supplies.  We’re also going to invest in stronger and more resilient infrastructure.

Last month, I announced a new competitive fund — $1 billion — to help communities do this.  Today we’re taking steps to make sure that this competition will work.  We’re going to announce the specifics about who can compete, how we can learn from communities that are rebuilding stronger from disasters like Hurricane Sandy and flooding in Colorado.  We want the best ideas to become models for the whole country.  And the idea of this competition is not just the communities that win a grant are able to improve their infrastructure but what we’re also going to be doing is hopefully lifting everybody’s game and making sure that people in their planning are thinking about these issues as they move forward.

“The bottom line is investing in our infrastructure, protecting our communities, ensuring the health and safety of our citizens.”


— President Obama, July 16, 2014

He reiterated that this shouldn’t be a partisan issue, as it’s something that Democrats, Republicans, and independents all care about.


“I want you to know that you have a partner in me,” the President said. “You have a partner in this administration, and I’m confident that, working together, we can take some common-sense steps to make sure that America’s infrastructure is safer, stronger and more resilient for future generations.”


Find out more about the series of actions the President announced this afternoon.



Giving Working Families a Voice



Ed. note: This is cross-posted on the U.S. Department of Labor’s blog. See the original posthere.


Last night, New York Mets second baseman Daniel Murphy participated in Major League Baseball’s All-Star Game – proof positive that you can perform peerlessly at your job while still taking care of your family at critical moments. Murphy made headlines a few months ago when he chose to miss the first game of the season to be with his wife after she gave birth to their child.


Murphy’s story is one about having the right priorities and being faithful to your values, even in the face of criticism. But his story is about something else very important – the power of membership in a strong labor union, which can use collective bargaining to secure paternity leave and other essential benefits.


Three weeks ago, a crowd of more than a thousand – workers, business leaders, policymakers, advocates, and more – gathered at the first White House Summit on Working Families to ignite a conversation about how to provide more people with the same workplace benefits and protections enjoyed by Daniel Murphy. And the labor movement, which has been in the vanguard of this struggle, played a prominent role.


Read More.















Dick Cheney The Living Embodiment Of Eisenhower’s Greatest Fear


Published on Jul 16, 2014

test”Former Vice President Dick Cheney said Monday that President Barack Obama is “devastating” the U.S. military and needs to divert more resources away from domestic priorities such as rebuilding roads and making sure low-income people can get food.


During an event sponsored by Politico, Cheney said the next president needs to “turn around the whole trend” of cutting defense dollars.


“That ought to be our top priority for spending. Not food stamps, not highways or anything else,” Cheney said. “Your No. 1 responsibility as president is to support and defend the Constitution of the United States. [Obama] is the commander-in-chief and he’s absolutely devastating the United States military today.”




Obama Announces Expanded Sanctions Against Russia


Published on Jul 16, 2014

The Obama administration is imposing new, deeper sanctions on Russia for its intervention in Ukraine, targeting Russian banks and energy and defense firms.



“Given its continued provocations in Ukraine, today I have approved a new set of sanctions on some of Russia’s largest companies and financial institutions,” President Obama announced during a brief statement in the White House briefing room today.


“I’ve repeatedly made it clear that Russia must halt the flow of weapons and fighters across the border into Ukraine, that Russia must urge separatists to release their hostages and support a ceasefire, that Russia needs to pursue internationally mediated talks and agree to meaningful monitors on the border — I’ve made this clear directly to Mr. Putin,” he said. “So far, Russia has failed to take any of the steps that I mentioned.” “These sanctions are significant but they are also targeted, designed to have the maximum effect on Russia while limiting any spillover effects on American companies,” the president added. “The Russian leadership will see once again that its action has consequences.”


The sanctions were expanded in consultation with European allies, Obama said, noting that though the U.S. prefers diplomatic solutions, “we have to see concrete actions and not just words that Russia in fact is committed to trying to end this conflict.”


“Like any people, the Ukrainians deserve the right to forge their own destiny,” he said. “We’re going to continue to stand with the Ukrainian people as they seek to determine their own future.”


The U.S. Department of the Treasury today imposed what it called “a broad-based package of sanctions on entities in the financial services, energy and arms or related materiel sectors of Russia, and on those undermining Ukraine’s sovereignty or misappropriating Ukrainian property.”


Among the firms targeted is Kalashnikov Concern, the company that makes AK-47s.


“Russia has continued to destabilize Ukraine and provide support for the separatists, despite its statements to the contrary,” Under-Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence David S. Cohen said in a statement.


“Because Russia has failed to meet the basic standards of international conduct, we are acting today to open Russia’s financial services and energy sectors to sanctions and limit the access of two key Russian banks and two key energy firms to U.S. sources of financing, and to impose blocking sanctions against eight arms firms and a set of senior Russian officials,” Cohen said.



Mother becomes NFL cheerleader at 40


Published on Jul 16, 2014

Kriste Lewis, 40, is one of the newest member of the New Orleans cheerleading squad, known as the Saintsations.




‘Doctor’ Coburn Lies about Hobby Lobby & Contraception on Senate Floor





House Rules Committee Hearing on Proposed Lawsuit of President Barack Obama


Streamed live on Jul 16, 2014

The House Rules Committee holds a hearing on initiating a House lawsuit against President Barack Obama over failing to enforce the Affordable Care Act.




Marines test-drive GUSS vehicle Ground Unmanned Support Surrogate


Published on Jul 16, 2014

The U.S. Marine Corps tested the Ground Unmanned Support Surrogate (GUSS) last week at the Kahuku Military Training Area on Hawaii’s Oahu island. The vehicle, the size of a small Jeep, can also drive itself.




Speeches and Remarks/Statements and Releases


Remarks by the President at Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience Meeting


FACT SHEET: Taking Action to Support State, Local, and Tribal Leaders as They Prepare Communities for the Impacts of Climate Change



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