Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on Friday defended the White House approach to the deficit as his department officially confirmed a fiscal 2012 deficit of $1.089 trillion. That figure is $207 billion less than in 2011, and $238 billion less than forecast in February. The fact the deficit remains above $1 trillion for the fourth year in a row, despite President Obama's pledge to cut it in half by now, is a major headache for Obama’s reelection campaign. In a joint statement with acting Budget Director Jeff Zients, Geithner sought to blame Congress for the deficit.
While Vice President Biden stressed the importance of "facts" a total of 26 times on the debate stage, those facts required considerable clarification Friday from the White House. (Snip) At another point, Biden appeared to signal a potential shift in policy when he described the president's proposed tax hike as affecting people making $1 million and more. But White House Press Secretary Jay Carney, while effusively praising Biden's feisty performance, had to use his briefing Friday to clear up those and other statements. On both points, Carney sought -- at length -- to explain why Biden's remarks were being misinterpreted.
(Reuters) - U.S. intelligence efforts in Libya have suffered a significant setback due to the abandonment and exposure of a facility in Benghazi, Libya identified by a newspaper as a "CIA base" following a congressional hearing this week, according to U.S. government sources. The intelligence post, located 1.2 miles from the U.S. mission that was targeted by militants in a September 11 attack, was evacuated of Americans after the assault that killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens. Three other Americans died in the attacks on U.S.-occupied buildings, including two who were hit in a mortar blast at the secret compound.
Vice President Biden's laughter during the vice presidential debate Thursday night is still the talk of Twitter on Friday morning, and is turning into one of the most memorable aspects of the first and only VP debate this cycle. Republicans think Biden was disrespectful to the American people and laughed off serious issues during Thursday night's debate with Paul Ryan. The Republican National Committee released a new Web video almost immediately after the debate, and members of Mitt Romney's campaign referred to Biden's reaction shots in most of the post-debate interviews. "These are very serious issues and I'll let the
With just over three weeks to go, President Obama finds himself in a very unfamiliar position. He is losing in many national and state polls. In fact, this week, Romney pulled ahead in the widely-cited RealClearPolitics average of polls. He leads Obama by just over 1% in the index. Its a stunning reversal from October 2008, when Obama enjoyed clear leads in every national poll conducted that month. The last time any poll should McCain with a lead was toward the end of September. (Snip) This goes a long way to explain why I'm convinced the overwhelming majority of polls
Yesterday, State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland objected to the very presence of a Fox News reporter in the press pool. Here’s the transcript: (Snip) MS. NULAND: Can you tell me who you are? Question: Mike Levine with Fox. Ms. Nuland: Every time I turn around, I’ve got a new Foxie in the pool here. Going to have to talk to them about that. No wonder Barack Obama fared so poorly in his debate with Mitt Romney. It seems that everyone in the Obama administration is deeply disturbed by the notion of any reporter willing to ask adverse questions.
Today, the White House finally revealed its policy on embassy security: keep President Obama out of the loop so he can claim plausible deniability and blame Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for any problems. In today’s White House press conference, a reporter asked press secretary Jay Carney about the situation in Libya. Carney responded: The President wants to get to the bottom of what happened. (Snip) What is also the case is that requests from the hundreds of diplomatic facilities around the country for security personnel or other related matters are made to the State Department. They are not made
A dismembered body found in a park in a Denver suburb has been confirmed as that of missing 10-year-old Jessica Ridgeway - while her killer remains at large. Authorities had initially been unable to confirm the identity of the body, which was found on Wednesday seven miles from where she vanished on October 5, as it was not 'intact', they said. They have now used DNA to identify the body as hers. 'Our focus has changed from the search for Jessica to a mission of justice for Jessica,' Westminster Police Chief Lee Birk said on Friday.
Plans to save Big Bird, the fuzzy yellow character on U.S. public television's "Sesame Street," from possible extinction are taking shape in the form of a puppet-based protest next month dubbed the "Million Muppet March." The demonstration is planned for November 3 at the National Mall in Washington, D.C., three days before the general election. Before the presidential debate between Democratic President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney had concluded on October 3, two men who had never met each floated the Million Muppet March idea on social media. They immediately united to defend public broadcasting.
My Obama is losing. Those words came across my message screen from a worried reader in Brazil. But it might have been from Kenya, Uganda or from one of the billions of citizens across the world that are hoping for the president to be re-elected. As in past years, the world is confused by the American election system. Simply put, most do not understand why the president would be in a virtual dead heat with Republican Mitt Romney after all that Obama has done as president
Washington — The Obama administration’s handling of the Libya attack has opened up a new front in the presidential campaign just weeks before Election Day, as Republicans seize on it to question the president’s performance as commander in chief. The dispute over the episode escalated after Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. said during the debate on Thursday night that “we weren’t told” that Americans on the ground wanted security bolstered, despite testimony that requests were made to and turned down by the administration. Mitt Romney’s campaign on Friday accused the vice president of trying “to mislead the American
A spokesman for the Obama campaign told Eyewitness News that as of Friday there are no plans for President Barack Obama to return to Charlotte and honor the promise he made during the Democratic National Convention to return after his speech was moved indoors.(snip)I have my ticket, my golden ticket,” said Lakisha Lucky, who still carries her ticket to Bank of America stadium in her car. Lucky hopes the president honors the promise he made the day they canceled events at the stadium.
Spelling potentially new trouble for U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., federal investigators have launched a probe into the South Shore congressman’s finances — a completely new area of scrutiny, sources told the Chicago Sun-Times. The investigation — based in the Washington, D.C., FBI field office — is not related to the attempted sale of the U.S. Senate seat that figured in former Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s corruption conviction, but is focusing on “suspicious activity” involving the congressman’s finances related to his House seat and the possibility of inappropriate expenditures, sources said.
In 1992, Barry Bonds was in the midst of one of the most astonishing performance streaks in baseball history. (snip) David Justice, standing on third, scored easily to tie the game, and behind him, chugging towards home was Sid Bream. Twenty years ago Sunday, the race was on between Sid Bream's woefully slow legs and Barry Bonds' left arm in what today remains as one of the most iconic moments in Major League Baseball history.
Backing up Vice President Joe Biden’s claim the previous night about being unaware of a request for more security at the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, the White House Friday asserted the responsibility lay with the State Department. “What I am saying, when it comes to the number of personnel, who are in place at consulates and embassies and other diplomatic facilities around the world, those decisions are appropriately made at the State Department by security personnel,” White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said. “When it comes to funding, this president makes sure
In an often heated congressional hearing Wednesday, lawmakers and witnesses alike pointed to State Department official Charlene Lamb as the person most directly responsible for rejecting multiple requests for increased security at the U.S. diplomatic missions in Libya prior to the Sept. 11 attack. House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) excoriated the State Department for rejecting requests from the U.S. Embassy in Libya for an extension of temporary security forces that were withdrawn in the months prior to the attack that killed Amb. Chris Stevens and three other Americans.
When terrorists attacked the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, on Sept. 11 of this year and killed the U.S. ambassador and three other Americans, there were no U.S. Marines deployed in Libya to defend U.S. diplomats, diplomatic facilities and classified information and equipment. However, says the State Department, a Marine Security Detachment was deployed on that day to carry out those duties at the U.S. Embassy in Bridgetown, Barbados. “U.S. Marine Security Guards serve at the U.S. Embassy in Bridgetown, and at other diplomatic missions around the world, to protect and safeguard American diplomacy,” Rebecca Ross, the
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama is meeting with three winners of a campaign contest and their guests for dinner at a restaurant in a popular Washington neighborhood. Obama's motorcade took him to Smith Commons Dining Room and Public House on Friday in the city's H Street neighborhood, which has undergone redevelopment in recent years. He was having dinner with supporters from North Carolina, Ohio and Colorado, three battleground states in next month's election.
CHAPEL HILL- Next Tuesday, First Lady Michelle Obama will speak to students and grassroots supporters in Chapel Hill two days before early voting begins on October 18. The event will take place at Carmichael Arena on the UNC campus. Doors open at 11 o'clock in the morning. North Carolina-based band Delta Rae will perform event prior to the First Lady’s remarks. The event is free and open to the public. Tickets are required due to limited space, and will be available to the public starting on a first-come, first-served basis at the pick-up locations below.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Justice Department is going to allow members of federally recognized Indian tribes to possess eagle feathers, although that's a federal crime. This is a significant religious and cultural issue for many tribes, who were consulted in advance about the policy the department announced Friday. The Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act and other federal wildlife laws criminalize the killing of eagles and possession of feathers and bird parts, but the Constitution and federal laws also give tribes local sovereignty for self-government. Under the new policy, tribal members will not be prosecuted
Imagine, pre-9/11/12, that you were responsible for arranging the defense of the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. Would you have considered American interests and personnel best protected by bringing in a local security outfit called the February 17 Martyrs Brigade? The question has yet to come up in House hearings, but I think it holds the key to the Obama administration's betrayal of the American people in "Benghazi-gate."
Thursday the Wall Street Journal’s Daniel Henninger published a column called “Obama and the L-word.” In it he described with disgust and dismay the way the Obama administration has been playing fast and loose with the term “liar” to describe Mitt Romney since Romney trounced Obama in last week’s presidential debate. Henninger noted that the use of the term cheapens and coarsens the political discourse in the US in a manner that is unprecedented in US politics. He also noted rightly that this is not part of the American political tradition.
CAIRO - Thousands of supporters and opponents of Egypt's new Islamist president clashed in Cairo's Tahrir Square on Friday in the first such violence since Mohammed Morsi took office more than three months ago, as liberal and secular activists erupted with anger accusing the Muslim Brotherhood of trying to take over the country. The two sides hurled stones and chunks of concrete and beat each other for sticks for several hours, leaving more than 100 injured, according to the state news agency. Two buses used by the Brotherhood to bring in supporters were set aflame behind the Egyptian Museum
The Secret Service has another embarrassment on its hands after one of its agents was found passed out on a Miami sidewalk and arrested — just hours after President Obama left town. Aaron Francis Engler was found early Friday morning by a Miami police officer who was responding to an unrelated call, CBS Miami reported. When the officer tried to stir the sleeping Secret Service man, he allegedly got belligerent -- hitting the cop on the chin. Other officers were called to help restrain him.
After Bill Clinton delivered his electrifying speech at the Democratic National Convention, many political observers concluded that the Clintons and Obamas had called a truce to their long-running feud. Under their armistice, Clinton agreed to make speeches and appear in TV commercials for Obama, acting like a booster rocket for the Democratic ticket in the remaining weeks of the campaign. It was a pretty picture, but as I have learned from several sources inside the Clinton camp, it turned out to be a case of wishful thinking. In fact, since the convention, Clinton and Obama have