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Feb 20, 2014

Obama budget proposal to drop Social Security cuts

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama on Thursday dropped a measure to trim cost-of-living increases in Social Security from an upcoming budget proposal in an election-year move that may insulate fellow Democrats facing heat from senior voters.

The White House said Obama’s budget proposal for the 2015 fiscal year, to be released on March 4, will not include a plan he made last year in an effort to gain some Republican support and break through congressional gridlock.

Feb 11, 2014

Barack and Francois take center stage at White House

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – There were no “freedom fries” or any other remembrances from strained Franco-American ties in the past. Instead, it was dry-aged beef and plenty of bonhomie as President Barack Obama gave a lavish welcome to French President Francois Hollande.

Obama went out of his way to welcome Hollande at the White House on Tuesday, saying a few words in passable French, teasing the Frenchman for his formality and toying with the notion that U.S. ties with France are as close as they are with old ally Britain.

Feb 7, 2014

Obama signs sprawling U.S. farm bill, lauds rural progress

, Feb 7 (Reuters) – In a large barn
smelling faintly of horses, President Barack Obama signed the
$956 billion farm bill into law on Friday, comparing the
five-year law to “a Swiss Army knife” because of the variety of
ways it can support jobs in America.

“It multi tasks,” Obama said, describing how the law supports
not only farmers and ranchers but poor families on food stamps,
researchers working on biofuels, and businesses developing and
exporting new products from rural America.

Feb 7, 2014

Syngenta will sell GM corn not approved by China -USDA head

ON BOARD AIR FORCE ONE, Feb 7 (Reuters) – Syngenta AG
, the world’s largest crop chemicals company, has
commitments to sell its entire supply of a genetically modified
corn variety that is not approved by China, U.S. Agriculture
Secretary Tom Vilsack said on Friday.

Vilsack said whether or not China eventually approves the
corn, known as Agrisure Viptera or MIR 162, it was still being
sold and that Syngenta has “basically have sold out” of its
supply for the 2014 growing season.

Feb 3, 2014

Obama says Kerry to ‘give me a recommendation’ on Keystone project

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama made clear he would make the ultimate call on whether to approve the Keystone XL crude oil pipeline from Canada, and played down the number of jobs the project could create in a Fox News interview to air on Monday.

In recent days, officials from the White House and State Department have emphasized Secretary of State John Kerry’s role in determining whether the $5.4 billion project should go ahead, and have shied away from describing Obama’s role.

Feb 1, 2014

Keystone report raises pressure on Obama to approve pipeline

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Pressure for President Barack Obama to approve the Keystone XL pipeline increased on Friday after a State Department report played down the impact it would have on climate change, irking environmentalists and delighting the project’s proponents.

The agency made no recommendation on whether Obama should grant or deny an application by TransCanada Corp to build the $5.4 billion line, which would transport crude from Alberta’s oil sands to refineries on the U.S. Gulf Coast.

Jan 31, 2014

Keystone pipeline will not affect Canada oil sands growth: U.S. report

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline is unlikely to increase the pace of Canadian oil sands development, a U.S. State Department study said on Friday, raising pressure on President Barack Obama to approve a project environmentalists see as a major climate change problem.

The massive 11-volume environmental impact study released on Friday did not recommend whether President Barack Obama should grant or deny an application by TransCanada Corp (TRP.TO: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) to build the $5.4 billion line, which would transport crude from Alberta’s oil sands to U.S. refineries.

Jan 31, 2014

Help wanted: Obama calls on CEOs to take on long-term jobless

WASHINGTON, Jan 31 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama will
meet on Friday with the leaders of more than 20 big companies
which have agreed not to discriminate against the long-term
unemployed, part of his initiatives to get the jobless back to

The companies are among about 300 which have agreed to a
one-page list of “best practices” for recruiting people who had
been without a job for six months or more, a group which has
struggled to find work despite an improving economy.

Jan 31, 2014

Help wanted: Obama calls on CEOs to help fix jobless problem

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama will meet on Friday with a group of chief executive officers who have agreed to make sure their companies do not rule out hiring people just because their resumes show they have been out of work for a while.

More than 300 companies have agreed to a one-page list of “best practices” for recruiting and hiring people from the ranks of the long-term unemployed – a group that has struggled to find work in spite of an otherwise improved economy.

Jan 29, 2014

Obama pushes minimum wage hike on State of Union road trip

LANHAM, Maryland (Reuters) – President Barack Obama, on a road trip to highlight themes from his State of the Union speech that called for narrowing the gap between the rich and poor, urged Congress on Wednesday to raise the minimum wage for millions of low-income Americans.

“If you work hard, you should be able to pay your rent, buy your groceries, look after your kids,” Obama said at a Costco big-box store in this Washington suburb. “If you put in a hard day’s work you deserve decent pay for it.”

    • About Roberta

      "Based on Capitol Hill, I help cover U.S. energy and environmental policy. I have reported on commodities since 1995, and have been with Reuters since 2002, moving to Washington from Canada in 2008."
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