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Mar 12, 2014

Obama says Russia faces costs over Ukraine intervention

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama warned Russia on Wednesday the West would be forced to apply a cost to Moscow if it fails to change course in its dispute with Ukraine, in a high-profile show of support for Ukraine’s embattled prime minister.

Obama held face-to-face talks with new Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk in the Oval Office in a search for diplomatic leverage that will force Russian President Vladimir Putin to loosen his military grip on Ukraine’s southern Crimea region.

Mar 11, 2014

U.S. president sweats over sweaters during NY shopping stop

NEW YORK (Reuters) – President Barack Obama took on a daunting task on Tuesday: shopping for clothes for his wife and daughters during a brief stop at a Gap store in New York.

Obama was in New York to attend two Democratic fundraisers aimed at building up campaign war chests for this year’s midterm congressional elections.

Mar 10, 2014

Kerry-Lavrov meeting depends on Moscow’s stance: U.S.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States held out the possibility on Monday that the U.S. and Russian foreign ministers could meet this week about Ukraine but said it needed to know Moscow would engage seriously on a diplomatic solution.

Russia’s bloodless seizure of the Crimea region of Ukraine has brought U.S.-Russian relations to one of their lowest points since the Cold War, with the United States searching for a way to keep Russia from annexing Crimea and its Russian naval base.

Mar 7, 2014

Obama warns on Crimea, orders sanctions over Russian moves in Ukraine

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama on Thursday ordered sanctions on people responsible for Moscow’s military intervention in Ukraine’s Crimea Peninsula, including travel bans and freezing of their U.S. assets, and said a referendum by the region to join Russia would violate international law.

U.S. officials said a list of people targeted by the sanctions had not yet been drawn up but that Russian President Vladimir Putin was not going to be one of them. White House spokesman Jay Carney said he was not aware of a limit on the number of people listed.

Mar 6, 2014

Obama orders sanctions against those involved in Russian move on Ukraine

WASHINGTON, March 6 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama on
Thursday ordered the freezing of U.S. assets and a ban on travel
into the United States of those involved in the Russian military
intervention into the Crimea region of Ukraine.

Obama signed an executive order aimed at punishing those
Russians and Ukrainians responsible for a Russian move into
Crimea, a crisis that has raised old-style Cold War tensions.

Mar 5, 2014

Obama, Germany’s Merkel discuss potential resolution to Ukraine crisis

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama spoke to German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Tuesday about a potential resolution to the crisis ignited by Russian intervention in Ukraine’s Crimea region, a senior administration official said.

Under the proposal, Russia would pull back its forces in Crimea to their bases in the region, limit the Russian troop numbers to a Ukraine-mandated ceiling of 11,000, and allow in international monitors to ensure the human rights of ethnic Russians are being protected, the official said.

Mar 5, 2014

Obama budget: a boon midterm narrative for Democrats?

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s populist budget proposal, announced on Tuesday, is a pointed attempt to bolster ties with congressional Democrats ahead of high-stakes elections in November.

The budget for fiscal year 2015 focuses on America’s stubbornly high jobless rate and fortifying a middle class that has had more and more trouble getting by.

Mar 4, 2014

Analysis – Obama’s caution on Ukraine may loom over midterm election

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – With Russia’s incursion into Ukraine reviving Cold War-style tensions, President Barack Obama is at risk of suffering a blow to his credibility at a time when he can least afford it: as he tries to convince voters to stick with his fellow Democrats in congressional elections that will help shape his legacy.

For five years, Obama has practiced a cautious approach to foreign policy crises, prizing sober diplomacy and the search for consensus over brinkmanship, in prolonged conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Mar 4, 2014

Obama’s caution on Ukraine may loom over midterm election

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – With Russia’s incursion into Ukraine reviving Cold War-style tensions, President Barack Obama is at risk of suffering a blow to his credibility at a time when he can least afford it: as he tries to convince voters to stick with his fellow Democrats in congressional elections that will help shape his legacy.

For five years, Obama has practiced a cautious approach to foreign policy crises, prizing sober diplomacy and the search for consensus over brinkmanship, in prolonged conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Mar 3, 2014

Sperling, Obama’s quirky and loquacious economic aide, makes exit

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – It seems fitting that Gene Sperling, a White House economic aide with a taste for the theatrical, is heading to Hollywood when he ends his latest West Wing tenure this week.

Sperling is exiting stage left to cap a combined 12 years as an economic adviser to Democratic presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, a remarkable show of stamina given the punishing hours and sharp elbows in Washington.

    • About Steve

      "A native of Chattanooga, Tennessee, Steve has worked for Reuters in Washington for 20 years, and spent 16 of those years at the White House covering Presidents Bush, Clinton and Bush. He covered the 2008 presidential campaign."
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