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Oct 23, 2013

White House official fired over anonymous tweets

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A senior White House official who was helping negotiate nuclear issues with Iran has been fired after being unmasked as the acidic voice behind a Twitter account known for its insults of public figures at the White House and on Capitol Hill, a government official said on Tuesday.

Jofi Joseph was director of nuclear non-proliferation on the White House National Security Council staff, but for more than two years sent hundreds of anonymous and abrasive tweets using the handle @NatSecWonk.

Oct 21, 2013

‘Frustrated’ Obama vows to get malfunctioning healthcare website fixed

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama sought on Monday to limit political damage from the problematic launch of the government website for his signature healthcare law as Washington became embroiled in a new uproar days after a debt default was narrowly averted.

With many Americans experiencing error messages and long waits in trying to sign on to healthcare.gov, Republicans in Congress who have fought the Affordable Care Act since before its 2010 passage renewed calls for a delay in the rollout of the law in order to fix it.

Oct 17, 2013

Crisis averted, Obama says Americans ‘completely fed up’ with Washington

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama scolded congressional Republicans on Thursday, hours after a fiscal crisis was narrowly averted and called on his opponents to help repair the economic damage caused by a 16-day U.S. government shutdown and a close brush with a debt default.

Obama stressed that he is willing to work with lawmakers wherever they can agree, but the tone he struck amounted to a rebuke of Republicans, whom Americans largely blame for pushing the United States to the brink of an economic calamity.

Oct 17, 2013

Obama says Washington has much work to do to regain public trust

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama emerged bruised but victorious from the latest budget war on Wednesday and said there was much work to do in a deeply divided Washington to win back the trust of the American people.

Obama’s firm stance against negotiating over extending the U.S. debt ceiling, a position he staked out early this year and stuck to despite pressure to back off, appeared to have paid off as Congress was heading toward reopening the government and extending the U.S. debt ceiling.

Oct 16, 2013

Obama says Speaker Boehner ‘can’t control his caucus’

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama said on Tuesday the frantic stop-and-go effort in Congress to avoid a debt default and end a government shutdown is “a mess” as a gloomy mood descended over the White House with time running out to a Thursday deadline.

Obama, who is to meet Treasury Secretary Jack Lew on Wednesday, and his Democratic backers stressed there is still time to avoid a historic default even as efforts to reach a deal in Congress floundered on Capitol Hill.

Oct 12, 2013

Obama pressures Republicans to raise debt ceiling, end shutdown

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama pressured Republican lawmakers on Saturday to agree to raise the U.S. debt ceiling for longer than they would prefer, as their fiscal impasse dragged into the weekend with five days left to find a deal.

The budget battle between Obama and Republicans who control the House of Representatives has idled hundreds of thousands of government workers hit by a 12-day government shutdown and put the United States at risk of a historic debt default, possibly by next Thursday, unless the borrowing limit is raised.

Oct 4, 2013

Obama cancels visits to Indonesia, Brunei due to U.S. government shutdown

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama canceled plans to attend summits in Indonesia and Brunei on Thursday, bowing to the reality that the political impasse over the U.S. government shutdown requires him to remain in Washington.

The decision means Obama will no longer depart on Saturday for what had originally been a four-nation, week-long Asia trip. He had canceled visits to Malaysia and the Philippines earlier this week because of his budget struggle with Republicans in Congress.

Oct 1, 2013

For Obama, it’s the ‘Republican shutdown’

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – For President Barack Obama, the U.S. government shutdown that rippled across the country on Tuesday is the “Republican shutdown” and he is working hard to see that the name sticks to his political opponents.

“We may not know the full impact of this Republican shutdown for some time,” he said in the White House Rose Garden, with 12 Americans gathered behind him brought in to illustrate the benefits of his signature healthcare law, popularly known as “Obamacare.”

Sep 30, 2013

Obama prepares for government shutdown, hopes for deal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama on Monday prepared Americans for what he called an “entirely preventable” government shutdown at midnight while urging Republicans in Congress to reach an 11th hour deal to avoid economic harm.

With no apparent movement in negotiations, the White House prepared to put in place a skeleton staff on Tuesday to operate essential functions like the National Security Council. Many staff were preparing for furloughs of uncertain length.

Sep 27, 2013

Obama to House Republicans: Don’t burn down the house over fiscal fight

WASHINGTON, Sept 27 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama
warned congressional Republicans on Friday they were on the
brink of triggering a government shutdown and a historic debt
default and urged them not to “burn down the house” to try to
extract budget concessions from him.

Obama made an appearance in the White House briefing room to
push for Congress to end its infighting as twin deadlines loom:
The federal government will run out of cash on Tuesday unless
Congress approves a spending bill to keep it open, and will
default on its debts if the U.S. borrowing limit is not extended
by Oct. 17 at the latest.

    • 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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