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Mar 13, 2013

Obama’s campaign team launches grassroots movement amid criticism

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A group formed by President Barack Obama’s campaign team kicked off an effort to advance his legislative priorities on Wednesday amid criticism that it risks giving high-dollar donors undue influence over government policies.

Organizing for Action is an independent, nonprofit group that seeks to convert the grassroots energy that led to Obama’s re-election in November into action in support of his policy goals such as gun control and an immigration overhaul.

Mar 12, 2013

Obama to meet CEOs on cyber security

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama will sit down on Wednesday with corporate leaders to discuss efforts to improve cyber security in private industries amid rising concern about hacking attacks emanating from China.

The White House said that in the meeting, to take place in the Situation Room, Obama would discuss efforts to address the cyber threat and solicit the CEOs’ input on how the government and private sector can best work together to improve the country’s cyber security.

Mar 12, 2013

Sultan of Brunei flies himself to Washington, meets Obama

WASHINGTON, March 12 (Reuters) – Not everybody can say they
met with the president of the United States. And hardly anybody
can say they piloted their own 747 airliner halfway around the
world to get to the meeting.

So it was noteworthy that the Sultan of Brunei Hassanal
Bolkiah, known for his vast oil wealth, sat down for talks with
President Barack Obama in the Oval Office on Tuesday.

Mar 8, 2013

Analysis: Obama’s shift to schmooze offensive reflects political reality

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s abrupt shift to a schmooze offensive – dining and visiting with Republican lawmakers – reflects a need for some resolution in the budget wars so he can move on to other priorities like gun control and immigration that could define his second term.

A drop in his approval ratings in recent weeks and a new round of media questions about his scant socializing with members of Congress have also likely put pressure on Obama to start talking to his political foes.

Mar 8, 2013

Obama’s shift to schmooze offensive reflects political reality

WASHINGTON, March 7 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s
abrupt shift to a schmooze offensive – dining and visiting with
Republican lawmakers – reflects a need for some resolution in
the budget wars so he can move on to other priorities like gun
control and immigration that could define his second term.

A drop in his approval ratings in recent weeks and a new
round of media questions about his scant socializing with
members of Congress have also likely put pressure on Obama to
start talking to his political foes.

Mar 5, 2013

After latest budget battle, Obama calls senators looking for common ground

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama, unable to persuade Republicans to accept higher taxes, is attempting to cobble together what he calls a “common-sense caucus” among lawmakers to help resolve U.S. budget woes and push his legislative agenda.

On Monday and in recent days, Obama has made individual phone calls to a number of senators in a search for common ground on $85 billion in budget cuts that went into effect last week, as well as his top priorities like deficit reduction, gun control and an overhaul of U.S. immigration laws.

Mar 4, 2013

Obama to nominate Walmart’s Burwell as White House budget chief

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama will nominate Walmart’s philanthropic head Sylvia Mathews Burwell on Monday to become director of the White House budget office, a White House official said on Sunday.

Burwell, 47, is a veteran of Bill Clinton’s White House and for the past year has been president of the Walmart Foundation at the corporation’s Bentonville, Arkansas, headquarters. The charity organization in 2011 gave out nearly $1 billion in corporate contributions to projects around the world such as fighting hunger and empowering women.

Mar 3, 2013

Obama to nominate Walmart’s Burwell as White House budget chief: sources

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama plans to nominate Walmart Foundation head Sylvia Mathews Burwell to head the White House Office of Management and Budget on Monday, sources familiar with the matter said on Sunday.

Burwell, 47, is a veteran of Bill Clinton’s White House and has helped steer philanthropic efforts while at Wal-Mart’s headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas.

Feb 28, 2013

Journalist Bob Woodward caught in crossfire with White House

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Journalist Bob Woodward has uncovered scandals and shed a withering light on secretive policy decisions for decades, so when he expressed outrage about an emailed crossfire with a senior White House aide, Washington sat up and took notice.

But a closer examination of his dust-up with White House economic adviser Gene Sperling may undercut Woodward even as it sheds a light on hardball tactics used by President Barack Obama’s team to try to rein in reporters.

Feb 27, 2013

White House, Republicans dig in ahead of budget talks

WASHINGTON, Feb 27 (Reuters) – Positions hardened on
Wednesday between President Barack Obama and Republican
congressional leaders over the budget crisis even as they
arranged to hold last-ditch talks to prevent harsh automatic
spending cuts beginning this week.

Looking resigned to the $85-billion in “sequestration” cuts
starting on Friday, government agencies began reducing costs and
spelling out to employees how furloughs will work.

    • 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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