Posted tagged ‘President Bush’

Barack Obama to Appear on Tonight Show

March 16, 2009

President Barack Obama will be making a guest appearance on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” on this coming Thursday.

This should be a fun one to watch! I’ll have to set up the DVR!

From the New York Times:

Mr. Obama will swing by the Leno show as part of his trip to southern California. The White House official said that Mr. Obama plans to talk about the economy with Mr. Leno and said he will try to focus on substance, possibly a tall task given the show’s format.

Will he be funny? “As funny as the times allow,” the official said.

Presidential candidates often appear on television shows when they’re trying to get elected, but once successful, it is rare to find a commander in chief appearing on TV shows except as joke fodder. President Bush did show up on NBC’s “Deal or No Deal” last year, but it was in a taped appearance in which he voiced support for a contestant who had served three tours of duty in Iraq.

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Man Throws Shoe at Iranian President Ahmadinejad

March 11, 2009

Well, it’s happened again!

This time, a man has thrown a shoe at Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, rather than former President Bush, on his way to an election rally in Urmia.

From Fox News:

The imitation attack took place as Ahmadinejad was traveling to a local stadium to deliver an election speech, and his convoy sped away after the shoe was thrown.

The incident was not reported by Iranian media, according to Haaretz, but has been widely discussed among the republic’s blogosphere. Some pro-Ahmadinejad bloggers have denied the incident occurred.

Reports have not specified exactly when the event occurred, but have said it took place at some point over the last few days. The shoe-throwing allegedly occurred after an elderly pedestrian was hurt by Ahmadinejad’s convoy, Haaretz reported.

President Obama to Reverse Stem Cell Ban

March 6, 2009

President Obama is planning to sign an executive order this coming Monday to overturn a policy that limited federal tax dollars for embryonic stem cell research, this according to administration officials familiar with the deliberations.

From CNN:

Obama’s move will be hailed by advocates for those suffering from a host of afflictions, ranging from diabetes to Parkinson’s disease, who believe that an expansion of stem cell research could boost medical progress toward eradicating the debilitating diseases.

But many conservatives object to the destruction of human embryos because they contend it ends a human life.

The officials said the administration is planning a Monday event at the White House in which Obama will overturn the executive order signed by President Bush in August 2001 that barred the National Institutes of Health from funding research on embryonic stem cells beyond using 60 cell lines that existed at that time. Interactive: Unlocking the promise of stem cells »

Bush also twice vetoed legislation, in July 2006 and June 2007, that would have expanded federally funded embryonic stem cell research.

Barack Obama to Close Guantanamo Bay

January 21, 2009

The new Obama administration is circulating a draft executive order that would call for the closing the detention center at Guantanamo Bay within the next year.

From the Associated Press:

The draft order also would declare a halt to all trials currently under way at the facility, where roughly 800 detainees in the war on terror are held.

The Associated Press obtained a copy of the draft order.

It is not known when President Barack Obama intends to issue it.

The Bush administration created the detention facility after the Sept. 11 attacks.

Barack Obama Becomes Nation’s 44th President

January 20, 2009

A historical moment indeed this morning as Barack Obama was sworn in as the nation’s 44th President.

I’ll never forget where I was on the morning of Tuesday, January 20, 2009. I’ll be able to tell my children that I was a witness to history. Barack Obama, the first African American elected to the highest office in the land.

Now, its my hope that President Obama can step into office and begin to fix the many problems that we are seeing in the United States today.

Thoughts?

From the New York Times:

Barack Hussein Obama became the 44th president of the United States Tuesday, and called on Americans to join him in confronting what he described as an economic crisis caused by greed but also “our collective failure to make hard choices.”

“Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real,” Mr. Obama said in his inaugural address minutes after he took the oath of office on the same bible used by Abraham Lincoln at his first inaugural in 1861. “They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America — they will be met.”

Mr. Obama, the first African American to serve as president, spoke to a sea of cheering people, hundreds of thousands of Americans packed on the National Mall from the Capitol to beyond the Washington monument. The multitude was filled with black Americans and Mr. Obama’s triumph was a special and emotional moment for them.

With his wife, Michelle, holding the Bible, Mr. Obama, the 47-year-old son of a white mother from Kansas and a black father from Africa, was sworn in just after noon, a little later than planned, and spoke immediately thereafter.

In his speech, Mr. Obama promised to take “bold and swift” action to restore the economy by creating jobs through public works projects, improving education, promoting alternative energy and relying on new technology.

“Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America,” Mr. Obama said in a prepared copy of his remarks.

The new president also noted the ongoing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the “far-reaching network of violence and hatred” that seeks to harm the country. He used strong language in pledging to confront terrorism, nuclear proliferation and other threats from abroad, saying to the nation’s enemies, “you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you.”

But he also signaled a clean break from some of the Bush administration’s policies on national security. “As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals,” he said, adding that the United States is “ready to lead once more.”

He acknowledged that some are skeptical of his ability to fulfill the hope that many have in his ability to move the nation in a new direction.

“What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them – that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply,” said Mr. Obama, who ran for stressing a commitment to reduce partisanship. “The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works – whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified.”

Hundreds of thousands of people packed the National Mall from the West Front of the Capitol to beyond the Washington monument, buttoned up against the freezing chill but projecting a palpable sense of hope as Mr. Obama becomes the first African American to hold the nation’s highest elected office. It was the largest inaugural crowd in decades, perhaps the largest ever; the throng and the anticipation began building even before the sun rose.

After his speech, following a carefully designed script that played out all morning, Mr. Obama was to head inside the Capitol and sign nomination papers for the Cabinet members he chose in the weeks following his Nov. 4 victory. The Senate is to confirm some of those new Cabinet secretaries this afternoon, but Republicans planned to delay the confirmation of Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton as secretary of state for at least one day.

Mr. Obama, who attended church earlier in the day, had coffee with President Bush and his wife, Laura, and then rode with them in a motorcade to Capitol Hill, will then join Congressional leaders and other dignitaries at a luncheon in Statuary Hall. That will be followed by a review of the troops — his first as commander-in-chief — before he travels back downtown at the front of the inaugural parade, which he will then watch from the reviewing stand at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

The crowd, before noon, was easily well into the hundreds of thousands.

From the Associated Press:

Braving frigid temperatures, an exuberant crowd of hundreds of thousands packed the National Mall on Tuesday to celebrate the inauguration of Barack Hussein Obama as America’s first black president. He grasps the reins of power in a high-noon ceremony amid grave economic worries and high expectations.

It was the first change of administrations since the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Crowds filled the National Mall from the Lincoln Memorial to the U.S. Capitol for a glimpse of the proceedings and, in the words of many, simply “to be here.” Washington’s subway system was jammed and two downtown stations were closed when a woman was struck by a subway train.

Two years after beginning his improbable quest as a little-known, first-term Illinois senator with a foreign-sounding name, Obama moves into the Oval Office as the nation’s fourth youngest president, at 47, and the first African-American, a barrier-breaking achievement believed impossible by generations of minorities.

Around the world, Obama’s election electrified millions with the hope that America will be more embracing, more open to change.

The dawn of the new Democratic era — with Obama allies in charge of both houses of Congress — ends eight years of Republican control of the White House by George W. Bush. He leaves Washington as one of the nation’s most unpopular and divisive presidents, the architect of two unfinished wars and the man in charge at a time of economic calamity that swept away many Americans’ jobs, savings and homes.

Bush — following tradition — left a note for Obama in the top drawer of his desk in the Oval Office.

White House press secretary Dana Perino said the theme of the message — which Bush wrote on Monday — was similar to what he has said since election night: that Obama is about to begin a “fabulous new chapter” in the United States, and that he wishes him well.

The unfinished business of the Bush administration thrusts an enormous burden onto the new administration, though polls show Americans are confident Obama is on track to succeed. He has cautioned that improvements will take time and that things will get worse before they get better.

Culminating four days of celebration, the nation’s 56th inauguration day began for Obama and Vice President-elect Joe Biden with a traditional morning worship service at St. John’s Episcopal Church, across Lafayette Park from the White House. Bells pealed from the historic church’s tower as Obama and his wife, Michelle, arrived five minutes behind schedule.

The festivities won’t end until well after midnight, with dancing and partying at 10 inaugural balls.

Bin Laden Tape Urges Jihad Against Israel

January 14, 2009

Osama Bin Laden is urging Muslims to launch a jihad against Israel and has also condemned Arab governments as allies of Israel. This comes in a new message aimed at harnessing anger in the Middle East over the Gaza offensive launched by Israel.

From the Associated Press:

Bin Laden spoke in an audiotape posted Wednesday on Islamic militant Web sites where al-Qaida usually issues its messages. It was his first tape since May and came nearly three weeks after Israel started its campaign against Gaza’s militant Hamas rulers.

The al-Qaida leader also vowed that the terror network would open “new fronts” against the United States and its allies beyond Iraq and Afghanistan.

He said President-elect Barack Obama has received a “heavy inheritance” from George W. Bush — two wars and “the collapse of the economy,” which he said will render the United States unable to sustain a long fight against the mujahedeen, or holy warriors.

“There is only one strong way to bring the return of Al-Aqsa and Palestine, and that is jihad in the path of God,” bin Laden said in the 22-minute audiotape, referring to the revered Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. “The duty is to urge people to jihad and to enlist the youth into jihad brigades.”

“Islamic nation, you are capable of defeating the Zionist entity with your popular capabilities and your great hidden strength — without the support of (Arab) leaders and despite the fact that most of (the leaders) stand in the barracks of the Crusader-Zionist alliance,” bin Laden said.

President Bush Blames Hamas for Conflict in Gaza

January 2, 2009

President Bush has laid the blame for the fighting in Gaza squarely at the feet of Hamas, accusing militants of waging a campaign of violence against Israel with little regard for its people.

From CNN:

“Since Hamas’ violent takeover in the summer of 2007, living conditions have worsened for Palestinians in Gaza,” Bush says in prepared remarks released Friday by the White House. “By spending its resources on rocket launchers instead of roads and schools, Hamas has demonstrated that it has no intention of serving the Palestinian people.”

In a radio address to air Saturday, Bush says Hamas committed an act of terrorism when it renewed rocket attacks into Israel last month, provoking this week’s airstrikes by Israel.

“In response to these attacks on their people, the leaders of Israel have launched military operations on Hamas positions in Gaza,” Bush says. “As a part of their strategy, Hamas terrorists often hide within the civilian population, which puts innocent Palestinians at risk.”

Palestinian medical sources said Friday that at least 421 people have been killed and 2,200 wounded in Gaza since Israeli air raids began December 27.

Israeli police and military officials say four Israelis have died and 57 have been wounded.

But Bush does not directly mention the toll that the airstrikes have taken in the address, again blaming conditions in Gaza on Hamas, which has repeatedly called for the destruction of Israel.

Bush said his administration will continue to monitor the situation in Gaza closely and will stay in contact with leaders throughout the region.