President Obama's accomplishments so far

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Ending F-22: $2.9B, Laser Aircraft Savings: $214M

Postby SusieQ » Wed Oct 28, 2009 8:34 pm

Cutting Wasteful Defense Spending: Priceless

The White House sent TPMDC some figures detailing the savings from the waste the Obama administration slashed from the Pentagon budget.

We detailed the cuts earlier, since President Obama will use them as an example of how "change" has come to Washington.

More information is here, but the list of cuts and their savings provided by an administration aide is after the jump.

Terminates the F-22 program: Savings - $2.9B

Terminates Transformational Satellite: Savings - $768M

Terminates the VH-71 program: Savings - $750M

Reduces Aircraft Carrier Rebuild Schedule: Savings - $727M

Terminates Future Combat Systems Manned Ground Vehicle: Savings - $633M

Reduces Ground Based Midcourse Defense Program: Savings - $504M

Terminates the Kinetic Energy Interceptor (KEI) program: Savings - $387M

Terminates the multiple kill vehicle (MKV): Savings - $283M

Cancels the second Airborne Laser (ABL) aircraft, and refocuses the ABL program as a technology research effort: Savings - $214M

Terminates Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR-X) Helicopter: Savings - $144M



Just another "thing" that President Obama has done during his first 9 months in office.

http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2009 ... celess.php
The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.
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Re: Ending F-22: $2.9B, Laser Aircraft Savings: $214M

Postby SusieQ » Wed Oct 28, 2009 8:54 pm

Another good piece on the military cutbacks. My husband, the 30 year military man that he is, is applauding these cuts as well.


Victory for Obama Over Military Lobby

When the Obama administration proposed canceling a host of expensive weapons systems last spring, some of the military industry’s allies in Congress assumed, as they had in the past, that they would have the final say.

But as the president signed a $680 billion military policy bill on Wednesday, it was clear that he had succeeded in paring back nearly all of the programs and setting a tone of greater restraint than the Pentagon had seen in many years.

Now the question is whether Mr. Obama can sustain that push next year, when the midterm elections are likely to make Congress more resistant to further cuts and job losses.

White House officials say Mr. Obama took advantage of a rare political moment to break through one of Washington’s most powerful lobbies and trim more weapons systems than any president had in decades.

Rahm Emanuel, the White House chief of staff, said Wednesday that the plan was to threaten a veto over a prominent program — in this case, the F-22 fighter jet — “to show we were willing to expend political capital and could win on something that people thought we could not.”

Once the Senate voted in July to stop buying F-22s, Mr. Emanuel said in an interview, that success “reverberated down” to help sustain billions of dollars of cuts in Army modernization, missile defense and other programs.

Mr. Emanuel said the strategy emerged when the defense secretary, Robert M. Gates, told Mr. Obama they needed to “shake up sacred cows and be seen as taking on fights.”

Military analysts said Mr. Gates, a holdover from the Bush administration, also aimed at the most bloated programs. And Senator John McCain of Arizona, the former Republican presidential candidate, who has criticized the Pentagon’s cost overruns, provided Mr. Obama with political cover to make the cuts without being seen as soft on the military.

“They probably get an ‘A’ from the standpoint of their success on their major initiatives,” said Fred Downey, a former Senate aide who is now vice president for national security at the Aerospace Industries Association. “They probably got all of them but one or maybe two, and that’s an extraordinarily high score.”

Still, Mr. Obama said at Wednesday’s signing ceremony, there is “more waste we need to cut.”

The act authorizes $550 billion for the Pentagon’s base budget in fiscal 2010 and $130 billion more for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. That compares to a total of $654 billion for both accounts in fiscal 2009.

The measure also includes a ban on hate crimes that Democratic leaders attached to the bill.

Mr. Obama has said that he does not intend to reduce military spending while the nation is engaged in two wars. But Mr. Gates also wants to cut more futuristic programs to free money for simpler systems like helicopters and unmanned spy planes that can help the troops now.

Winslow T. Wheeler, a military analyst at the Center for Defense Information, a Washington analytical organization, said another key to Mr. Gates’s success was regaining control of the budget from the armed services.

But the administration has had to make some compromises, and some issues remain to be decided in a separate spending bill.

Mr. Obama had wanted to cancel an alternate engine for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, a new plane that is expected to be a mainstay for the Air Force, the Navy and the Marines. He had also threatened to veto the military bills if they took money from plane purchases to keep developing that engine.

But Congressional leaders say the believe that the second engine will provide crucial insurance for the $300 billion fighter program. And they say they will take money from other parts of the military budget to save it.

Mr. Obama has also threatened to veto any attempts to salvage an early version of a new presidential helicopter that the administration canceled. The policy bill that he signed Wednesday does not contain any money for it. But the House version of the spending bill does, and that issue remains to be resolved.

Still, even White House officials say they were surprised at how far they got in reshaping the weapons programs.

“In terms of sort of bringing fiscal responsibility to Washington and changing the way the place works, you couldn’t have picked a more challenging area than the defense budget,” said Rob Nabors, the deputy director of the White House’s Office of Management and Budget.

A New Boeing Plant

The Boeing Company said Wednesday that it would open a second assembly line for its long-delayed 787 jetliner in North Charleston, S.C., expanding beyond its longtime manufacturing base in Washington State.

Boeing, based in Chicago, already operates a factory in North Charleston that makes 787 parts and owns a 50 percent stake in another plant there that also makes sections of the plane.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/29/busin ... .html?_r=1
The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.
-John Kenneth Galbraith

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs, who, however, has never learned to walk forward.
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President Obama's accomplishments so far

Postby SusieQ » Wed Oct 28, 2009 9:00 pm

I think we need a thread that lists the accomplishments of this administration so far.

President Signs Legislation Committing U.S. to Iraq Withdrawal

Date Affirmed as December 31, 2011, Quarterly Reports to Congress Required

WASHINGTON, Oct. 28 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- President Barack Obama today
signed legislation that that formally recognizes the U.S. obligation to
withdraw from Iraq and requires the Pentagon to provide quarterly reports on
the progress of that withdrawal.

This is the first time since the invasion of Iraq in 2003 that Congress has
passed legislation that affirms that the United States is committed to leaving
Iraq by a specific date, two national Quaker organizations, the American
Friends Service Committee (AFSC) and the Friends Committee on National
Legislation (FCNL) said today.

"We congratulate Senate Armed Services Chairman Carl Levin and House Armed
Services Chairman Ike Skelton for including this important milestone in the
2010 military authorization bill," said Aura Kanegis, Director of Public
Policy for the American Friends Service Committee. "The U.S.-Iraq bilateral
agreement is so central to public discourse in Iraq, but too often forgotten
in the U.S." The United States and Iraq signed a bilateral agreement in
November 2008 that commits the United States to withdraw all military forces
from Iraq by December 31, 2011.

The legislation signed by President Obama today requires the Pentagon to
report to Congress every three months on progress to withdraw all U.S. troops,
withdraw or transfer to Iraqi authorities all military equipment, close down
or transfer to Iraqi authorities military bases, and release or transfer to
Iraqi authorities all Iraqi detainees before the December 31, 2011 deadline.

"The first congressional effort to signal support for complete withdrawal was
the ban on establishing permanent bases in Iraq," said Jim Fine, the
Legislative Secretary on Foreign Policy at the Friends Committee on National
Legislation. "Now the Pentagon will issue month by month reports on the
progress made to close down bases or transfer them to the Iraqi government,
which adds new teeth to this historic provision."

With this law, Congress has established unprecedented oversight of the
progress made towards complete withdrawal from Iraq.

The American Friends Service Committee is a Quaker organization that includes
people of various faiths who are committed to social justice, peace and
humanitarian service. Its work is based on the belief in the worth of every
person and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice. For
more information visit http://www.afsc.org.

The Friends Committee on National Legislation, the oldest registered religious
lobby in Washington, is a non-partisan Quaker lobby in the public interest.
FCNL works with a nationwide network of tens of thousands of people from every
state in the U.S. to advocate for social and economic justice, peace, and good
government. For more information: http://www.fcnl.org.

http://www.reuters.com/article/pressRel ... RN20091028
The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.
-John Kenneth Galbraith

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs, who, however, has never learned to walk forward.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt


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Re: President Obama's accomplishments so far

Postby SusieQ » Wed Oct 28, 2009 9:04 pm

Obama signs hate crimes bill into law

Washington (CNN) -- President Obama on Wednesday signed a law that makes it a federal crime to assault an individual because of his or her sexual orientation or gender identity.

The expanded federal hate crimes law, hailed by supporters as the first major federal gay rights legislation, was added to a $680 billion defense authorization bill that Obama signed at a packed White House ceremony.

The hate crimes measure was named for Matthew Shepard, a gay Wyoming teenager who died after being kidnapped and severely beaten in October 1998, and James Byrd Jr., an African-American man dragged to death in Texas the same year.

Shepard's mother, Judy, was among those at the ceremony that also included Vice President Joe Biden, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, Attorney General Eric Holder and leading members of Congress and the Pentagon, who were on hand for the appropriations bill signing.

To loud applause, Obama hailed the hate crimes measure in the bill as a step toward change to "help protect our citizens from violence based on what they look like, who they love, how they pray."


http://www.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/10/28/hate.crimes/
The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.
-John Kenneth Galbraith

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs, who, however, has never learned to walk forward.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt


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Re: President Obama's accomplishments so far

Postby SusieQ » Wed Oct 28, 2009 9:06 pm

Obama signs bill to punish Iran's fuel suppliers

President Barack Obama signed into law Wednesday legislation to punish foreign oil companies that export gasoline to Iran, marking the first time Congress has imposed economic sanctions on Iran to protest its nuclear program.

The new law blocks the U.S. Energy ( USEG - news - people ) Department from awarding contracts to companies to deliver crude oil to the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve if they also sell or ship gasoline to Iran.

The sanctions on Iran's fuel suppliers were part of an energy and water program spending bill signed by Obama. The sanctions provision was sponsored by Senators Jon Kyl and Susan Collins.

"Time is running out for Iran to give up its illegal nuclear weapons program," the senators previously said about their fuel sanctions plan.

Congress and the Obama administration fear Iran's uranium enrichment program will be used to develop weapons, while Tehran says it is for peaceful purposes to generate electricity.

http://www.forbes.com/feeds/reuters/200 ... TIONS.html
The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.
-John Kenneth Galbraith

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs, who, however, has never learned to walk forward.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt


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Re: President Obama's accomplishments so far

Postby SusieQ » Wed Oct 28, 2009 9:15 pm

Obama Signs Equal-Pay Legislation

WASHINGTON — President Obama signed his first bill into law on Thursday, approving equal-pay legislation that he said would “send a clear message that making our economy work means making sure it works for everybody.”

Mr. Obama was surrounded by a group of beaming lawmakers, most but not all of them Democrats, in the East Room of the White House as he affixed his signature to the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, a law named for an Alabama woman who at the end of a 19-year career as a supervisor in a tire factory complained that she had been paid less than men.

After a Supreme Court ruling against her, Congress approved the legislation that expands workers’ rights to sue in this kind of case, relaxing the statute of limitations.

“It is fitting that with the very first bill I sign — the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act — we are upholding one of this nation’s first principles: that we are all created equal and each deserve a chance to pursue our own version of happiness,” the president said.

He said was signing the bill not only in honor of Ms. Ledbetter — who stood behind him, shaking her head and clasping her hands in seeming disbelief — but in honor of his own grandmother, “who worked in a bank all her life, and even after she hit that glass ceiling, kept getting up again” and for his daughters, “because I want them to grow up in a nation that values their contributions, where there are no limits to their dreams.”

The ceremony, and a reception afterward in the State Dining Room of the White House, had a celebratory feel. The East Room was packed with advocates for civil rights and workers rights; the legislators, who included House and Senate leaders and two moderate Republicans — Senators Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe, both of Maine — shook Mr. Obama’s hand effusively (some, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, received presidential pecks on the cheek) as he took the stage. They looked over his shoulder, practically glowing, as Mr. Obama signed his name to the bill, using one pen for each letter.

“I’ve been practicing signing my name very slowly,” Mr. Obama said wryly, looking at a bank of pens before him. He handed the first pen to the bill’s chief sponsor, Senator Barbara Mikulski, Democrat of Maryland, and the last to Ms. Ledbetter.

The ceremony also marked First Lady Michelle Obama’s policy debut; she spoke afterward in a reception in the State Dining Room, where she called Ms. Ledbetter “one of my favorite people.”

Mr. Obama told Ms. Ledbetter’s story over and over again during his campaign for the White House; she spoke frequently as an advocate for him during his campaign, and made an appearance at the Democratic National Convention in Denver.

Now 70, Ms. Ledbetter discovered when she was nearing retirement that her male colleagues were earning much more than she was. A jury found her employer, the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company plant in Gadsden, Ala., guilty of pay discrimination. But in a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court threw out the case, ruling that she should have filed her suit within 180 days of the date that Goodyear first paid her less than her peers.

Congress tried to pass a law that would have effectively overturned the decision while President George W. Bush was still in office, but the White House opposed the bill; opponents contended it would encourage lawsuits and argued that employees could delay filing their claims in the hope of reaping bigger rewards. But the new Congress passed the bill, which restarts the six-month clock every time the worker receives a paycheck .

Ms. Ledbetter will not see any money as a result of the legislation Mr. Obama signed into law. But what she has gotten, aside from celebrity, is personal satisfaction, as she said in the State Dining Room after the signing ceremony.

“Goodyear will never have to pay me what it cheated me out of,” she said. “In fact, I will never see a cent. But with the president’s signature today I have an even richer reward.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/30/us/po ... r-web.html
The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.
-John Kenneth Galbraith

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs, who, however, has never learned to walk forward.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt


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Re: President Obama's accomplishments so far

Postby SusieQ » Wed Oct 28, 2009 9:20 pm

Obama Signs SCHIP

"All right," President Obama said to the assembled jubilant masses in the East Room of the White House today. "Please, everybody have a seat," he told the rejoicing crowd.

"This is good," he said to the group, which fully well knew not all the news from the Obama White House as of late has been good.

"This is good," the president said to cheers and applause.

The president was there to sign the State Children's Health Insurance Program, or SCHIP, which his White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel helped create a decade ago, and which President Bush vetoed last year.

By doing so, the new president said, "we fulfill one of the highest responsibilities that we have: to ensure the health and well-being of our nation's children. It's a responsibility that's only grown more urgent as our economic crisis deepens, with health care costs that have exploded, and millions of working families are unable to afford health insurance."

The nation has 8 million uninsured children, part of the more than 45 million uninsured Americans total, the president said.

"It's hard to overstate the toll this takes on families -- the sleepless nights worrying about somebody getting hurt or praying that a sick child gets better on her own," the president said. "The decisions that no parent should ever have to make -- how long to put off that doctor's appointment, whether to fill that prescription, whether to let a child play outside knowing that all it takes is one accident, one injury to send your family into financial ruin."

The president took the time to say that his stimulus package currently being debated in the Senate would also serve the cause of health care.

"If Congress passes this recovery plan," he said, "in just one month we will have done more to modernize our health care system than we've done in the past decade. We'll be on our way to computerizing all of America's medical records, which won't ...just eliminate inefficiencies, won't just save billions of dollars and create tens of thousands of jobs, but it will save lives by reducing deadly medical errors."

The president took another opportunity to assail the "criticisms of this plan that frankly echo the very same failed theories that helped lead us into this crisis in the first place ... I reject these theories. And by the way, so did the American people when they went to the polls, in November, and voted resoundingly for change."

Sitting down to sign the bill with myriad writing implements so different bill sponsors could get one -- "I've been practicing writing with eight pens," the president said, "running out of signature," he added to laughter -- President Obama signed SCHIP into law.

"There you go," he said.

http://blogs.abcnews.com/politicalpunch ... s-sch.html
The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.
-John Kenneth Galbraith

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs, who, however, has never learned to walk forward.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt


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Re: President Obama's accomplishments so far

Postby SusieQ » Wed Oct 28, 2009 9:23 pm

Obama signs Pakistan aid bill



Barack Obama, the US president, has signed off a bill that will provide Pakistan with $7.5bn in non-military aid, despite criticism of conditions attached to the assistance by Pakistani officials.

Obama signed the bill, which will provide the aid to Islamabad over the next five years, behind closed doors at the White House on Thursday.

Robert Gibbs, the White House spokesman, in a statement said the signing of the bill was the "tangible manifestation of broad support for Pakistan in the US".

Gibbs said Obama wants to engage Pakistan on the basis of a strategic partnership "grounded in support for Pakistan's democratic institutions and the Pakistani people."

http://english.aljazeera.net/news/ameri ... 49145.html
The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.
-John Kenneth Galbraith

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs, who, however, has never learned to walk forward.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt


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Re: President Obama's accomplishments so far

Postby SusieQ » Wed Oct 28, 2009 9:31 pm

Obama signs energy, water spending bill into law

(Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama on Wednesday signed into law a $33.5 billion spending bill to fund government energy and water programs for the 2010 budget year that began October 1.

Following are key provisions in the bill:

* Solar Energy: $225 million for research, development, and demonstration projects to make solar energy more affordable.

* Biofuels: $220 million for grants to improve production of alternative fuels such as cellulosic ethanol and biodiesel.

* Vehicle Technology: $311 million to improve fuel efficiency with better engines, better batteries and engines that burn clean, domestic fuel.

* Hydrogen Technology: $174 million to help develop hydrogen and fuel-cell technologies.

* Energy Efficient Buildings: $200 million to research conservation technologies for buildings and industry to reduce energy demand.

* Industrial Technologies: $96 million to help businesses improve energy efficiency.

* Weatherization Grants: $210 million for insulation and energy conservation measures to reduce utility bills for low-income families.

http://in.reuters.com/article/environme ... 7620091028
The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.
-John Kenneth Galbraith

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs, who, however, has never learned to walk forward.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt


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Re: President Obama's accomplishments so far

Postby SusieQ » Wed Oct 28, 2009 9:33 pm

Obama signs into law credit card reform

In the most sweeping changes to the credit card industry in 40 years, President Obama signed into law Friday an act to restrict practices he says contributed to consumers' financial problems during the recession.

"With this bill we are putting in place some common sense reforms designed to protect consumers," Obama said at a signing ceremony at the White House.

"We're not going to be giving people a free pass and we expect consumers to live within their means and pay what they owe. But we also expect financial institutions to act with the same sense of responsibility that the American people aspire to in their own lives," he said.

The new law — which includes restrictions on interest rate increases and credit offered to college students — deals a blow to the banking industry, which has lobbied aggressively against tighter regulation. At the same time, it provides less than a complete win for consumers because it doesn't cap interest rates or fees.

The legislation "is not going to be a hanging for banks, but I think Congress has collared them and are bringing them in," says Robert McKinley, founder of CardTrak.com, which consults with banks. "It's been the Wild West for the card industry for a long time."

Marcia Sullivan, director of government relations for Consumer Bankers Association, a trade group, says banks' biggest concern is that the new restrictions will affect the availability and price of credit.

"I think that every single company that offers a credit card is reassessing its cost," says Sullivan. Issuers will be "reassessing what they do and how they do it."

The law's impact will be felt by most households in America. About 90 million households carry credit cards, with an average debt load of more than $10,500, according to CardTrak.com. The curbs, which mostly take effect in nine months, deal with controversial practices including:

•Interest rate increases. Issuers can generally raise rates on existing credit card debt only if consumers have paid their bill more than 60 days late.

•Penalty fees. Issuers can't charge an over-limit fee unless consumers have asked for this additional credit. Banks also can't impose late fees if they delayed crediting a payment.

•Marketing to college students. Banks can't extend credit cards to people under 21 without verifying their ability to pay or getting their parents' permission.

The law comes on the heels of consumer outcry about increases in credit-card rates and fees during the downturn. Banks have said that higher funding costs, along with surging loan delinquencies and defaults, forced them to reassess card risk.

The problem is, banks' actions have only made it harder for consumers to pay their bills. In the first quarter of 2009, the latest data available, credit card delinquencies hit an all-time high of 6.5%, according to the Federal Reserve. Credit-card defaults reached a near-record 7.5%.

Susanna Montezemolo, a vice president at the Center for Responsible Lending, an advocacy group, says because the law is a "compromise piece of legislation, there are certainly other areas where it could be made stronger." Still, Montezemolo says that consumers groups are generally "thrilled" that borrowers will have new rules of the road for credit cards.


http://www.usatoday.com/money/perfi/cre ... -law_N.htm
The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.
-John Kenneth Galbraith

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs, who, however, has never learned to walk forward.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt


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Re: President Obama's accomplishments so far

Postby SusieQ » Wed Oct 28, 2009 9:37 pm

Obama signs wilderness bill into law

WASHINGTON - President Obama signed into law today the largest conservation legislation in a generation, providing a happy ending to a frustrating six-year quest for Oregon supporters who worked to provide stronger protections to 200,000 acres of public land in the state and millions more nationwide.

"This legislation ... guarantees that we will not take our forests, rivers, oceans, national parks, monuments, and wilderness areas for granted; but rather we will set them aside and guard their sanctity for everyone to share,'' Obama said. "That's something all Americans can support.''

Standing with Obama were a large collection of lawmakers, administration officials and public lands advocates who had struggled for years to see the package turned into law. Among them were Sen. Ron Wyden and Rep. Earl Blumenauer of Oregon and former Oregon State professor Jane Lubchenco who now heads the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Rep. Greg Walden, R-Ore., who also played a major role in writing and moving the Oregon provisions through Congress was at the ceremony too, using the opportunity to deliver a letter to Obama urging him to allow more cutting in of timber in national forests.

"With a stroke of the pen today, President Obama cemented Oregon's Wilderness legacy for generations to come,'' Wyden said.

"This is a special day for myself and the countless Oregonians who have literally dedicated years to making this Wilderness a reality as well as all those who hunt, hike, fish or just share pride in the unparalleled nature that makes Oregon so special," said Wyden, who was one of the principal architects of the Oregon provisions in the law.

The 1,300-page bill Obama signed into law is a collection of 170 separate lands, parks and conservation bills --including some that lawmakers had been working on for decades --all balled into one. It establishes three new national parks (including one for the birthplace of President Bill Clinton in Hope, Ark.) and protects more than 1,000 miles of wild and scenic rivers and streams from development, including about 9 miles of rivers at the headwaters of the North Fork of the Elk River in Oregon.

The bill gives permanent wilderness protection --the highest the government can offer --to 127,000 acres surrounding Mount Hood and millions more across nine states. Most are in the West, but some are as far east as Virginia.

"Obama's signature is the icing on the cake for six years of hard work protecting Oregon's icons Mount Hood and the Gorge,'' said Erik Fernandez, wilderness coordinator for the conservation group, Oregon Wild.

"The depth of support for this law by people from all walks of life, as well as the size, scope and diversity of the lands protected are a clear indication Americans recognize that our wild lands must and do serve many purposes, not the least of which is as a place to hunt, fish, hike, camp, watch birds and just find solitude,'' said the Campaign for America's Wilderness executive director Mike Matz, who attended the signing ceremony.

The signing ceremony will provide a very brief pause from a very busy week for Obama.

On Monday morning he addressed the future of the ailing U.S. auto industry, suggesting that GM and Chrysler need to do more to earn additional federal aid. He must keep his eye on potentially calamitous floods in North Dakota and Minnesota and this evening he travels to Capitol Hill to chat with Democrats.

The topic almost certainly will be the budget, which Congress will consider this week. And the Democratic troops are restive. Some want to use Obama's first budget as a way to move quickly on health care reform, climate change and other big-ticket items. Others in the party nearly faint at the prospect of trillion dollar deficits.

Meanwhile, Republicans are waiting to pounce.

It should be an interesting week.

But, at least the long-denied goal of many in Oregon to pass the lands bill has finally been realized. In addition to Mount Hood, the law will protect 13,700 acres of old-growth forest in the Siskiyou National Forest, 23,000 acres in southwestern Oregon's Soda Mountain region, nearly 31,000 acres of wilderness in the Badlands east of Bend, and 8,600 acres of wilderness overlooking the John Day Wild and Scenic River.


http://blog.oregonlive.com/nationalpoli ... _bill.html
The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.
-John Kenneth Galbraith

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs, who, however, has never learned to walk forward.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt


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Re: President Obama's accomplishments so far

Postby SusieQ » Wed Oct 28, 2009 9:45 pm

Obama Signs Veterans' Medical Bill Into Law

President Barack Obama "signed a bill [on Thursday] designed to keep funding for veterans' medical care steady during future budget negotiations," the Associated Press reports. Obama said the bill will guarantee predictable funding for the Department of Veteran Affairs.

"The White House said the change was needed to protect veterans' programs, given that Congress has been late 20 of the last 23 years in passing a budget bill. Aides say the uncertainty of the budget process harms those who have served in uniform" (10/22).

Ahead of the bill signing, ABC's Political Punch wrote that Obama was honoring a campaign promise by signing the Veterans Health Care Budget Reform and Transparency Act into law. "In a letter to the president of the American Federation of Government Employees in October 2008, then-Senator Obama promised that, if elected, his administration would support the legislation"


http://www.kaiserhealthnews.org/Daily-R ... -Bill.aspx
The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.
-John Kenneth Galbraith

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs, who, however, has never learned to walk forward.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt


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Re: President Obama's accomplishments so far

Postby SusieQ » Wed Oct 28, 2009 9:52 pm

President Obama Signs Landmark National Service Legislation


Washington D.C. – President Obama delivered an early victory for a central cause of his Administration by signing into law a sweeping expansion of national service that will engage millions of Americans in addressing local needs through volunteer service.

The President signed the landmark Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act today at a Washington DC elementary school, joined by Vice President Biden, First Lady Michelle Obama, Dr, Jill Biden, Members of Congress, former President Clinton, former First Lady Rosalyn Carter, and an audience of nonprofit leaders and national service volunteers. The President was introduced by the bill’s namesake and longtime service champion Senator Kennedy, who co-authored the legislation with Senator Orrin Hatch.

After signing the bill, the President, First Lady Michelle Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, Dr. Jill Biden, and former President Bill Clinton will plant trees and restore habitat in an environmental service project with AmeriCorps members and high school students at a local park.

The Serve America Act reauthorizes and expands national service programs administered by the Corporation for National and Community Service, a federal agency created in 1993. The Corporation engages four million Americans in result-driven service each year, including 75,000 AmeriCorps members, 492,000 Senior Corps volunteers, 1.1 million Learn and Serve America students, and 2.2 million additional community volunteers mobilized and managed through the agency’s programs.

This bill had a fast bipartisan sprint through Congress. The President called on Congress to send him the Kennedy-Hatch national service legislation in his joint address on February 25. The bill was introduced on March 8 and passed the House on a 321 to 105 vote on March 18. The Senate followed suit one week later with a 79-19 vote, with final passage in the House on March 31, just 22 days after it was introduced.

“The broad bipartisan support for this legislation, and its remarkably swift journey through Congress, reflect the growing national consensus that service is a powerful response to the economic and social challenges facing America today,” said Corporation Board Chair Alan Solomont. “Across the country, people are looking for ways to help their neighbors and their communities. This bill will help us channel more of that energy into meeting local and national needs.”

Earlier today, President Obama announced his intention to nominate Maria Eitel to be CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service. Eitel is the President of the Nike Foundation and a Vice President of NIKE, Inc. As president of the Nike Foundation, she has led the Foundation’s work to increase opportunities for the world’s most disadvantaged girls. Prior to becoming the Foundation’s first president, Ms. Eitel served as Nike Inc.’s first vice president for corporate responsibility, leading the development and implementation of the company’s first corporate responsibility agenda.

President Obama said, “Maria brings a unique blend of skills and management experience that will help her successfully lead the Corporation during our Administration’s bold expansion of national service programs. Maria is genuinely passionate about the role of national and community service as a vehicle for engaging and mobilizing citizens in social change, and will bring new, creative thinking to the growth and mission of the Corporation.”

The legislation comes at a time of growing social need caused by the economic downturn and a corresponding “compassion surge” of Americans wanting to help those left vulnerable by its impact. The Corporation reported today that AmeriCorps received 17,038 online applications in March, nearly triple the 6,770 received in March of 2008. In the past five months, the agency received 48,520 online applications, up 234% over the 14,532 applications it received during the same five month period a year ago. Many volunteer centers and nonprofits groups are also reporting a recent increase in volunteers.

“The President’s call to service at a time of great need is striking a responsive chord with the American public, especially millennials and baby boomers,” said Acting CEO Nicola Goren. “In this economic downturn, we need service and volunteering more than ever, and this legislation expresses the country’s support for service when it’s needed most.”

The Serve America Act, which goes into effect on October 1, would increase and enhance opportunities for Americans of all ages to serve by increasing AmeriCorps from 75,000 to 250,000 positions over the next eight years, while increasing opportunities for students and older Americans to serve. It will strengthen America’s civic infrastructure through social innovation, volunteer mobilization, and building nonprofit capacity. The new law is also designed to strengthen the management, cost-effectiveness and accountability of national service programs by increasing flexibility, consolidating funding streams, and introducing more competition. For a bill summary, click here.

“This bill will help unleash a powerful new wave of service and civic action to help tackle our nation’s toughest challenges," said Solomont. “We are grateful to Representatives George Miller, Bud McKeon, Carolyn McCarthy, and Todd Platts and to Senator Kennedy, Senator Hatch, Senator Mikulski, and Senator Enzi and all those who worked on this historic bipartisan step for national service. We look forward to working with Congress and the White House to fund and implement this Act.”

The bill follows quickly on the heels of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which provided $200 million to support up to 13,000 AmeriCorps members serving in distressed communities. Acting CEO Goren will swear in the first 200 Recovery Act AmeriCorps members at a VISTA training this Friday in Albuquerque, putting “boots on the ground” to help citizens affected by the economic downturn.

The President signed the bill before an audience that included current participants in AmeriCorps, Senior Corps and Learn and Serve America, Members of Congress who worked on the Act, and leaders of national service and nonprofit organizations. The event took place at the SEED School, an innovative public boarding school that caters to underserved students who face challenges in school and at home. In addition to offering an academically rigorous, college prep education, the SEED School incorporates service-learning into the curriculum of all its students, supported by the Corporation’s Learn and Serve America program.

http://www.americorps.gov/about/newsroo ... pr_id=1301
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Re: President Obama's accomplishments so far

Postby enterprise man » Wed Oct 28, 2009 9:56 pm

I had a post but it some how ended up in the GITMO section.

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Re: President Obama's accomplishments so far

Postby dejapig » Thu Oct 29, 2009 11:56 am

enterprise man wrote:I had a post but it some how ended up in the GITMO section.

Then you must have gone off topic. :lol:
Be who you are & say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter & those who matter don't mind. --Dr. Seuss
Keith Olbermann rocks! --dejapig


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