Streams

 

President Obama

The Takeaway

Lessons from President Lyndon Johnson's Time in the Oval Office

Monday, December 31, 2012

Robert Caro is the author of the multi-volume Pulitzer Prize-winning biography, “The Years of Lyndon Johnson.”  The most recent installment is entitled "The Passage of Power." He sat down with John Hockenberry to reflect on how the obstacles and successes of President Johnson's presidency compare to those of President Obama's.

Comments [3]

The Brian Lehrer Show

Time Person of the Year: Barack Obama

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Michael Scherer, Time White House correspondent, talks about the selection of President Obama as Time's Person of the Year.

Comments [23]

The Brian Lehrer Show

Obama's Public Fiscal Cliff Appeal

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Josh King, director of production of presidential events under President Clinton and host of the podcast "Polioptics" on Sirius XM satellite radio, details how President Obama is staying in "campaign mode" during the fiscal cliff negotiations, and whether it's having the intended effect.

Comments [11]

The Brian Lehrer Show

History Lessons for the President

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Douglas Brinkley, professor of history at Rice University and author of Cronkite, explains what the historical precedent is for Obama's second term and for storm response.

 

Comments [26]

Transportation Nation

Poll Captures Storm Surge Of Positive Feelings For NY MTA, Gas Rationing

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

NY MTA chairman Joe Lhota, flanked by NY Governor Andrew Cuomo and Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, looking pleased while announcing the re-opening of a flooded tunnel last week.(photo by Jim O'Grady / WNYC)

(New York, NY - WNYC) Poll results show that Superstorm Sandy has remade two kinds of landscapes in New York: physical and psychological. Beachfront is gone, trees are uprooted and whole communities have been forcibly rearranged by a monster tide. No less dramatically, a majority of New Yorkers are expressing love not only for their elected officials but everyone's favorite bureaucratic whipping boy, the NY Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

You read that correctly.

The latest Quinnipiac University poll finds 75 percent of New Yorkers rated the authority's performance during and after Sandy at "excellent" or "good." That's better than the Red Cross's 66 percent approval rating, and the dismal 37 percent approval for the region's utility companies, which struggled at times to bring the power back.

NY MTA chairman Joe Lhota was highly visible in the days and weeks following the storm as his workers methodically pumped out no less than seven under-river tunnels and, one by one, got them back to carrying trains and vehicular traffic.

The NY MTA also showed a fair degree of nimbleness by running shuttle buses over cross-river bridges until the subways were dried out. (Taking a cue, the NY Department of Transportation today announced its plan to run a temporary ferry from the hard-hit South Shore of Staten Island to Manhattan.) And the authority captured the public imagination with an online map that showed the the subway recovering in real time.

The Quinnipiac poll, which surveyed more than 1,000 registered voters in New York, also reported that Mayor Bloomberg's odd-even gas rationing system won favor by 85 to 12 percent. Other winners: President Obama, New York Governor Cuomo and, with the best numbers, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. See the full results here.

Read More

Comment

The Takeaway

Why Obama Should Go Over the Fiscal Cliff

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Some Republicans, including columnist Marc Thiessen, say their only negotiating tactic is to let the United States go over the fiscal cliff. But New Yorker staff writer John Cassidy says it’s Obama who would benefit from the January 1st package of tax hikes and spending cuts.

Comments [1]

The Brian Lehrer Show

Update on Gaza

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

David Sanger, chief Washington correspondent for The New York Times, WNYC contributor and author of Confront and Conceal: Obama's Secret Wars and Surprising Use of American Power, provides an update on the growing Gaza conflict, and frames the situation in terms of the president's overall stance on Middle Eastern foreign policy.

Comments [29]

The Brian Lehrer Show

Asia in Obama's Second Term

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Suzanne DiMaggio, vice president of Global Policy Programs at the Asia Society, talks about what China's change in leadership and President Obama's tour in Asia this week tell us about U.S. policy in the region.

Comments [2]

WNYC News

Cuomo Seeks $30 Billion in Extra Storm Aid from Feds

Monday, November 12, 2012

Citing massive economic losses to the state of New York, Governor Andrew Cuomo is asking Congress for $30 billion in additional funding for Sandy recovery.

Comments [1]

It's A Free Country ®

WATCH | President Obama Addresses 'Fiscal Cliff'

Friday, November 09, 2012

At 1 p.m. Friday afternoon, President Obama will make his first comments on economic policy since the election. The president is expected to address the "fiscal cliff" the nation will face in January.

Comment

Money Talking

Money Talking: Will Obama and Congress Avoid the Fiscal Cliff?

Friday, November 09, 2012

With President Barack Obama reelected to a second term and Congress set to reconvene after Veterans Day, all eyes in Washington are set on the January 1 fiscal cliff when billions in spending cuts and tax increases will go into effect.

Comments [3]

Transportation Nation

Analysis: Did Cars Save President Obama?

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

There's been a ton of talk since last night about how much the relatively low unemployment rate in Ohio and the descending rates in Michigan and Wisconsin helped President Obama with his so-called "Mid-Western firewall."

The ironies couldn't be thicker:

The President's bailout of major car companies soon after he took office offended many Democratic voters.

“I feel they should’ve gave the people the money to spend to keep the companies going,” retail clerk Linda Webb told me in 2010, while pushing her grocery cart out of the Walmart in Jackson, Michigan. “But they did the opposite. They gave it to all the big people that didn’t need the money. If they handed me money like they handed them, I could’ve went and bought a car — it would have kept them in production.”

In 2010, the hiring spurred by the bailout wasn't quite so easy to see, but since then, it's set in.

Then there's the industry itself -- not exactly a natural Obama ally.

The auto industry has had its own reasons to resist the Obama presidency, including implementation of regulations requiring cars to get a minimum of 55 miles per gallon by next decade.

But at the end of the day, a prediction that a top Democratic official made to Transportation Nation back in June proved true: swing states jobs numbers, he said, would be "determinative" in the fall.  Here's what we wrote then:

Buoyed in part by automobile hiring, employment in swing states looks far better than the nation as a whole, providing a possible path to victory for President Barack Obama, who bailed out the big three auto manufacturers with a clothespin on his nose.

In Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and Missouri, the auto industry has been adding jobs at rapid clip,  according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. So that even though things were really bad in those states, they’re now less bad. Which is good news for the President.

“We know that this thing is going to be super tight,” said a senior Democratic official. “But we are absolutely of the belief that the swing states jobs numbers will be determinative in the fall.”

By now, the national narrative is well known. May’s employment numbers were meh, signalling a heap of trouble for the President. “He is the underdog,” opined NPR’s Mara Liasson, who then ticked off things that could only make the electoral picture worse for the Democrats: the Euro crisis, the Chinese economy, etc. That pretty much sums up the conventional wisdom.

Except.

In the swing states, things are markedly better than they were two years ago, and in many of them, the employment picture is a whole lot brighter than the nation as a whole.

Here's the rest of that post.

 

Read More

Comment

The Takeaway

Listener Share their Hopes for the Next Four Years

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

"In the next four years, I want my country to _________." The day after the presidential election, many Takeaway listeners had an easy answer to that question: Get along. Other listeners said it was time for both parties to learn a few lessons and move on. Some listeners called with long policy to-do lists, while others while yet others proposed that President Obama revisit his "team of rivals" strategy.

Comment

WNYC News

Veterans Groups, Providers Weigh in on Presidential Order to Help Military Members

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Veterans groups and mental health care providers are watching closely, as a new presidential order designed to increase services for military men and women takes shape.

Comments [1]

The Leonard Lopate Show

Bob Woodward on The Price of Politics

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Bob Woodward discusses how President Obama and the highest profile Republican and Democratic leaders in the United States Congress attempted to repair the American economy and deal with the federal debt over three and one half years. The Price of Politics, his 17th book, addresses the key issue of the presidential and congressional campaigns: the state of the American economy and how to address it.

Comments [15]

WNYC News

What to Look for as the 67th UN General Assembly Begins

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

World leaders will take the stage at the United Nations this week and next, for the 67th session of the General Assembly. The session began Tuesday afternoon, but world leaders aren’t expected to flood in until next week to begin discussing several pressing issues

Comments [1]

The Takeaway

White Virginians Voice Concerns Over Mitt Romney

Friday, September 14, 2012

A recent Reuters article has found that some white voters in Virginia — who generally vote Republican — have concerns about Mitt Romney's wealth and religion. These concerns may prove especially important as the typically red state has emerged as one of the election's most important swing states.

Comments [2]

Money Talking

Money Talking: Fuel Efficiency Standards

Friday, August 31, 2012

As Republicans gathered for their national convention in Tampa this week, President Barack Obama stole some of their thunder by announcing that automakers will have to nearly double the fuel efficiency of cars and trucks by 2025.

Comments [2]

Transportation Nation

Obama Tells States "Use It or Lose It" for $470 Million in Transpo Money (CHART)

Friday, August 17, 2012

States will lose out on millions of dollars in federal highway money if they sit on the cash without putting it to immediate use, the White House said in a statement today.

The U.S. Department of Transportation is making freeing up $473 million in unspent highway earmarks for other projects  "that will create jobs and help improve transportation." The move is intended to speed the stimulus and job creation impact of federal transportation spending, much of which goes to large projects that can take years to plan and execute.

President Barack Obama said, “We’re not going to let politics stand between construction workers and good jobs repairing our roads and bridges.”

According to the DOT, $473 million in highway earmarks remain unspent from 2003-2006 appropriations (full list here). Today's authorization allows state transportation departments to take that earmarked money and use it on other highway, transit, passenger rail or port projects.

Funds not re-obligated within a state by the end of the year can go to other states in the 2013 fiscal year, hence the headline in the White House press release "Use It or Lose It" (in full below)

Top Ten States with unused earmarks:

Top Ten States with Unspent Transportation Earmark Money

Alabama $51,488,747.50
California $43,075,444.64
Texas $30,795,362.97
New York $29,031,287.86
Pennsylvania $28,536,041.90
Alaska $20,239,216.44
Massachusetts $18,933,562.00
Kentucky $17,518,853.15
Michigan $15,806,886.79
Mississippi $15,248,578.00

Full Press Release:

Obama Administration on Idle Earmark Projects: Use It or Lose It “We Can’t Wait” Action Helps States Put People to Work, Improve Infrastructure

WASHINGTON, DC – The Obama Administration today announced that it won’t allow infrastructure funds to sit idle as a result of stalled earmark projects at a time when hundreds of thousands of construction workers are looking for work. U.S Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood is making over $470 million in unspent earmarks immediately available to states for projects that will create jobs and help improve transportation across the country.

“My administration will continue to do everything we can to put Americans back to work,” said President Barack Obama. “We’re not going to let politics stand between construction workers and good jobs repairing our roads and bridges.”

“We are freeing up these funds so states can get down to the business of moving transportation projects forward and putting our friends and neighbors back to work,” said Secretary LaHood.

President Obama has vowed to veto any bill that comes to his desk with earmarks and would support legislation to permanently ban earmarks. But $473 million in highway earmarks from FY2003-2006 appropriations acts remain unspent years later. Those acts contain provisions that authorize the Secretary to make the unused funds available for eligible surface transportation projects.  Effective today, state departments of transportation will have the ability to use their unspent earmarked highway funds, some of which are nearly 10 years old, on any eligible highway, transit, passenger rail, or port project.

States must identify the projects they plan to use the funds for by October 1, and must obligate them by December 31, 2012.

“Particularly in these difficult fiscal times, states will be able to put these dollars to good use,” said Federal Highway Administrator Victor Mendez.  “These funds will create jobs in the short term and help bring about what President Obama called ‘an America built to last.’”

To ensure that this funding is quickly put to good use to improve our nation’s infrastructure, funds not obligated by the December 31 deadline will be proportionally redistributed in FY 2013 to states that met the deadline.

A list of available funds by state can be accessed here: http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/pressroom/redisfy0306earmarks.htm

Read More

Comment

Money Talking

Money Talking: Why Has Wall Street Abandoned President Obama for Mitt Romney?

Friday, August 17, 2012

Wall Street threw its support behind Barack Obama in 2008, but this election cycle the tables have turned. Now, it's funneling most of its donations to Mitt Romney and conservative super PACs.

Comments [5]