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Here's What's Happening Here at the White House

Saturday, November 09, 2013


Weekly Address: Honoring America's Veterans

In this week's address, President Obama commemorates Veterans Day Weekend by thanking the brave men and women who have worn this country's uniform. The President says he is proud of their service and will do everything possible to ensure America always has their back and always honors their sacrifice.

Click here to watch this week's Weekly Address.



Top Stories

VA Serves One Millionth Post-9/11 G.I. Bill Beneficiary: On Friday, the Department of Veterans Affairs joined Dr. Jill Biden to celebrate the Post-9/11 GI Bill benefit and recognize the significant impact it’s had in helping Service members, Veterans and their families get a quality education and good jobs. 

They congratulated the 1 millionth beneficiary of this landmark program, who is a great representative of the Post-9/11 Veteran generation; which has sacrificed so much for our country. This GI Bill program is just one small way our nation can say “thank you” to these men and women for their service.

President Obama Talks Exports in the Big Easy: On Friday, President Obama traveled to the Port of New Orleans -- one of the busiest port complexes in the world and responsible for moving millions of tons of steel, chemicals, fuel, and food every year. The Port also handles, as the President noted, much of the country's coffee: "which means you're responsible for keeping the White House awake at all times."

The President spoke about the importance of investing in our infrastructure -- rebuilding our roads, bridges, and ports -- to create jobs at home, expand trade, and keep American businesses competitive: 

"Right now, exports are one of the brightest spots in our economy. Thanks in part to new trade deals that we signed with countries like Panama and Colombia and South Korea, we now export more goods and services than ever before. And that means jobs right here in the United States of America.

Last year, every $1 billion in exports supports nearly 5,000 jobs, including jobs right here at this port.  So we’re working on new trade deals that will mean more jobs for our workers, and more business for ports like this one.

And, by the way, when I travel around the world, I’m out there selling.  I’ll go anywhere in the world to make sure that ... those products stamped with those words, “Made in America” ... that we can open up those markets and sell them anywhere."

Read his full remarks here.

Shining a Light on our Researchers, Doctors, Nurses, and Caregivers: Earlier this week, the Vice President and Dr. Jill Biden hosted their 2nd Annual Breast Cancer Awareness Reception at the Naval Observatory. They were joined by survivors, caregivers, families, doctors, researchers, and advocates who have all been touched by breast cancer.

Read Dr. Biden's blog about the event here.

First Lady Michelle Obama Celebrates Diwali at the White House: On Tuesday, First Lady Michelle Obama welcomed guests to the White House for a Diwali celebration. The celebration started with the First Lady surprising local students at a Bollywood dance clinic and trying out some moves herself.

Then the First Lady spoke during a reception in the East Room:

“We’ve celebrated this holiday here at the White House every year since Barack took office. And there’s a reason why we've done that,” she said.

When we say that we want to make the White House the “people’s house,” we mean all people. We mean that we want to honor and embrace all of the many cultures and faith traditions that make us who we are as Americans. And Diwali is very much one of those traditions.

The Employment Situation in October: Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers Jason Furman explains the five key points in Friday's October Employment report, including the fact that businesses have added jobs for 44 consecutive months, with private-sector employment increasing by 7.8 million over that period.

President Obama to Dallas Health Care Volunteers: "Nothing Is Going to Stop Us from Getting This Done." On Wednesday, the President traveled to Dallas, Texas, where he joined canvassers and navigators who are part of the community's most active group of volunteers working to enroll their neighbors in quality, affordable coverage through the Marketplace.

The President personally thanked them for their work, calling out the fact that ultimately, "all the politics, all the chatter sometimes leaves out the fact that the system we had -- the status quo -- just wasn't working for too many people."

"...Now what we’ve got to do is sign up those folks who don’t have health insurance and improve insurance for those who are under-insured, who don’t have very good insurance, and have been subject to the whims of the insurance company. And that’s what this is all about. And that’s the challenge that we’ve got over the next month, three months, six months, next year. And if we get that done -- when we get that done -- then we will have created a stable system in which there’s no reason why people shouldn’t be getting health care in this country."

You can read the President's full remarks here

The Time is Now: President Obama Meets with Business Leaders on Immigration Reform: On Tuesday, the President, Vice President and senior Administration officials met at the White House with a group of top U.S. business leaders to discuss the importance of commonsense immigration reform to bolster U.S. economic growth, and improve the climate for business, and job creation. These leaders shared with the President their desire to see our broken immigration system fixed, both because it is the right thing to do, and because it will be good for the U.S. economy.

In addition to the 7.5 million jobs created in the U.S. over the past three and a half years, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO), over the next two decades, the bipartisan bill that has already passed the Senate would grow the economy by an additional $1.4 trillion, and shrink our deficits by nearly $1 trillion. The Senate bill would modernize our legal immigration system

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