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POTUS

President Obama on Chuck Todd: ‘Now a big cheese’

After addressing the US economy, ongoing violence in Ukraine, and the threat of ISIS in Iraq and Syria during a White House statement just after 4pm today, President Obama turned to the press corps for questions.

First up: NBC News chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd.

“I’m going to start with somebody I guess is now a big cheese, he’s moved on,” Obama quipped, referring to Todd’s new role as moderator of “Meet the Press. Todd will vacate his role as the NBC White House lead when he takes over “MTP” on September 7.

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BuzzFeed Highlights Evasive Phrasing in White House Press Briefings

BuzzFeedLogoBuzzFeed’s John Templon yesterday published a piece on elusive phrases offered by White House press secretaries after analyzing 5,000 briefings dating back to the 1993 Clinton White House.

President Clinton’s press secretaries George Stephanopoulos, Dee Dee Myers, Jake Siewert, and Joe Lockhart led their counterparts from the Obama and Bush administrations in their use of “weasel phrases,” as described by BuzzFeed as “I can’t comment on,” “I’m not aware [of/that/etc.],” and “I don’t know.”

Per every 1,000 words, Stephanopoulos and Myers uttered 12.5 and 11.0 “weasel phrases,” respectively, compared to Bush press secretary Ari Fleischer at 3.4

Click through to BuzzFeed for a list of trends as well as each press secretary’s favorite – evasive – phrases.

WATCH LIVE: Josh Earnest’s White House Press Briefing Thursday at 1pm

At 1pm Thursday afternoon, White House press secretary Josh Earnest will deliver a press briefing before the White House press corps.

Watch live, below.

President Obama: ‘The world is shaped by people like Jim Foley’

NBC-James-Foley-300x168President Obama Wednesday afternoon delivered a statement on the beheading of American photojournalist James Foley by ISIS.

A video posted to YouTube on Tuesday was confirmed authentic by National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden on Wednesday. In it, Steven Sotloff, a freelance journalist who has written for TIME that was kidnapped in August 2013 is also shown, and threats on his life made.

In remarks from Martha’s Vineyard, Obama said, “No just God would stand for what they did yesterday or every single day…People like this ultimately fail. They fail because the future’s won by those who build and not destroy. The world is shaped by people like Jim Foley.” Read more

WATCH LIVE: President Obama to Deliver 12:45pm Statement

President Barack Obama will deliver a statement at 12:45pm Wednesday from Martha’s Vineyard on the beheading of American photojournalist James Foley by ISIS. National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden confirmed the video’s authenticity on Wednesday, after it was posted, and soon after removed, from YouTube.

WATCH live via NBC News:

Valerie Jarrett Explains Why Obama Isn’t Headed to Ferguson

politicologoIn a piece published to POLITICO Tuesday evening, Todd S. Purdum explores why President Barack Obama isn’t headed to Ferguson, Mo. amid racial tensions captivating national news headlines.

On Monday, during a press conference from the White House, Obama announced that he would send Attorney General Eric Holder to the Missouri town, to monitor demonstrations and police interactions with protesters after 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot to death by policeman Darren Wilson earlier this month.

“The circumstances determine the reaction, and it isn’t appropriate for the president to speak up emotionally in the midst of an ongoing investigation by the Justice Department,” said White House senior advisor Valerie Jarrett to Purdam via phone. “He wants the attorney general and his team to be able to conduct an independent investigation without any thumb on the scale one way or another. I think the president’s goal is to add his voice in a way that is calming, so the violence ends, and to send a message to the government officials on the ground about what his expectations are in terms of freedom to assemble, freedom of speech and freedom of the press — and also to signal to the people who have been looting and shooting that that’s not an acceptable way to honor the death of a young man.”

For the full piece, click on over to POLITICO.

President Obama Recognizes Retiring ABC News-er Ann Compton on Monday

During yesterday’s press conference on current events in Iraq and Ferguson, Mo., President Barack Obama took three questions for the White House press corps, including one from ABC News White House correspondent Ann Compton.

Before asking her question, President Obama said, “Ann Compton, everybody here knows, is not only the consummate professional but also a pleasure to get to know. I just want to say, publicly, Ann, we’re going to miss you. We’re very proud of the extraordinary work you’ve done, and we hope you’re not a stranger around here…I expect you might get some cake at some point.”

Asked by the ABC News-er whether he had plans to travel to Ferguson, the president replied, “I have to be very careful about not prejudging these events before investigations are completed.”

Compton is set to retire September 10, 41 years to the day after she joined the network.


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WATCH LIVE: Obama on Iraq and Ferguson at 4pm Monday

President Barack Obama will deliver a statement on recent developments in Iraq and Ferguson, Mo. today at 4pm at the White House.

WATCH live via NBC News:

President Obama on the Arrest of Journalists in Ferguson

President Obama addressed the arrests of two reporters in Ferguson, Mo. Wednesday night at a press conference he offered Thursday afternoon in Martha’s Vineyard.

“Here in the United States of America, police should not be bullying or arresting journalists who are just trying to do their jobs and report to the American people on what they see on the ground,” Obama said.

The Washington Post’s Wesley Lowery and HuffPost’s Ryan Reilly were arrested, assaulted and released without charges, paperwork or the names of the arresting officers amid protests in the Missouri town after an unarmed African American teen – Michael Brown – was shot and killed by police on Saturday.

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Bloomberg’s Jonathan Allen on the Unsteady Relationship of Obama and Clinton

Bloomberg’s Jonathan Allen this afternoon published a piece on the hot and cold relationship of President Obama and Hillary Clinton.

“From the time of their shotgun wedding after the 2008 campaign — Obama vowing to keep his primary adversary close and Clinton promising to serve him loyally as head of his State Department — they’ve kept the partnership of the two most powerful brands in Democratic politics from tearing asunder,” writes Allen.

But as the end of Obama’s second term and Clinton’s expected run for the White House fast approach, their relationship, Obama’s support, and Clinton’s public perception are more important now, that ever.

Read the full piece, here.

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