Watch-It Wednesday: Why Should I Get A VA Loan?

Watch-It Wednesday: Why Should I Get A VA Loan?


It’s Wednesday! And around here that means only one thing. It’s time for our weekly video blog, Watch-It Wednesday! This week Jeff Perry discusses some of the benefits of VA Home Loans and why they might be the best option for those that have served in the military. The floor is yours, Jeff!

If you can’t see the embedded video, watch our VA Home Loan video here.

Got something to say? We’d love to hear from you! Email us at content@quickenloans.com and we just might feature your question or comments in an upcoming blog post!

Video Transcription:

Why choose VA Home Loans?

Hi my name is Jeff Perry, Vice President with Quicken Loans and I wanted to talk to you today about the VA Loan.
At Quicken Loans we specialize in VA Loans. We have an entire team that’s dedicated to speaking with clients about VA options. So if you’ve served in the military, a VA Loan might be your best option.

So some of the benefits of doing a VA Loan are: number one, you don’t have to pay PMI. So in most loans, a conventional or FHA loan, if you have less than 20 percent equity you have to pay PMI. With VA, you don’t. That’s one benefit.

Another benefit is that if you’re looking to buy a new home you can finance 100 percent of the purchase of a brand new home. So no down payment and you have great low interest rates.
And also the interest rates and the cost…low interest rates and low closing costs. Most people call in and they’re not even aware that a VA Loan option is their best option because they just don’t know. So we’re gonna take the time and talk to you about those options because you’re entitled to those and you deserve those options.

So if you want more information, please call us. We’ll be glad to help you and see what options you qualify for.  Thank you.


bookmark Watch It Wednesday: Why Should I Get A VA Loan?

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Source: quickenloans.com

Watch-It Wednesday: Types of Adjustable Rate Mortgages

Watch-It Wednesday: Types of Adjustable Rate Mortgages


First there was Monday. Then came Tuesday. Now it’s Wednesday. These are tested and scientifically proven facts. And around here, Wednesday means one thing – it’s Watch-It Wednesday! Our weekly video blog where we answer your mortgage questions. This week, Matt Stoffer tells us about different types of adjustable rate mortgages. Drop some knowledge on us, Matt!

If you can’t see the embedded video, watch our Adjustable Rate Mortgage video here.

Got something to say? We’d love to hear from you! Email us at content@quickenloans.com and we just might feature your question or comments in an upcoming blog post!

Video Transcription:

Hi, I’m Matt Stoffer – Vice President of Quicken Loans Web Center in Scottsdale Arizona.  And I wanted to take a moment of your time and talk to you about the adjustable rate mortgage, also known as the ARM. The two most popular varities of the product are the 5-year and 7-year adjustable rate mortgage. What that means is  you’ll have a fixed rate for 5 full years – or 60 months – if you choose the 5-year option.  Or you’ll have a fixed rate for 7 years – or 84 full months – if you choose the 7-year option.

I recently bought a home in Scottsdale, Arizona, with my wife, and we chose a 7-year ARM.  And that rate is going to be locked in until 2018 giving me the comfort that I’m not gonna have to worry about my rate changing – giving my wife the same comfort.  It’s a fantastic product and something that many Americans can benefit from.  Because with 10 years of experience in the mortgage industry, I’ve found that the average American only stays in a home for about 3-5 years.  And even if they stay in the home longer, what we typically find is people look to refinance and improve their situation every 3-5 years as well.

Hopefully I’ve been able to provide you some insight into the adjustable rate mortgage product. If you have any questions, call Quicken Loans – we’ll be happy to help.


bookmark Watch It Wednesday: Types of Adjustable Rate Mortgages

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Source: quickenloans.com

Readout of the President's Meeting with Members of Congress on Libya

Readout of the President's Meeting with Members of Congress on Libya

Readout of the President's Meeting with Members of Congress on Libya | The White House Skip to main content | Skip to footer site map The White House. President Barack Obama The White House Emblem Get Email UpdatesContact Us Go to homepage. The White House Blog Photos & Videos Photo Galleries Video Live Streams Podcasts Briefing Room Your Weekly Address Speeches & Remarks Press Briefings Statements & Releases White House Schedule Presidential Actions Executive Orders Presidential Memoranda Proclamations Legislation Pending Legislation Signed Legislation Vetoed Legislation Nominations & Appointments Disclosures Visitor Access Records Financial Disclosures 2010 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff 2009 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff Ethics Pledge Waivers Issues Civil Rights It Gets Better Defense The Way Forward in Afghanistan Disabilities Economy Financial Reform Innovation Startup America Education Educate to Innovate Higher Education Race to the Top Commencement Challenge Energy & Environment A New Foundation Deepwater BP Oil Spill Ethics Family Fiscal Responsibility Foreign Policy Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Trip to Asia 2010 Haiti Earthquake Speech in Cairo Health Care Homeland Security Immigration Poverty Rural State Fair Tour Seniors & Social Security Service Taxes Tax Cuts, Unemployment Insurance and Jobs Technology Urban Policy Veterans Women Additional Issues The Administration President Barack Obama Vice President Joe Biden First Lady Michelle Obama Dr. Jill Biden The Cabinet 2010 Video Reports White House Staff Chief of Staff Bill Daley Deputy Chief of Staff Nancy-Ann DeParle Deputy Chief of Staff Alyssa Mastromonaco Counselor to the President Peter Rouse Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett Executive Office of the President Other Advisory Boards About the White House Interactive Tour History White House Rooms White House Art Presidents First Ladies The Oval Office The Vice President's Residence & Office Eisenhower Executive Office Building Camp David Air Force One White House Fellows President’s Commission About the Fellowship Current Class Recent Class Staff Bios White House Internships The Story About Us Program Apply Here Submit a Recommendation Tours & Events 2011 Easter Egg Roll Kitchen Garden Tours Holidays 2010 Inside the White House Our Government The Executive Branch The Legislative Branch The Judicial Branch The Constitution Federal Agencies & Commissions Elections & Voting State & Local Government Resources /* Maximize height of menu features. */if(typeof(jQuery)!='undefined')jQuery.each($('.topnav-feature','#topnav'),function(i,v){var o=$(v),oh=o.height(),sh=o.siblings().height();if(oh Home • Briefing Room • Statements & Releases   table.system-status-report th, table td, table th { padding: 5px;}.item-list ul.pager {margin: 0;}.view-display-id-page_1 {padding: 20px;}.node-form .text {width:95%;}.node-form, #node-delete-confirm, #user-login {max-width:648px;}dl.node-type-list {max-width: 615px; padding: 20px; margin: 20px;}#edit-delete, div.submenu.revisions {display: none;}ul.secondary li {display: block;}ul.secondary a.active {border-bottom: 1px solid #999;} The White House

Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release March 25, 2011 Readout of the President's Meeting with Members of Congress on Libya

On March 25, President Obama briefed a bipartisan, bicameral group of Members of Congress on the situation in Libya. The President and his team provided an update on accomplishments to date, including the full transfer of enforcement of the no-fly zone to NATO, and yesterday’s unanimous agreement among NATO allies to direct planning for NATO to assume command and control of the civilian protection component in accordance with UNSCR 1973. Following the briefing, the President answered multiple questions from the Members of Congress. The discussion lasted approximately one hour and took place in the White House Situation Room.
 
Joining from the Administration
Chief of Staff Bill Daley
National Security Advisor Tom Donilon
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (via phone)
CJCS Mike Mullen
GEN Carter Ham (via via video conference)
 
Bipartisan bicameral group of members of Congress that participated (in person or by phone)
Speaker John Boehner
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor
House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi
House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer
Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell
Senate Republican Whip Jon Kyl
 
Representative Adam Smith
Senator Carl Levin
Senator John McCain
 
Senator John Kerry
Senator Richard Lugar
Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen
Representative Howard Berman
 
Senator Dianne Feinstein
Senator Saxby Chambliss
Representative Mike Rogers
Representative C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger
 
Senator Daniel Inouye
Senator Thad Cochran
Representative Hal Rogers
Representative Norm Dicks

Blog posts on this issue March 29, 2011 6:11 PM EDT2011 White House Easter Egg Roll: Get Up and Go!2011 White House Easter Egg Roll: Get Up and Go!

Announcing the 2011 White House Easter Egg Roll logo, poster contest and more.

March 29, 2011 5:24 PM EDTStrengthening Our Understanding of a Changing Planet

The Nation’s primary global change research program has a new leader who will oversee these enhancements at time of great import for the global-change science community and for society as a whole.

March 29, 2011 5:05 PM EDTAmerica’s Future Leaders

Eduardo Ochoa, Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education at the Department of Education, talks about community colleges, where a majority of Latinos and other minorities who are traditionally underserved by higher education are now reaching for a college degree in ever-greater numbers.

view all related blog posts ul.related-content li.views-row img {float: left; padding: 5px 10px 0 0;} Stay ConnectedFacebookTwitterFlickrMySpaceYouTubeVimeoiTunesLinkedIn   Home The White House Blog Photos & Videos Photo Galleries Video Live Streams Podcasts Briefing Room Your Weekly Address Speeches & Remarks Press Briefings Statements & Releases White House Schedule Presidential Actions Legislation Nominations & Appointments Disclosures Issues Civil Rights Defense Disabilities Economy Education Energy & Environment Ethics Family Fiscal Responsibility Foreign Policy Health Care Homeland Security Immigration Poverty Rural Seniors & Social Security Service Taxes Technology Urban Policy Veterans Women Additional Issues The Administration President Barack Obama Vice President Joe Biden First Lady Michelle Obama Dr. Jill Biden The Cabinet White House Staff Executive Office of the President Other Advisory Boards About the White House Interactive Tour History Presidents First Ladies The Oval Office The Vice President's Residence & Office Eisenhower Executive Office Building Camp David Air Force One White House Fellows White House Internships Tours & Events Inside the White House Our Government The Executive Branch The Legislative Branch The Judicial Branch The Constitution Federal Agencies & Commissions Elections & Voting State & Local Government Resources The White House Emblem En español Accessibility Copyright Information Privacy Policy Contact USA.gov Subscribe to RSS Feeds Apply for a Job

Source: whitehouse.gov

Readout of President Obama's calls with Brazilian President Rousseff, Chilean President Piñera, and El Salvadoran President Funes

Readout of President Obama's calls with Brazilian President Rousseff, Chilean President Piñera, and El Salvadoran President Funes

Readout of President Obama's calls with Brazilian President Rousseff, Chilean President Piñera, and El Salvadoran President Funes | The White House Skip to main content | Skip to footer site map The White House. President Barack Obama The White House Emblem Get Email UpdatesContact Us Go to homepage. The White House Blog Photos & Videos Photo Galleries Video Live Streams Podcasts Briefing Room Your Weekly Address Speeches & Remarks Press Briefings Statements & Releases White House Schedule Presidential Actions Executive Orders Presidential Memoranda Proclamations Legislation Pending Legislation Signed Legislation Vetoed Legislation Nominations & Appointments Disclosures Visitor Access Records Financial Disclosures 2010 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff 2009 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff Ethics Pledge Waivers Issues Civil Rights It Gets Better Defense The Way Forward in Afghanistan Disabilities Economy Financial Reform Innovation Startup America Education Educate to Innovate Higher Education Race to the Top Commencement Challenge Energy & Environment A New Foundation Deepwater BP Oil Spill Ethics Family Fiscal Responsibility Foreign Policy Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Trip to Asia 2010 Haiti Earthquake Speech in Cairo Health Care Homeland Security Immigration Poverty Rural State Fair Tour Seniors & Social Security Service Taxes Tax Cuts, Unemployment Insurance and Jobs Technology Urban Policy Veterans Women Additional Issues The Administration President Barack Obama Vice President Joe Biden First Lady Michelle Obama Dr. Jill Biden The Cabinet 2010 Video Reports White House Staff Chief of Staff Bill Daley Deputy Chief of Staff Nancy-Ann DeParle Deputy Chief of Staff Alyssa Mastromonaco Counselor to the President Peter Rouse Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett Executive Office of the President Other Advisory Boards About the White House Interactive Tour History White House Rooms White House Art Presidents First Ladies The Oval Office The Vice President's Residence & Office Eisenhower Executive Office Building Camp David Air Force One White House Fellows President’s Commission About the Fellowship Current Class Recent Class Staff Bios White House Internships The Story About Us Program Apply Here Submit a Recommendation Tours & Events 2011 Easter Egg Roll Kitchen Garden Tours Holidays 2010 Inside the White House Our Government The Executive Branch The Legislative Branch The Judicial Branch The Constitution Federal Agencies & Commissions Elections & Voting State & Local Government Resources /* Maximize height of menu features. */if(typeof(jQuery)!='undefined')jQuery.each($('.topnav-feature','#topnav'),function(i,v){var o=$(v),oh=o.height(),sh=o.siblings().height();if(oh Home • Briefing Room • Statements & Releases   table.system-status-report th, table td, table th { padding: 5px;}.item-list ul.pager {margin: 0;}.view-display-id-page_1 {padding: 20px;}.node-form .text {width:95%;}.node-form, #node-delete-confirm, #user-login {max-width:648px;}dl.node-type-list {max-width: 615px; padding: 20px; margin: 20px;}#edit-delete, div.submenu.revisions {display: none;}ul.secondary li {display: block;}ul.secondary a.active {border-bottom: 1px solid #999;} The White House

Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release March 25, 2011 Readout of President Obama's calls with Brazilian President Rousseff, Chilean President Piñera, and El Salvadoran President Funes

President Obama called Brazilian President Rousseff, Chilean President Piñera, and El Salvadoran President Funes today to express his appreciation for their hosting of the First Family during a successful trip to Latin America this past week.  President Obama highlighted the productive conversations carried out with the three leaders and followed up on several initiatives launched during the trip.  With President Rousseff, he underscored the importance of the new bilateral Economic and Financial Dialogue and the Strategic Energy Dialogue; with President Piñera, he thanked Chile for its leadership in co-sponsoring UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) Resolution on Iran that was approved on March 24; and with President Funes, he agreed with the Salvadoran leader on the importance of our partnership on Citizen Security in Central America and reaffirmed El Salvador’s participation in the Partnership for Growth initiative.

Blog posts on this issue March 29, 2011 6:11 PM EDT2011 White House Easter Egg Roll: Get Up and Go!2011 White House Easter Egg Roll: Get Up and Go!

Announcing the 2011 White House Easter Egg Roll logo, poster contest and more.

March 29, 2011 5:24 PM EDTStrengthening Our Understanding of a Changing Planet

The Nation’s primary global change research program has a new leader who will oversee these enhancements at time of great import for the global-change science community and for society as a whole.

March 29, 2011 5:05 PM EDTAmerica’s Future Leaders

Eduardo Ochoa, Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education at the Department of Education, talks about community colleges, where a majority of Latinos and other minorities who are traditionally underserved by higher education are now reaching for a college degree in ever-greater numbers.

view all related blog posts ul.related-content li.views-row img {float: left; padding: 5px 10px 0 0;} Stay ConnectedFacebookTwitterFlickrMySpaceYouTubeVimeoiTunesLinkedIn   Home The White House Blog Photos & Videos Photo Galleries Video Live Streams Podcasts Briefing Room Your Weekly Address Speeches & Remarks Press Briefings Statements & Releases White House Schedule Presidential Actions Legislation Nominations & Appointments Disclosures Issues Civil Rights Defense Disabilities Economy Education Energy & Environment Ethics Family Fiscal Responsibility Foreign Policy Health Care Homeland Security Immigration Poverty Rural Seniors & Social Security Service Taxes Technology Urban Policy Veterans Women Additional Issues The Administration President Barack Obama Vice President Joe Biden First Lady Michelle Obama Dr. Jill Biden The Cabinet White House Staff Executive Office of the President Other Advisory Boards About the White House Interactive Tour History Presidents First Ladies The Oval Office The Vice President's Residence & Office Eisenhower Executive Office Building Camp David Air Force One White House Fellows White House Internships Tours & Events Inside the White House Our Government The Executive Branch The Legislative Branch The Judicial Branch The Constitution Federal Agencies & Commissions Elections & Voting State & Local Government Resources The White House Emblem En español Accessibility Copyright Information Privacy Policy Contact USA.gov Subscribe to RSS Feeds Apply for a Job

Source: whitehouse.gov

Readout of Vice President Biden's Meeting with British Deputy Prime Minister Nicholas Clegg

Readout of Vice President Biden's Meeting with British Deputy Prime Minister Nicholas Clegg

Readout of Vice President Biden's Meeting with British Deputy Prime Minister Nicholas Clegg | The White House Skip to main content | Skip to footer site map The White House. President Barack Obama The White House Emblem Get Email UpdatesContact Us Go to homepage. The White House Blog Photos & Videos Photo Galleries Video Live Streams Podcasts Briefing Room Your Weekly Address Speeches & Remarks Press Briefings Statements & Releases White House Schedule Presidential Actions Executive Orders Presidential Memoranda Proclamations Legislation Pending Legislation Signed Legislation Vetoed Legislation Nominations & Appointments Disclosures Visitor Access Records Financial Disclosures 2010 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff 2009 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff Ethics Pledge Waivers Issues Civil Rights It Gets Better Defense The Way Forward in Afghanistan Disabilities Economy Financial Reform Innovation Startup America Education Educate to Innovate Higher Education Race to the Top Commencement Challenge Energy & Environment A Secure Energy Future A New Foundation Deepwater BP Oil Spill Ethics Family Fiscal Responsibility Foreign Policy Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Trip to Asia 2010 Haiti Earthquake Speech in Cairo Health Care Homeland Security Immigration Poverty Rural State Fair Tour Seniors & Social Security Service Taxes Tax Cuts, Unemployment Insurance and Jobs Technology Urban Policy Veterans Women Additional Issues The Administration President Barack Obama Vice President Joe Biden First Lady Michelle Obama Dr. Jill Biden The Cabinet 2010 Video Reports White House Staff Chief of Staff Bill Daley Deputy Chief of Staff Nancy-Ann DeParle Deputy Chief of Staff Alyssa Mastromonaco Counselor to the President Peter Rouse Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett Executive Office of the President Other Advisory Boards About the White House Interactive Tour History White House Rooms White House Art Presidents First Ladies The Oval Office The Vice President's Residence & Office Eisenhower Executive Office Building Camp David Air Force One White House Fellows President’s Commission About the Fellowship Current Class Recent Class Staff Bios White House Internships The Story About Us Program Apply Here Submit a Recommendation Tours & Events 2011 Easter Egg Roll Kitchen Garden Tours Holidays 2010 Inside the White House Our Government The Executive Branch The Legislative Branch The Judicial Branch The Constitution Federal Agencies & Commissions Elections & Voting State & Local Government Resources /* Maximize height of menu features. */if(typeof(jQuery)!='undefined')jQuery.each($('.topnav-feature','#topnav'),function(i,v){var o=$(v),oh=o.height(),sh=o.siblings().height();if(oh Home • Briefing Room • Statements & Releases   table.system-status-report th, table td, table th { padding: 5px;}.item-list ul.pager {margin: 0;}.view-display-id-page_1 {padding: 20px;}.node-form .text {width:95%;}.node-form, #node-delete-confirm, #user-login {max-width:648px;}dl.node-type-list {max-width: 615px; padding: 20px; margin: 20px;}#edit-delete, div.submenu.revisions {display: none;}ul.secondary li {display: block;}ul.secondary a.active {border-bottom: 1px solid #999;} The White House

Office of the Vice President

For Immediate Release March 30, 2011 Readout of Vice President Biden's Meeting with British Deputy Prime Minister Nicholas Clegg

Vice President Biden welcomed British Deputy Prime Minister Clegg today back to the White House where the two leaders discussed developments in North Africa and the Middle East, including the international community’s efforts to protect the Libyan people in accordance with UN Security Council Resolutions 1970 and 1973 and to help the Libyan people prepare for a post-Qadhafi future.  They reaffirmed the United States’ and United Kingdom’s commitment to the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan, and discussed progress in transitioning to an Afghan security lead.  In addition, they reviewed developments in Pakistan, reaffirming both countries’ commitment to Pakistan’s economic and social development.

Blog posts on this issue March 26, 2011 5:30 AM EDTWeekly Address: The Military Mission in Libya

The President says that thanks to our men and women in uniform, the military mission in Libya is succeeding even as responsibility is transferred to our NATO allies and partners.

March 25, 2011 9:21 PM EDTPresident Obama’s Message to the People of Cote D’Ivoire

President Obama sends an important message to President Alassane Ouattara, Laurent Gbagbo, and the people of Cote d’Ivoire.

March 25, 2011 6:47 PM EDTWeekly Wrap Up: Healthy Anniversary!Weekly Wrap Up: Healthy Anniversary!

Your quick look at the week that was on WhiteHouse.gov

view all related blog posts ul.related-content li.views-row img {float: left; padding: 5px 10px 0 0;} Stay ConnectedFacebookTwitterFlickrMySpaceYouTubeVimeoiTunesLinkedIn   Home The White House Blog Photos & Videos Photo Galleries Video Live Streams Podcasts Briefing Room Your Weekly Address Speeches & Remarks Press Briefings Statements & Releases White House Schedule Presidential Actions Legislation Nominations & Appointments Disclosures Issues Civil Rights Defense Disabilities Economy Education Energy & Environment Ethics Family Fiscal Responsibility Foreign Policy Health Care Homeland Security Immigration Poverty Rural Seniors & Social Security Service Taxes Technology Urban Policy Veterans Women Additional Issues The Administration President Barack Obama Vice President Joe Biden First Lady Michelle Obama Dr. Jill Biden The Cabinet White House Staff Executive Office of the President Other Advisory Boards About the White House Interactive Tour History Presidents First Ladies The Oval Office The Vice President's Residence & Office Eisenhower Executive Office Building Camp David Air Force One White House Fellows White House Internships Tours & Events Inside the White House Our Government The Executive Branch The Legislative Branch The Judicial Branch The Constitution Federal Agencies & Commissions Elections & Voting State & Local Government Resources The White House Emblem En español Accessibility Copyright Information Privacy Policy Contact USA.gov Subscribe to RSS Feeds Apply for a Job

Source: whitehouse.gov

Readout of the President's call with Japanese Prime Minister Kan

Readout of the President's call with Japanese Prime Minister Kan

Readout of the President's call with Japanese Prime Minister Kan | The White House Skip to main content | Skip to footer site map The White House. President Barack Obama The White House Emblem Get Email UpdatesContact Us Go to homepage. The White House Blog Photos & Videos Photo Galleries Video Live Streams Podcasts Briefing Room Your Weekly Address Speeches & Remarks Press Briefings Statements & Releases White House Schedule Presidential Actions Executive Orders Presidential Memoranda Proclamations Legislation Pending Legislation Signed Legislation Vetoed Legislation Nominations & Appointments Disclosures Visitor Access Records Financial Disclosures 2010 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff 2009 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff Ethics Pledge Waivers Issues Civil Rights It Gets Better Defense The Way Forward in Afghanistan Disabilities Economy Financial Reform Innovation Startup America Education Educate to Innovate Higher Education Race to the Top Commencement Challenge Energy & Environment A New Foundation Deepwater BP Oil Spill Ethics Family Fiscal Responsibility Foreign Policy Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Trip to Asia 2010 Haiti Earthquake Speech in Cairo Health Care Homeland Security Immigration Poverty Rural State Fair Tour Seniors & Social Security Service Taxes Tax Cuts, Unemployment Insurance and Jobs Technology Urban Policy Veterans Women Additional Issues The Administration President Barack Obama Vice President Joe Biden First Lady Michelle Obama Dr. Jill Biden The Cabinet 2010 Video Reports White House Staff Chief of Staff Bill Daley Deputy Chief of Staff Nancy-Ann DeParle Deputy Chief of Staff Alyssa Mastromonaco Counselor to the President Peter Rouse Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett Executive Office of the President Other Advisory Boards About the White House Interactive Tour History White House Rooms White House Art Presidents First Ladies The Oval Office The Vice President's Residence & Office Eisenhower Executive Office Building Camp David Air Force One White House Fellows President’s Commission About the Fellowship Current Class Recent Class Staff Bios White House Internships The Story About Us Program Apply Here Submit a Recommendation Tours & Events 2011 Easter Egg Roll Kitchen Garden Tours Holidays 2010 Inside the White House Our Government The Executive Branch The Legislative Branch The Judicial Branch The Constitution Federal Agencies & Commissions Elections & Voting State & Local Government Resources /* Maximize height of menu features. */if(typeof(jQuery)!='undefined')jQuery.each($('.topnav-feature','#topnav'),function(i,v){var o=$(v),oh=o.height(),sh=o.siblings().height();if(oh Home • Briefing Room • Statements & Releases   table.system-status-report th, table td, table th { padding: 5px;}.item-list ul.pager {margin: 0;}.view-display-id-page_1 {padding: 20px;}.node-form .text {width:95%;}.node-form, #node-delete-confirm, #user-login {max-width:648px;}dl.node-type-list {max-width: 615px; padding: 20px; margin: 20px;}#edit-delete, div.submenu.revisions {display: none;}ul.secondary li {display: block;}ul.secondary a.active {border-bottom: 1px solid #999;} The White House

Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release March 29, 2011 Readout of the President's call with Japanese Prime Minister Kan

President Obama spoke with Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan this evening from Air Force One.  This was their third telephone conversation since the earthquake and tsunami struck Japan on March 11.  The President reiterated that the United States is determined to support the people of Japan in their efforts to deal with the devastating effects of this tragedy, both in the short and the long term.  Prime Minister Kan thanked the President for the extensive U.S. help in the response effort.  The two leaders reaffirmed the importance of close U.S.-Japanese cooperation in dealing with the ongoing nuclear emergency.

Blog posts on this issue March 26, 2011 5:30 AM EDTWeekly Address: The Military Mission in Libya

The President says that thanks to our men and women in uniform, the military mission in Libya is succeeding even as responsibility is transferred to our NATO allies and partners.

March 25, 2011 9:21 PM EDTPresident Obama’s Message to the People of Cote D’Ivoire

President Obama sends an important message to President Alassane Ouattara, Laurent Gbagbo, and the people of Cote d’Ivoire.

March 25, 2011 6:47 PM EDTWeekly Wrap Up: Healthy Anniversary!Weekly Wrap Up: Healthy Anniversary!

Your quick look at the week that was on WhiteHouse.gov

view all related blog posts ul.related-content li.views-row img {float: left; padding: 5px 10px 0 0;} Stay ConnectedFacebookTwitterFlickrMySpaceYouTubeVimeoiTunesLinkedIn   Home The White House Blog Photos & Videos Photo Galleries Video Live Streams Podcasts Briefing Room Your Weekly Address Speeches & Remarks Press Briefings Statements & Releases White House Schedule Presidential Actions Legislation Nominations & Appointments Disclosures Issues Civil Rights Defense Disabilities Economy Education Energy & Environment Ethics Family Fiscal Responsibility Foreign Policy Health Care Homeland Security Immigration Poverty Rural Seniors & Social Security Service Taxes Technology Urban Policy Veterans Women Additional Issues The Administration President Barack Obama Vice President Joe Biden First Lady Michelle Obama Dr. Jill Biden The Cabinet White House Staff Executive Office of the President Other Advisory Boards About the White House Interactive Tour History Presidents First Ladies The Oval Office The Vice President's Residence & Office Eisenhower Executive Office Building Camp David Air Force One White House Fellows White House Internships Tours & Events Inside the White House Our Government The Executive Branch The Legislative Branch The Judicial Branch The Constitution Federal Agencies & Commissions Elections & Voting State & Local Government Resources The White House Emblem En español Accessibility Copyright Information Privacy Policy Contact USA.gov Subscribe to RSS Feeds Apply for a Job

Source: whitehouse.gov

Readout of Vice President Biden's Visit with Volunteers for the 25th Annual National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic

Readout of Vice President Biden's Visit with Volunteers for the 25th Annual National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic

Readout of Vice President Biden's Visit with Volunteers for the 25th Annual National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic | The White House Skip to main content | Skip to footer site map The White House. President Barack Obama The White House Emblem Get Email UpdatesContact Us Go to homepage. The White House Blog Photos & Videos Photo Galleries Video Live Streams Podcasts Briefing Room Your Weekly Address Speeches & Remarks Press Briefings Statements & Releases White House Schedule Presidential Actions Executive Orders Presidential Memoranda Proclamations Legislation Pending Legislation Signed Legislation Vetoed Legislation Nominations & Appointments Disclosures Visitor Access Records Financial Disclosures 2010 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff 2009 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff Ethics Pledge Waivers Issues Civil Rights It Gets Better Defense The Way Forward in Afghanistan Disabilities Economy Financial Reform Innovation Startup America Education Educate to Innovate Higher Education Race to the Top Commencement Challenge Energy & Environment A New Foundation Deepwater BP Oil Spill Ethics Family Fiscal Responsibility Foreign Policy Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Trip to Asia 2010 Haiti Earthquake Speech in Cairo Health Care Homeland Security Immigration Poverty Rural State Fair Tour Seniors & Social Security Service Taxes Tax Cuts, Unemployment Insurance and Jobs Technology Urban Policy Veterans Women Additional Issues The Administration President Barack Obama Vice President Joe Biden First Lady Michelle Obama Dr. Jill Biden The Cabinet 2010 Video Reports White House Staff Chief of Staff Bill Daley Deputy Chief of Staff Nancy-Ann DeParle Deputy Chief of Staff Alyssa Mastromonaco Counselor to the President Peter Rouse Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett Executive Office of the President Other Advisory Boards About the White House Interactive Tour History White House Rooms White House Art Presidents First Ladies The Oval Office The Vice President's Residence & Office Eisenhower Executive Office Building Camp David Air Force One White House Fellows President’s Commission About the Fellowship Current Class Recent Class Staff Bios White House Internships The Story About Us Program Apply Here Submit a Recommendation Tours & Events 2011 Easter Egg Roll Kitchen Garden Tours Holidays 2010 Inside the White House Our Government The Executive Branch The Legislative Branch The Judicial Branch The Constitution Federal Agencies & Commissions Elections & Voting State & Local Government Resources /* Maximize height of menu features. */if(typeof(jQuery)!='undefined')jQuery.each($('.topnav-feature','#topnav'),function(i,v){var o=$(v),oh=o.height(),sh=o.siblings().height();if(oh Home • Briefing Room • Statements & Releases   table.system-status-report th, table td, table th { padding: 5px;}.item-list ul.pager {margin: 0;}.view-display-id-page_1 {padding: 20px;}.node-form .text {width:95%;}.node-form, #node-delete-confirm, #user-login {max-width:648px;}dl.node-type-list {max-width: 615px; padding: 20px; margin: 20px;}#edit-delete, div.submenu.revisions {display: none;}ul.secondary li {display: block;}ul.secondary a.active {border-bottom: 1px solid #999;} The White House

Office of the Vice President

For Immediate Release March 26, 2011 Readout of Vice President Biden's Visit with Volunteers for the 25th Annual National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic

Earlier today, Vice President Biden greeted volunteers during registration for the 25th annual National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic in Snowmass Village, Colorado. Over 600 volunteers will participate in the week-long program that brings together nearly 400 veterans with disabilities through adaptive winter sports. The clinic is organized by the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Disabled American Veterans.

Click here for a photo: http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/vp_dav.jpg.

Blog posts on this issue March 25, 2011 6:47 PM EDTWeekly Wrap Up: Healthy Anniversary!Weekly Wrap Up: Healthy Anniversary!

Your quick look at the week that was on WhiteHouse.gov

March 24, 2011 9:41 AM EDTImproving Employment Access for Americans with Disabilities

New rules from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission will make it easier for employers to understand the guidelines of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and help Americans with disabilities find quality work.

March 14, 2011 4:39 PM EDTWomen in Uniform, From World War Two to Today

In honor of Women's History Month, the VA has posted a set of photos of women in uniform over the last half century. Check them out here.

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Press Gaggle by Press Secretary Jay Carney, 3/24/2011

Press Gaggle by Press Secretary Jay Carney, 3/24/2011

The White House

Office of the Press Secretary

12:52 P.M. EDT

     MR. CARNEY:  Good afternoon, everyone.  Thanks for coming to the gaggle today. 

     I don’t have any announcements at the top, so I will start, Julie, with you.

     Q    Thank you.  Just -- I want to start out and register a complaint on behalf of some of my TV colleagues that the gaggle is off camera today, this being our only opportunity to hear from you or anyone in the administration, particularly on the situation in Libya.

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, I have to say it’s because my shirt -- I didn’t have any white or blue shirts -- and this one wouldn’t work on TV, so I decided to gaggle.  All my other shirts are in the laundry.

No, seriously, we thought people were just getting back from the trip, a lot of folks who traveled on with us today, and we just thought it would be easier to have a gaggle.  But I promise I will brief --

     Q    Looks like a pretty full -- it’s like a full house.

     MR. CARNEY:  I promise I will brief tomorrow on camera.

     Q    Can radio use your sound?

     MR. CARNEY:  I’m sorry?

     Q    Can radio use your sound?
MR. CARNEY:  Sure.  Is that how we do it?  I don’t know.

     MR. EARNEST:  I don’t know.  How have we usually done that?

     Q    Yes.

     Q    Yes.  (Laughter.) 

MR. EARNEST:  We have a room full of honest brokers today.

     Q    I’m always honest --

     MR. CARNEY:  It’s fine, it’s fine with me if you use the sound.

     Q    Can we hear from the President today then?

     MR. CARNEY:  You mean otherwise I’m an adequate substitute for the President?

     Q    No, no, we’d like to hear from him.

     MR. CARNEY:  I have no announcements for a public appearance by the President.   

     Q    So then if we could move on to Libya.

     MR. CARNEY:  Okay, yes.

     Q    You guys have been talking in terms of handing control over to someone other than the United States on military action there in terms of days, not weeks, for almost a week now.  So are we still operating under that timeline?  And did you guys lay out that timeline because you thought that you’d be able to hand over control to someone else sooner than you’ve been able to?

     MR. CARNEY:  We are still operating under that timeline that it will be days, not weeks.  We are at less than a week at the moment and we have been in consultations with our allies and partners on the issue of making that transition and we’re confident that it will happen relatively soon.  As you know, discussions ongoing at NATO and we feel very confident that it will happen soon.

     Q    Did you think it would happen by now, though?

     MR. CARNEY:  No, we’re still in days.  In fact, I think if you measure this -- you don’t get to weeks until you get beyond one, which would be two weeks.  So we’re not even halfway to two weeks yet.  (Laughter.)  Right?  No disagreement, right?  Okay.  (Laughter.) 

     Q    Can you talk about your reaction to the Turkish parliament vote on the NATO operation and what that means in terms of putting together a coalition?

     MR. CARNEY:  We are discussing with the Turkish government, regularly consulting on this issue.  As you know, the President spoke with Prime Minister Erdogan the other day.  And we’re very confident that we’re going to reach an agreement on command and control and other aspects of what we would probably describe as phase two of this operation in the near future, and that includes working with the Turks on it.

     Q    What does the President envision as the U.S. role once this agreement is reached?

     MR. CARNEY:  The United States will continue to have a role but it will not be a lead role in the enforcement of the no-fly zone; it will be in a support and assist role.  We’ve talked about jamming, as well as intelligence and other things that we can bring to bear, some of the capabilities we have.  But we will not be leading the effort to enforce the no-fly zone.

     Our engagement will have been at its most intense in the early stage of this because of the capacities we have to do some of the things you saw U.S. forces do in this -- in the first several days of this operation

     Q    Just a related topic.  What is the White House’s relationship with the military?  The military was very clear about their concerns about the Libya operation ahead of this, and there were obviously some tensions with the military during the Afghan review.  And I’m just wondering if you could characterize the relationship with the military.

     MR. CARNEY:  I think the relationship with the military is excellent.  The President consults regularly with his military commanders, with Secretary Gates.  And I would point you, in terms of the military’s role and perspective on this operation to the appearances by Admiral Mullen the other day and to the briefings the Pentagon has been giving on this operation since it began.

     As I said in the past when the questions were about why weren’t we moving more quickly to install and enforce a no-fly zone or why weren’t we doing this or that, that the comments by Secretary Gates and Secretary Clinton and others about the complexities of a no-fly zone and what a no-fly zone would mean, should we go down that route, which the President insisted along remain an option on the table, were important to put out there, because people needed to understand, as we’ve seen, that a no-fly zone is not just a phrase that rolls easily off the tongue.  It’s a serious enterprise that involves what we have seen.  And that is part of the discussion that was had in public prior to the President taking this action.  And we think it’s an important part of the process of informing the public.

     Jake.

     Q    First of all, we missed you, Jay.  Welcome back.

     Do you guys have any comment on the fact that the no-fly zone was violated for the first time by the Libyan air force, and the French took out a Libyan plane?  Do you have any response to that?
MR. CARNEY:  I would simply say that it proves that it’s a bad idea to violate the no-fly zone. 

     Q    If the no-fly zone is such a complicated process, and if forging this coalition “on the fly,” as the Secretary of Defense put it, is the situation, why was it on the fly?  Why was -- there had been weeks of discussing a no-fly zone, and then all of a sudden everything changed last Tuesday, and President Obama decided he wanted to get more aggressive.  Why was it “on the fly,” as the Secretary of Defense put it?  Why had there not been weeks of planning for this?

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, there had been discussion of a no-fly zone.  The fact of the matter is -- and as you know we’ve discussed this many times -- from the first protest to the actions taken by the U.N. nine days later, to the actions taken by the U.N. with the Security Council Resolution 1973 were unbelievably fast, by any historical precedent.  So I think the -- when you’re talking about a military operation with multi-partners like we have in Libya, these are relatively complex in terms of command and control, and I think ideally would allow -- in the preparations for them would allow for more time, potentially.  But the fact is, the President faced an imminent humanitarian crisis in Libya with the very unequivocal threats that Qaddafi was making about what he would do to the citizens of Benghazi.  And the President and our international partners, the U.N. and the Arab League and others, felt that it was absolutely essential to act quickly to save lives.

     And I think there is no question that lives have been saved because of the action taken by the United States and by our partners in moving against Qaddafi’s forces in the way that we have.

     Q    Had there been planning before last week?

     MR. CARNEY:  Of course.  No question this has been a discussion, but the fact is we had to move quickly.  And I think that we moved quickly with phase one.  Again, we go back into this sort of debate about this sort of surreal world we live in in terms of timeframes here that we’re talking six -- what, five days now since this began, and we will resolve very shortly the issues of command and control for the next phase of this operation.  This is very quick by any standard.

     Q    Last week the White House was under the impression that the UAE was going to be contributing, making military contributions.  In a readout that you guys provided to the conversation that Vice President Biden had with the Crown Prince, there was only mention of humanitarian contributions.  What happened to the UAE?

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, we are very pleased by the offers of help that the UAE and other countries have made, and contributions can come in different forms.  As you know, Qatar has offered to supply and participate with -- by supplying aircraft.  We welcome that.  We welcome the interest shown by other Arab governments, including the Jordanians and the UAE -- I mean, sorry, Jordanians to contributing.  We look -- this is -- we’re still in the first phases of this operation, and there will be many ways for our partners in this endeavor to contribute going forward.

     Q    Why would they change their mind?  Or was it a miscommunication to begin with?
MR. CARNEY:  Well, I don’t want to speak for another government.  I think that we welcome this participation that they have indicated they want to provide.

     Q    Okay.  Last question is, Defense Secretary Gates on Yemen said, “we haven’t done any post-Saleh planning, if you will.”  There’s no planning for what might happen if the President of Yemen falls?

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, we’ve said, Jake, many times that the resolution of the situation in Yemen, as is the case with the unrest in so many of these countries, has to be, in our view, peaceful.  It has to be brought about through political dialogue.  And we’re not in the business of choosing for the peoples of these countries who their leaders ought to be.  However the future of Yemen, whatever the leadership in the future looks like for Yemen, that’s got to be decided by the people of Yemen and not by the people of the United States.
We do not build our policy in any country around a single person, and we obviously will look forward to having a solid relationship to the leader of Yemen.

     Q    But there’s no post --

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, look, I’m think -- I’m not going to dissect the language here.  I just -- I mean, the answer I just gave you, I think that we are focused on offering our judgment that in Yemen, as in other countries, force is not the appropriate response to the unrest, and we call on all sides to refrain from violence and we call on all sides to engage in a political dialogue, as President Saleh has indicated he wants to do.  So we think that’s a positive thing, and we’re not going to prejudge the outcome of that dialogue.

Dan.
Q    Does the administration have a full understanding of who the opposition is in Libya and who could potentially step in if Qaddafi does to step down?

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, again, we’re not in the business, to go back to the question -- the answer I just gave to Jake about another country -- we’re not in the business of picking leaders.  As I think I stated --

     Q    But if you’re trying to get one leader out, I think there should be --

     MR. CARNEY:  There’s no question --

     Q    -- some concern about who’s going to step in.

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, there’s no question that the principles we have enunciated with regards to unrest throughout the region apply to Libya, which is that we support those who support the idea of transition to a democratic and representative government, a government that is responsive to the aspirations and grievances of its people.  And we, as I’ve said and others have said, have been, since well before this military mission began, been in discussions with opposition leaders.  The Secretary of State met with the opposition in Paris prior to the -- last week, prior to the initiation of this military endeavor, and we are continuing those contacts. 
And again, it’s not about individuals.  Our support is for a process that creates a government that is democratic and responsive to the aspirations and grievances of the people of Libya.  And it’s for Libyans to decide who their leaders are.

     Q    Does the President think that he needs to do more up on the Hill to ease some of the concerns of lawmakers who don’t feel that they’ve been sort of fully brought in to the discussions on Libya?

     MR. CARNEY:  We believe and the President believes very strongly that consultations with Congress are important.  It’s part of his responsibility as President on an issue like this to consult with members of Congress, and he has done that.  He has instructed senior staff here to do that.  And we have in a very substantial way consulted with Congress, and we’ll continue to do that.

     I mean, I just want to make sure that everybody is aware of the variety of ways in briefings and in hearings that senior people in the administration, as well as the President, have been engaged in consultations with Congress, going back as far as February 28th when national intelligence officers from the DNI briefed House members of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence where they had a closed session on Libya and Somalia; March 1st there was a similar closed briefing with Senate Select Committee on Intelligence members, with issues in the Middle East, North Africa, including Libya.  Secretary Clinton testified to the House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on assessing U.S. foreign policy priorities and needs, which included a substantial discussion of Libya.  That was on March 1st.  March 2nd, Secretary Gates and Admiral Mullen testified at a hearing on Defense Department appropriations, again including a discussion -- an ample discussion of a potential Libyan no-fly zone.  Also on March 2nd, Secretary Clinton, at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, included a discussion on Libya and possible policy options.

     The list goes on.  March 4th, March 10th, March 14th, the ODNI briefed Speaker Boehner on Libya in a classified briefing -- that was March 14th.  On March 17th, Under Secretary Burns testified in open session to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on popular uprisings in the Middle East, but the main focus was on Libya.  On March 17th --

Q    Jay, isn’t it apples and oranges --

     MR. CARNEY:  Let me just continue, because it’s important that the American people understand how much consultation there has been.  And then, as you know, March 17th, there was an all-senators briefing on Libya developments and possible U.S. government and international responses, including potential military options, by an interagency team led by Under Secretary of State Bill Burns but including the ODNI and DOD.

     And I should mention, as you all know, that on March 1st -- I believe it was March 1st where the Senate passed a resolution calling on actions to be -- that they believed should be taken by the United States and international partners, which was extremely similar to the actions that, of course, we did take several weeks later.

     On March 18th, the President invited members of Congress, a bipartisan, bicameral leadership meeting at the White House to consult on Libya and to brief them on the limited, discreet and well-defined participation that he envisioned for the United States to help implement the U.N. resolution. 

     Members of Congress who participated included Majority Leader Reid, Democratic Whip Hoyer, Senator Levin, Senator Lugar, Senator Chambliss, Representative Rogers, Representative Ruppersberger, Speaker Boehner, Majority Leader Cantor, Democratic Leader Pelosi, Senator Durbin, Senator McConnell, Senator Kyl, Senator Kerry, Senator Feinstein, Representative McKeon, Representative Ros-lehtinen and Representative Berman.

     Consultations continued on the 18th and 19th and forward, and they will continue from this day forward.

     Q    So then why -- why then -- you read off that long list of consultations -- why then are these concerns coming from the Hill -- 

     MR. CARNEY:  We think the --

     Q    Is this just whining?

     MR. CARNEY:  No, no.  We think that it is important to consult with members of Congress.  We think the questions that have been asked have been legitimate.  There has been some, obviously -- not members of Congress, but elsewhere I think some commentary that has been perhaps driven by politics.  But in terms of members of Congress, we think their questions and concerns are legitimate and need to be answered, which is why the President has, on numerous occasions, not just consulted with Congress but taken your questions and made statements about Libya just in the last week, nearly every day, in fact, and will continue to do that.

     And I would say that the questions that are outlined by members of Congress have by and large been answered by the President himself, by the Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense, Admiral Mullen, Denis McDonough, Ben Rhodes, me.  And we’ll continue to do that.

     Q    So do you think all of the questions that John Boehner asks in his letter have already been answered?

     MR. CARNEY:  We have certainly endeavored to answer those questions already and --

     Q    So you’re not planning any kind of response to him?

     MR. CARNEY:  I didn’t -- I don’t know of any specific response to the letter.  I’m not precluding one, but I just -- this is an ongoing process.  We will continue to consult with the leaders of Congress and with rank-and-file members.

     Q    So I guess you believe that when John Boehner said in his letter no opportunity was afforded to consult with congressional leaders, you believe he’s wildly off the mark?

     MR. CARNEY:  I would just point you to the list of consultations that I enumerated with you, the public statements, private closed briefings that were given, and also make the point that we -- even within that, because this only goes back to February 28th and today is March 24th, this has obviously been a very tight timeframe.  And it was driven in part by what was happening on the ground, which was fast-moving and evolving.

     And I would remind you that standing at this podium -- as now what seems like an eternity ago, probably two weeks or less -- one of your colleagues repeatedly asked me how many people have to die before the U.S. acts, okay?  And how many people have to die before the international community takes action?

     And I would say that the President acted and took action because he felt that it was incumbent upon him, and the leaders of the coalition agreed, that something had to be done to prevent Qaddafi’s forces from committing a massacre in Benghazi.  And we feel it’s very important that the actions that were taken prevented that kind of massacre from taking place.

     American military action, international military action has saved an enormous number of lives in the past five days, and that is something that Americans should be very proud of.

     Q    Back on the issues of consultations, one of their arguments is there’s a difference between consultation and briefings and notification.  They believe that they’ve been briefed and notified about what the administration was doing, but when it came time to make the final decision, they do not believe they had an opportunity to make counter-arguments that the administration would consider in making its final decision, that there was no real consultation, there was just notification.

     MR. CARNEY:  I’m not going to read out the meetings we had.  Certainly I’ve listed some of the members who participated in some of these briefings, and you should --

     Q    But they’re saying it only counts at the very end.

     MR. CARNEY:  You should ask them what kind of questions were raised then and the answers they got from the President and others.

     I would simply say that, again, we believe consultation is vitally important as part of the process.  The President is committed to it and will continue to do it.  He also believes that he is the Commander-in-Chief, and leadership requires him to take action when action will save lives and delaying action will cost lives.  And in this case, had we waited for Congress to get back, there is no question I think in anybody’s minds -- in our military, in our foreign policy establishment, national security establishment, or in the minds of reporters who cover it on the ground -- that there -- Qaddafi’s forces would control Benghazi and there would have been a great deal of people killed in the process.

     Q    Quick clarification from the President’s press conference the other day when he said, “When this transition takes place, it is not going to be our planes that are maintaining the no-fly zone.”  That means zero U.S. planes?

     MR. CARNEY:  That’s my understanding, that in terms of maintaining and enforcing the no-fly zone, the United States will not be participating in that way.  We will be in the support and assist role.

     Q    And then he continued.  He said, “It is not going to be our ships that are necessarily involved in enforcing the arms embargo.”  By saying “necessarily,” was he leaving wiggle room there?

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, I’m not going to improve upon the President’s words there.  I will simply say that we will obviously have a continued role in a support and assist posture, that we will not be leading the effort.  And since the actions that had been taken thus far have been designed to create the environment for the enforcement of a no-fly zone, and that we had unique capacities, capabilities, in order to make that happen, we -- the intense efforts of the United States military were frontloaded in this in phase one.  So we will obviously continue to participate as part of the coalition in phase two and beyond.

     Yes, Wendell.

     Q    Jay, what about the assertion by Speaker Boehner and other Republicans, at least, that the U.S. is now involved in a third military conflict without the President having prepared the American public?  Been calls from Senator Kirk, for example, for an Oval Office address?   Does the President feel that that is not necessary?

     MR. CARNEY:  The President looks forward to communicating to the American public about Libya, as he has on multiple occasions already, but he will obviously continue to do it.  I don’t have an announcement on the forum for the way in which he will do that next, but I can assure you it will be more than one time in the future, as it has already been five or six times in the past. 

     And I think that -- we believe that it actually -- it absolutely is important for the President to speak to the American public to inform them of what he’s doing.  He’s done that on multiple occasions thus far and will continue to do that.

     Q    Does he feel the involvement was not extensive enough to warrant, for example, a primetime address to the American public?

     MR. CARNEY:  I think the -- again, the issue of format and forum is not the question here, it’s the fact that he has addressed this on multiple occasions, will continue to address this.  And I’m not ruling out format and forum for the future in any way.  I’m just making the point that the President has spoken about his thinking, his decisions on Libya on multiple occasions.  He’s also written a letter, as required by the War Powers Act, notifying Congress in detail of what our mission is and what the goals are.  And again, he will continue to speak to the public going forward.

     Q    What is this military action?  We’ve been asking, is it a war?  And if it is not a war --

     MR. CARNEY:  It is a time-limited, scope-limited military action, in concert with our international partners, with the objective of protecting civilian life in Libya from Muammar Qaddafi and his forces.

     Q    But not a war.

     MR. CARNEY:  I’m not going to get into the terminology.  I think what it is certainly not is, as others have said, a large-scale military -- open-ended military action, the kind of which might otherwise be described as a war.  There’s no ground troops, as the President said.  There’s no land invasion.  I think there is precedent for -- multiple, multiple precedents for this by presidents of both parties in terms of taking this kind of military action. 

I would point you to the action taken by President Clinton in Bosnia, which was similar in that it involved the establishment and enforcement of a no-fly zone.  And I’m not sure how Fox describes it or other outlets describe that action, but it is of the similar kind of action -- although this would be, we believe, more limited in time and scope, in terms of U.S. involvement.

     Q    And one final question on that.  Can we expect the President to speak to us in some format when the U.S. actually does step back and --

     MR. CARNEY:  I think that without, again, specifying precisely when or on what occasion, I think you will be hearing from the President on this with relative frequency and relatively soon.

     Yes.

     Q    Does the objective, as you just articulated, objective of protecting civilian life from Muammar Qaddafi’s forces require that Muammar Qaddafi leave power?

     MR. CARNEY:  We made very clear -- and I think this is an important thing because it goes to some of the questions that have been raised -- that the military mission that is described in U.N. Security Council Resolution 1973, specifically deals with using all necessary means to protect civilians in Libya.  That is the military mission.  It is separate from that, it is the policy and position of this administration, this government, that Muammar Qaddafi has lost the legitimacy to lead and that he should step down, that he should remove himself from power.

     And as part of our -- that policy position, we have engaged in a number of actions -- unilateral and multilateral -- aimed at putting pressure on Muammar Qaddafi and those around him to convince him or those around him that he should leave power.

     Ultimately it is for the Libyan people to decide who their leaders should be and should not be.

     Q    So you preclude the use of military power to oust Qaddafi?

     MR. CARNEY:  Yes.  Our -- in terms of our engagement in this military action under 1973 --

     Q    Whether implementing the Security Council resolution or U.S. administration policy?  It sounds like --

     MR. CARNEY:  We are not engaged in militarily driven regime change.  That is absolutely correct.

     Q    Okay.  What happens in days, not weeks, precisely?  You said support and assist role.  Last Saturday in Paris, the Secretary said we are not the lead in this.  Yesterday, Denis McDonough, the Deputy National Security Advisor, says we brought the U.N. along.  If we’re not -- what is the chain of command going to be?  Will U.S. forces be taking orders from non-U.S. commanders, for example?  What --

     MR. CARNEY:  I don’t want to --

     Q    Can you define support and assist?  What happens in days, not weeks?

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, what will happen is the transition of command and control from the United States to another lead. 

     Q    So those --

     MR. CARNEY:  And it’s been I think amply described now that NATO will have a key role to play in that command and control structure in the next phase of this operation.

     Q    And since NATO is commanded by an American general, then U.S. -- there will be no U.S. forces operating under the control of a foreign general, for example?

     MR. CARNEY:  I don’t want to announce to you from here what has not been finally decided upon.

     Q    But you’re leaving open the possibility that American military personnel could be commanded by a non-military --

     MR. CARNEY:  I’m doing no such thing.  I’m simply saying I don’t have an announcement on what that command and control will look like.  What we have said and what will be the case is that we will not be in the lead in terms of the phase two.  Command and control will be controlled elsewhere.  We have also said that U.S. military aircraft will not be engaged in enforcement of the no-fly zone.

     Q    Finally, Representative George Miller, a relatively high-ranking Democrat, I know you’ve enumerated all the instances where the administration consulted with Congress.  He says -- he said on air this morning he sees no evidence that there was such a consultation and that he finds the procedures that were used disturbing.  Is he -- he’s mistaken?

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, I would just say that we have consulted, we will continue to consult.  We believe consulting with Congress is very important in this.  And answering questions that members of Congress have is a very important part of this process, and we’ll continue to do that.

     Q    So in response to Speaker Boehner’s letter, that those were good questions that he raised, you’re basically saying they’re good questions raised, and they’ve been answered.

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, we have certainly, I believe, answered many of those questions and especially the ones about what the mission is and what it isn’t.  I mean, the President has answered that on multiple occasions, Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense, Press Secretary, Deputy National Security Advisor, National Security Advisor.  We continue to stand ready and are eager to answer the questions that members of Congress have.  And we take them all very seriously.

     My point is simply, without going through the list put forward by the Speaker, is that we have answered a lot of those questions and we will continue to answer them and clarify them where questions are raised.

     Q    It just sounds like you’re kind of trying to have a -- this is legitimate --

     MR. CARNEY:  We believe it is --

     Q    -- but, no, it’s not legitimate because we already answered all these questions.

     MR. CARNEY:  No, you’re putting words in my mouth.  I think it is legitimate, and one -- I think evidence of the fact that we think it’s legitimate and an important part of this process is that we have taken those questions and tried to answer them in a full way. 

     Again, on the question of what the mission is and isn’t, the military mission, I think the President has been very clear.  He has been asked and answered this question numerous times by members of the press, most recently on this trip that we just took, and he will, I’m sure, continue to answer those questions, as will other members of his administration.

     Q    When you said that -- on the trip you said that you would welcome an expression of support from Congress.  Would you also welcome a debate in Congress that may result in an expression of support and may not?

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, look, we are not going to tell Congress what it should or shouldn’t do.  We would welcome expressions of support.  There are obviously numerous members of Congress, not cited by you, oddly, at this briefing, who have expressed support for the actions that we’ve taken.  But again, it’s a process that we are fully engaged in and will participate in.

     Q    Lastly, do you have an estimate of what the cost of this mission is?  The President said it could be done within the current budget authority, but what is --

     MR. CARNEY:  I don’t have numbers for you.  I can tell you that that is what we believe -- that there are contingency funds that are built in to the Defense Department budget for this kind of thing.

     Q    But how could you not have even a ballpark amount?

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, again, people, I’m sure, are working on that.  I just -- I don’t have numbers for you.  I think some of the numbers that had been floated out there are far higher than we expect them to be, but I don’t want to get into numbers, because I’m not an economist.  (Laughter.) 

     Q    I just don’t understand why --

     MR. CARNEY:  Sorry.

     Q    I don’t understand why -- how you can be so confident that you don’t need any extra money if you don’t know how much it’s going to cost.

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, again, I don’t have a specific figure for you.  What I can say is the mission, as defined, which involved a lot of frontloaded or early stage participation by the United States military -- obviously that costs money, but it is a time-limited and scope-limited operation, which will then result in less cost as we move to further stages of the operations.  So we are confident that, based on the mission, that those costs can be covered with existing funds.

     MR. EARNEST:  Jay, I think you just got time for a couple more.

     MR. CARNEY:  Sorry, we want to turn this not into a --

     Q    -- on Japan, please?

MR. CARNEY:  Let me get to Mr. Knoller and then, yes, a Japan question. 

     Q    When you point out the dichotomy between the U.N. resolution objectives and the administration’s objectives, that doesn’t, in your mind, convey a mixed message?

     MR. CARNEY:  Look, we understand that it needs to be explained, which is why the President has explained it.  And we believe that the kind of action that was taken is very important in this case, the nature of the military action.  What we do not think, as we’ve said many times since the unrest began in this region, what we do not think would be the kind of action that would be helpful in the long term, in terms of American interest, would be unilateral military action to effect regime change in any country, frankly, in this circumstance.

     So one of the things that has been spoken to many times, it has been very important, about the decision to take -- to use military force in this case, is that it has been not just American, not just Western, not just European, but international in nature and in a vitally important way, supported by countries in the region.  And I think that explains a lot of things, but it also explains why when a plane malfunctioned, a U.S. fighter jet malfunctioned and one of the pilots fell into Libyan hands, that he was treated with such great dignity and respect.

     Yes, sir.  I’m sorry, wait, let me get Japan and then I’ll come to you.  Yes.

     Q    Is the President concerned about the safety of food being exported from Japan to the U.S.?

     MR. CARNEY:  I would just say that the President is obviously focused very much on the situation in Japan.  I think he tried to make that clear, amidst all the other questions -- the important trip he was making to Latin America and all the questions that he got about the situation in Libya, that he was still very focused on developments in Japan.

       In terms of U.S. safety issues, the agencies that handle food safety are there for just this kind of circumstance, and obviously ensure the safety of imported food in the United States.

     Q    So he’s confident that they’re making the right decisions?

     MR. CARNEY:  Yes, yes.  I’m going to take two more after this, because we’re gaggling.

     Q    There’s a meeting next week -- March 29th meeting of foreign ministers.  I assume the Secretary of State will be going to that.  Can you talk about the importance of that to the mission and the handoff?

     MR. CARNEY:  I don’t want to go into great detail about it.  State Department should do that.  But obviously this is part of a series of intense consultations that have been taking place.  It will be an important meeting.

     Q    Would it be considered a key part of the handoff?

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, again, I don’t want to put a date or a time on the transition that we’ve talked about, whether it’s that day or another day.  But we feel confident that the issues that have been discussed with our allies will be resolved soon and that we will be able to move to that stage very quickly.

     Last one, yes.

     Q    Is the President disappointed that Germany abstained from the Security Council and does he still believe that the Chancellor deserves the Medal of Freedom?  And last, can you confirm that Angela Merkel is coming to Washington in June?

     MR. CARNEY:  I don’t have anything for you on travel.  The President obviously feels that the medal was and is deserved.  And the reservations that the Germans had had been expressed well in advance.

     Thanks.

END
1:29 P.M. EDT

2011 White House Easter Egg Roll: Get Up and Go!

Announcing the 2011 White House Easter Egg Roll logo, poster contest and more.

The Nation’s primary global change research program has a new leader who will oversee these enhancements at time of great import for the global-change science community and for society as a whole.

Eduardo Ochoa, Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education at the Department of Education, talks about community colleges, where a majority of Latinos and other minorities who are traditionally underserved by higher education are now reaching for a college degree in ever-greater numbers.

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Source: whitehouse.gov

Readout of the President's call with Italian President Napolitano

Readout of the President's call with Italian President Napolitano

Readout of the President's call with Italian President Napolitano | The White House Skip to main content | Skip to footer site map The White House. President Barack Obama The White House Emblem Get Email UpdatesContact Us Go to homepage. The White House Blog Photos & Videos Photo Galleries Video Live Streams Podcasts Briefing Room Your Weekly Address Speeches & Remarks Press Briefings Statements & Releases White House Schedule Presidential Actions Executive Orders Presidential Memoranda Proclamations Legislation Pending Legislation Signed Legislation Vetoed Legislation Nominations & Appointments Disclosures Visitor Access Records Financial Disclosures 2010 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff 2009 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff Ethics Pledge Waivers Issues Civil Rights It Gets Better Defense The Way Forward in Afghanistan Disabilities Economy Financial Reform Innovation Startup America Education Educate to Innovate Higher Education Race to the Top Commencement Challenge Energy & Environment A New Foundation Deepwater BP Oil Spill Ethics Family Fiscal Responsibility Foreign Policy Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Trip to Asia 2010 Haiti Earthquake Speech in Cairo Health Care Homeland Security Immigration Poverty Rural State Fair Tour Seniors & Social Security Service Taxes Tax Cuts, Unemployment Insurance and Jobs Technology Urban Policy Veterans Women Additional Issues The Administration President Barack Obama Vice President Joe Biden First Lady Michelle Obama Dr. Jill Biden The Cabinet 2010 Video Reports White House Staff Chief of Staff Bill Daley Deputy Chief of Staff Nancy-Ann DeParle Deputy Chief of Staff Alyssa Mastromonaco Counselor to the President Peter Rouse Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett Executive Office of the President Other Advisory Boards About the White House Interactive Tour History White House Rooms White House Art Presidents First Ladies The Oval Office The Vice President's Residence & Office Eisenhower Executive Office Building Camp David Air Force One White House Fellows President’s Commission About the Fellowship Current Class Recent Class Staff Bios White House Internships The Story About Us Program Apply Here Submit a Recommendation Tours & Events 2011 Easter Egg Roll Kitchen Garden Tours Holidays 2010 Inside the White House Our Government The Executive Branch The Legislative Branch The Judicial Branch The Constitution Federal Agencies & Commissions Elections & Voting State & Local Government Resources /* Maximize height of menu features. */if(typeof(jQuery)!='undefined')jQuery.each($('.topnav-feature','#topnav'),function(i,v){var o=$(v),oh=o.height(),sh=o.siblings().height();if(oh Home • Briefing Room • Statements & Releases   table.system-status-report th, table td, table th { padding: 5px;}.item-list ul.pager {margin: 0;}.view-display-id-page_1 {padding: 20px;}.node-form .text {width:95%;}.node-form, #node-delete-confirm, #user-login {max-width:648px;}dl.node-type-list {max-width: 615px; padding: 20px; margin: 20px;}#edit-delete, div.submenu.revisions {display: none;}ul.secondary li {display: block;}ul.secondary a.active {border-bottom: 1px solid #999;} The White House

Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release March 30, 2011 Readout of the President's call with Italian President Napolitano

The President spoke today with Italian President Napolitano to congratulate Italy and the Italian people on the 150th anniversary of Italian unification and to express his deep appreciation for President Napolitano and Prime Minister Berlusconi’s promotion of peace and stability across the world and steadfast support of coalition operations in Libya under NATO’s command.  President Obama recognized Italy’s expertise in the region and agreed to continue the closest consultations between our two governments as we work to protect the Libyan people and enforce UN Security Council Resolutions 1970 and 1973.

Blog posts on this issue March 30, 2011 9:10 PM EDTNominate Outstanding Math and Science Teachers this Week!

Know an outstanding math or science teacher whose devotion and skills in the classroom are transforming their students’ lives?

March 30, 2011 5:59 PM EDTCesar Chavez - A Role Model for Service

Christina Markle, former part-time AmeriCorps Bonner Leader and a current John Gardner fellow from UC Berkeley at the Corporation for National and Community Service, talks about the inspirational life of Cesar Chavez and the legacy of service he left behind.

March 30, 2011 4:57 PM EDTMentoring Our Future Generation of STEM Professionals

Yesterday, the Department of Energy unveiled a new mentoring program to pair female undergraduate science, engineering and math students in the Washington, D.C., area with female employees who specialize in those subject areas.

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Source: whitehouse.gov

Statement by the President on the Passing of Geraldine Ferraro

Statement by the President on the Passing of Geraldine Ferraro

Statement by the President on the Passing of Geraldine Ferraro | The White House Skip to main content | Skip to footer site map The White House. President Barack Obama The White House Emblem Get Email UpdatesContact Us Go to homepage. The White House Blog Photos & Videos Photo Galleries Video Live Streams Podcasts Briefing Room Your Weekly Address Speeches & Remarks Press Briefings Statements & Releases White House Schedule Presidential Actions Executive Orders Presidential Memoranda Proclamations Legislation Pending Legislation Signed Legislation Vetoed Legislation Nominations & Appointments Disclosures Visitor Access Records Financial Disclosures 2010 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff 2009 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff Ethics Pledge Waivers Issues Civil Rights It Gets Better Defense The Way Forward in Afghanistan Disabilities Economy Financial Reform Innovation Startup America Education Educate to Innovate Higher Education Race to the Top Commencement Challenge Energy & Environment A New Foundation Deepwater BP Oil Spill Ethics Family Fiscal Responsibility Foreign Policy Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Trip to Asia 2010 Haiti Earthquake Speech in Cairo Health Care Homeland Security Immigration Poverty Rural State Fair Tour Seniors & Social Security Service Taxes Tax Cuts, Unemployment Insurance and Jobs Technology Urban Policy Veterans Women Additional Issues The Administration President Barack Obama Vice President Joe Biden First Lady Michelle Obama Dr. Jill Biden The Cabinet 2010 Video Reports White House Staff Chief of Staff Bill Daley Deputy Chief of Staff Nancy-Ann DeParle Deputy Chief of Staff Alyssa Mastromonaco Counselor to the President Peter Rouse Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett Executive Office of the President Other Advisory Boards About the White House Interactive Tour History White House Rooms White House Art Presidents First Ladies The Oval Office The Vice President's Residence & Office Eisenhower Executive Office Building Camp David Air Force One White House Fellows President’s Commission About the Fellowship Current Class Recent Class Staff Bios White House Internships The Story About Us Program Apply Here Submit a Recommendation Tours & Events 2011 Easter Egg Roll Kitchen Garden Tours Holidays 2010 Inside the White House Our Government The Executive Branch The Legislative Branch The Judicial Branch The Constitution Federal Agencies & Commissions Elections & Voting State & Local Government Resources /* Maximize height of menu features. */if(typeof(jQuery)!='undefined')jQuery.each($('.topnav-feature','#topnav'),function(i,v){var o=$(v),oh=o.height(),sh=o.siblings().height();if(oh Home • Briefing Room • Statements & Releases   table.system-status-report th, table td, table th { padding: 5px;}.item-list ul.pager {margin: 0;}.view-display-id-page_1 {padding: 20px;}.node-form .text {width:95%;}.node-form, #node-delete-confirm, #user-login {max-width:648px;}dl.node-type-list {max-width: 615px; padding: 20px; margin: 20px;}#edit-delete, div.submenu.revisions {display: none;}ul.secondary li {display: block;}ul.secondary a.active {border-bottom: 1px solid #999;} The White House

Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release March 26, 2011 Statement by the President on the Passing of Geraldine Ferraro

Michelle and I were saddened to learn about the passing of Geraldine Ferraro. Geraldine will forever be remembered as a trailblazer who broke down barriers for women, and Americans of all backgrounds and walks of life. Whether it was as a public school teacher, assistant district attorney, Member of Congress, or candidate for Vice President, Geraldine fought to uphold America's founding ideals of equality, justice, and opportunity for all.  And as our Ambassador to the UN Human Rights Commission, she stood up for those ideals around the world. Sasha and Malia will grow up in a more equal America because of the life Geraldine Ferraro chose to live. Our thoughts and prayers go out to her husband, John Zaccaro, her children and grandchildren, and their entire family.

 

Blog posts on this issue March 28, 2011 6:14 PM EDTRemembering the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire

Today, as part of Women's History Month and in commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire, Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett and Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis welcomed four remarkable women organizers to the White House.

March 28, 2011 1:24 PM EDTWorking to End Violence Against Women

As we wind down Women’s History Month, Lynn Rosenthal, White House Advisor on Violence Against Women, reflects back on all the changes in women’s lives over the past few decades. Most notably, violence against women has emerged as an important topic at the local, state, and national level.

March 26, 2011 6:57 PM EDTPresident Obama on the Passing of Geraldine Ferraro

The President expresses his sadness over the passing of a woman he calls "a trailblazer who broke down barriers for women, and Americans of all backgrounds and walks of life."

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Source: whitehouse.gov

Remarks by the President at Univision Town Hall

Remarks by the President at Univision Town Hall

The White House

Office of the Press Secretary

Bell Multicultural High School
Washington, D.C.

10:37 A.M. EDT

 MR. RAMOS: Mr. President, I have the first question. As a newscaster and as an anchor, I have to ask first. And I would like to ask something that everybody wants to know. I don't know if you can give us something about the speech you're going to give later on for us to listen to here at Univision. And we are going through a very difficult time. We're going through three different wars at the same time. I was looking at the education budget in the country and it amazes me that every dollar that is being spent on education we spend $10 for war and the Department of Defense. Do we need to change that? What would you do?

 THE PRESIDENT: Well, first of all, I just want to say, Jorge, it’s wonderful to be with Univision. It’s wonderful to be here at Bell Multicultural. (Applause.) You guys are doing outstanding work.

I also want to make a confession, and that is that although I took Spanish in high school, I'm receiving translation through this earpiece. (Laughter.) But for all the young people here, I want you guys to be studying hard because it is critical for all American students to have language skills. And I want everybody here to be working hard to make sure that you don't just speak one language, you speak a bunch of languages. That's a priority. (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: Let’s talk about Libya.

 THE PRESIDENT: Jorge, with respect to Libya, I am going to be addressing this issue tonight, and I’ve already discussed it on several occasions, including on your program.

 Our involvement there is going to be limited both in time and in scope. But you’re absolutely right that we have a very large defense budget. Some of that is necessitated by the size of our country and the particular special role that we play around the globe. But what is true is that over the last 10 years, the defense budget was going up much more quickly than our education budget.

And we are only going to be as strong as we are here at home. If we are not strong here at home, if our economy is not growing, if our people are not getting jobs, if they are not succeeding, then we won’t be able to project military strength or any other kind of strength.

 And that's why in my 2012 budget, even though we have all these obligations -- we’re still in Afghanistan; I have ended the war in Iraq, and we’ve pulled 100,000 troops out -- (applause) -- but we still have some commitments there -- despite all that, my proposed budget still increases education spending by 10 percent, including 4 percent for non-college-related expenses. But we also increased the Pell Grant program drastically so all these outstanding young people are going to have a better chance to go to college. (Applause.)

 So the larger point you’re making I think is right that we have to constantly balance our security needs with understanding that if we’re not having a strong economy, a strong workforce and a well-educated workforce, then we’re not going to be successful over the long term.

 MR. RAMOS: Okay. Mr. President, one of the main problems here in the United States is that -- with Hispanics especially -- is that only one out of three of Hispanic students actually graduates from high school. They drop out. And Iris Mendosa, a student from this school has the first question. Iris?

 Q Hello, Mr. President. My name is Iris Mendosa, and I attend Washington, D.C. Bell Multicultural High School. And my question is: What can we do to reduce the amount of students that drop out of school before graduating?

 THE PRESIDENT: Well, I appreciate the question. And I want to reiterate something that Mr. Conde said at the outset. This is an issue that’s not just important for the Latino community here in the United States; this is an issue that is critical for the success of America generally, because we already have a situation where one out of five students are Latino in our schools, and when you look at those who are 10 years old or younger, it’s actually one in four. So what this means is, is that our workforce is going to be more diverse; it is going to be, to a large percentage, Latino. And if our young people are not getting the kind of education they need, we won’t succeed as a nation.

 Now, here’s what’s also important -- that eight out of 10 future jobs are going to require more than a high school education. They’re going to require some sort of higher education, whether it’s a community college, a four-year college, at the very least some job training and technical training -- all of which means nobody -- nobody -- can drop out. We can’t afford to have anybody here at Bell drop out. We can’t have anybody drop out anywhere in the country.

 Now, there are some things that we know work. To the extent that young people are getting a good start in school and are falling behind, they’re less likely to drop out. So that’s why it’s important for us to invest in early childhood education. And my budget makes sure that we put more money into that. In K through 12, we’ve got to make sure that we’ve got the highest-quality teachers. We have to make sure that we have parental involvement so that we are building a culture in our community. Everybody -- businesses, philanthropies, churches, whoever these young people are interacting with, they’ve got to hear a message that they don’t have any choice, they’ve got to graduate, and everybody is going to be behind them.

 We know that there’s some programs that will help young people catch up if they’ve already fallen behind. And one of the things that we’ve emphasized is something called Race to the Top, which is a program that says to states and school districts all across the country, if you design programs that are especially designed to get at those schools that are creating a lot of dropouts, that are not performing up to par, we’ll give you extra money if you are serious about reform.

 So we’re going to have to take a comprehensive approach to make sure that we reduce dropout rates. And the last point I’ll make on this -- there are about 2,000 schools in the country where the majority of dropouts take place. I mean, we can name them. We know what these schools are. And for us to put some extra help, some intensive help, into those schools to help turn them around is something that we've really got to focus on.

 Mr. Conde and I were both at a school down in Miami that used to have a 60 percent dropout rate and now they’ve been able to reduce that drastically because they completely turned the school around -- got a new principal, got -- about a third of the teachers were new, had a whole new approach, had the whole community surround them.

 We can do that with each of those 2,000 schools around the country, we can make a big difference. Great question. (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: As you know, the success in the students depends not only on good teachers and good administrators; it also depends on their parents.

 Q I’m from Chile. And my daughter attends CHEC. I do know that the success of our children’s education also hinges on their parents. So my question is, how can we help to fight illiteracy and lack of language knowledge, English knowledge?

 THE PRESIDENT: Well, first of all, the fact that you’re here shows that you’re a very involved parent and that’s where this has to start. No matter who you are, no matter where you come from, if you’re a parent, you are the single most important factor in whether your child is going to succeed. And so starting out very young, reading to your children -- even if you yourself are not an English-language speaker, reading them in Spanish gets them used to the idea of reading and builds their vocabulary and will be building a foundation for learning.

Making sure that as your children get older, that you’re turning off the television set and making sure that they’re doing their homework -- even if you as a Spanish-speaking person may not be able to help them with all their homework, you can make sure that they’re actually doing it. Parents making sure that they’re involved in their schools and going and meeting teachers. And I know that there are some schools where parents experience not a good interaction with the schools. The schools seem to push them away, particularly if English is not their native language. But you have rights as parents to make sure that your children are getting what they need. And the more you’re interacting with the teachers and the principals and the administrators, the more support you can provide to your child.

So those are all areas where parents can make a big difference. What we’re trying to do as the government is to make sure that we’re providing more incentives for schools to improve their parental involvement programs. We’re trying to make sure that schools are open and understand that it is up to them to provide a welcoming environment to parents so that they can be involved in their child’s education.

And specifically with respect to young people who are coming to school and English may not be their native language, we’ve got to make sure that we continue to fund strong programs, both bilingual education programs but also immersion programs that ensure that young people are learning English but they’re not falling behind in their subjects even as they are learning English.

And there’s a way to do that that is effective. We have schools that do it very well; there are some schools that don’t do it as well. We want to lift up those models that do it well. And parents should be demanding and insisting that even if your child is not a native English speaker, there is no reason why they can’t succeed in school, and schools have an obligation to make sure that those children are provided for. They have rights just like everybody else. (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: Thank you very much. Mr. President, in San Salvador, we had the opportunity to have a conversation regarding deportation, and I was telling you that your government has deported more immigrants than any other President before. And you also told me that many students in the United States, even though they are undocumented, are not deported. But Karen Montinado (ph) sent us this video, and I wanted for you to watch it together with me, and I want for you to give me your opinion regarding her experience:

Q My question for the President is why saying that deportations have stopped or the detention of many students like me? Why is it that we are still receiving deportation letters like this one?

 THE PRESIDENT: Well, Jorge, I said before we have re-designed our enforcement practices under the law to make sure that we’re focusing primarily on criminals. And so our deportation of criminals are up about 70 percent. Our deportation of non-criminals are down. And that's because we want to focus our resources on those folks who are destructive to the community. And for a young person like that young woman that we just spoke to, who’s going to school, doing all the right things, we want them to succeed -- which is why I have been such a strong proponent of the DREAM Act; why I reiterated during my -- (applause) -- why I reiterated during my State of the Union speech that we need to pass the DREAM Act. We came close in December. It almost happened.

And for those students here who aren’t familiar with what the DREAM Act says, basically what it says is if you’re a young person who came to this country with your parents, even if you were undocumented when you came here but you were a child -- you didn't make the decision -- you’ve grown up as an American child, and we want your talents here in the United States. And if you have done right in your community, if you’ve been studying hard, if you’ve been working in school, you should be able to go ahead and get a process towards legalization and a process whereby you can be a full-fledged citizen in this country.

 We almost were able to get it passed. We fell a few votes short. I believe that we can still get it done. But it’s going to be very important for all the viewers of Univision, all the students who are interested in this issue, we’ve got to keep the pressure up on Congress. And I have to say without being partisan that the majority of my party, the Democrats, I got their votes to get this passed, but we need a little bit of help from the other side. And so all of you need to contact your members of Congress, contact your members of the Senate, and let them know that this is something that is the right thing to do.

 America is a nation of laws, which means I, as the President, am obligated to enforce the law. I don't have a choice about that. That's part of my job. But I can advocate for changes in the law so that we have a country that is both respectful of the law but also continues to be a great nation of immigrants. And the DREAM Act is a perfect example of a law that can help fix this.

 Of course, I believe that we also have to have an even more comprehensive reform of our immigration system. It’s broken right now. We have to have secure borders. We have to make sure that businesses are not exploiting undocumented workers, but we have to have a pathway to citizenship for those who are just looking for a better life and contributing to our country. And I’ll continue to fight for that. (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: Mr. President, my question will be as follows: With an executive order, could you be able to stop deportations of the students? And if that’s so, that links to another of the questions that we have received through univision.com. We have received hundreds, thousand, all related to immigration and the students. Kay Tomar (ph) through univision.com told us -- I’m reading -- “What if at least you grant temporary protective status, TPS, to undocumented students? If the answer is yes, when? And if no, why not?”

 THE PRESIDENT: Well, first of all, temporary protective status historically has been used for special circumstances where you have immigrants to this country who are fleeing persecution in their countries, or there is some emergency situation in their native land that required them to come to the United States. So it would not be appropriate to use that just for a particular group that came here primarily, for example, because they were looking for economic opportunity.

 With respect to the notion that I can just suspend deportations through executive order, that’s just not the case, because there are laws on the books that Congress has passed -- and I know that everybody here at Bell is studying hard so you know that we’ve got three branches of government. Congress passes the law. The executive branch’s job is to enforce and implement those laws. And then the judiciary has to interpret the laws.

 There are enough laws on the books by Congress that are very clear in terms of how we have to enforce our immigration system that for me to simply through executive order ignore those congressional mandates would not conform with my appropriate role as President.

That does not mean, though, that we can't make decisions, for example, to emphasize enforcement on those who’ve engaged in criminal activity. It also doesn’t mean that we can't strongly advocate and propose legislation that would change the law in order to make it more fair, more just, and ultimately would help young people who are here trying to do the right thing and whose talents we want to embrace in order to succeed as a country. (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: You mentioned minutes ago -- you talked about the DREAM Act. And you talk to parents and teachers and one of the things of the educational system in the United States is it allows them to go to elementary school and secondary studies, high school, but it doesn’t allow them to go to college. And Sonia Marlene (ph) has a question regarding the DREAM Act. And students have been frightened and they are saying publicly that they are undocumented and they are being at risk of deportation.

 Q Thank you for being here in this forum. My name is Sonia Marlene(ph). And I'm a mother, a parent, an activist, and pro-undocumented young people. After the non-passing of the DREAM Act in Congress, many students asked me, why should I keep struggling to continue with my studies when I don't have a future in this country? What should I answer to them, Mr. President?

 THE PRESIDENT: Well, I think that change in this country sometimes happens in fits and starts. It doesn’t happen overnight. If you think of the history of the civil rights struggle, though even after Brown v. Board of Education, there were still struggles to ensure that ultimately everybody was treated with dignity and respect.

 I think with respect to the DREAM Act, as I said, it was very close to passage. We didn’t get it passed this time, but I don't want young people to be giving up because if people in the past had given up, we probably wouldn’t have women’s rights, we wouldn’t have civil rights. So many changes that we’ve made had to do with young people being willing to struggle and fight to make sure that their voices are heard.

 And one of the things just to reemphasize is if we’ve got talented young people here in the United States who are working hard, who aspire to college, in some cases want to serve in the military, want to serve our country, it makes no sense for us to send them away.

One of the strengths of America, compared to other countries, is that we’re always attracting new talent to our shores -- people who reinvigorate the American Dream. And that has to continue in this generation. And so they should know, these young people should know that they have a President who believes in them and will continue to fight for them and try to make sure that they have full opportunities in this country. (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: Thank you. At the beginning of this show, Mr. President, we were saying why are 10 dollars spent in wars and a dollar on schools. Somebody else asked why do we help people who have more money instead of doing that to people who have less money.

 The next question comes the Jimenes family, and so this is what they want to ask you: “Hello, Mr. President. California is one of the last on the list regarding spending in schools. However, it seems that there’s a lot of money for arms and for corporate bailouts but not for school budgets. How is it our children can stay strong in our country, can survive, if we don’t want to spend in their education today, a quality education?”

 THE PRESIDENT: Well, the irony is, is that California used to be famous for having the best school system in the country. And that wasn’t that long ago. I mean, when I was a young person -- I know I seem very old to all of you -- (laughter) -- but when I was a young person back in the ‘70s, ‘80s, everybody would say what a great public school system California had and what a great university system California had. But, unfortunately, most education funding is done at the state level. And in many states, what’s happened is that there have been various laws put in place that limit the ability to raise money for schools, partly by capping property taxes.

 And, look, I’m somebody who believes that money is not everything when it comes to schools. You’ve got some great schools in low-income neighborhoods that don’t have a high tax base but you’ve got a dynamic principal, you’ve got great teachers, you’ve got parents who are rallying around the school. You can do well even if you don’t have a lot of money.

 But money does make a difference in terms of being able to provide the resources, the supplemental help, the equipment, the technology, the science labs, all those things. And the fact of the matter of is, is that in most states what we need is for people to reprioritize.

Part of what happened in California was there were huge amounts of money spent on prisons and that drained away money from the school system. And if it turns out that it costs $16,000 or $17,000 or $20,000 for one inmate, and you could spend an extra $3,000 or $4,000 or $5,000 in a school to keep that -- young people from going into prison in the first place, it’s a smart investment for us to invest in the schools first.

 But what’s important, I think, for everyone to understand is this is typically a decision that’s made at the state level. And so in each of the states, wherever you’re watching -- in Arizona, in New Mexico, in California, in Maryland -- whatever state you’re in, you should be pressing your state legislatures and your governors to make sure that they are properly prioritizing education when it comes to the state budget, because just as a country is going to succeed because it’s got the best workers, the same is going to be true in states.

 Companies can locate anywhere today, and they’re going to choose to locate in those places where they’ve got the most well-educated, best-trained workforce, because then that saves them money. They don’t have to re-train people. They know that whoever they hire they’re going to have good math skills and good science skills and good communication skills. So that’s a huge competitive advantage for any state in the country. And it’s important, I think, for you to make sure that all your state and local officials know this is something that you’re paying attention to.

But it’s a great question. Thank you. (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: One of the things that surprised me during this investigation that we ran through is that when I get eight Hispanic students together, only one of them, one out of eight of Hispanics will go to college. That I think is just a waste of talent and energy and their life. And Kenny Alvarado (ph) has a question regarding changing that number, who knows, that eight or seven can go, that most of them can actually attend school.

 Q Hello, Mr. President, my name is Kenny Alvarado. I attend Bell Multicultural and I have great aspirations to be able to attend university. Before a student was able to receive two scholarships a year to pay for college. Now that student can only have one. What is your government going to do to keep the Pell scholarship without cutting the budget for education?

 THE PRESIDENT: Well, first of all, I expect you to go to college, so -- I’m confident that you’re going to succeed. (Applause.) I believe in you.

 Here’s what we’ve done over the last two years. First of all, we increased the level of Pell Grants so now you can get up to $800 more in Pell Grants every year than you were able to do two years ago because of changes that we made.

 We also made Pell Grants available to millions more students around the country. So we expanded eligibility so that more young people could get access to student loans and grants that would help them pay for college.

The way we did this -- the student loan program through the government had been previously funneled through banks, and the banks were taking out a profit on the student loan program, even though these were all loans that were guaranteed by the U.S. government -- so the banks weren’t taking any risks. They were basically just processing these loans, but they were taking a couple billion dollars off the top in profits. And we said, well, why do we have to go through the banks? Why don't we just give these loans directly to the students? That will save us billions of dollars. That way we can expand the program, make sure that more young people can go to college. So that's what we have already implemented.

 In addition, what we’ve said is that starting in 2014 -- so right about when you guys are -- some of you are starting college, in some cases some of you will be right in the middle of college -- we’re going to institute a program whereby your loans repayments will not have to exceed more than 10 percent of your income.

Now, this is something very important for all of you, because -- (applause) -- I speak from experience. Michelle and I, we didn’t come from wealthy families. So we came from families a lot like yours, and we had to take out all these student loans to go to college and law school. By the time we were out, we had, I think between us, $120,000 worth of debt. It took us 10 years to pay it off. And we were lucky because we both got law degrees; we could make enough money to pay that debt.

But let’s say that we had wanted to teach, and we were only making -- what’s a teacher making these days? (Laughter.) Not enough, is what somebody said. (Laughter.) Or you wanted to go into public service, or work for a non-profit. You might not be able to make enough to afford servicing $120,000 worth of debt, or $60,000 worth of debt. So what we said is we’re going to cap at 10 percent. And we will give you additional help if you go into helping professions like teaching that are so important to our future.

 The bottom line is this. We’ve made enormous strides over the last two years. If you are working hard, if you guys are getting good grades in school, if you are ready to be admitted to college, there's no reason why you should not be able to afford to go to college. We’re going to make sure that we’re helping to provide you the money you need. All right? (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: Well, thank you. Well, Kenny, the President of the United States wants for you to go to a university or college. We’ll talk to you in four more years, okay? (Laughter.)

Mr. President, one of the biggest tragedies is that -- you don’t have to die to go to school and many of our students are suffering bad -- bullying is what it’s called in English, they’re being abused at school. And you and your wife have been involved in a program to avoid that to happen. But the bottom line is at least one of four students go to school and instead of studying they are at risk of being wounded or even die. Jessica Bermudes (ph) sent us a video -- I don’t know how many thousands of letters you receive, but you received one from her. And this is what she wrote:

 “Mr. President, I wrote you a letter after my son passed away but you never answered. It’s been two years since he committed suicide and I haven’t been able to get any legal remedy that would do justice to my son. Compensation is not enough. Would you be willing to pass a federal law that sanctions bullying like the type my son suffered?”

 THE PRESIDENT: Well, obviously we’re heartbroken by a story like that and we’ve been seeing reports in the news -- and some young people here, you’ve probably seen young people who took their own lives because they had been experiencing such terrible bullying and peer pressure in the schools.

Now, look, bullying has always existed. I’ve said before when I was a kid, I was teased. I had a different name; I had an unusual background; I had big ears. (Laughter.) And so all of us have been bullied at some point -- except maybe Jorge because Jorge was very handsome and cool in school, I’m sure. (Laughter.)

MR. RAMOS: I don’t think so.

 THE PRESIDENT: So all of us have experienced this to some degree or another. But it’s gotten worse partly because of new communications. Right? You guys understand this better than I do, but Facebook, Twitters -- (laughter) -- you know, all that stuff makes for added pressure not just in school but also outside of school. You can’t escape it.

 And so what we did was we had a conference at the White House where we convened interested groups from across the country -- parent organizations, philanthropies, student organizations -- to find ways that -- strategies that we could put in place to reduce bullying.

 Now, one of the most powerful tools, it turns out, is students themselves. And there are schools where young people have done surveys to find out how much bullying is taking place in school and how secure do you feel in the classroom. And then the students themselves started an entire campaign in the schools to say, we’re not going to tolerate bullying, and in fact, if we see somebody bullying, we’re going to call them out on it. And that peer pressure could actually end up making as much of a difference as just about anything.
But obviously we are interested in finding additional strategies for how we can reduce this epidemic of bullying that’s taking place. And the young people here, if you have suggestions in terms of how we should approach these problems, we want to listen to you. And if you go to the White House website, whitehouse.gov, that will give you a set of tools and strategies that we’re pursuing in terms of trying to make a difference on this issue. (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: As you know, Mr. President, we are pressuring parents for them to help their children, and this is what they’re telling us through Univision and univision.com, is that maybe they don’t speak English or they don’t have the time because they are working hard. Maybe they need to -- they are concerned about immigration problems. But Margarita Gramajo (ph) is a parent, and she will speak for herself.

 Q Good morning, Mr. President. My name is Margarita Gramajo (ph). I know many parents that don’t speak English, and they also have to work long hours to be able to feed their families. I would like to know what your government can do, how can you help these parents so they are better able to support their children’s education?

 THE PRESIDENT: Well, the first thing we can do is make sure that parents have economic opportunities, that they’ve got a job that pays a decent wage. Obviously, in many immigrant communities, families and parents may be working two or three jobs because they're making such low wages. Oftentimes, they don't have benefits, so if they get sick, they don't have a place to turn and that becomes an added burden. And so, overall, one of the most important things we can do is just make life easier for those who don't make a lot of money and are sometimes working in the underground economy.

And that's why comprehensive immigration reform is important. That's why our health care reforms that will provide health insurance for a lot of families that are out there is so important, because that will relieve some of the financial pressure and burden.

 But when it comes to schools, as I said before, I want schools to welcome parents. I want schools to go out there actively calling parents and finding out how can we work with you to make sure your students can achieve. How can we enlist you in the project of making sure your young people graduate from high school, go to college and move on to a career? If a school is not doing that, if it’s not actively reaching out to parents, then it’s not doing its job.

And my Secretary of Education is sitting right in front of you, Arne Duncan. And he travels all across the country, and a lot of what we do when we talk to schools is telling them how important parental involvement is, and trying to recruit parents.

 Now, if they don't speak English, then it’s important for those schools to think about strategies to have translators in the schools to help them communicate with the teachers and the principals. If it turns out that the school budgets are tight and they can’t afford to hire translators, then we should enlist community members who are bilingual to come in and volunteer on parent-teacher meetings.

This is where philanthropies can make a big difference. This is where churches can make a big difference -- because there’s no reason why the community can’t also mobilize to support parents to make sure that they are able to take the time to meet with teachers and support the overall process of education.

 So I can’t make a parent who’s not interested, interested. Ultimately, that has to come from the parent, him or herself. But what I can do is make sure that the school knows how important the parent is, and that’s something that we are emphasizing in every program that we do. And when we evaluate, for example, programs like Race to the Top, where we’re looking to give extra money to schools, one of the criteria we look at is, do you have a smart plan for getting parents involved -- because oftentimes that may be one of the indicators of success. All right? (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: One of the main concerns that parents have is not only that one out of four in school, but besides that, there’s a huge need for them to work and who are they going to leave their children with? Early development -- who will take care of my child when they have to go to work? Belquiz Martinez (ph) has the next question, also from a mother, from a parent.

Go ahead.

 Q Well, good evening, Mr. President. My name is Belquiz Martinez (ph), and my children attend bilingual education. And this is my question. I would like to know what are you going to do -- what your presidency is going to do to keep the bilingual programs and the early Head Start?

 THE PRESIDENT: Well, one of the things that we’ve already done in my first two years as part of the Recovery Act was to put several billion additional dollars into Head Start programs and early childhood education programs.

The Latino community is a young population and so there are a lot of young kids, so they need high-quality early childhood education, high-quality daycare, high-quality Head Start programs, more than just about any other community. Unfortunately, actually, they are underrepresented in these programs, and we need to do more to provide that kind of support. So in our new budget we’re also putting additional resources into early childhood education.

 This is something that will pay big dividends for the entire society down the road. Because what we know is, when kids get a good start, when they come to school prepared, then they are more likely to stay on grade level and not fall behind.

 On the other hand, if a child comes to school and they don’t know their colors, they don’t know their letters, they’re not accustomed to being read to, then they’re starting off at a disadvantage. And kids can overcome those disadvantages -- I’m somebody who never gives up on any kid -- but, let’s face it, the longer they’re behind, the more discouraged they get. They may get turned off from school and ultimately they end up dropping out.

 So we’re already putting more money into these programs. It’s not enough. Waiting lines for high-quality childcare is still too long. We've got to do more.

 The other thing is, in addition to more money we have to reform many of these programs, because, frankly, sometimes a childcare program may look nice on the outside, but when you get inside it turns out that the instructors there, they’re not professionally trained, they don't know anything about early childhood development. They’re basically just babysitters -- which is fine if you're going out for an evening with your spouse, but if these folks are going to be with your child each and every day for five hours, six hours, eight hours, you want somebody who knows -- who’s been professionally trained and understands how to make sure that you're giving a good foundation of learning to children.

 And so we're doing a lot of work in improving professional development and the quality of the programs, even as we increae the money to support subsidies for those programs. (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: We have talked about different topics, very important, giant concepts, but the main concerns of our children are more concrete. It’s about tests. When was the last time you took a test -- do you remember that?

 THE PRESIDENT: Let me tell you, I am tested every day. (Laughter.) I was tested when I appeared on Jorge’s program a couple of -- four days ago. (Laughter.) He’s a very tough instructor, a tough -- he’s a tough grader. (Laughter.)

 MR. RAMOS: You passed your test. Lisa has a question regarding tests.

 Q My name is Lisa and I'm going to attend my last year here at Bell Multicultural High School. Students go through a lot of tests. Could you reduce the amount of tests? For example, we found a student passes a test, he shouldn’t take the same test next year.

 THE PRESIDENT: Well, I think probably what you're referring to are standardized tests -- because if you're just talking about your math or your science or your English test, tough luck -- (laughter) -- you’ve got to keep on taking those tests, because that's part of the way that teachers are going to know whether you're making progress and whether you understand the subject matter.

 What is true, though, is, is that we have piled on a lot of standardized tests on our kids. Now, there’s nothing wrong with a standardized test being given occasionally just to give a baseline of where kids are at. Malia and Sasha, my two daughters, they just recently took a standardized test. But it wasn’t a high-stakes test. It wasn’t a test where they had to panic. I mean, they didn’t even really know that they were going to take it ahead of time. They didn’t study for it, they just went ahead and took it. And it was a tool to diagnose where they were strong, where they were weak, and what the teachers needed to emphasize.

 Too often what we've been doing is using these tests to punish students or to, in some cases, punish schools. And so what we've said is let’s find a test that everybody agrees makes sense; let’s apply it in a less pressured-packed atmosphere; let’s figure out whether we have to do it every year or whether we can do it maybe every several years; and let’s make sure that that's not the only way we're judging whether a school is doing well.

 Because there are other criteria: What’s the attendance rate? How are young people performing in terms of basic competency on projects? There are other ways of us measuring whether students are doing well or not.

 So what I want to do is -- one thing I never want to see happen is schools that are just teaching to the test. Because then you're not learning about the world; you're not learning about different cultures, you're not learning about science, you're not learning about math. All you're learning about is how to fill out a little bubble on an exam and the little tricks that you need to do in order to take a test. And that's not going to make education interesting to you. And young people do well in stuff that they’re interested in. They’re not going to do as well if it’s boring.

 So, now, I still want you to know, though, you're going to have to take some tests, man. (Laughter.) So you're not going to get completely out of that. All right? (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: My host here is Maria Tukeva, the principal of Columbia Heights educational campus, and hers has to do with teachers and to hire the teachers and get better pay for the teachers.

 Q Mr. President, first of all, thank you so much again for the great honor of your presence here. I have a very important problem. You know the lack of African American teachers and Latinos, they have to have role models they can relate to. How can we create a training and recruiting program for African Americans and Latino teachers? (Applause.)

 THE PRESIDENT: I think this is a great question. This is a great question. I’m not sure I’m going to get these statistics exactly right, but I think that if the percentage of Latino students now is 20 percent, percentage of African American students might be 12-15 percent, the number of African American and Latino teachers may only be 3 or 4 percent, maybe 5 percent. And when it comes to male teachers, it’s even lower. That's a problem.

 So there are a couple things that we can do. Number one is I think it’s very important for us to say to young people who are thinking about a career, think about teaching. There’s no job that's more important and is going to give you more satisfaction and will give you more impact and influence over your community than if you go into teaching.

And so we’re trying to constantly elevate teaching as a profession. And I think we as a society have to do that, because young people, they're kind of seeing what appears to be valued. And if all they see are basketball players and rappers and -- then that's where they’ll gravitate to. And if, on the other hand, they see that teachers are being lifted up as important, then they’ll think about teaching as a career. So that's part number one.

 Part number two, we’re working to figure out how to do more recruitment in historically black colleges and universities, in Hispanic-serving institutions. We need to get in there and say to young people, consider teaching as a career. And I know that that’s something that Arne Duncan has emphasized.

I’m going to be giving a commencement at Miami Dade College, which, if I’m not mistaken, is the single largest institution serving Hispanic students in the country. President Padrón is here, who also happens to chair my Council on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Students. And one of the things that I want to do when I’m there, I’ll speak to the fact that I want a bunch of those young people going into teaching.

 So we’ve got to go to where the students are, get them early, get them in the pipeline, provide them the outstanding training that they need, and make sure then they’re supported as they go through. Because part of the challenge in teaching, it’s not just enough to recruit the teacher. Once the teacher is in the classroom, they’ve got to have support systems in place, professional development in place, so that they can learn their trade.

Because it’s like anything else. I mean, there’s no job where you would just start off the first day and suddenly you know exactly what you’re doing. Jorge, I’m sure, was a very young person when he became a news anchor, but I’m sure he had to get some tips and he got better and better as time went on. Certainly that’s true for me as a public servant, as an elected official. Well, teachers are the same way.

 So we’ve got to have professional development programs. We’ve got to have mechanisms to make sure that people succeed over time. But I’m confident that if we give them the opportunity, there are going to be a lot of young people who want to pursue this career. (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: Not long ago I was having a conversation with my son. He’s only 12 years old, and he couldn’t believe that I grew up in a world where there were no cell phones, no Internet, no computers. (Laughter.) So do you have your BlackBerry with you, or do you have an iPhone? What do you have?

 THE PRESIDENT: You know, I took my BlackBerry off for this show, because I didn’t want it going off, and that would be really embarrassing. But usually I carry a BlackBerry around.

 MR. RAMOS: Do you have an iPad?

 THE PRESIDENT: I do have an iPad.

 MR. RAMOS: Your own computer?

 THE PRESIDENT: I’ve got my own computer.

 MR. RAMOS: Very well. (Laughter.)

 THE PRESIDENT: I mean, Jorge, I’m the President of the United States. You think I’ve got a -- (laughter and applause) -- you think I’ve got to go borrow somebody’s computer? (Laughter.) Hey, man, can I borrow your computer? (Laughter.) How about you? You’ve got one?

 MR. RAMOS: Okay, Diana has a question regarding computers. So go ahead, Diana.

 Q Hello, Mr. President, my name is Diana Castillo (ph), and I attend Bell. My question is, do you believe that the new technology like iPads, computers, helps students in their education? And if that is so, what can be done so we can have access to this technology?

 MR. RAMOS: A minute -- I’m afraid I'll have to tell the most powerful man in the world that he only has one minute.

 THE PRESIDENT: Actually, the truth is it can make a difference. If the schools know how to use the technology well, especially now with the Internet, it means that students can access information from anywhere in the world. And that's a powerful tool.

So a lot of schools that we’ve seen now have every student getting a computer. We visited a school up in -- where was that? It was in Boston, at Boston Tech? Is that what it’s called? And each student gets a computer. And they were able to do science experiments and get the information right on the screen directly as they were working in the labs.

So what we want to do is encourage schools to use technology. But technology is not a magic bullet. If you have a computer, but you don't have the content and you don't have teachers who know how to design good classes around the computer, it’s not going to make a difference. So it’s not just the technology. We also have to make sure that we have the teachers that are trained to work with students so they can use that technology to explore all these -- all the information that's available out there today. (Applause.)

 MR. RAMOS: It’s my understanding that you also wanted to address our audience -- last words.

 THE PRESIDENT: Well, first of all, I just want to thank again Univision for hosting this town hall. Part of the reason why we felt this was so important is because the Latino community in this country will be a key for our future success. And all of the young people who are sitting here are going to be a key to our success. And that means that everybody has to be involved in this project of lifting up graduation rates; lifting up performance in things like math and science; making sure that young people are getting education beyond high school so that they are prepared for the careers of the future.

And what I want to say is that the government can do its part -- we can increase funding for education; we can make college more affordable through grant programs and loan programs -- but we can’t do it alone. Ultimately, everybody has to be involved, and that includes the students here.

And I just want to say to all the young people here -- this is a competitive world now, and you can’t expect to be able to just find a job just because you’re willing to work. If you haven’t prepared through a good education, you are going to be trapped in low-end jobs. And so you’ve got to bring an attitude of hard work and pursuing excellence each and every day. That’s what you have to bring to the classroom. That’s what we need as a country. And if we do -- if we all work together, then I’m confident that not only is the Latino community going to succeed, but the American family is going to thrive and succeed in the 21st century. (Applause.)

MR. RAMOS: Mr. President, the last thing I wanted to tell you -- there are more than 50 million Hispanics and you are the first African American President. And with great education, of course, we hope that we have the first Latino president soon. Thank you for being here.

THE PRESIDENT: They may be sitting here. (Applause.) Who knows?

MR. RAMOS: Definitely. Thank you so much from Univision. Thank you so much. (Applause.)

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much.

END
11:33 A.M. EDT

Eduardo Ochoa, Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education at the Department of Education, talks about community colleges, where a majority of Latinos and other minorities who are traditionally underserved by higher education are now reaching for a college degree in ever-greater numbers.

Presidential “Latinos and Education” Town Hall—A Key to Winning the Future

President Obama participates in a town hall event focused on education and the Latino community.

The Deapartment of Education's TEACH campaign is an initiative to encourage talented Americans to become teachers. TEACH.gov provides individuals interested in entering the teaching profession with resources to help them meet the requirements of being a teacher.

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Source: whitehouse.gov