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February 14, 2016

Posts in "Russia"

January 16, 2016

Democrats Join GOP Warnings On Iran As Sanctions Eased


Obama speaks from the G20 summit in Turkey. (Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

Obama faces new political fire for Saturday’s developments in Iran. (Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

President Barack Obama’s legacy became further tied to Tehran on Saturday when Iran released four American prisoners and U.N. inspectors cleared the way for the easing of some painful sanctions on the Middle Eastern power.

Obama is taking new political fire from Republican presidential hopefuls and lawmakers — joined by some notable Democrats — over the nuclear deal his administration and other world powers inked with Iran that made the sanctions lifting possible. Now, he is under new attacks after swapping seven Iranians for Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian and three other Americans.

White House officials hailed Saturday’s developments as major victories — “a demonstration of what diplomacy is able to achieve,” as one put it Saturday — but warned the sanctions could be put back in place if Iranian leaders’ violate the nuclear pact.

Full story

November 24, 2015

Democrats to Obama: Don’t Trust Putin on ISIS


NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 28:  (AFP OUT)  Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) and U.S. President Barack Obama shake hands for the cameras before the start of a bilateral meeting at the United Nations headquarters September 28, 2015 in New York City. Putin and Obama are in New York City to attend the 70th anniversary general assembly meetings.  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Obama and Putin exchanged a much-analyzed handshake in September at the U.N. General Assembly meetings in New York. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images File Photo)

Several House Democrats want President Barack Obama to reject Moscow’s overtures on fighting ISIS, arguing Russian President Vladimir Putin cannot be trusted.

But whether to work more closely with Russia on striking Islamic State targets in Syria is among the most pressing issues that experts expect to top the agenda Tuesday when Obama huddles at the White House with French French President Francois Hollande.

Full story

November 23, 2015

White House Digs In on ISIS Strategy Ahead of Hollande Visit


US President Barack Obama (R) and French President Francois Hollande take part in a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the G7 Summit at the Schloss Elmau castle resort near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, in southern Germany on June 8, 2015.    AFP PHOTO / ALAIN JOCARD        (Photo credit should read ALAIN JOCARD/AFP/Getty Images)

Obama met with Hollande at the G7 Summit in Germany in June. (Alain Jocard/AFP/Getty Images File Photo)

The White House continues to give no indication that President Barack Obama is poised to deploy additional U.S. combat troops or military hardware to fight the Islamic State.

Press Secretary Josh Earnest on Monday gave reporters a snapshot of what Obama and French President Francoise Hollande will discuss Tuesday about the response to the Paris terrorist attacks. At no point did Earnest mention the two leaders talking about the potential for the U.S. to expand military operations or increase its combat footprint in Syria or Iraq. But he had plenty to say about America’s allies, including France, doing more. Full story

Hollande Meets With Obama: 4 Things to Watch


US President Barack Obama (R) and French President Francois Hollande take part in a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the G7 Summit at the Schloss Elmau castle resort near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, in southern Germany on June 8, 2015.    AFP PHOTO / ALAIN JOCARD        (Photo credit should read ALAIN JOCARD/AFP/Getty Images)

Obama and Hollande met on the sidelines of the G7 Summit in June in Germany. (Alain Jocard/AFP/Getty Images File Photo)

French President Francois Hollande will find a reluctant partner in President Barack Obama when the two leaders meet Tuesday at the White House.

Lawmakers and experts expect Hollande will ask Obama, commander in chief of the massive U.S. security apparatus, to take new action against the Islamic State extremist group after the Nov. 13 attacks in Paris. But Obama has pledged to provide “whatever resources” France needs and defensively signaled he is not inclined to alter his strategy against the group, also known as ISIS or ISIL Full story

November 19, 2015

Democrats Want More From Obama on Islamic State


Durbin, right, said the president should have been more forceful. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Durbin, right, said the president should have been more forceful. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Democrats on both sides of the Capitol want President Barack Obama to get tougher on the Islamic State, in both words and deeds.

House Democrats on Thursday expressed frustration with the White House over its messaging on a GOP-crafted bill the chamber passed Thursday, 289-137, that would tighten screening processes for individuals coming from Iraq and Syria. And on the Senate side, some in Obama’s party want a more muscular response to last Friday’s attacks in Paris.

“I think the president should have been more forceful in his original statements,” Senate Majority Whip Richard J. Durbin, D-Ill., told CQ Roll Call. Full story

October 2, 2015

Obama Says Syria Critics Offering ‘Half-Baked’ ‘Mumbo-Jumbo’


“Half-baked” and “mumbo jumbo” aren’t your usual presidential words used to discuss foreign policy, but a clearly frustrated President Barack Obama lashed out Friday at critics who have sharply criticized his restrained approach to the war in Syria.

“When I hear people offering up half-baked ideas, as if they are solutions, or trying to downplay the challenges involved in the situation, what I’d like to see people ask is, specifically, precisely, what exactly would you do and how would you fund it and how would you sustain it? And typically, what you get is a bunch of mumbo jumbo.”
Full story

September 28, 2015

Obama’s Global Warming, Syria Push at United Nations Skips Congress


At the United Nations Monday, President Barack Obama touted what are probably the two biggest items left on his to-do list before leaving office — a global warming agreement later this year in Paris and a settlement to the Syria conflict. Congress barely got a mention.

The Paris accord, like the Iran deal before it, will be strictly an executive agreement, given that Obama wouldn’t have the votes to pass anything in either chamber. Prospects seem to have improved for getting a deal after last week’s agreement with China, which has announced plans to implement a cap-and-trade scheme and push for a global accord in France. Congress, if it gets a chance to weigh in at all, will be via an effort to disapprove Obama’s carbon regulations. Full story

June 8, 2015

Frustrated Obama Fights Courts, Congress, ISIS, Putin (Updated) (Video)


Frustrated Obama King v. Burwell Obamacare

Cassie Boyle, 8, and her sister Helena Roberts, 11, hold a picture of their father and grandmother, Hannah Brown, at a rally outside of the Supreme Court during March arguments in the King v. Burwell case. Brown died 1999 at age 58, and the family attributes her death to her lack of sufficient health insurance. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 3:25 p.m. | The “fourth quarter” of President Barack Obama’s presidency isn’t exactly going according to plan.

All of the president’s frustrations appeared on full display Monday at the conclusion of the G-7 summit in Germany — with Obama taking on the courts, Congress, the Islamic State terror group and Vladimir Putin. Full story

December 3, 2014

‘Looser’ Obama Riffs on Taxes, Trade, Regulations, Immigration, GOP


From left: Deutsche Bank Chief executive Jacques Brand, President and CEO of Convergys Andrea Ayers, President and CEO of Dell Michael Dell (3L), listen to U.S. President Barack Obama at the quarterly meeting of the Business Roundtable. (Getty Images News)

From left: Deutsche Bank Chief executive Jacques Brand, President and CEO of Convergys Andrea Ayers, President and CEO of Dell Michael Dell, listen to President Barack Obama at the quarterly meeting of the Business Roundtable. (Getty Images News)

President Barack Obama is starting to open up, six years into the job.

“You get a little looser in your last two years in office,” he told CEOs at a meeting with the Business Roundtable.

Indeed, the remark itself would never have been made public under the old White House policy of kicking out the press for the all-important Q&As the president regularly has with business leaders and donors. Full story

August 28, 2014

Russian Stock Market Up Despite Jay Carney ‘Short’ Talk


(Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

(Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

It’s been more than five months since CQ Roll Call asked Jay Carney about the stock market in Russia — and he talked about shorting it. You’d have lost a bundle if you followed that advice.

“I wouldn’t, if I were you, invest in Russian equities right now — unless you’re going short,” Carney responded to the question posed at his March 18 daily press briefing.

But despite incremental sanctions and new reports of Russian incursions into Ukraine, the Russian stock market is still up substantially since CQ Roll Call asked the question. Full story

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