Exclusive – Oval Office Watch – Thursday, May 27
by OVAL OFFICE WATCH
May 27, 2010
Salazar: Interior Department offshore drilling findings 'deeply disturbing' - GO HERE.
Clinton: Korea's Security Situation 'Precarious' - CLICK HERE.
Gates officially establishes U.S. Cyber Command - SEE HERE.
Obama Adviser on Oil Leak: "He Wants This Thing Shut Down"
President Obama is frustrated with the response to the Gulf Coast oil spill, according to adviser Carol Browner, assistant to the president for energy and climate change.
Browner says that the president has expressed his concerns in meetings at the White House.
"He wants this thing shut down, he wants to get on with cleaning it up and restoring these communities and getting those fishermen back to work," Browner told Fox Senior White House Correspondent Major Garrett in an interview Tuesday.
The president will travel to the coast on Friday, almost four weeks after his initial visit to the region. During his first trip he received a briefing on response efforts and met with local fisherman affected by the disaster.
On Wednesday oil rig operator BP will attempt to close the leak with mud, rubber tires, and cement. This so-called "top kill" maneuver has a 70 percent chance of success, according to experts.
BP has informed lawmakers that it intends to cut the live video feed of the spewing underwater well before it attempts the procedure.
But Browner says the White House has protested a video black out and is hopeful that the company will change its mind. Read article.
White House: Undoubtedly Worst Oil Spill in U.S. History: Day 36 of the Gulf Coast Oil Spill With No End in Sight
Kate McCarthy & Bradley Blackburn, ABC News.com
The oil leak that has spewed millions of gallons of crude into the Gulf of Mexico will undoubtedly become the worst in U.S. history, the White House said today.
"I don't think there is any doubt, unfortunately," Carol Browner, assistant to the president for energy and climate change, told George Stephanopoulos on "Good Morning America" this morning.
BP is expected to try another solution Wednesday, called the "top kill," to stop the leaking well head. BP said there is a 60 to 70 percent chance of success, but Browner declined to put "odds" on the planned attempt.
"We are doing everything in our power to try and make it work," Browner said.
"GMA's" Sam Champion went diving with oceanographer Philippe Cousteau Jr. in the Gulf of Mexico and got a firsthand look at the toxic soup of oil and chemical dispersant that formed large underwater plumes as deep as 25 feet. Read article.
Obama to DoD: Prepare for N. Korea Aggression
President Barack Obama has directed the U.S. military to coordinate with South Korea to "ensure readiness" and deter future aggression from North Korea, the White House said on Monday.
The United States gave strong backing to plans by South Korean President Lee Myung-bak to punish North Korea for sinking one of its naval ships, White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said in a statement.
The White House urged North Korea to apologize and change its behavior, he said.
"We endorse President Lee's demand that North Korea immediately apologize and punish those responsible for the attack, and, most importantly, stop its belligerent and threatening behavior," Gibbs said.
"U.S. support for South Korea's defense is unequivocal, and the president has directed his military commanders to coordinate closely with their Republic of Korea counterparts to ensure readiness and to deter future aggression," he said.
Obama and Lee have agreed to meet at the G20 summit in Canada next month, he said. Read article.
What Lebanon Prime Minister Saad Hariri seeks from White House visit
Nicholas Blanford, CS Monitor.com
In his first official White House visit, Lebanon Prime Minister Saad Hariri is looking for President Obama to help ease tensions with Israel. His coalition government includes a member of Hezbollah, whose fighters say they are readying for a fresh war.
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said on Friday that the two leaders would discuss “a broad range of mutual goals in support of Lebanon’s sovereignty and independence, regional peace and security.
Supporting Lebanon was a cornerstone of the Bush administration’s Middle East policy, particularly following the 2005 assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, Saad’s father, when the tiny Mediterranean country broke briefly from neighboring Syria’s tight grip.
President Obama's administration has been focused on drawing Syria out of Iran's orbit and lessening its support for Hezbollah. But recent US and Israeli allegations that Syria has been transferring Scud rockets to Hezbollah's control have brought Lebanon back toward the center of Washington's radar screen. Read article.
Constitution is this year’s big best-seller
Molly K. Hooper, The Hill.com
Demand for copies of the U.S. Constitution is skyrocketing.
The increased interest comes amid the rise of the Tea Party movement and as both parties cite the Constitution to advance their agendas.
The pocket edition of the Constitution and Declaration of Independence ranked 10th on the Government Printing Office’s (GPO) best-seller list in March.
Since September 2009, the GPO has sold more than 8,700 copies of the pocket Constitution to the public, according to GPO spokesman Gary Somerset. That is a higher sell rate than in recent years.
Those sales are in addition to the thousands of copies given to members of Congress each year. Congress authorized a resolution in 2009 to print 441,000 copies for the use of the House (1,000 for each member) and 100,000 copies for the Senate (1,000 for each senator).
The Heritage Foundation and the Cato Institute, which keep statistics on the Constitution, also say that requests for the historical document are on the rise. Read article.
Maj. Gen. Jerry R. Curry, Ret., CurryforAmerica.com
Where are the Adams, the Abe Lincolns the Winston Churchills of today? Men who are consistently on the side of righteousness, who stand on the right side of issues, who can be counted on to make right choices and take right actions? These are the kinds of leaders America desperately needs.
The America we know and love exists because our Founders had a vision of and faith in a land of freedom and democracy, one they were able to turn into a great nation. These leaders communicated their vision to the people who, in turn, fully embraced and implemented it. Ronald Reagan embraced and communicated that same vision when he said, “I have always believed that this anointed land was set apart in an uncommon way, that a divine plan placed this great continent here between the oceans to be found by people from every corner of the earth who had a special love of faith and freedom.”
Many of the world’s elites will continue to find fault with the U.S. no matter what it does. But while they are holding us in contempt, illegal immigrants who have a “special love for faith, freedom and democracy” will ignore their criticisms and keep pouring across our southern border in record numbers. What do they know that the educated, privileged and powerful of this world refuse to see or acknowledge? Read article.