From the White House

Weekly Address: President Obama – Ensuring a Fair and Competitive Marketplace

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From the White HouseWeekly Address

In this week’s address, President Obama discussed the importance of fair competition in the marketplace. The principle of fair competition isn’t a Democratic or a Republican idea – it’s an American idea. Over the past eight years, the Obama Administration has taken many actions to keep the marketplace fair, including: defending a free, open, and accessible internet; cracking down on conflicts of interest by making sure professionals who give retirement advice do so in the consumer’s best interest; and – just this week – standing up for beef, pork, and poultry growers when they’re treated unfairly. The President believes our free-market economy only works when there’s competition and rules are in place to keep it fair, open, and honest. That’s what this is all about – ensuring that everyone has a chance to compete by leveling the playing field and keeping the rules clear and consistent.

Michelle Obama on ‘Hidden Figures’: “You are worthy … don’t ever let anyone tell you that you are less-than.”

From the Obama White House:

On Thursday, the White House hosted an event highlighting Hidden Figures in the history of space exploration. The event featured the stories of individuals who have made significant contributions to human space flight, space science, and innovation but who have not often had their stories told. The event included a Q&A with the cast and crew of the movie Hidden Figures and remarks from Administration officials.

(Michelle Obama appears at 27:30 into the program)

Michell Obama:

Now, these women [Katherine Johnson, and Mary Jackson, and Dorothy Vaughan] couldn’t even drink from the same water fountain or use the same bathroom as many of their colleagues — and you all are too young to even imagine that. You’ve read that in the history books, but that’s how close this history is. These women — their families are still breathing beings, and this happened in my lifetime and in many of your parents’ and grandparents’ lifetimes. And folks didn’t always take these women seriously because they were black, and also because they were women.

But they didn’t listen to those doubters. You understand? They did not listen to the haters — because they’re always out there. They’re out there even today.

What they listened to was other voices — teachers who said that they had something special to offer. See, because in all the noise that you hear, there’s always a voice of power and beauty and positivity. Each and every one of you, if you think about it, no matter what negativity you hear, there is always some ray of positive hope out there that you can choose to take in. These women did that.

They listened to their families and their friends who said, “you are worthy,” and they told them, “don’t ever let anyone tell you that you are less-than.” So you have to choose to let those voices into your life, and block out those that don’t reflect your reality.

Full transcript is below.

Weekly Address: President Obama – It’s Time to Get Covered on the Health Insurance Marketplace

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From the White HouseWeekly Address

In this week’s address, President Obama discussed Open Enrollment on the Health Insurance Marketplace, which began November 1. The deadline to sign up for coverage beginning on January 1 is this Thursday, December 15, and the final deadline to sign up for 2017 coverage is January 31. Today, thanks to the Affordable Care Act, every American with insurance is covered by the strongest set of consumer protections in history. For every person with insurance, preventive care is available with no cost sharing; there are no more annual or lifetime limits on essential health care; you can’t get charged more just for being a woman; young people can stay on a parent’s plan until they turn 26; seniors get discounts on their prescriptions; and no one can be denied coverage because of a pre-existing condition. Although Republicans in Congress want to repeal this law, the President emphasized that we should build on the progress we’ve already made. To sign up for health care coverage, visit HealthCare.gov or call 1-800-318-2596.

President Obama to Service Members: “It has been the privilege and honor of a lifetime to be your Commander-in-Chief”

President Barack Obama, in his final address to members of the military, thanked them for their service.

White House transcript:

THE PRESIDENT: Hello, MacDill! Thank you so much!
Well, first of all, you notice this coincidence — on the scoreboard it says “44” — That happens to be — oh.

AUDIENCE MEMBER: We love you!

THE PRESIDENT: I love you, too. I do. (Applause.)

To General Votel, General Thomas, and most importantly, to all of you — I am here for a very simple reason, and that is just to say thank you, on behalf of the American people. We have been so reliant on the outstanding work that has been done by SOCOM and CENTCOM, the extraordinary leadership from the highest general down to the person who’s just started. I have been consistently in awe of your performance and the way that you’ve carried out your mission. […]

We’ve got amazing military families here who are sacrificing alongside of you every single day. Give them a big round of applause. […]

I know you’re marking an important anniversary. For 75 years — from World War II through Korea, the Cuban Missile Crisis, Vietnam, the Gulf War, the Afghan and Iraq wars — the men and women of this base have always stepped up when we needed them most. So, on behalf of the entire country, I want to wish you a happy 75th anniversary.

But it has been the privilege and honor of a lifetime to be your Commander-in-Chief — the Commander-in-Chief of the finest fighting force the world has ever known. You are the best. Because we have the best people.

You and your families have inspired us. We’ve been inspired by your patriotism, for stepping forward, for volunteering, for dedicating yourself to a life of service. We’ve been inspired by your devotion, your willingness to sacrifice for all of us. We’ve been inspired by your example. At a time when sometimes the country seems so divided, you remind us that, as Americans, we’re all part of one team. We take care of each other. And you remind us of what patriotism really means.

So I just want to say thank you to all of you. You are going to continue with your mission, but I will tell you that Michelle and I, having had the experience and the honor of working with you, are going to make it one of our missions as civilians to support you in every way that we can.

God bless you. God bless our troops. God bless the United States of America.

He also spoke about his administration’s approach to counterterrorism. Video and transcript below.

Weekly Address: President Obama – Pass the 21st Century Cures Act

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From the White HouseWeekly Address

In this week’s address, President Obama highlighted the 21st Century Cures Act, a bill in Congress that could help us find a cure for Alzheimer’s, end cancer as we know it, and help those who are seeking treatment for opioid addiction. This week, the House passed the bill overwhelmingly with bipartisan support – and the President called on the Senate to do the same when they vote in a few days. Because that’s what this is all about: coming to a compromise based on the belief that we should seize every chance we have to find cures as soon as possible.

Weekly Address: President Obama – Coming Together On Thanksgiving

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From the White HouseWeekly Address

In this week’s address, President Obama wished the American people a happy Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving reminds us that no matter our differences, we are still one people, part of something bigger than ourselves. Because what makes us American are the ideals to which we pledge our allegiance. And it’s about our ability to live up to the creed “E Pluribus Unum” — that out of many, we are one.

Weekly Address: Vice President Biden – Building on a Record of Economic Progress

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From the White HouseWeekly Address

In this week’s address, Vice President Joe Biden discussed the progress we have made to ensure that anyone who works hard and plays by the rules has a real shot at getting into the middle class and staying there. Over the past eight years, we have made significant progress; from working with Congress to cut taxes for low- and middle-income families, to taking executive authority to provide paid sick leave to more than 1.1 million workers. Since the President’s call to action to increase the minimum wage in 2013, 18 states and 55 cities have raised their minimum wage. The Vice President noted that although we’ve made progress, more work needs to be done to give American workers a chance. Because when they are given the chance, American workers never let their country down.

Weekly Address: President Obama – Honoring Our Veterans

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From the White HouseWeekly Address

In this week’s address, President Obama recognized the service and sacrifice of our Nation’s military members and veterans. These men and women serve as an example of what our Nation strives to be every day. From the example of the 9/11 Generation signing up to serve in response to tragedy, to the example of our military’s unity and diversity, our Nation’s veterans and service members represent the best of our country. To all of our Nation’s veterans: thank you for your service.

Weekly Address: President Obama – The Progress We’ve Made Because of the Affordable Care Act

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From the White HouseWeekly Address

This week, President Obama discussed Open Enrollment on the Health Insurance Marketplace, which began November 1 and will end on January 31. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, 20 million American adults have obtained health insurance, and an additional three million children have gained coverage since the President took office. The uninsured rate is the lowest level on record. Today, thanks to the Affordable Care Act, your preventive care is free; there are no more annual or lifetime limits on essential health care; you can’t get charged more just for being a woman; young people can stay on a parent’s plan until they turn 26; seniors get discounts on their prescriptions; and no one can be denied coverage because of a pre-existing condition. To sign up for health care coverage, visit HealthCare.gov or call 1-800-318-2596.

Weekly Address: Vice President Joe Biden – Achieving the Mission of the Cancer Moonshot

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From the White HouseWeekly Address

In this week’s address, Vice President Joe Biden discussed the progress of the White House Cancer Moonshot, an initiative with the goal to make a decade’s worth of advances in cancer prevention, diagnosis, and treatment, in five years. Recently, the Cancer Moonshot Task Force released a report that outlines what we need to do to achieve this goal, including: enhancing prevention efforts, expanding access to care, increasing collaboration and sharing data amongst cancer researchers, and building an international commitment to the fight against cancer. The report also highlighted the progress we’ve made since the launch of the Moonshot. Today, federal agencies are working together to share research – such as the National Institutes of Health using NASA’s research on radiation and its effects on the human body. In the past few months, more than 70 public and private sector commitments have been made to join the fight against cancer – such as IBM, which offered its supercomputer, Watson, to partner with the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs to help patients determine specific therapies they need for their cancer treatment. The Vice President said the Moonshot is about all of us doing our part in the fight against cancer. To learn how you can volunteer to help, visit Cancer.Serve.Gov, and to learn about clinical trials nearby, visit Trials.Cancer.Gov.