The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Washington (AFP) – U.S. President Barack Obama left Washington Tuesday for a round of West Coast fundraising, with opponents questioning the trip’s timing amid a proliferation of global crises.

The trip to Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles, in which Obama will help raise money for Democrats campaigning in November’s mid-term elections, has elicited sharp criticism from Republicans.

The White House assured reporters however that the president would not miss a beat in fulfilling his duties.

“In terms of fundraising, it’s a responsibility that presidents in both parties for generations have been responsible for,” said White House spokesman Josh Earnest, following a barrage of questions over the trip’s timing.

Obama travels amid a third week of violence in the Gaza-Israel crisis, and just days after Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was blown out of the sky over eastern Ukraine by what is believed to have been a surface-to-air missile. It also comes amid a raging jihadist-led Sunni insurgency in Iraq.

“The fact of the matter is the president, like most professionals, has the capability to deal with more than one priority at a time,” Earnest said.

“He’s got his own airplane. He’s got dedicated phone lines. He has senior advisers who will be accompanying him every step of the way to make sure that he has access to the information and technology necessary to represent American interests in the midst of these challenging international times,” Earnest added.

Obama is scheduled to return to the White House late Thursday.

AFP Photo/Jewel Samad

Advertising

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

President Joe Biden

The price of gasoline is not Joe Biden's fault, nor did it break records. Adjusted for inflation, it was higher in 2008 when Republican George W. Bush was president. And that wasn't Bush's fault, either.

We don't have to like today's inflation, but that problem, too, is not Biden's doing. Republicans are nonetheless hot to pin the rap on him. Rising prices, mostly tied to oil, have numerous causes. There would be greater supply of oil and gas, they say, if Biden were more open to approving pipelines and more drilling on public land.

Keep reading... Show less
Youtube Screenshot

Heat deaths in the U.S. peak in July and August, and as that period kicks off, a new report from Public Citizen highlights heat as a major workplace safety issue. With basically every year breaking heat records thanks to climate change, this is only going to get worse without significant action to protect workers from injury and death.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration admits that government data on heat-related injury, illness, and death on the job are “likely vast underestimates.” Those vast underestimates are “about 3,400 workplace heat-related injuries and illnesses requiring days away from work per year from 2011 to 2020” and an average of 40 fatalities a year. Looking deeper, Public Citizen found, “An analysis of more than 11 million workers’ compensation injury reports in California from 2001 through 2018 found that working on days with hotter temperatures likely caused about 20,000 injuries and illnesses per year in that state, alone—an extraordinary 300 times the annual number injuries and illnesses that California OSHA (Cal/OSHA) attributes to heat.”

Keep reading... Show less
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}