President Obama Provides an Update on Our Strategy to Degrade and Destroy ISIL

President Barack Obama delivers a statement and answers a few questions from the press following his meeting with Defense Department and military leadership regarding the campaign against ISIL, at the Pentagon, Arlington, Va., July 6, 2015.... Read more »

Asked and Answered: Hannah’s Song

This is the latest post in our "Asked and Answered" series, in which we periodically feature an exchange between the President -- or a Senior Administration Official -- and an American who wrote him. If you'd like to write the President yourself, you can do so here.

Meet Hannah, a rising 9th grader at Indian River High School in the North Country region of New York, home to many families from the Army’s 10th Mountain Division of Fort Drum. As the daughter of Lt. Col. Todd E. Bajakian, former commander of Fort Drum’s Warriors in Transition Battalion, Hannah knows first-hand how important it is that we give our military families the support they need.

This past May at the White House’s annual Mother’s Day Tea, Hannah had the opportunity to meet the First Lady and give her the lyrics to her original song, “All On The Line.”

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The Letter the President Carried:

Today at 2:30 pm ET in Nashville, TN, President Obama is participating in a discussion on how we can build on the progress we've made under the Affordable Care Act. Watch live:

Natoma Canfield Letter

A letter from Natoma Canfield, a woman from Ohio that President Barack Obama met who didn’t have health insurance, hangs on the wall in the hall between the Oval Office and the President's Private Office in the West Wing. June 28, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)

More than five years ago, as Congress engaged in heated debates over the Affordable Care Act, President Obama carried a single piece of paper with him every single day: this letter from Natoma Canfield.

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In Charleston, President Obama Honors the Life of Pastor and State Senator Clementa Pinckney

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"We are here today to remember a man of God who lived by faith. A man who believed in things not seen. A man who believed there were better days ahead, off in the distance. A man of service who persevered, knowing full well he would not receive all those things he was promised, because he believed his efforts would deliver a better life for those who followed."

-- President Obama, on the late Rev. Clementa Pinckney

Today, President Obama traveled to Charleston, South Carolina to honor the life of pastor and state senator Clementa Pinckney -- one of the nine who lost their lives in last week's shooting at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston.

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President Obama Hosts A Ramadan Iftar Dinner at the White House

Yesterday evening, President Obama hosted an Iftar dinner celebrating the Muslim holy month of Ramadan at the White House. President Barack Obama hosts an Iftar dinner celebrating Ramadan in the East Room of the White House, June 22, 2015.... Read more »

Behind the Lens: Photographing an American Hero

Six years ago — on June 6, 2009 — I photographed Cory Remsburg for the first time.

It was amid a whirlwind day in France for President Obama — and for me. We’d had an event with U.S. embassy personnel in Paris; a flight on Air Force One from Paris to Caen; a state visit with then-President Sarkozy; a picturesque helicopter ride into Normandy; the 65th anniversary of D-Day; a helicopter, then a plane ride back to Paris; and finally a tour with the Obama family at the Cathedral de Notre Dame. The President and First Lady greeted hundreds of people that day, including a small group of Army Rangers in Normandy.

Eight months later, I accompanied the President as he made his regular quarterly trip to visit wounded warriors at National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda. The 10th patient he visited that day did not at all look familiar to me. The patient, an Army Ranger, had suffered a severe brain injury caused by a roadside explosion in Afghanistan.

His name was Cory Remsburg.

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5 Photos: The President Awards the Medal of Honor to Sergeant William Shemin and Private Henry Johnson

Today, in a ceremony at the White House, President Obama awarded the Medal of Honor posthumously to Army Sergeant William Shemin and Army Private Henry Johnson for conspicuous gallantry during World War I.

Sergeant Shemin entered the Army on October 2, 1917. He was assigned as a rifleman to Company G, 47th Infantry Regiment, which moved from Syracuse, New York to Camp Greene, North Carolina, joining the 4th Infantry Division. The Division arrived in France in May, 1918.

Private Johnson entered the Army on June 5, 1917. He was assigned to Company C, 15th New York (Colored) Infantry Regiment, an all-black National Guard unit that would later become the 369th Infantry Regiment. The Regiment was ordered into battle in 1918, and Private Johnson and his unit were brigaded with a French Army colonial unit in front-line combat.

Take a look at five photos from today's ceremony -- and then read more about Sgt. Shemin and Pvt. Johnson's heroic actions.

Command Sergeant Major Louis Wilson accepts the Medal of Honor from President Barack Obama awarded posthumously to Army Private Henry Johnson for conspicuous gallantry during World War I, at a ceremony in the East Room of the White House, June 2, 2015.

Command Sergeant Major Louis Wilson accepts the Medal of Honor from President Barack Obama awarded posthumously to Army Private Henry Johnson for conspicuous gallantry during World War I, at a ceremony in the East Room of the White House, June 2, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

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Weekly Address: Pass the USA Freedom Act

President Barack Obama tapes the Weekly Address in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, May 29, 2015.

President Barack Obama tapes the Weekly Address in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, May 29, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)

In this week's address, the President addressed critical pieces of national security business that remained unfinished when the Senate left town. This Sunday at midnight, key tools used to protect against terrorist threats are set to expire. The USA Freedom Act strikes a balance between security and privacy, reauthorizing important measures that give our national security professionals the authorities they use to keep us safe, while also implementing reforms that enhance the privacy and civil liberties of our citizens. But currently, a small group of senators is standing in its way.

The President asked Americans to speak with one voice to the Senate to put politics aside, put the safety of the American people first, and pass the USA Freedom Act now.

Transcript | mp4 | mp3

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President Obama Honors the Air Force Academy Fighting Falcons with the Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy

This afternoon, President Obama hosted the Air Force Fighting Falcons football team at the White House in honor of their winning the annual Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy. In the East Room, President Obama congratulated the Air Force Chief of Staff... Read more »