President Obama

AP Photo

Baseball is back to normal this weekend after a very abnormal game this week in Baltimore. The sports world was captivated by the Orioles and White Sox playing a game in an empty Camden Yards, due to the riots in Baltimore.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says Major League Baseball missed the chance to make a bigger statement.

Carolyn Kaster / AP Photo, Pool

President Barack Obama surveyed the damage from the March 22 disaster by helicopter as he traveled Tuesday to meet with those affected by the mudslide. 

Obama met privately with victims and family members before addressing a group of emergency responders at the Oso firehouse. The firehouse was decorated with posters thanking emergency responders and proclaiming “Oso strong.” Obama vowed the country will stand “strong right alongside you.”

"There are still families who are searching for loved ones.  There are families who have lost everything, and it’s going to be a difficult road ahead for them.  And that’s why I wanted to come here — just to let you know that the country is thinking about all of you and have been throughout this tragedy," said the president. "We're very, very proud of you. Michelle and I grieve with you."

President Obama's second inaugural address was widely perceived as a throwing down of the gauntlet in how it framed his progressive faith in government and challenged his Republican political opponents in any number of ways.

Given that, expect to see more glove-throwing Tuesday as the president delivers the first State of the Union speech of his second term.

Calling on Americans to "answer the call of history, and carry into an uncertain future that precious light of freedom," President Obama used his second inaugural address to push for action on the nation's problems and to say that partisan politics should not get in the way of pragmatism.

Inauguration Mashup: The speech in 11 easy steps

Jan 18, 2013
NPR

May the eagles of democracy soar above the covenant that binds our great nation in an era of new beginning ... or something.

Have you ever watched an inaugural address and wondered: How DO those guys (because they're always guys) do it? Well, we've prepared this handy guide so you, too, can give a speech like the chief executive.

Writing that "after four of the most challenging years in the nation's history, his chance to leave office as a great president who was able to face crises and build a new majority coalition remains within reach," Time magazine has named President Obama its "person of the year."

The others on Time's "short list" were:

For a man who was elected president partly on his ability to give a great speech, Barack Obama has been at times a surprisingly poor communicator in office and on the campaign trail.

That may have been most evident earlier this month during the first presidential debate. But Obama generally hasn't been as impressive at getting his message across in his four years in the White House as he was during the campaign that put him there.

President Barack Obama has ordered federal aid to help state and local efforts recover from a severe storm in July that pounded parts of northeast Washington state.

According to court papers, a Washington state man accused of threatening to kill President Barack Obama raised a pump-action shotgun at officers who came to his door, but one managed to grab the barrel before any shots were fired.

A Secret Service agent and Federal Way police officer went to 31-year-old Anton Caluori's apartment on Tuesday afternoon, after the FBI received a profanity-laced email threatening to kill the President.

It seemed normal enough when President Obama chatted with a coffee shop patron about beer in Iowa Tuesday. The president has shown he's a fan of beer — and it's the most politically expedient, "everyman" beverage a candidate can drink. But then the president told a man at Knoxville, Iowa's Coffee Connection cafe that he travels with his own home-brew — and gave him a bottle to prove it.

Photo by Bellamy Pailthorp / KPLU News

President Barack Obama was in Seattle yesterday on a fundraising swing. It was his first trip since the big announcement Wednesday that he now supports the right of same-sex couples to marry, a stance that was celebrated by supporters both inside and outside his speech at the Paramount theater downtown.

At 8th and Pine, a colorful band of demonstrators gathered for a rally near the barricades to say thank you to the President, even though they couldn’t afford the thousand-dollar ticket to see him speak.

In an interview with ABC News, President Obama declared his support for gay marriage. This marks a departure from the president's previous stance, which has repeatedly been described as "evolving."

Here's the money quote from ABC's OTUS blog:

Paula Wissel

Speaking in Everett in the massive building where Boeing 787's are assembled,  President Barack Obama praised the aerospace company for succeeding at keeping jobs in the United States.

As the president delivered the final State of the Union address of his term before a looming re-election battle, he looked out at a sea of angry and skeptical Republicans who had fought him on budgets, government shutdowns, and whether or not to raise the nation's debt ceiling.

And what did President Bill Clinton do in 1996?

He delivered his "the era of big government is over" speech, which The Washington Post summed up this way: "Clinton Embraced GOP Themes in Setting Agenda."

PORTLAND – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack was in Portland Tuesday to promote President Obama's American Jobs Act.

The bill aims to spur job growth by cutting payroll taxes for employers and investing in school and transportation infrastructure.

"All of these steps have been proposed in the past by Republicans and Democrats, so there is no reason why we can't get bipartisan support for these programs," Vilsack said.

Dennis Hamilton / Flickr

President Barack Obama is coming to Seattle, but unless you’ve already forked over $38,000 or so, you’ll miss him.

However, you might be able to catch a free glimpse of Air Force One on Sunday morning as it makes its way to Boeing Field. Obama is expected to spend mere hours in and around Seattle, and while you may not see the President himself, you might feel the impact.  

The White House

President Barack Obama hung the Medal of Honor around the neck of Sergeant First Class Leroy Petry, from the Joint Base Lewis McChord, in a ceremony at the White House today.  Petry is assigned to an Army Rangers regiment at Fort Benning, Georgia.

photo courtesy of the Seattle Storm

President Barack Obama welcomed the Seattle Storm to the White House Rose Garden today. Obama said the 2010 WNBA champions set a good example for young girls with big dreams. The President is a basketball fan and his daughters, Malia and Sasha, also like to shoot hoops.

Bridgeport High School is one of just three schools left in a contest to have President Barack Obama speak at graduation. 

Shortly after the announcement came from the White House this morning, principal Tamra Jackson jumped on the intercom to let her students know:

Dec. 24, 1998 file photo / Associated Press

A small team of Americans killed Osama bin Laden, the mastermind behind the Sept. 11 attacks, in a firefight Sunday at a compound in Pakistan, President Obama said in a dramatic late-night statement at the White House.

A jubilant crowd gathered outside the White House as word spread. of bin Laden's death after a global manhunt that lasted nearly a decade.

"Justice has been done," Obama said.

WhiteHouse.gov / Bridgeport High School

Do you remember who delivered your high school graduation speech? If the students of Bridgeport High School get their wish, they almost certainly will.

AP Photo

One of America's most prominent living poets is coming to Seattle. Dr. Maya Angelou is the author of a groundbreaking memoire published in 1970, I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings. It describes how she overcame racism and trauma growing up in the South. 

Dr. Angelou is now 83, and recently received the highest civilian honor in the land, the Medal of Freedom, from President Barack Obama. 

KPLU's Bellamy Pailthorp spoke with her and asked, first of all, how she came to write her first work of prose. (Click on the audio "play" arrow at the top of this post to hear KPLU's interview).

Dr. Angelou will speak at Seattle's Paramount Theatre on Monday, March 14th, in an appearance at 7:30 p.m.

People with a direct stake in the Hanford Nuclear Reservation will be closely following President Obama's budget roll out. Money for cleaning up hazardous waste there is expected to be down.

How's this for a guest list? President Obama, Vice-President Joe Biden, former President Bill Clinton and First Lady Michelle Obama.