Obama: We're investigating classified-info leaks
June 8th, 2012
09:40 AM ET

Obama: We're investigating classified-info leaks

[Updated at 11:17 a.m. ET]  The United States will conduct "thorough investigations" into leaks of classfied information, President Barack Obama said Friday in his first public comments on the controversy since several members of Congress called for an independent counsel to investigate.

"The notion that my White House would purposely release classified national security information is offensive," Obama said. "It's wrong, and people ... need to have a better sense of how I approach this office and how people (around me) approach this office."

The controversy involves, among other things, last week's report in The New York Times that provided classified details of what it described as a U.S cyberattack targeting Iran's nuclear centrifuge program.

Some Republicans, led by Sen. John McCain of Arizona, alleged that the White House must be knowingly involved because of the nature of the leaked information. The White House rejects the accusations. The FBI and the U.S. attorney in Washington are investigating, federal lawmakers have told reporters.

Obama's comments in the White House press briefing room came after he made a statement on the economy, in which he called on Congress to pass all parts of his 2011 jobs plan to counter European economic troubles, which he says threatens a U.S. economic recovery (see below).

[Updated at 10:56 a.m. ET]  President Barack Obama said Congress should adopt all parts of his jobs plan - which he introduced last year - to help counter economic "headwinds" from Europe that he says is holding back a U.S. economic recovery.

He said he appreciated the fact that Congress passed on part of his plan - a payroll tax cut extension. But he called for the passage of the other parts, including bills that would help people refinance their mortgages and give businesses tax breaks for hiring more workers.

Obama’s remarks come a week after a jobs report showed U.S. unemployment in May rose from 8.1% to 8.2%, and that only 69,000 jobs were added last month - the weakest growth in a year.

[Updated at 10:52 a.m. ET] The threat of further economic turmoil in Europe threatens the U.S. economy, President Barack Obama said Friday in urging European leaders to enact plans to stabilize their economies.

Obama said the good news is that European leaders know that "there is a path out of this challenge," including taking actions that would promote economic growth and job creation. He also urged Greece, which is facing a debt crisis, to remain in the euro zone.

Investors around the world have been concerned about Europe's financial difficulties, including fears that Spain, which is in recession, will need to be bailed out by other European nations, and uncertainties about whether Greece will be forced to drop the euro, according to CNNMoney. On Thursday, credit rating agency Fitch downgraded Spain's sovereign debt rating.

The decisions that are required to turn around Europe's finances "are tough, but Europe has the capacity to make them, and they have America’s support," Obama said.

If Europe as a whole goes into recession, that means fewer goods and services that the United States can sell to Europe, Obama said.

"And that is going to have some impact on our recovery," Obama said.

[Updated at 10:37 a.m. ET] U.S. President Barack Obama will deliver a statement about the economy Friday morning, the White House has said.

The president will talk about "the situation in Europe, which continues to pose headwinds to our recovery here at home," the White House said in a statement. The White House said he would begin speaking at about 10:15 a.m., but reporters still were waiting for him in the White House press briefing room at 10:35 a.m.

Obama will urge Congress to pass proposals "to put construction workers back to work upgrading our roads and bridges, teachers back in the classroom educating our kids and police and firefighters back on the job keeping our communities safe," according to the White House.

Obama’s remarks come a week after a jobs report showed U.S. unemployment in May rose from 8.1% to 8.2%, and that only 69,000 jobs were added last month - the weakest growth in a year.

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Economy • Politics
soundoff (338 Responses)
  1. g.r.r.

    Little chance that the WH released or wanted released information on Stuxnet. They are in the process of negotiations with Iran for a PEACEFUL solution. This release greatly hurts that attempt. Instead, I believe that we will find that some neo-con soldier is behind that. And it does not help O at the polls.
    I will say that the info about OBL/drones could come from the WH, but not likely. In fact, I suspect that the same ppl that did the Stuxnet release, did the OBL/drone.

    At this time, I think that it is likely that we have another set of neo-con traitors who did this similar to W's admin outing plame and then another taking the blame. Or reagan disobeying CONgress. Or Nixon covering for the republican break-in. I have little doubt that neo-cons will continue to be crooks as long as they KNOW that they can get by with it.

    June 8, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
    • FLIndpendent

      I had the same thought about this being orchestrated from the Repubs especially since McCain is making a huge deal of it. Just wait and see – there will be some huge grand scheme within the next couple of months to try to take this President down. I don't put anything past these guys especially with Rove, Koch Brothers & Grover Norquist pulling the strings.

      June 8, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Lookout4

    Obama can't even say that with a straight face. (It hard to investigate your self objectively isn't it.)

    June 8, 2012 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
  3. kramer

    You Republicons cannot remember Anything..!! "Convenient Memory" or just blatant Distorting and Revising History.!!??

    The entire 2007 Budget and Policies were PRE-SET by the ALL-REPUBLICON 2000-2006 Both Branches of CONGRESS!!!

    Then, Republicons and Bush went into PREVENT Mode and Bush VETOED ANY Hope or CHANGE which could reverse their STACKING of the DECK for CORPORATIONS and ONLY the Wealthiest..!!!

    You MAY Have your own OPINIONS, But NOT YOUR OWN FACTS..!!!!

    June 8, 2012 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
  4. Larry L

    @Jim McDonald

    This regime will be remembered as the most corrupt in history.
    Turn off Fox News and think. Remember Cheney's 61 personal phone calls to Enron's Ken Lay within two months of the fall. How about Cheney's "special" treatment of Haliburton – a company in which he is heavily invested (google-up "Haliburton loophole). Bush gave Haliburton a bonus AFTER the Army Audit Agency reported they had cheated the government on contracts. How about the false use of intelligence data to start the Iraq War? Those 4500 Soldiers are are still dead. Turn off Fox News and think.

    June 8, 2012 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
  5. grvol

    Guess he can't blame Bush anymore so now he's blaming Europe. Wah Wah its someone else's fault. Gotta get rid of this incomp and his corrupt cronie commies this fall!

    June 8, 2012 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
  6. NoBama

    President Blameshifter

    How pathetic is that!!!?

    June 8, 2012 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  7. alf


    Guess you didn't do well in civics class or has that been cancelled ?? The Congress controls the budget and federal monies, NOT the President....Remember the Frank/Dodd bill?? Hard to understand I know, but they are both Democrats !! SURPRISE !!!

    June 8, 2012 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  8. JC

    I do find it interesting that we and the International community, are still being lectured by an Administration that has YET to propose a simple budget... that even their OWN PARTY members cannot pass.

    June 8, 2012 at 11:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Chuck in Jasper, Ga.

      Typical sock puppet comment completely devoid of any facts. Congratulations. You are qualified to call yourself a Republican. As is required by LAW, Obama has submitted a budget proposal to Congress each and every year he has been President. Congress has failed to pass them. As to a lack of support by Democrats that uneducated tools keep making, the fail to acknowledge that Democrats were not happy with Obama making concessions to Republican demands while Republicans refused to make any concessions. If you knew what you were talking about, which you obviously do not, you would know that Boehner and Obama had come to an agreement that would have cut the deficit by 4 trillion, Republican leadership couldn't get their own party to support Boehner's bill because it included removing the cut cuts enacted by Bush for people making more than 250k. The Democrats but Medicare and Social Security on the table but Republicans put nothing on the table. That is why we ended up with the so-called Super Committiee and why Democrats rejected it. Nice try Lanbchop. Sooner or later you will wake up and smell the crap you are shoveling.

      June 8, 2012 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Dizzykat

    If Bush was asking since 2001 for congress to reign in Fannie and Freddie...and republicans had solid majorities in both houses...then how exactly did Barney Frank "block it"? From the Bush tax cuts, to DOMA, the Republicans got anything they wanted passed. But now you want to pretend that a single congressman was able to block something?

    The fact is that your entire post is one fabrication after another. Do you really not recall Bush's "zero down, bad credit is ok" home loan programs? That's right...it was the Bush administration that forced Fannie and Freddy to lower their standards!!!

    And a few inconvenient facts regarding your blaming dems for the economic downturn. It was home construction that was largely driving the economy...but when did that peak? It was 2006...BEFORE the democrats took over congress.

    Also...name a single democratic bill passed between the dems taking congress in 2007 and the economic free fall of mid-2008 that had any significant impact on the economy? The fact is there was none. Even if the democrats wanted to do something, not only did they not have a fillibuster proof majority in the senate...but they also didn't have the numbers to override a Bush veto.

    But nice try...thanks for lying....I mean playing.

    June 8, 2012 at 11:58 am | Report abuse |
    • mlr

      The bill that passed that started us down the road was in Clinton's term – and was to force banks to loosen terms in lending so that more people could buy houses – who really could not afford them – because the basic liberal believe is that everyone should have the "RIGHT" to own a home. The impact of legislation like this takes about a decade to be relaized (study economics and you will see this over and over). On Dodd and Frank – it was the committees they were in charge of, that kept refusing to bring bills out of committee... and more importantly – the money being syphoned and the lies being told to congress and citizens that "all was well".

      That said – both parties had screw ups in the mess.. it was not a single party screw up. The problem with Obama is that he is not even trying to lead or solve anything. He is too busy blaming anyone but his failed policies and constant debt spending – and playing with movie stars. He does this because he has no business skills – and a deep socialist leaning background that does not allow him to consider private sector solutions.

      June 8, 2012 at 12:08 pm | Report abuse |
  10. old gaffer

    I'm sure he's pursuing the leaks with all the openness and efficacy he's brought to the "Fast and Furious" investigation. After all, it's not like anyone's died; oops, my bad, they have.

    Obama and most of his entire cabinet should be rounded up and hung for treason.

    June 8, 2012 at 12:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • ArizonaYankee

      I agree completely. The man and most of his Socialist Democrats are now a total disaster. Treason alone is not enough....

      June 8, 2012 at 12:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chuck in Jasper, Ga.

      Wrong Administration. That was Bush, Cheney and the Rumsfeld crew. You remember them don't you. You remember the "proof" of WMD's too I bet. There is your treason.

      June 8, 2012 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
  11. mommers

    Obama is investigating? Hahahahahahah

    June 8, 2012 at 12:00 pm | Report abuse |
  12. real talk

    Did the trillion dollar and counting completely unfunded wars get declared in 2007? Bsh wasn't the idiot in his presidency Cheney was! It is amazing how you tried to paint a picture that it was the Dems starting in 2007 that ran up spending it's the Dems fault. Bush's presidency ended in 2008 right? So are you saying that Dems ran up 4.6 trillion in deficit in a little more than a year? WRONG. Bush had a rebulican house and a republican senate that gave him everthing he asked for!!! Why were they voted out of the house and senate in the first place????? If they were doing such a fantastic job shouldn't and wouldn't they have been re elected? We need to clean house and senate again til we get those in there that will represent the people!

    June 8, 2012 at 12:01 pm | Report abuse |
  13. HillWilly

    In case no one has noticed... Things are kinda bad out here in the real world. It did not start with President Obama, and its not really his fault. It is also not any one past Presidents fault. It is the fault of our people...

    It is our fault every time we:
    Ignore the REAL world reality of an issue...
    Vote based on out "team" or "Party" rather then on heart...
    Vote for the same proven greedy people because they have (R) or (D) next to their name on a ballot...
    Fail to stand up and speak when something seems not right...

    It is funny and sick that we listen to and believe everything we are told. When a politician says she will do something and then does not do it... we forget and re-elect them because they are are party and the only other choice is ewww the other party.

    Cut the garbage and vote out both parties unless you know the record of the person running. Otherwise do not vote on that position or issue! This is not the big football championship... we do not need advertising on election day... we need people who will make the tough choices and look us in the face and tell us exactly why they made that choice... and not care if it was the end of their political carrier come election time but know in their heart that the choice was right.

    June 8, 2012 at 12:01 pm | Report abuse |
  14. joshua

    Democrats as rep. and independents are following the same agenda and we are just being lied to all the time. ob. promised change that we thought were good now we kn he just complete bush job and started a worse course of action. i suggest we dont vote for none.

    June 8, 2012 at 12:02 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Seriously?

    Funny how an articel about leaked classified information turns into an economic report....

    June 8, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
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