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. thetruth

    The country is already coming to realize that Obama would throw his mother under the bus for a few votes (ask the Wisc. union people who got his twitter insteand of support, because he didn't want to get their recall loss on him), now this 'Manchurcian Candidate' is willing to throw the entire national security under the bus for a few 'I'm tough on terrorist' votes.....this guy was just inept now he's becoming down right scary....shame shame

    June 8, 2012 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chuck in Jasper, Ga.

      Prettyy comical. You call yourself "thetruth" but didn't post a single factual word. Definitely a Republican.

      June 8, 2012 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Anna

    I watched the Presiden truly hoping to see outrage about the leaks and that he would stop at nothing to find out who was doing it – unfortunately I didn't see outrage I saw a man unhappy that anyone would suggest there could be a problem with leaks – this man cares nothing about making or keeping America great, his agenda is far different – nomoreobama

    June 8, 2012 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |
  3. a disgrace

    obama had four years to work on a failing America's problems and instead he spent his disgrace of a presidency on vacation and partying with celebrities.the American people have only one thing left to tell obama...FOOL ME ONCE!!

    June 8, 2012 at 12:06 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Ricardo

    "If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary. In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself."

    President James Madison (1751 – 1836), The Federalist Papers, 1788

    June 8, 2012 at 12:06 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Bill in LR Ark

    Yea right .... offensive that he got caught. I was much better at lying than him. He'll get better if the public is stupid enough to give him another 4 years of practice.

    June 8, 2012 at 12:06 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Jeff

    The Finger-Pointer in Chief will get to the bottom of it!

    June 8, 2012 at 12:07 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Useurnoodle

    From Canada: Republicans are so F**#ing STUPID!!!

    June 8, 2012 at 12:08 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Floyd from Ilinois

    I would be very happy if the senile McCain would stop throwing around these baseless, insulting accusations, for which he offers no proof – and never takes responsibility. But then, expecting ANY Republican to stop lying is probably wishful thinking.

    He lost. he needs to get over it.

    June 8, 2012 at 12:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • matthew

      What accusation???? Only fools are so blinded in their great enamor of Obama that they refuse to see the truth. All the leaks endangering the lives of people trying to help to U.S. is coming from none other than the White House. Wake up people!

      June 8, 2012 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bob O.

      Did you conveniently forget to mention the ranking democrats on Intelligence Feinstein and Ruppersburger also calling for criminal investigations? Also, did you forget to mention Frm. Sec. of Defense confirming that he told Obama's National Security team to "shut the f- up" on the Bin Laden raid and Afghanistan leaks?

      June 8, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jj

      did you guys hear nutball Biden speaking the other day? He claims that we will be able to grow crops in the future with out soil or water. Since every living thing on earth is primarily made of water how is thIs possible??? People actually believe this. Duh! He sounded exactly like a used car salesman

      June 8, 2012 at 2:16 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Ricardo

    "While the people retain their virtue, and vigilance, no administration, by any extreme of wickedness or folly, can very seriously injure the government, in the short space of four years."

    President Abraham Lincoln (1809 – 1865), First Inaugural Adress, March 4, 1861

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

      Great post

      June 8, 2012 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Hopeand?

    When you measure how well someone does their job you a take the time period with which they worked or served and see how they did. GWB avg unemployment for 8 years about 5.5% --- After almost 4 years Obama has his record and its plain for all to see-–the problem he has is even democrats are seeing how stupid this guy is. The recent leaks are VERY BAD and this guy i sooo bad he can't even lie and cover up well--When classified info comes out and THE ONLY PLACE IT COULD HAVE COME FROM IS THE WHITEHOUSE--you are a bit screwed.

    June 8, 2012 at 12:13 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Bobby Dias

    Obama is trying to make McCain one of his fake enemies by this so-called leak in which Obama himself ordered the information to be given out.

    June 8, 2012 at 12:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • FLIndpendent

      @ Bobby – proof please. Quite throwing out Faux News accusations when you don't know the truth.

      June 8, 2012 at 1:44 pm | Report abuse |
  12. mlr

    These leaks are DISGRACEFUL – and get people killed. I am sure there have already been people killed because of them that we will never hear about. This stops right at the President's desk – and we all know it. The only benefit of this info coming out was to try to make him look good. It did not work. I wonder who his team is going to throw under the bus as the sacrificial lamb this time.

    June 8, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • FLIndpendent

      Did you feel the same way about the Valerie Plame leak? Just want to be sure you're not being biased.

      June 8, 2012 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Neo

    The Media needs to give Obama another free pass. Nothing going on here behind the Curtain!

    June 8, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  14. luque

    CNN beter stop saying "OBAMA" make sure you say President Obama or George Clooney wil lcome after you

    June 8, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
  15. maine liberal

    "people ... need to have a better sense of how I approach this office and how people (around me) approach this office."
    The TP and repugnants havent learned in 4 years

    June 8, 2012 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
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