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.

FULL STORY
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Filed under: Barack Obama • Economy • Politics
soundoff (338 Responses)
  1. pprty

    GOP – get to work & do something or lose your job!

    June 8, 2012 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
    • Stacy

      THe liberal Senate and Obama needs to get to work, they are the one sitting on the bills and not passing them.

      June 8, 2012 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
  2. pprty

    The only thing wrong with Obama is that he isn't raising H- with the GOP – yet!

    June 8, 2012 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      He needs to start prosecuting for treason. The Republicans are inciting discontention and are undermining their commander in chief by calling him a "domestic threat".

      June 8, 2012 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
    • jimcolyer

      Mitt Romney 2012 & 2016

      June 8, 2012 at 11:21 am | Report abuse |
  3. Brian in DC

    It's painful to see or hear this guy anymore. "Adopt my jobs plan so I can shovel more money to the unions". Go back to your comfort zone in Hollywood Obama.

    June 8, 2012 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
    • Big_D

      Thanks for providing an example of a Republican with no memory of how Bush crashed the economy. It must be interesting living without a conscience.

      June 8, 2012 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
    • Paul

      That's good. Make up a quote and blast him for it.

      June 8, 2012 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
    • Dolly

      Unionization of private companies in the US is down to a low of 7%. Putting that aside, your argument is that we should never fill a pot hole, educate a child nor fix a bridge because it might be a union member who is performing the job? I like to have my infrastructure maintained and my children educated. Your hate towards unions is blinding you to the fact that behind every problem is a job that needs to be done. Your world is a world most of us do not want to live in and fortunately we can afford to not live in. If you do not like unions, then do not join one. There is a 93 percent chance that any job you would get is not unionized so I think you can easily avoid unions.

      June 8, 2012 at 11:27 am | Report abuse |
  4. Big_D

    I love how the Republicans are warming up their spot in hell. Anyone that blames Obama for picking up the disaster left by Bush should be ashamed. I guess to be a Republican you need to lack scruples anyway. That is how you back a party that lied us into the two wars that eliminated the SURPLUS left by Clinton and into the first 12 trillion of our debt.

    June 8, 2012 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
    • OhYeah

      I agree that the country was misled into Iraq but to blame everything else on one party is absurd. Let me guess you also blame the collapse of the housing market and wall street on Repbulicans as well huh...considering that it was under President Clinton that banking regulations were eased so that his intention of everyone could own a home was made with. Both parties are to blame for the fall out that we have seen. To blame one party is what continues to drive this country down!

      June 8, 2012 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
  5. Naota

    • We need to do something about jobs

    • There are problems that need fixing

    • It's not my fault

    Great speech there Barry – you're gone come next election

    June 8, 2012 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
    • marginwalker

      Yeah, like it's his fault that congress cant get anything past due to the republican's #1 legislative goal to make Obama a 1 term president!

      June 8, 2012 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
  6. jackndanville

    okay, now it's Europe's fault...and the tsunami...and Bush...and divisive TEA party freshmen Rep.s....is the mirror broken, Mr. President? or do you simply refuse to see yourself?

    June 8, 2012 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
  7. John

    It seems that every time the President takes to the podium he blames someone else (Europe, George Bush, Congress, speculators) or something else (warm weather, cold weather, tsunamis) for where we are. Harry Truman ("The Buck Stops Here.") must be spinning in his grave.

    June 8, 2012 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
  8. Naota

    Democrats are trying to pretend Obama hasn't been president for four years.

    That's embarrassing

    June 8, 2012 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
    • FLIndpendent

      Actually, in our present times, any president only has about 1 1/2 years to get anything accomplished unless there is one party for their full term. With elections every 2 years and campaigning basically non-stop, it would take Superman himself to make this country what it should be. I don't care who is our President, we are done for unless our whole political system changes and the people take back their democracy.

      June 8, 2012 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Steve

    The leaks are obviously from a Republican. They are currently engaged in a fascist coup to finish their unanswerable control over our government. They are taking over our country with lies, propaganda, fear and military dominance.

    June 8, 2012 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
    • Stacy

      Keep dinking that Kool-Aid

      June 8, 2012 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  10. Sam

    Hey CNN! A campaign speech blaming the political opposition for your failures is not "Breaking News". It's no wonder CNN network has no ratings. Obama is the threat to "ecomomic recovery" btw.

    June 8, 2012 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
  11. Stacy

    There are at least 30 bills passed by the congress that Harry Reid has sitting in the senate that he will not bring to the floor for a vote. The do nothing senate and the President is blocking legislative progress to get the economy going.

    June 8, 2012 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
    • Bob

      30 pieces of pure political garbage passed by the Teabaggers, never meant to go anywhere, and would not have created a single job, so who cares?

      Pue political grandstanding. A complete waste of time.

      June 8, 2012 at 11:49 am | Report abuse |
  12. Phil, Georgia

    GotDamn these republicans have NO American Pride. Where in the hell is there infrastructure Bill. That's the one thing that they have always agreed to and seem to agree to now and there is a great need for it,,so where is there robust plan??? This is not a two party problem,, Democrats will be on board with a robust plan.......But Republicans are not. They have shown time after time that they are willing to Tank America, loose our greatness, ....for their own power. We will destroy ourselves if this is allowed to continue to happen. Just like other great empires of the past, we are sabataging ourselves from within and makes it tons easier for another country to overthrow us.

    June 8, 2012 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
    • FLIndpendent

      Isn't it amazing how building/fixing infastructure to create jobs was supported by both parties before but since that's Obama's plan, the Repubs are now against it. If that isn't treason, I don't know what is. Truly shameful. Also, all of you hanging your hat on Romney to be our great savior, do you ever wonder why we are being made to wait until after the election for anything else to get done by Congress? What can Romney do that Obama can't and if he has the answers than why not be a patriot and help now. I'm sure Congress would take his suggestions. It's all a game people and we're the losers.

      June 8, 2012 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Spam Eater

    Wish i didn't have the TV on while the lying dirt bag Obama is speaking. Too much danger that I might throw a shoe and break my flat screen. Whatever credibility he may have ever had is long gone. Is there nothing this babbling narcissist will accept any iota of responsibility for?

    June 8, 2012 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
  14. Jeff

    wake up people...this guy is proposing plans that HELP AMERICA..NOT IRAQ....you people are clueless just like your repub counterparts......Obama will win the election hands down....

    June 8, 2012 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
  15. Big_D

    I know why Republicans are so against legalization of MJ. They have such bad memories they have already forgot how Bush crashed the economy. They couldn't handle losing their short term memory, it is all they have.

    June 8, 2012 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
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