Full Text February 10, 2012: President Obama Signs Rep. Gabby Giffords’ Final Bill — The Ultralight Aircraft Smuggling Prevention Act of 2012

 

POLITICAL SPEECHES & DOCUMENTS

OBAMA PRESIDENCY & THE 112TH CONGRESS:

President Obama Signs Rep. Gabby Giffords’ Final Bill

Source: WH, 2-10-12

Representative Gabrielle Giffords' Final Bill (February 10, 2012)
President Obama signs H.R. 3801, the Ultralight Aircraft Smuggling Prevention Act of 2012, in the Oval Office, Feb. 10, 2012. This bill was the last piece of legislation that former Representative Gabrielle Giffords sponsored and voted on in the U.S. House of Representatives. Vice President Joe Biden, former Representative Giffords and her husband, Mark Kelly attended the signing ceremony. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Today, President Obama signed the last piece of legislation that Congresswoman Gabby Giffords authored before her retirement.

The new law is designed to clamp down on ultralight planes that are used to smuggle drugs into the United States.

In a statement, President Obama said, “I’m confident that while this legislation may have been her last act as a Congresswoman, it will not be her last act of public service.”

This final bill from Rep. Giffords passed Congress unanimously.

POLITICAL QUOTES & SPEECHES

Statement by President Obama upon Signing the Ultralight Aircraft Smuggling Prevention Act of 2012

This bill gives our nation’s law enforcement expanded authority to combat illicit drug trafficking on our Northern and Southern Borders and being able to sign it next to my friend Gabby Giffords gives me enormous pride.  She has spent her career fighting for the safety of the people of Arizona and the fact that it passed unanimously shows just how much Gabby is respected by her colleagues in Congress in both parties.  Her dedication to fairness and to this country has been an inspiration to so many, including myself.  I wished Gabby well in her recovery and told her that I expect to see more of her in the months and years to come.  I’m confident that while this legislation may have been her last act as a Congresswoman, it will not be her last act of public service.

Advertisements

Full Text February 10, 2012: President Barack Obama’s Speech Announces New Policy Compromise on Contraception Health Plan Coverage Rule

POLITICAL SPEECHES & DOCUMENTS

OBAMA PRESIDENCY & THE 112TH CONGRESS:

President Obama Announces New Policy to Improve Access to Contraception

Source: WH, 2-10-12

President Obama Announces Contraception Policy
President Barack Obama, with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius behind him, announces a new health care policy that requires a woman’s insurance company to offer contraceptive care free of charge if the woman’s religious employer objects to providing contraceptive services as part of its health plan coverage. The announcement was made in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House, Jan. 12, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Today, President Obama announced a policy that will accommodate religious freedom while making sure that women have access to preventive health care, including contraception, at no additional cost, no matter where they work.

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, most health insurance companies will cover women’s preventive care — services like well-woman visits, mammograms, immunizations, as well as contraception — without charging a co-pay or deductible beginning in August 2012.

Churches had already been exempted from providing employees with health care that covered contraception. The new policy announced today ensures that if a woman works for other types of religious employers with objections to providing contraceptive services as part of their health plan, the religious employer will not be required to provide, pay for or refer for contraception coverage.

Instead her insurance company will be required to directly offer her contraceptive care at no additional charge, as President Obama explained:

Under the rule, women will still have access to free preventive care that includes contraceptive services — no matter where they work.  So that core principle remains.  But if a woman’s employer is a charity or a hospital that has a religious objection to providing contraceptive services as part of their health plan, the insurance company — not the hospital, not the charity — will be required to reach out and offer the woman contraceptive care free of charge, without co-pays and without hassles.

Covering contraception is cost neutral for insurance companies since it saves money by keeping women healthy and preventing spending on other health services. The President said that nearly 99 percent of all women have relied on contraception at some point in their lives, but more than half of women between the ages of 18 and 34 have struggled to afford it.

Neither cost nor employer should dictate a woman’s ability to make choices about her own health, the President said:

Whether you’re a teacher, or a small businesswoman, or a nurse, or a janitor, no woman’s health should depend on who she is or where she works or how much money she makes.  Every woman should be in control of the decisions that affect her own health. Period.

Read more about the policy announced today here.

POLITICAL QUOTES & SPEECHES

Remarks by the President on Preventive Care

James S. Brady Press Briefing Room

12:15 P.M. EST

Q    Here we go.

THE PRESIDENT:  Here we go.

Q    Here he is.

THE PRESIDENT:  Here I am.

Q    “Hello, everybody.”

THE PRESIDENT:  That was pretty good.

Q    I’ve been working on that.

THE PRESIDENT:  Hello, everybody.  (Laughter.)  I was actually going to say good morning.  But I guess it’s afternoon by now.

As part of the health care reform law that I signed last year, all insurance plans are required to cover preventive care at no cost.  That means free check-ups, free mammograms, immunizations and other basic services.  We fought for this because it saves lives and it saves money –- for families, for businesses, for government, for everybody.  That’s because it’s a lot cheaper to prevent an illness than to treat one.

We also accepted a recommendation from the experts at the Institute of Medicine that when it comes to women, preventive care should include coverage of contraceptive services such as birth control.  In addition to family planning, doctors often prescribe contraception as a way to reduce the risks of ovarian and other cancers, and treat a variety of different ailments.  And we know that the overall cost of health care is lower when women have access to contraceptive services.

Nearly 99 percent of all women have relied on contraception at some point in their lives –- 99 percent.  And yet, more than half of all women between the ages of 18 and 34 have struggled to afford it.  So for all these reasons, we decided to follow the judgment of the nation’s leading medical experts and make sure that free preventive care includes access to free contraceptive care.

Whether you’re a teacher, or a small businesswoman, or a nurse, or a janitor, no woman’s health should depend on who she is or where she works or how much money she makes.  Every woman should be in control of the decisions that affect her own health. Period.  This basic principle is already the law in 28 states across the country.

Now, as we move to implement this rule, however, we’ve been mindful that there’s another principle at stake here –- and that’s the principle of religious liberty, an inalienable right that is enshrined in our Constitution.  As a citizen and as a Christian, I cherish this right.

In fact, my first job in Chicago was working with Catholic parishes in poor neighborhoods, and my salary was funded by a grant from an arm of the Catholic Church.  And I saw that local churches often did more good for a community than a government program ever could, so I know how important the work that faith-based organizations do and how much impact they can have in their communities.

I also know that some religious institutions -– particularly those affiliated with the Catholic Church -– have a religious objection to directly providing insurance that covers contraceptive services for their employees.  And that’s why we originally exempted all churches from this requirement -– an exemption, by the way, that eight states didn’t already have.

And that’s why, from the very beginning of this process, I spoke directly to various Catholic officials, and I promised that before finalizing the rule as it applied to them, we would spend the next year working with institutions like Catholic hospitals and Catholic universities to find an equitable solution that protects religious liberty and ensures that every woman has access to the care that she needs.

Now, after the many genuine concerns that have been raised over the last few weeks, as well as, frankly, the more cynical desire on the part of some to make this into a political football, it became clear that spending months hammering out a solution was not going to be an option, that we needed to move this faster.  So last week, I directed the Department of Health and Human Services to speed up the process that had already been envisioned.  We weren’t going to spend a year doing this; we’re going to spend a week or two doing this.

Today, we’ve reached a decision on how to move forward.  Under the rule, women will still have access to free preventive care that includes contraceptive services -– no matter where they work.  So that core principle remains.  But if a woman’s employer is a charity or a hospital that has a religious objection to providing contraceptive services as part of their health plan, the insurance company -– not the hospital, not the charity -– will be required to reach out and offer the woman contraceptive care free of charge, without co-pays and without hassles.

The result will be that religious organizations won’t have to pay for these services, and no religious institution will have to provide these services directly.  Let me repeat:  These employers will not have to pay for, or provide, contraceptive services.  But women who work at these institutions will have access to free contraceptive services, just like other women, and they’ll no longer have to pay hundreds of dollars a year that could go towards paying the rent or buying groceries.

Now, I’ve been confident from the start that we could work out a sensible approach here, just as I promised.  I understand some folks in Washington may want to treat this as another political wedge issue, but it shouldn’t be.  I certainly never saw it that way.  This is an issue where people of goodwill on both sides of the debate have been sorting through some very complicated questions to find a solution that works for everyone. With today’s announcement, we’ve done that.  Religious liberty will be protected, and a law that requires free preventive care will not discriminate against women.

We live in a pluralistic society where we’re not going to agree on every single issue, or share every belief.  That doesn’t mean that we have to choose between individual liberty and basic fairness for all Americans.  We are unique among nations for having been founded upon both these principles, and our obligation as citizens is to carry them forward.  I have complete faith that we can do that.

Thank you very much, everybody.

White House Recap February 4-10, 2012: The Obama Presidency’s Weekly Recap — President Obama Hosts Second Annual White House Science Fair & Hails Housing Agreement with Banks over Mortgage Fraud & Abuses

WHITE HOUSE RECAP

WHITE HOUSE RECAP: February 4-10, 2012

Weekly Wrap Up: The Next Generation of Scientists, Engineers and Inventors

Source: WH, 2-10-12

All-hands-on-deck for Science and Innovation: Monday marked the second annual White House Science Fair, featuring research and inventions from more than 100 students representing 30 student teams. With marshmallows catapulting through the State Dining Room and robots roaming around the Blue Room, this celebration of research highlighted the talent of America’s next generation and their ability to change the world through science and engineering. If you missed President Obama’s historic launch of 14-year-old Joey Hudy’s marshmallow cannon, you can check it out here.

Housing Agreement: On Thursday morning, President Obama spoke about what he called a “landmark settlement”– an agreement with the nation’s five largest mortgage providers that will result in their issuing at least $25 billion to address mortgage loan servicing and foreclosure abuses. This settlement, in which “America’s biggest banks – banks that were rescued by taxpayer dollars – will be required to right these wrongs,” will aid thousands of working families now, and establish new protections for homeowners henceforward.

Kids Can’t Wait: From the East Room of the White House, the President announced that 10 states have agreed to implement impactful education reforms and will receive waivers from the burdensome mandates of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), also known as No Child Left Behind. These waivers will ensure that states have the flexibility necessary to raise student achievement standards, improve school accountability and increase teacher effectiveness.

Happy Second Birthday, Let’s Move!: There’s reason to celebrate – Thursday marked the Let’s Move! initiative’s second anniversary. Significant progress has been made to solve the problem of childhood obesity over the course of the past two years – President Obama signed the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act into law in December 2012; grocers including Walgreens, Supervalu and Walmart committed to build or expand 1,500 stores in food deserts; among many other accomplishments that are making a difference in the lives of our children.

History Buzz February 10, 2012: William C. Harris & Elizabeth D. Leonard: 2012 Gilder Lehrman Lincoln Prize Awarded Books That Explore Lincoln’s Relationship with Border States, Jag Joseph Holt

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

History Buzz

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

2012 Gilder Lehrman Lincoln Prize Awarded Books That Explore Lincoln’s Relationship with Border States, Jag Joseph Holt

Source: Gettysburg College Newswise, 2-10-12

The 2012 Gilder Lehrman Lincoln Prize, which includes an award of $50,000, will go to co-winners William C. Harris of North Carolina State University, for “Lincoln and the Border States: Preserving the Union,” (Kansas) and Elizabeth D. Leonard of Colby College, for “Lincoln’s Forgotten Ally: Judge Advocate General Joseph Holt of Kentucky” (UNC Press).

The Prize is awarded by Gettysburg College and the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History. The winners were chosen from 116 nominations. Each will receive $25,000 and a bronze replica of Augustus Saint-Gaudens’s life-size bust, “Lincoln the Man” in a ceremony April 11 in New York City.

The Prize was co-founded in 1990 by businessmen and philanthropists Richard Gilder and Lewis Lehrman, co-chairmen of the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History in New York and co-creators of the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the largest private archives of documents and artifacts in the nation. The Institute is devoted to history education, supporting history theme schools, teacher training, digital archives, curriculum development, exhibitions and publications, and the national History Teacher of the Year Award program.

In his book, Harris covers Lincoln’s often desperate efforts to keep the border states within the Union during the first months of the Civil War, with a focus on three states: Maryland, Kentucky, and Missouri. Harris’s study is thorough and well researched, and emphasizes Lincoln’s careful moderation in dealing with an issue that he himself believed was crucial to the survival of the country. Harris clearly develops the various aspects of loyalty in the three states under examination, and illuminates Lincoln’s emerging management style.

In her book, Leonard provides a thorough biography of a man who played a role in four presidential administrations, Judge Advocate General Joseph Holt of Kentucky. She portrays Holt as an interesting personality with strengths, weaknesses, quirks and integrity, and provides a new perspective on emancipation in Kentucky, as evidenced by Holt himself, a slave-owner, who later supported emancipation. The discussion of Holt’s role as judge advocate general in the Lincoln administration provides information about Lincoln’s wartime efforts regarding emancipation and civil liberties.

“This year’s winners — William Harris’s ‘Lincoln and the Border States’ and Elizabeth Leonard’s ‘Lincoln’s Forgotten Ally’ — both tell important stories in wonderfully readable prose, while deepening our understanding of Lincoln and the Civil War era,” said Gilder Lehrman Institute President James G. Basker. “These are both ‘must reads’ for anyone who cares about the complex political challenges Lincoln and his government faced during the worst crisis in our country’s history.”

“Gettysburg College is proud to have the opportunity to partner with the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History in the presentation of the Gilder Lehrman Lincoln Prize to these two excellent books that extend our understanding of Abraham Lincoln’s leadership and the role played by of one of his most loyal supporters,” said Gettysburg College President Janet Morgan Riggs.

The three-member 2012 Gilder Lehrman Lincoln Prize jury — United States Naval Academy Professor Emeritus and 2011-2012 Class of 1957 Distinguished Professor of American Naval Heritage Craig L. Symonds, who won the 2009 Lincoln Prize for “Lincoln and His Admirals: Abraham Lincoln, the U.S. Navy, and the Civil War”; American diplomat and historian Elizabeth Brown Pryor, who won the 2008 Lincoln Prize for “Reading the Man: A Portrait of Robert E. Lee through his Private Letters”; and Professor of History at South Carolina State University Stanley Harrold, who received a 2011 Lincoln Prize honorable mention for “Border War: Fighting over Slavery before the Civil War” — considered 116 titles before recommending the finalists to the Gilder Lehrman Lincoln Prize Board which makes the final decision.

In addition to Gilder, Lehrman, Basker and Riggs, the Board includes Gettysburg College Trustees Emeritus Edwin T. Johnson and James R. Thomas.

Past Lincoln Prize winners include Ken Burns in 1991 for his documentary, “The Civil War,” Allen Guelzo for his books, “Abraham Lincoln: Redeemer President” in 2000 and “Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation: The End of Slavery in America” in 2005 and Doris Kearns Goodwin in 2006 for her book, “Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln.”

About Harris

A prominent Lincoln and Civil War historian, Professor Emeritus of History at North Carolina State University William C. Harris is the author of ten books, including “With Charity for All: Lincoln and the Restoration of the Union,” Abraham Lincoln Institute Book Award winner “Lincoln’s Last Month,” and Henry Adams Prize winner “Lincoln’s Rise to the Presidency.” He is also the recipient of The Lincoln Diploma of Honor presented by Lincoln Memorial University.

About Leonard

A Civil War and American women’s history expert, Elizabeth D. Leonard is the John J. and Cornelia V. Gibson Professor of History at Colby College and the author of five books, including “All the Daring of the Soldier: Women of the Civil War Armies” and “Lincoln’s Avengers: Justice, Revenge, and Reunion after the Civil War,” both selections for the History Book Club. She is a member of the American Historical Association, Organization of American Historians and Southern Historical Association.

About the Honorable Mention Recipient

In addition to the two winners, Barbara A. Gannon, Assistant Professor of History at the University of Central Florida, was awarded an honorable mention for “The Won Cause: Black and White Comradeship in the Grand Army of the Republic” (UNC Press).

Gannon’s book examines how black Union veterans crafted their own narrative of the Civil War, and how they reinforced this narrative with one another at their post-war Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) meetings. Gannon examines not only the activities of black GAR chapters, but also notes the rather startling fact that there were a number of racially integrated chapters. She demonstrates how shared suffering and sentimentalism counteracted racism, to a degree, among veterans in what was a profoundly racist era.

About the Finalists

William A. Dobak, “Freedom by the Sword: The U.S. Colored Troops, 1862-1867” (U.S. Army Center for Military History) is a comprehensive history of black Union troops during the Civil War and Reconstruction. The book concentrates on the formation, training and operations of black troops, as well as the social, political and racial context.

Amanda Foreman, “A World on Fire: Britain’s Crucial Role in the American Civil War” (Random House) covers not only the perception of Britons about what was going on in the United States 1861-65, but also offers views of the war itself through the prism of a number of British subjects who were volunteers on one side or the other.

William G. Thomas, “The Iron Way: Railroads, the Civil War, and the Making of Modern America” (Yale) is an outgrowth of the “Railroads and the Making of Modern America” digital archive project. This book illuminates the critical impact of railroad construction, railroad management and the boost railroads provided to regional development during and after the Civil War era.

Founded in 1832, Gettysburg College is a highly selective four-year residential college of liberal arts and sciences with a strong academic tradition. Alumni include Rhodes Scholars, a Nobel laureate, and other distinguished scholars. The college, which enrolls 2,600 undergraduate students, is located on a 200-acre campus adjacent to the Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania.

The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, founded in 1994, is a not-for-profit organization that oversees the Gilder Lehrman Collection and conducts history education programs in all fifty states, serving more than 150,000 teachers, their students and communities, across the country every year.

History Buzz February 10, 2012: Peniel Joseph: Stetson University presents civil rights / social justice lecture by historian

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

History Buzz

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

Peniel Joseph: Stetson University presents civil rights/social justice lecture by historian

Source: Florida Courier, 2-10-12

Stetson University presents author and historian Dr. Peniel Joseph to speak on “Stokely Carmichael and American Democracy in the 1960s” as part of the university’s civil rights and social justice lecture series, at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 23. The lecture will be held in the Rinker Auditorium of the Lynn Business Center, 345 N. Woodland Blvd., DeLand, and is free and open to the public.

Joseph, a professor of history at Tufts University, is currently working on a biography of Black Power icon Stokely Carmichael and his involvement in the American Civil Rights Movement, and that will be the focus of Joseph’s lecture at Stetson.

Carmichael, who later changed his name to Kwame Ture, was a well-known black activist in the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s. He was involved in such organizations as the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee and participated in the Freedom Rides. He was one of the authors of the manifesto “Black Power.” Carmichael spoke at Stetson in 1997 and died the following year.
Professor Joseph is the author of the award-winning Waiting ‘til the Midnight Hour: A Narrative History of Black Power in America and Dark Days, Bright Nights: From Black Power to Barack Obama, as well as editor of The Black Power Movement: Rethinking the Civil Rights-Black Power Era and Neighborhood Rebels: Black Power at the Local Level.

Joseph is the founder of the “Black Power Studies” subfield whose reverberations have widely impacted interdisciplinary scholarship within the academy and popular conceptions of civil rights and Black Power outside of it. He is a frequent national commentator on issues of race, democracy, and civil rights who has appeared on CNN, MSNC, and NPR. During the 2008 presidential election he provided historical analysis for the PBS News Hour with Jim Lehrer.

For more information, contact the Office of the Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences at (386) 822-7515.

History Buzz February 10, 2012: Natalie Dykstra: Hope College professor writes biography on Clover Adams

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

History Buzz

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

Hope College professor writes biography on Clover Adams

Source: Holland Sentinel, 2-10-12

Hope College professor Natalie Dykstra has written a biography of Clover Adams.

Dykstra’s book “Clover Adams: A Gilded and Heartbreaking Life” covers Adams’ l9th century life, marriage to historian Henry Adams, and suicide at age 42. The book focuses on understanding Adams through her letters and photography Dykstra said in a press release, “Clover was known for her marriage and for committing suicide.  The last act of her life had defined her, and she’d become no more than an emblem of loss and suffering. This seemed so unfair. I tried to stay close to her words and her photographs and to understand these sources as fully as possible to see her life from her point of view.”

In addition to her book, Dykstra is also putting together a gallery show of Clover’s photographs for the Massachusetts Historical Society. The exhibit will through June 2.

Dykstra is an associate English professor. She has taught at the college since 2000.

%d bloggers like this: