November 28, 2014 | Updated at 10:37 AM EST The Latest Entertainment & Celebrity News

Obama, First Press Conference: Talks Fiscal Cliff, Petraeus & Defends Susan Rice (VIDEO)

President Obama answered questions from the press Wednesday for the first time since his re-election on Nov. 6.

By Nancy Asiamah, EnStars on Nov 15, 2012 10:18 AM EST
facebook tweet this pin it plus
Sign Up for Newsletter
  • Obama
  • U.S. President Obama gestures during a news conference at the White House in Washington (Photo : Reuters)

President Obama answered questions from the press Wednesday for the first time since his re-election on Nov. 6.

The three topics that dominated the press conference were the looming fiscal cliff, Ambassador Susan Rice and the scandal involving generals David Petraeus and John Allen.

The president said it does not make sense for taxes to be raised now, even if Congress fails to act by Jan. 1. 

"Our economy can't afford that right now," Obama said. "Certainly no middle-class family can afford that right now. And nobody in either party says that they want it to happen."

President Obama added that another option will be to pass a law right now that would prevent any tax hike whatsoever on the first $250,000 of everybody's income. Meaning every American, including the wealthiest Americans, get a tax cut. It also means that 98 percent of all Americans and 97 percent of all small businesses won't see their taxes go up a single dime.

The press questioned President Obama on his promise to end the Bush-era tax cuts this year, a promise he failed to keep two years ago.

"Two years ago the economy was in a different situation," the president said. "We were still very much in the early parts of recovering from the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.

"And ultimately, we came together, not only to extend the Bush tax cuts, but also a wide range of policies that were going to be good for the economy at the point -- unemployment insurance extensions, payroll tax extension -- all of which made a difference," he added. "[That] is a part of the reason why what we've seen now is 32 consecutive months of job growth, and over 5 1/2 million jobs created, and the unemployment rate coming down."

The downfall of two of the nation's top generals have captured the public's attention, but the president said he has no evidence that classified information was disclosed in any way that would have a negative impact on national security.

"General Petraeus had an extraordinary career," Obama said. "He served this country with great distinction in Iraq, in Afghanistan and as head of the CIA. We are safer because of the work that Dave Petraeus has done. 

"My main hope right now is -- is that he and his family are able to move on and that this ends up being a single side note on what has otherwise been an extraordinary career," he added. 

Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham both said Wednesday that they want to have Watergate-style hearings on the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi and that they will do everything to block the nomination of Susan Rice to be secretary of state. However, Obama saw differently. 

"For them to go after the U.N. ambassador, who had nothing to do with Benghazi and was simply making a presentation based on intelligence that she had received and to besmirch her reputation is outrageous," Obama said.

"But when they go after the U.N. ambassador, apparently because they think she's an easy target, then they've got a problem with me. And should I choose -- if I think that she would be the best person to serve America in the capacity -- the State Department, then I will nominate her. That's not a determination that I've made yet."


© 2014 Enstarz, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.

facebook tweet this pin it plus
Contribute to this Story send us a tip send us a tip send us a tip
Sign Up for Newsletters

Around The Web

  • SEARCH ENSTARS

Teyana Taylor

Teyana Taylor Talks Choosing Not To Play Aaliyah In Controversial Biopic 'I'm A Real Fan'

Now that Aaliyah: Princess Of R&B biopic has debuted on Lifetime, famous singer Teyana Taylor has spoken out about how she feels when it comes to her walking away from the lead role.

The Mentalist

Simon Baker Teases 'The Mentalist' Jisbon Developments, Jane & Lisbon Adjust In Premiere

Patrick Jane and Teresa Lisbon will have to fit new relationship into their work life.

Kaiser Griffith

'Teen Mom 2' Star Hints At Custody Battle On Twitter

Jenelle Evans from MTV's 'Teen Mom 2' took control of her family's Thanksgiving celebration on Thursday, cooking everything from Turkey to chocolate desserts.

NCIS LA

Deeks & Kensi Get Icy In 'NCIS: LA' Christmas Episode [PHOTOS], What's In Store For 'Humbug' [VIDEO]

Watch Eric Christian Olsen and Daniela Ruah ice skate for Christmas episode.

Witches Of East End

Chances Of A 'Witches Of East End' Renewal Are Reportedly Growing Stronger

The chances of 'Witches of East End' getting a renewal appear to be growing higher and higher.

'The Voice' Season 7 Promotional Photo

A Glimpse Into The Top 10 Of Season 7 Of 'The Voice'

The Top 10 on Season 7 of 'The Voice' are set to perform Monday before eliminations take place Tuesday.

Masika Tucker

'LHHH' Masika Tucker Checks Yung Berg On Twitter 'Watch It', Rapper Confirms Return To Show? Says 'I'll Be Back'

It seems VH1's 'Love & Hip Hop Hollywood' Masika Tucker and Yung Berg are still going strong after he allegedly attacked her earlier this month.

Longmire

'Longmire' Star Robert Taylor 'Overjoyed' For 4th Season

'Longmire's' Robert Taylor, who has charmed fans for three seasons in the title role, is one of the show's few stars who lacks a strong social media presence

Timbaland

Timbaland Reveals Alexandra Shipp Wrote Him Amid 'Aaliyah: Princess Of R&B' Backlash

Timbaland has spoken out in his first interview since slamming Lifetime's Aaliyah: Princess Of R&B and revealed lead actress Alexandra Shipp reached out to him during his rant.

Blake Shelton

Miranda Lambert Reacts To Blake Shelton's Confession

Blake Shelton told wife and fellow country artist Miranda Lambert that there's another woman in his life on Thursday and it seems the Somethin' Bad singer had a pretty intense reaction to it.

Witches Of East End

'Witches Of East End' Cast Wants A Third Season, Check Out Their Gloomy Faces

The cast of 'Witches of East End' have shown just how sad they truly are that the supernatural drama is no longer on television.

Jason Biggs

'Orange Is the New Black' Actor Jason Biggs May No Longer Be Starring In Series Going Forward?

There is some doubt as to whether one of the stars of Netflix's 'Orange Is the New Black' will return for season 3 in mid-2015.

Rick and Maya both receive shocking news about their future on the Nov. 21, 2014 episode of 'The Bold and the Beautiful'

Rick & Maya Both Receive Shocking News About Their Future On 'The Bold and the Beautiful'

He wanted to get revenge on his brother and wife for betraying him, but Rick's (Jacob Young) schemes may have backfired in ways he never expected on The Bold and the Beautiful.

Todd Chrisley

Todd Chrisley's First Wife Speaks On Gay Rumors, Confesses 'I Can See Why' There's Speculation

Just after 'Chrisley Knows Best' star Todd Chrisley's son, Kyle Chrisley claimed that he is homosexual, Todd's first wife has broken her silence on rumors.

Latest News

The Voice

Eliminated 'The Voice' Contestants Candidly Talk About Their Experiences

Anita Antoinette and Reagan James were eliminated Tuesday night on 'The Voice' and now they're sharing all about their experiences on the reality singing competition show.

Once Upon a Time

'Once Upon a Time' Snow Queen Arc Leads Into 'Favorite Twist Yet' As 'Frozen' Continues?

The inclusion of Disney's 'Frozen' has proven to be a success for ABC's 'Once Upon a Time,' so will the arc continue into the second half of season 4?

The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills Season 4 Cast

Brandi Glanville vs. Lisa Vanderpump 'Real Housewives' War

What would the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills be without a little scandal or some crazy drama?

Liam Payne

Liam Payne May Need A Little Lesson On How To Take Selfies

After giving the performance of a lifetime and taking home three awards at the AMA's this past Sunday, the group One Direction was quickly back on the road to attend the ARIA Awards on Wednesday night.

Michael Fassbender

Is This 'X-Men' Character The Next One To Get His Own Standalone Series?

Outside of the X-Men series, the spin-offs starring Hugh Jackman as Wolverine have been the most popular films in the franchise that doesn't have many other outside films. That is set to change with a Deadpool and Gambit movie coming soon, but could a Magneto one be next?

Kate Gosselin

Kate Gosselin Spent Thanksgiving With Her Eight Children, Without Jon

Kate Gosselin had another memorable Thanksgiving with her eight children.

5 Seconds of Summer

Did Abigail Breslin Write 'You Suck' About 5SOS' Michael Clifford?

The 5 Seconds of Summer band member just might be the inspiration behind Abigail Breslin’s debut song 'You Suck'.

Penny Dreadful

Someone 'Extraordinarily Famous' Is Visiting The Set Of 'Penny Dreadful'

Showtime's 'Penny Dreadful' got an "extraordinarily famous" visitor on set on Thursday.

Theo James

How Much Will We See Theo James In 'Insurgent?'

While the focus for 'Insurgent' has been on Shailene Woodley, and rightly so, there is also the main character of Four played by Theo James that could have a lot to do during the young adult novel sequel.

Ross Lynch

Ross Lynch 'Asked' To Compete In 'Dancing With the Stars' In Spring, Member Of Hough Family?

Another member of the Hough family might be joining ABC's 'Dancing With the Stars' as a contestant for season 20 in the spring.

Featured Videos

From Our Partners

Game of Thrones - HBO

'Game of Thrones' Season 5 HBO Release Date, Spoilers, New Trailer Teaser Footage Released, Watch Here (VIDEO)

HBO releases new trailer teaser for 'Game of Thrones' Season 5, watch here. (VIDEO)

youtube.com

'The Voice' NBC Season 7 Reagan James Interview After Elimination from Team Blake, Watch Here (VIDEO)

Watch Team Blake's Reagan James interview after her elimination from 'The Voice' Season 7 here. (VIDEO)

Shane Victorino

Boston Red Sox Rumors: Shane Victorino Says 'I Should Be The Starting Right Fielder' [VIDEO]

The Boston Red Sox have made waves so far in the offseason by signing Hanley Ramirez and Pablo Sandoval to big-money deals, but that has some current players lobbying for their roster spots.

Cleveland Cavaliers

Cleveland Cavaliers News And Rumors: Top 5 Reasons The Cavs Are Only .500

Here are the top five reasons that the Cavaliers are struggling in the early stages of the season.

Paranormal Activity

Paranormal Activity The Ghost Dimension Announced, Next Entry In Horror Franchise Will Be In 3D; Out In 2015

The fifth entry in the Paranormal Activity series, subtitled The Ghost Dimension, will return the franchise to the main storyline and also bring it in glorious, eye-popping 3D.

Path of Exile

Path Of Exile Patch 1.3.0: Update Brings Massive PvP Changes Including Season Pass, Tournaments, New Challenge Leagues And More [VIDEO]

Grinding Gear Games has detailed some of the big PvP-related changes coming to their award winning dungeon crawler Path of Exile. The update is due in two weeks.

Paul Walker

Paul Walker's Brother Cody Shares Thoughts One Year After His Tragic Death

Paul Walker's Brother Cody Shares Thoughts One Year After His Tragic Death

Dixie Carter

TNA Wrestling News and Rumors: Update On Impact Wrestling's Move to Destination America [VIDEO]

TNA Impact Wrestling will debut on its new network home of Destination America in January 2015 and the company has big plans for when the flagship program goes live.

Game of Thrones

Telltale Game Of Thrones Episode One Release Date Announced, Iron From Ice Launching Very Soon

Telltale Games has announced the release date schedule for the first episode of its Game of Thrones adaptation on all platforms.

Real Time Analytics