Karen Ocamb

Obama Prepares for State of the Union Address on Tuesday

Filed By Karen Ocamb | January 23, 2012 3:45 PM | comments

Filed in: Politics
Tags: Mitt Romney, President Obama, State of the Union, tax returns, White House

President Obama fist-bumps a White House worker (Photo from Aj Lewis' Facebook page)

Bowing to pressure from the media and his Republican presidential opponents, Mitt Romney will release his 2010 tax return and an estimate for 2011 on Tuesday, Jan. 24, the same day President Obama will deliver the State of the Union address. The Washington Post reported on Romney's appearance on Fox News Sunday:

Romney has said he pays a tax rate of about 15 percent, which is less than many Americans, because so much of his income is in the form of capital gains. His finances also came under scrutiny after revelations that he keeps millions in personal holdings in the Caymen Islands, though Romney reiterated Sunday that he fully pays his tax bills to the U.S. government. "I know people will try to find something, but we pay full-fare taxes, and as you'll see, it's a pretty substantial amount," Romney said on the program.....

Romney also defended his practice of committing 10 percent of his income to the Mormon church, which is customary for members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, as it is formally called. He said he did not believe his religion would be an issue in the campaign long term, even though exit polls from South Carolina suggested that it might have been a hindrance there.

Meanwhile, Obama Senior Advisor David Plouffe says the White House wants to hear from you. Video and details after the break.

From the White House blog:

Mark your calendars! Next Tuesday January 24, President Obama will present the annual State of the Union Address at 9 pm EST, and all week long, the White House wants to hear from concerned citizens on the topics that most matter to you.

Once again, we will be streaming an enhanced version of the speech that features graphics, data and stats that highlight the issues the President is discussing on Whitehouse.gov/sotu. We will also live stream that broadcast through the White House Live App on Facebook, YouTube and our new Google+ page.

Starting immediately after the speech and continuing through the rest of the week, senior White House officials will hear from you about the state of our union. President Obama is committed to creating a system of transparency, public participation, and collaboration using social media and other online resources to engage citizens across America on your highest priorities.

Immediately following the speech, we'll be streaming an online panel live from the White House. The panel of senior advisors — Mark Zuckerman, White House Deputy Director of the Domestic Policy Council; Roberto Rodriguez, Special Assistant to the President for Education Policy; Brian Deese, Deputy Director National Economic Council; Ben Rhodes, Deputy NSA for Strategic Communications and Speechwriting and Jen Palmieri, Deputy White House Communications Director - will be answering questions about the President's address submitted by citizens via twitter (#WHChat & #SOTU), Google+, Facebook and the in-person audience of tweetup participants.

Administration officials will spend Wednesday taking questions on the State of the Union in a day-long Office Hours marathon, an online question and answer session through Twitter. Josh Earnest, White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary, will be available throughout the day, and Mark Zuckerman, White House Deputy Director of the Domestic Policy Council will be taking questions at 1 pm EST. Dan Pfeiffer, the White House Communications Director, will also participate.

Thursday's Office Hours will feature community-focused discussions with policy advisors and experts and Friday will be directed towards specific issues.

Review the full schedule of events below to learn how you can participate. We hope you will join us at some point next week.

Here’s how Office Hours work:

  • Ask your question on Twitter with the hashtag #WHChat
  • Administration officials respond to your questions in real-time via Twitter
  • Follow the Q&A through the @WHLive Twitter account
  • If you miss the live session, the full Q&A will be posted on WhiteHouse.gov and Storify.com/WhiteHouse

Office Hours Schedule for Thursday January 26 (times listed are EST)

  • 10:00 a.m. Veterans: Matt Flavin, White House Director of Veterans and Wounded Warrior Policy
  • 11:00 a.m. LGBT: Miriam Vogel, White House Senior Policy Advisor and Gautam Raghavan, White House Associate Director for Public Engagement
  • 12:00 p.m. Women: Racquel Russell, Special Assistant to the President for Mobility and Opportunity and Avra Siegel, White House Deputy Executive Director for the Council on Women and Girls
  • 1:00 p.m. Seniors: Jeanne Lambrew, Deputy Assistant to the President for Health Policy and Nick Papas, Assistant Press Secretary
  • 2:00 p.m. Latinos: Felicia Escobar, White House Senior Policy Advisor, Julie Rodriguez, White House Associate Director of Public Engagement and Luis Miranda, White House Director of Hispanic Media
  • 4:00 p.m. Small Business Owners: Christine Koronides, Senior Advisor for Economic Policy, National Economic Council
  • 5:00 p.m. African Americans: Danielle Gray, Deputy Assistant to the President for Economic Policy
  • 6:00 p.m. Asian American Pacific Islanders: Chris Lu, Assistant to the President and Cabinet Secretary

Office Hours Schedule for Friday January 27 (times listed are EST)

  • 11:00 a.m. Foreign Policy: Ben Rhodes, Deputy NSA for Strategic Communications and Speechwriting
  • 12:00 p.m. Education: Roberto Rodriguez, Special Assistant to the President for Education Policy
  • 1:00 p.m. Health: Jeanne Lambrew, Deputy Assistant to the President for Health Policy and Nick Papas, Assistant Press Secretary
  • 2:00 p.m. Energy: Heather Zichal, Deputy Assistant to the President for Energy & Climate Change and Dan Utech, Deputy Director for Energy Policy
  • 3:00 p.m. Consumer Protections: Brian Deese, Deputy Director National Economic Council
  • 4:00 pm The Economy: Jason Furman, Principal Deputy Director National Economic Council
  • 5:00 p.m. Job Opportunities: Portia Wu, Senior Policy Advisor for Mobility and Opportunity Policy
  • 6:00 p.m. Urban Issues: Racquel Russell, Special Assistant to the President for Mobility and Opportunity

(Crossposted at LGBT POV)


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