barackobama When you walk into my office, the first thing you see is an American flag signed by the team that carried out the operation in Abbottabad, Pakistan, against Osama bin Laden ten years ago today.
When I look back ten years later, I’m grateful to the thousands of people across government who made it possible for me to say to the families who had a loved one murdered on September 11 that America had never forgotten their loss. I hope you’ll take a moment to watch my conversation with Admiral McRaven at Obama.org.
barackobama I recently joined @Ava and the @LATimes Book Club to talk about A Promised Land. We ended up touching on everything from the civil rights leaders who inspired me to pursue a career in public service, to the values that are important for leadership, to the members of the next generation who give me so much hope for the future. Check out our conversation.
barackobama Today is Apportionment Day. States have just learned how many seats they have in Congress for the next decade. This process is an important step in making sure our maps—and electoral process—better reflect our communities.
The redistricting process isn’t just about where districts are drawn—it’s also about how many districts are drawn in each state. It’s intended to provide folks with equal and fair representation in the House of Representatives and Electoral College, but as we know, map manipulators can often take power away from communities by drawing districts in unfair ways.
This year, state legislatures are undertaking this process and will draw new maps that will determine political power through 2031. We must ensure that every single person has equitable representation and that our electoral maps are drawn fairly. Join @AllOnTheLine in their efforts to hold elected leaders accountable and make sure we achieve fair maps this year.
barackobama I love wandering into independent bookstores and discovering new voices and new authors. And those bookstores often form the backbone of our communities. That’s why, on Independent Bookstore Day, I wanted to talk with some of the folks who’ve been doing so much for readers and authors across the country.
barackobama No challenge poses a greater threat to our planet and to future generations than climate change. That’s why this Earth Day, I’m proud that the @ObamaFoundation is supporting young people who are helping lead this fight, and that we’ve designed the Obama Presidential Center to be sustainable while showing visitors how they can make a difference in their own communities.
barackobama Today, a jury did the right thing. But true justice requires much more. Michelle and I send our prayers to the Floyd family, and we stand with all those who are committed to guaranteeing every American the full measure of justice that George and so many others have been denied.
barackobama Charles and @Shaq agree: we can all help end this pandemic by getting the COVID-19 vaccine. It's the only way to keep everyone safe and help us get back to all the things we miss most—from seeing family and friends to watching sports in person.
barackobama Today, the City of Chicago starts prep work in Jackson Park, marking the beginning of the exciting road to groundbreaking for the Obama Presidential Center.
Michelle and I hope that the Center will help lift up the South Side and surrounding communities by creating jobs and attracting new visitors—serving as a place where young people can take action and have some fun. Let’s get to work.
barackobama Our hearts are heavy over yet another shooting of a Black man, Daunte Wright, at the hands of police. It’s important to conduct a full and transparent investigation, but this is also a reminder of just how badly we need to reimagine policing and public safety in this country. You can find resources and ways to help here: obama.org/anguish-and-action
barackobama When we first met His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, he and Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II had already been on the world stage for more than half a century — welcoming leaders like Churchill and Kennedy; Mandela and Gorbachev. As two Americans unaccustomed to palaces and pomp, we didn’t know what to expect.
We shouldn’t have worried. The Queen and Prince Philip immediately put us at ease with their grace and generosity, turning a ceremonial occasion into something far more natural, even comfortable. Prince Philip in particular was kind and warm, with a sharp wit and unfailing good humor. It was our first introduction to the man behind the title, and in the years since, our admiration for him has only grown. We will miss him dearly.
Like the Queen, Prince Philip saw world wars and economic crises come and go. The radio gave way to the television, and the television to the internet. And through it all, he helped provide steady leadership and guiding wisdom. It has long been said that the United States and Great Britain have a special relationship — one that has been maintained and strengthened not just by presidents and prime ministers but by the Royal Family that has outlasted them all.
At the Queen’s side or trailing the customary two steps behind, Prince Philip showed the world what it meant to be a supportive husband to a powerful woman. Yet he also found a way to lead without demanding the spotlight — serving in combat in World War II, commanding a frigate in the Royal Navy, and tirelessly touring the world to champion British industry and excellence. Through his extraordinary example, he proved that true partnership has room for both ambition and selflessness — all in service of something greater.
As the world mourns his loss, we send our warmest wishes and deepest sympathies to the Queen, their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren; and everyone who knew and loved this remarkable man.
barackobama Bruce and I closed out our podcast, Renegades: Born in the USA, back where it all began: with a conversation about what it will take to restore faith in America’s promise, and how to tell a new, unifying story about this country that is true to our ideals and honest about where we fall short. It’s not easy to do in these cynical times, but we both believe that story exists—and that folks across the country are hungry for it. Along the way, I tell Bruce about an unlikely gift that a stranger gave me on the campaign trail in Greenwood, South Carolina, and he explains the story behind one of his most popular and misunderstood songs. Listen to our final episode on Spotify.