Obama's Olympic fever
The U.S. Women's Gymnastic team after winning a gold medal on Day 4 of the London 2012 Olympic Games. (Photo credit: Getty Images Europe)
August 1st, 2012
12:47 PM ET

Obama's Olympic fever

(CNN)–Like millions of people around the world, President Obama is avidly following the Olympic Games in London.

Mixing politics and sports in the battleground state of Ohio on Wednesday, the president told supporters at a campaign rally in Mansfield to "give it up for all our outstanding American athletes" competing in the international games.

The president told the crowd he had just spoken to the U.S. Women's Gymnastic team which won a gold medal Tuesday night.  It was the first team gold medal for U.S. women gymnasts since 1996.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said the president spoke by phone from Air Force One to all five members of the team.

Carney said the president told Aly Raisman that "of all Olympians, you guys amaze us most."

He congratulated Jordyn Wieber saying, "I'm so impressed with how you bounced back and led the team."

Mr. Obama told McKayla Maroney "way to nail that vault."

To Gabby Douglas, the president said, "You just tore it up. I know how hard you worked to get there."

Finally Obama told Kyla Ross how he noticed her steadiness, saying "I was impressed by how cool you were. I don't know how you do what do especially the balance beam." FULL POST


Topics: 2012 Election • Olympics • President Obama
Obama speaks with world leader on phone while holding baseball bat
This official White House photo was posted on the website as the photo of the day simply captioned: "President Barack Obama talks on the phone with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of Turkey in the Oval Office, July 30, 2012. "(Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
August 1st, 2012
11:33 AM ET

Obama speaks with world leader on phone while holding baseball bat

(CNN)–It's still a mystery why President Barack Obama was holding a baseball bat during his telephone conversation with Turkey's Prime Minister Erdogan earlier this week.  An official White House photo shows the president with the bat in one hand and a phone in the other.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney was asked about the photo on Tuesday and promised get some answers but so far nothing.

The photo is getting quite a bit of attention in overseas publications wondering about "hidden messages" or the "symbolic meaning" of the president holding the baseball bat.

The White House released a short readout of Monday's call, which focused on Turkey's neighbor Syria, saying the "two leaders shared their growing concerns about the Syrian regime’s ruthless attacks against its own people, most recently in Aleppo."

Tensions between Turkey and Syria have escalated after the Syrians downed a Turkish plane earlier this summer.


Topics: President Obama • Turkey
POTUS first fan-in-chief for Olympics
Gold medalist Michael Phelps kisses his gold medal after the podium ceremony of the men's 4x200m freestyle relay final during the swimming event at the London 2012 Olympic Games. (Photo Credit: AFP/Getty Images)
August 1st, 2012
08:24 AM ET

POTUS first fan-in-chief for Olympics

White House (CNN)–As Michael Phelps swam into the history books on Tuesday, becoming the most decorated Olympian of all time, it didn't go unnoticed by the number one fan in the White House.

"Congrats to Michael Phelps for breaking the all-time Olympic medal record. You've made your country proud. -bo," President Obama tweeted to his 18 million followers.

Phelps, who won his 19th Olympic medal as the anchor of the gold winning USA 4×200 meter freestyle relay team, tweeted back, "Thank you Mr. President!! It's an honor representing the #USA  !! The best country in the world!!"

An avid sports fan, it's no surprise the commander in chief was watching.  "He is a sports fan, as everyone knows," Jay Carney said at last Friday's press briefing. "I heard him the other day. He's like, 'I love the Olympics. I can't wait for the Olympics to start." The president also appointed First Lady Michelle Obama to lead the American delegation to the London games.


Topics: Olympics • President Obama
Obama heading to battleground of Ohio
President Obama departs the White House Wednesday aboard Marine One headed to campaign in the swing state of Ohio. (Photo Credit: Lesa Jansen, CNN)
August 1st, 2012
08:04 AM ET

Obama heading to battleground of Ohio

9:00AM          In-Town Pool Call Time

9:50AM          THE PRESIDENT departs the White House en route Joint Base Andrews/South Lawn/Open Press

10:05AM        THE PRESIDENT departs Joint Base Andrews en route Mansfield, Ohio

Out-of-Town Travel Pool Coverage

11:15AM        THE PRESIDENT arrives Mansfield, Ohio/Mansfield Air National Guard Base /Open Press

11:40AM         THE PRESIDENT delivers remarks at a campaign event/Mansfield Central Park /Open to Pre-Credentialed Media

2:30PM           THE PRESIDENT departs Mansfield, Ohio en route Akron, Ohio/Mansfield Air National Guard Base /Open Press FULL POST