News / USA

Obama Urges Cooperation With Officials as Hurricane Strikes

President Barack Obama speaks in the White House Briefing Room in President Barack Obama speaks preparations for Hurricane Sandy, in the White House Briefing Room in Washington, October 29, 2012.President Barack Obama speaks in the White House Briefing Room in President Barack Obama speaks preparations for Hurricane Sandy, in the White House Briefing Room in Washington, October 29, 2012.
x
President Barack Obama speaks in the White House Briefing Room in President Barack Obama speaks preparations for Hurricane Sandy, in the White House Briefing Room in Washington, October 29, 2012.
President Barack Obama speaks in the White House Briefing Room in President Barack Obama speaks preparations for Hurricane Sandy, in the White House Briefing Room in Washington, October 29, 2012.
— President Barack Obama is urging Americans to follow evacuation orders and other instructions from emergency officials as Hurricane Sandy comes ashore along the U.S. East Coast. The "superstorm" also is affecting the U.S. presidential campaign.

Obama canceled a campaign event in Florida on Monday, and flew back to Washington. And here in the nation's capital, the federal government and public transportation systems shut down and businesses closed.

The president met in the Situation Room with key advisers and government officials and then came to the White House briefing room to discuss the storm.

Praising what he called extraordinary cooperation among state, local and federal officials, he warned that Hurricane Sandy will affect a major portion of the country.

"The most important message that I have for the public right now is please listen to what your state and local officials are saying. When they tell you to evacuate, you need to evacuate," said the president. "Do not delay; don't pause; don't question the instructions that are being given because this is a serious storm and it could potentially have fatal consequences if people have not acted quickly."

Obama said the public should anticipate widespread power outages, as well as aid and ground transportation problems during and after the storm. Earlier, he issued state of emergency declarations to facilitate federal aid to eight U.S. states.

The storm also is affecting the U.S. presidential election campaign. Obama and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney have canceled events at least through Tuesday.

Romney did appear at an event in the key battleground state of Ohio, where he repeated his assertion that the president Obama has failed to present voters with a clear agenda.

"The president hasn't been able to lay something out other than to say we're going to stay the course and continuing down the same road.  He calls it 'going forward.' I call it forewarned. We know where this road heads," said Romney.

Obama campaign officials, including campaign manager Jim Messina, assert that early voting indicates that the president is winning the race against Romney.

"Early [voting] is giving us solid leads in the battleground states that are going to decide this election," said Messina.

Obama campaign officials say that although the president will lose time campaigning while he oversees the federal government's response to the storm, Obama still has time to step up the pace of his reelection bid ahead of Election Day on November 6.

You May Like

Reports of Mass Murder on Mediterranean Smuggler’s Boat

Boat sailed from Libya with 750 migrants aboard and arrived in Italy with 569 More

Video New Thailand Hotline Targets Misbehaving Monks

Officials say move aims to restore country’s image of Buddhism, tarnished by recent high profile scandals such as opulent lifestyle, drug and alcohol abuse, as well as child sex abuse More

Study: Dust from Sahara Helped Form Bahama Islands

What does the Sahara have in common with a Caribbean island? Quite a lot, researchers say More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Astronauts Train in Underwater Labi
X
George Putic
July 25, 2014 7:25 PM
In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid