President Obama

belchonock, 123rf Stock Photo

A Murray man is among the 61 prisoners who had their sentences commuted by President Barack Obama Wednesday. Michael Yandal of Murray was convicted in 2007 on possession with the intent to distribute crack cocaine and marijuana and the possession of a firearm. 

President Obama delivered a stern rebuke to the media, for their role in the 2016 campaign and, as he sees it, not holding candidates accountable for "unworkable plans."

President Obama's choice to serve as the newest Supreme Court justice is Merrick Garland, a moderate federal appeals court judge and former prosecutor with a reputation for collegiality and meticulous legal reasoning.

Garland, who has won past Republican support, has "more federal judicial experience than any other Supreme Court nominee in history," a White House official said. "No one is better suited to immediately serve on the Supreme Court."

It was perhaps fitting that the most memorable passage of President Obama's final State of the Union speech should come near its end.

After nearly an hour on the podium, Obama paused and slipped into a mode more suited to a pulpit. In the next few minutes, the president tried to address the state not of the American union but of American politics.

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

On Tuesday, January 12, President Barack Obama will deliver his State of the Union address, starting at 8 p.m. central time. NPR will provide live anchored coverage of the President's speech as well as the Republican response from Governor Nikki Haley of South Carolina. This will be the last State of the Union address of his presidency.

President Barack Obama didn't exactly go out on a limb with his college-basketball picks this year.

Like most people, he picked Kentucky to run the table, go 40-0, and win the NCAA Tournament. He also picked three No. 1 seeds and one No. 2 to make it to the Final Four.

"I don't think you can play a perfect basketball game anymore than you can do anything perfectly," the president said of Kentucky, "but these guys are coming pretty close."

The president did mix in a little politics.

After six years of often bitter back-and-forth with congressional Republicans over the issue of immigration, President Obama announced he has decided to go it alone by temporarily shielding up to 5 million immigrants from being deported.

Kentucky Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson will resign on Nov. 13 for a post in the White House, and former state Auditor Crit Luallen will be appointed in his place, Gov. Steve Beshear announced Thursday.

Abramson will be President Obama's liaison to state and local government, the Associated Press reports.

The AP adds:

www.ed.gov/school-safety

The U.S. Department of Education is awarding more than 70 million dollars over 38 states to improve school climate and keep students safe, including a Western Kentucky organization. The  Western Kentucky Educational Cooperative will receive nearly $750,000 in School Climate Transformation grants that are part of President Obama and Vice President Biden’s “Now is the Time” initiative, a comprehensive plan to make  schools safer, reduce gun violence by keeping guns out of dangerous hands, and increase mental-health services.

bbc.co.uk

In the same week Congress decides on whether or not to defund the Affordable Care Act and/or prevent a government shutdown, President Barack Obama made his remarks to the United Nations General Assembly, outlining the role of the United States in the Middle East and Worldwide. Commentator, Murray State History Professor and Foreign Policy Analyst, Dr. Brian Clardy examines the underlying message of the Presidents' speech and its potential challenges. Please note that the views expressed in this commentator are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of WKMS.

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