Subject: Pool report No. 1
POTUS remarks to governors in State Dining Room
Feb. 24, 2014
After introduction from VP Biden, POTUS entered the State Dining Room
at 11:18 a.m, and spoke for 10 minutes.
“I enjoyed watching some of you with your eyes on higher office size
up the drapes – and each other,” he said of last night’s NGA dinner in
the same room.
Talked about working together on the 4 points of the “opportunity
agenda” — jobs, training, world-class education, and wages. Praised
those who have increased their state minimum wage. Recapped many
points of SOTU.
“The point is this has to be a year of action.”
“I am absolutely convinced that the time is right to partner with the
states and governors all across the country on these agendas, because
I know that you guys are doing some terrific work in your own states.”
“There may not be much of an appetite in Congress for doing big jobs
bills, but we can still do Select USA.”
Praised govs who have expanded Medicaid. “You’ve got Republican
governors here – I won’t name them in front of the press cuz i don’t
want to get y’all in trouble – who have chosen to cover more poeple
thru new options under medicaid, and as a result millions of people
are going to get help.”
The governors and senior WH staff sat at eight round tables, each of
which had a bowl of apples in the center.
Health Secy Sebelius sat next to Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam (R). The
two Terrys sat next to each othe r– Govs. Brandstad (R) of Iowa and
McAuliffee (D) of Virginia. NGA Chair Gov. Mary Fallin (R) Oklahoma
sat between VP Biden and Senior Adviser Valerie Jarrett. Colorado Gov.
John Hickenlooper (D) sat on Biden’s other side. CEA chairman Jason
Furman next to Mass Gov. Deval Patrick (D). Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R)
sat next to NEC director Gene Sperling.
Also in the room: Dan Pfeiffer, John Podesta, Cecilia Munoz (next to
RI Gov. Lincoln Chafee), COS Denis McDonough, Ag Secy Tom Vilsack,
Christian Science Monitor