Scenes from the first Friday of the Obama administration
With their first week in power coming to a close in Washington, D.C., President Barack Obama and his White House staff sat down and went straight to business. After the order to close the prison on Guantanamo Bay was signed yesterday, Obama went to work tackling the other looming problems in the United States.
Obama tried to encourage cooperation at a bipartisan meeting of congressional leaders at the White House to discuss the $825-billion stimulus plan. Attendees included, from left, Rep. James Clyburn, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, House Minority Leader John Boehner, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. (More below)
Pelosi left with a smile after a press conference as the stimulus package tries to make its way through Congress.
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton spoke to U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) employees at their headquarters. Clinton commented that U.S. foreign aid should be strengthened with more funding and better coordination with military assistance programs in war zones such as Iraq and Afghanistan.
USAID's Acting Administrator Kent Hill (center) and Vice President of the American Foreign Service Association Francisco Zamora listened to Clinton, who delivered her speech at the Ronald Reagan building.
Outside the White House, anti-abortion demonstrators knelt in prayer in front of the White House during a rally to call for an end to abortion in the U.S. Today is the day after the 36th anniversary of the Roe vs. Wade decision.
The rally was led by anti-abortion activist Alveda King, a niece of Martin Luther King Jr. Obama signed an executive order reversing the ban on U.S. funding for international family-planning clinics that provide abortions or referrals to abortions.
White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs stepped into his new role and fielded questions from the news media during his second day of delivering the press briefing in the White House. Gibbs responded on topics ranging from the economy to the president's BlackBerry.
In Japan, Maruzen book store staff Daisuke Tanaka adjusts "The Speeches of Barack Obama," and other Obama books in Tokyo. The book of speeches and accompanying CD has become an unprecedented national best-seller for those studying English.
Meanwhile, Obama merchandise still lines the streets of Washington, D.C. If the vendors can't unload all their inventory, there appears to be quite a demand around the world.
-- Michelle Castillo
Don't miss anything on the new Obama administration or Congress. Register here for cellphone alerts on each new Ticket item. RSS feeds are also available here. And we're now on Amazon's Kindle as well.
Photo credits (from top): Mark Wilson / Pool via Bloomberg News; Itsuo Inouye / AP Photo; Mark Wilson / Getty Images; Shawn Thew / EPA; Jay Premack / Bloomberg News; Matthew Cavanaugh / EPA; Nicholas Kamm / AFP/Getty Images; Nicholas Kamm / AFP/Getty Images; Shawn Thew / EPA; Jewel Samad / AFP/Getty Images