White House Confirms Weekly Presidential Radio Address on Hiatus
The White House confirms the weekly presidential radio address – a fixture for decades – is on indefinite hiatus.
“We received quite a few comments and a lot of feedback that the weekly address wasn’t being used to its full potential,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in response to a VOA question during Monday’s daily briefing. “We’re looking at different ways that we can revamp that and make it where it’s more beneficial and gets more information out.”
The last time the White House released a weekly radio recording made by President Donald Trump was on October 13. During the first nine months of his administration he had regularly taped the messages.
Regular presidential radio addresses began with the “fireside chats” of President Franklin Roosevelt during the depth of economic depression in 1933.
Roosevelt had begun using radio to reach the public as governor of New York State at a time when radio broadcasting was a technological revolution.
The tradition was revived by President Ronald Reagan in 1982, a veteran radio announcer and actor, who started the Saturday audio-only addresses from the White House.
Trump: US to Redesignate North Korea as State Sponsor of Terror
South Korea and Japan have welcomed a move by the United States to redesignate North Korea a state sponsor of terrorism in order to put additional financial and diplomatic pressure on the totalitarian government.
South Korea's foreign ministry said Tuesday it sees the decision "as part of the international community's joint efforts to take North Korea to the path of denuclearization."
"It should have happened years ago," President Donald Trump said Monday from the White House, calling the Pyongyang government a "murderous regime."
The move, which will be formally announced by the State Department on Tuesday, returns North Korea to the department's State Sponsors of Terrorism list. Currently, the only countries on the list are Iran, Syria and Sudan.
A State Department official said the Trump administration determined Pyongyang "has repeatedly provided support for acts of international terrorism," including assassinations on foreign soil. "These acts are in keeping with the DPRK's wider range of dangerous and malicious behavior," the official said.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said sanctions already in place against North Korea are having an effect and that there is still hope for diplomacy.
The United States put North Korea on the terror sponsor list in 1988, after North Korean agents blew up a South Korean civilian airliner, killing 115 people. But Pyongyang was removed in 2008 after they met benchmarks related to a nuclear disarmament deal.