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Obama W.H. change official biography pages of past presidents?
May 17th, 2012
04:00 PM ET

Obama W.H. change official biography pages of past presidents?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

President Barack Obama is under fire for adding his own policy plugs to the official biographies of past presidents on the White House website.

Here's how it works: The White House added blurbs to the end of these biographies. These "Hey, did you know?" factoids appear on nearly every president's bio page going back to Calvin Coolidge.

For example:

"In a June 28, 1985, speech, Reagan called for a fairer tax code, one where a multimillionaire did not have a lower tax rate than his secretary. Today, President Obama is calling for the same with the Buffett Rule."

These added links plug everything from Obama’s health care overhaul to Social Security, Medicare and the repeal of don't ask, don't tell.

Republicans are having a field day with this.

The RNC created a hysterical "Obama in History" website. It shows the president as part of other historical events like the moon landing and the Declaration of Independence and with historical figures such as Albert Einstein, Richard Nixon and Elvis.

The White House insists that the biographies themselves weren't changed. They tell Fox News they "simply added links at the bottom of each page." They say this is a commonly used Internet practice to encourage people to explore further.

Maybe so.

However, one expert tells ABC News that while these additions didn't "cross the line" by changing the presidential biographies, the White House could have made it clearer that they weren't part of the official White House presidential biographies.

Here’s my question to you: Is it appropriate for President Obama to change the official biography pages of past presidents on the White House website?

Tune in to the Situation Room at 4pm to see if Jack reads your answer on air.

And, we love to know where you’re writing from, so please include your city and state with your comment.

soundoff (109 Responses)
  1. jk in MN

    This sounds like one of those FOX News stories, Jack. You know, try to make an issue out of a non-issue – something that isn't as important to the country like how the country will get the long term unemployed back into the workforce paying taxes to support the country's budget.

    May 17, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
  2. John from Alabama

    Jack: People add comments to many different type of literature every day. Mr. Obama can change past presidents biography pages as long as he leaves the originial biographies intact. Allowing sitting president to make commonts on presidents in the past is fair game. Any changes must be credited to President Obama. History is part of the President's Tenure in office. Believe me there will be plenty of comments about President Obama's time in office by future presidents.

    May 17, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
  3. Richard C.

    This is beyond wrong! It's bad enough history books have been edited to be so politically correct that students have no idea about the actual details of American history. It is no wonder that some refer to Obama as the 'narcissist-in-chief'.
    Malvern, PA.

    May 17, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
  4. Sharon Betts

    It would be appropriate if there were factual errors being corrected.
    Sharon from Maine

    May 17, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
  5. kattyusa

    This man knows no shame...the Audacity of this Narcissistic excuse for a President. It blows my mind the lengths he will go. Truly, he thinks we are stupid – and some of us are....

    May 17, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
  6. 1grasshopper

    No it's not!

    May 17, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
  7. Gary in San Jose, California

    How did this make his to do list? Please stop adjusting the art and steer our ship away from the ice berg.

    May 17, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
  8. Steve, Clifton, Virginia

    President Obama is now the Commander and Chief and everything that goes on under his watch is his responsibility. If there is information on the White House website which is inaccurate or false, then of course it's appropriate to correct the information posted.

    May 17, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
  9. Michael Bindner, Alexandria VA

    Is Obama doing this or someone who works for him? I suspect this is below his pay grade. It also depends on who is making the change and why. If a civil servant is doing it based on recent understandings of history, I see nothing nefarious, although I am answering the question before the details are posted. Even if it is the political staff driving this, there is a saying that applies – the victor writes the history. Elections matter.

    May 17, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
  10. Cathy

    He didn't "change" anything. They simply "added" the presidents accomplishments for comparison. I don't understand what the big deal is with this...It is only the first month of this race and I am already tired of the BS from both sides!

    May 17, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
  11. superponte

    The White House has a website? That people actually visit?!

    Mike from Swansea, MA

    May 17, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
  12. Dave - Phx

    Who cares, this is a non issue.

    May 17, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
  13. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: I think that is the least of the President's concern at the moment. Someone else is in charge of that function--and can it be changed--sure it can--but one thing for sure-changing the biography page of the White House's website of past Presidents doesn't change "history."

    May 17, 2012 at 1:56 pm |
  14. Reggie

    I think Obama is out place to do that. He was dragged up and not brought up to be a decent person. He is lacking in integrity but if you dont know about it you can cannot have it. How come none of the other presidents have done that? I think who ever voted for Obama did our country a disservice because the office of the president has lost the influence it once held. It will take a long time to dig our country out of the hole he has put us in. All you people who supported Obama and still do have made him believe he is above everything and everyone.....the modern Messiah ...and thats why he has chosen to make those changes.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
  15. james in greenville, north carolina

    Jack, it would be inappropiate for other Presidents to do so. But not Obama. For some reason or another Obama always gets a pass on whatever he does. It is hard to explain. Must be the 8th wonder of the world or something.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:02 pm |
  16. Bob Melbourne, FL

    No Jack! It’s not only inappropriate for the Administration to alter the biographies of former Presidents, It’s flat out disgraceful. The only thing bigger than the debt he’s racked up is his narcissistic ego.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:02 pm |
  17. Ken in California

    All I want to see on the White House web site, is where to find a job, so knock it off.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:02 pm |
  18. Pat, Twin Falls, Idaho

    Just what we need, Obama changing history to make him look good. Another lie.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
  19. Educated Single Mom

    No different than Mr. Romney constantly rewriting and reinventing himself. Jack with everything going on...why do you always focus on President Obama? I certainly do not agree with him all the time, but do you have to constantly focus on him? It is becoming so predictable. I wish you and CNN would have focused on Ron Paul more and perhaps this country would have had a better choice than Romney. Lighten up.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
  20. Mark in BC NV

    Can you say "egotistical and narcistic"? What an embarasment this dim-wit is. I'm so ashamed of being an American right now because my fellow Americans voted for this useless tool of a man. If you vote for this guy in November, may a thousand sheep crap in your house!

    May 17, 2012 at 2:08 pm |
  21. Gary H. Boyd

    Absolutely not Jack. What would be more appropriate would be for him to put forward a complete and detailed biography of himself. His background is so murky it is genuinely questionable. Place of birth, religious beliefs, education, and finances to name just a few. That he would choose to change the biographies of past Presidents is absurd.

    Gary in Scottsdale, Arizona

    May 17, 2012 at 2:08 pm |
  22. Cy Gardner

    A) It IS the White House website
    B) What did they "change"? They added information.
    C) He did promise change, remember?
    D) How often do you call attention to the "changes" your fellow "journalists" over at Fox make when they want a story to follow their preconceived narrative?
    CNN is just FOX with subtlety. I watch you less and less. cy from arlington, va

    May 17, 2012 at 2:09 pm |
  23. tom Bulger, Canandaigua, ny

    If the record is being corrected. It might not shock you, Jack, to hear that some of those past presidents were irredeemable liars.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
  24. Judy

    Wow Jack, this is a very misleading question, just like the politics of today. As you state in your blog, he didn't change the biographies. He merely added links pointing out truthful moments in the history of past presidents. I see nothing wrong with it..If you really want to attack Obama, please try to find something less petty.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:11 pm |
  25. Rich McKinney, Texas

    Appropriate? Definitely not but since when has Obama ever worried about propriety or for that mater facts. When you can't out do other presidents with your performance you have to make stuff up to look more important and successful then you were. I didn't read his Bio Jack but perhaps you could answer one question for me? Did he explain why gas is 100 percent higher then it was when he took office and how the economy is in the toilet still and unemployment is over 8 percent. That's not a very good legacy to be leaving behind. I think even Carter did a better job then Obama has.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:11 pm |
  26. Jenna Roseville CA

    Is it appropriate for President Obama to change the official biography pages of past presidents on the White House website?

    This is a non issue Jack. Do you need someone help you with questions? I've got plenty.Like:

    What do you think about House Majority Leader John Boehner threatening the nation with refusing to raise the debt ceiling again while also refusing to compromise with Democrats?

    Jenna
    Roseville CA

    May 17, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
  27. Doug Ericson

    If it is within Obama's right to to add adendumbs to the White House Web Site, Presidential Biographies, then it follows that future Presidents could subtract Obama's additions. I don't see any real harm, mainly because there isn't a handfull of folks that would go to the White Hoiuse Web Site to research past Presidents. I wonder what he put after Carters biography. He could write that he zapped Bin Laden and that interest rates are 17 points lower in his administration. Its kind of funny actually, the whole concept. Who thinks of these sort of things. I guess His Hallariousness, Joe Biden, will have to put his two cents in too, in the Vice Presidential biography section. Doug, Pepperell, MA.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
  28. Bob Melbourne, FL

    This is the same White House that after taking office wanted to indoctrinate our children in schools with videos on how they could influence their parents to help the government. The same administration who opened a website for people to report those who were not in favor of the affordable health care act. The same administration that when they don’t have a record worth running on sends investigators to dig up dirt on the other guys donors. Did anyone expect any less?????????

    May 17, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
  29. Patsy, Tx

    If they had actually "changed the biography pages of past Presidents on theWhite House website", it would not be
    appropriate. But since an "expert" said they did not "cross the line", your question is bogus. Your bias is
    becoming unattractive, Jack, and really boring.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:23 pm |
  30. Josh from New Orleans

    A president is using official website pages to gain a political edge? Shocker! The republicans are just upset that they didn't think of doing this themselves. But the republicans would probably take out certain things in the biographies, not adding to them like Obama did.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
  31. calaurore9

    Hope Mr. Obama doesn't have that much extra time on his hands. He should use it to write a happy ending for his own Presidential bio.

    Carol in NoHo, Ma

    May 17, 2012 at 2:28 pm |
  32. Paul From Round Rock, Texas

    No it is not proper or right. To compair his beleifes to past presidents say added to his bio would be ok but that does not seem to be the case. Let past presidents deeds and faults be thier soul story.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
  33. Frank Poynton from Los Angeles

    Here we go again, the Republicans have got their panties in a twist over a non issue. Its a wringing endorsement of their own folly.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
  34. viviennecolquhoun

    It's as appropriate as having a White House web site. It's the type of practice that makes the content more engaging for the reader, "IMHO", it's unfortunate that the reader can't be engaged in the content without the added commentary. An effective website is evaluated by it's clicks and page views, so, a webmaster, or in this case probably a web team has to resort this sort of practice, or they'll be fired and their jobs outsourced....

    May 17, 2012 at 2:36 pm |
  35. Dave R

    He's not changing anything. He's just adding to what is already there. Your question is based on the presumption that he has changed something. Shame of you.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
  36. george c paree

    He is unbelievabvle his ego is so big he mite take honura for george harry trunam the only honest president this centruy. chuck paree anderson in

    May 17, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
  37. viviennecolquhoun

    From Darlington, Maryland.

    It's as appropriate as a White House webs site. It's the sort of practice all web sites use to amp up their views, clicks, likes and shares. If the goal is to keep the content politically neutral then the White House website should be managed by career bureaucrats who can't be involved in politics of the various Administrations....but oh, wait, that's Big Government and Regulations. People need to realize you can't have it both ways.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
  38. Simon/Orlando

    It means his ego is bigger than all the other presidents combined.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
  39. Bert in Los Angeles

    Hi Jack, It is ok to change the official biography pages of past presidents as long as the change is the truth and not just "official." While Obama is at it, he should change the name of the "Buffett Rule" to the "Reagan Rule" and run it through Congress one more time. Naw, it won't work; today's official GOP has changed since Reagan and is Republican in name only, RINO!

    May 17, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
  40. jack stephen binion

    Entirely inappropriate behavior that diminishes the dignity of the office of the President.What's next, re-election ads on the side of Air Force One? A ten-meter campaign button on the Statue of Liberty?Leaving the legal aspects aside, this is just another example of the current administration's disdain for the culture and history of this country.

    May 17, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
  41. Terry in Virginia

    It's a bit tacky. Surprised Romney didn't think of it first, like he did with the auto bail out before he was against the bail out then for the bail out then ...

    May 17, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
  42. Gigi Oregon

    Your question is "Much to-do about nothing"...Is he wearing a cowboy suit or pilot garb while writing comments? If so then we have something to worry about. I think President Obama getting bin Laden is going to be with me on election day. And I didn't lose a son or grandson while he was captured and killed. And he is slowly but surely bringing a more sable feeling of HOPE too our household.

    May 17, 2012 at 3:02 pm |
  43. Martha Brooks

    It may be a "sin" with a small "s" but it's not exactly revisionist history. They added a tidbit on the end as favorable comparison to predecessors. It's OK because Romney hints that he's the reincarnation of Reagan. Never understand it, because I lived through the Reagan years and for many of us, they sucked!

    Martha, Rew, PA

    May 17, 2012 at 3:03 pm |
  44. Susan

    Jack: The question is moot since he did not 'change' anything. He merely placed the bios on the internet and commented on the content. I think it's interesting and thought provoking. If the Republicans had thought of it first and it worked to their advantage, they would have done it. They need to stop trying to making everything into a political target and tell us why we should vote FOR them and instead of just against someone else.

    May 17, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
  45. Larry in Houston

    Is it appropriate for President Obama to change the official biography pages of past presidents on the White House website?
    Answer : NO – not appropriate, Jack. period. I'm a Democrat – but I can see why the republicans are having a field day with this one. ""They say this is a commonly used internet practice to encourage people to explore further"" Hello ?? What do You Mean, ""a commonly USED INTERNET PRACTICE ??? From Reagan & Back, I don't believe they had the Internet way back then, did they ? or am I mistaken here ? A common internet practice For Other Things & Other Scenarios or Othe Situations, But NOT This Situation !!
    I can now see why obama is doing a lot of things differently than most anybody else, that was in his position, Jack. He "ain't" gonna make it, after November comes & goes. So he better do whatever he's gonna do Now. If I could Trust Romney that my social security Will Be There, when I turn 62, I would Vote for Romney. Since I'm only 57, I've got 5 more years, and believe me, I'm Taking the cut at 62, rather than going for the 65 thing !!
    Vote Democrat – (for the working people that makes Under 50K per yr) 2012

    May 17, 2012 at 3:10 pm |
  46. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    Appropriate? This is politics and perceptions are a key factor in winning votes. It's not a wonder that most people don't even vote anymore and become so cynical that they don't believe anything these people say. Do You?

    May 17, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
  47. Michelle

    The presidential biographies should remain neutral ground, above the partisan fray. The office of the presidency is greater than any sitting president, and the Obama team crossed a line when they failed to observe a clear separation between policy promotion and historical scholarshp.
    Atlanta, GA

    May 17, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
  48. mike acuna

    It seems our current president has no shame or limits to self promote himself. Since he has been in re-election mode he hasn't been very presidential.

    May 17, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
  49. Joe in Missouri

    Of course it is all right Jack, so long as President Obama understands that the next president will do the same to him.

    May 17, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
  50. Jayne in NH

    He's the President and he's got control of the web site so the answer is "yes."

    May 17, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
  51. NurseLisa in CT

    as he is sitting in the top chair at the white house, sure. Jack have you ever noted the occasionally ridiculous links at the bottom of some CNN stories?

    May 17, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
  52. Matt, Miami

    Not as bad as the shameless Mitt Romney taking credits for saving the Automobile Industry. BTW welcome to the 21st Century, Jack!

    May 17, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
  53. Ann from Charleston SC

    Politicians have been putting their spin on information for decades, centuries even. So why this question? Obama is comparing his ideas with those of his predecessors. What is inappropriate about that?

    May 17, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
  54. CRAIG R. MCNEES

    tampa, fl ever since he learned to photoshop his birth certificate, he just can't help himself to keep on re-writing history. it is not appropriate, nor was it appropriate to repaint on airforce 1 his campaign slogan and remove the USA flag from it as well. my tax dollars wasted again.

    May 17, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
  55. Kevin in CA

    Certainly, to create jobs ... and how many did it create?

    May 17, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
  56. Riley ODay

    He is commander in chief of the most poweful country in the world. He can do as he pleases.

    May 17, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
  57. Tom in Desoto, TX

    I want to see Boehner and his band write that George W Bush was instrumental in having a strong economy, putting millions to work, respecting peoples privacy, improving the countries infrastructure and have 2 unfunded wars, raising the nations security alert on a whim and driving the to points not seen since the 1930's. And, he did it all while lowering taxes for the rich. And since many republicans in power are Bush holdovers, explain how they won't do the same thing all over again. Now that would be a change.

    May 17, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
  58. Megan

    I found the additions inappropriate and, I hope, future administrations will refrain from following this example of hiding propaganda in history. The official biography page of a past president should only contain information regarding that president. It is that past president's homage – and should not be usurped by the current administration. President Obama has his own biography on the site – he can include his accomplishments there. Alternatively, he can even add a page to the website entitled "Mr. Obama Continues the Work of Past Presidents." But, inserting himself into other president's biographies appears childish and egotistical. Moreover, whoever made these additions acted like an Orwellian style Ministry of Truth designed to control history – something we should all be wary of.

    May 17, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
  59. Jane in CA

    Were the statements added truthful or false? If they were false, then it was deceitful and wrong. If they added additional accurate information, what is wrong with a more complete biography? Or do past presidents get to decide which facts and only which facts about their life are reported? Last time I checked, people were still writing new biographies of all kinds of people who have already had biographies written. The goal is to present new information or provide a different perspective. Is this any less appropriate because the author is a website? Perhaps the White House would not need to do this if the Republican party would just admit that he is an American citizen. But the RNC doesn't care how many of their websites call Obama a Kenyan.

    May 17, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
  60. Gail, Plano TX.

    Gee, Jack, I have no idea what you're talking about! Must be a slow news day!

    May 17, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
  61. Tom in Desoto, TX

    This is ludicrous at every level. It was stupid to do and if any one votes based on this...they really ought to take inventory of themselves. It's as meaningful as asking, "Who spends more time tanning, Mitt Romney or John Boehner"? By the way, who do you believe does and don't they have better things to do?

    May 17, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
  62. curtis in philadelphia

    I hope that George W. Bush's' biography contains the fact that W. Bush was the president who signed the Wall Street bailout, and that like W. Bush, Obama signed the General Motors bailout, and it's noted that GM is now profitable, whereas JPMorgan Chase just lost 2 billion dollars through murky trading.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
  63. Guy -Blanco, Texas

    All's fair in love and war. It's too bad he has not CHANGED and acknowledged his failures likewise. Guess the Teleprompter Czar deletes these.

    At least he has not added to the $5.5 trillion debt he has amassed in 3 years by spending money to move aside 2 of the President's images on Mt. Rushmore so he could put his in the middle!

    May 17, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
  64. Johnny C (from Los Angeles)

    Hi Jack -

    How many tax dollars were spent on this waste of time and energy? I think that states my opinion.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
  65. JB, Soldotna, AK

    Whats the beef Jack? This choosen Destroyer has not done anything Appropriate or for the Good of anyone other than him self & his Dream Act of bringing about that promised Fundamental Hope & Change to Believe in since Day 1. So why would any one expect any thing differant now? We are in some major trouble here Jack, Elephants, Donkeys or Hoot Owls all.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
  66. Michael, from Smiths, Alabama

    Why should it matter? As long as he's not attempting to rewrite presidential biographies, I see nothing wrong with it. The Republicans only want you to believe there's something "evil" about it, which is their typical strategy.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  67. David Doherty

    Why not, the more the American public knows about how our government functions the stronger our country is because of it. At least that's what I've been told all my life. What are those zany republicans complaining about now?
    Dave from NH.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
  68. julescator

    Slow news day? My goodness, Obama is a pillar of strength to put up with these ridiculous claims daily. It's a shame he doesn't have more "dirt" in his presidency for you to talk about. Goodness!

    May 17, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  69. BQ

    Well we gave him the keys to the house! Seams to me he can paint the walls any way he wants its his house.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  70. Bob

    It's every bit as appropriate as those who want to rewrite school history books which minimize Adams, Franklyn and Jefferson to make room to portray Phyllis Schlafly as the mother of modern conservatism and pillar of modern history.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  71. Mark m

    'hey did you know' is like pop up video for presidential bios.... Who doesn't like pop up video?

    May 17, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  72. Carolina

    I think it's perfectly appropriate...a website was updated with additional information, they didn't reprint history books. The RNC should try clicking the links, maybe they'll learn something.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  73. Stephanie in Seattle

    Of course it's not appropriate but this reveals how desperate obama is. Or... this is a perfect example of extreme narcissism gone wild. True narcissists really do see themselves in a lofty way and cannot fathom that others don't see them through the same lens. obama...he's no Lincoln, no Reagan, No Roosevelt, etc.. but someone should tell him.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  74. Tayhler A.

    Does it really matter. We both know he isn't going to slander their names, but merely make modifications. I don't see why this question is being asked. Not cnn news worthy. Sorry Jack.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  75. Phil

    Why not Jack? The right continuously rewrite the bible to promote their own narrow, biased, hateful views. Given that, the President's comments on his policy compared to those of his predecessors is nothing.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  76. Daysie, Ontario

    I don't think its necessarily appropriate, I mean using it to plug in your own agenda is just wrong; I like Obama but I think thats just naughty. Now if only he had the power to use a magic eraser for some of those Presidents in our Nations history... don't think I could oppose that.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  77. Scott from Tennessee

    Obama is using and doing everything he can to try and make himself look like a night in shining armor for this next election. I'm displeased that he's adding on to the past American Presidents' biography's for the sake of his campaign.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  78. TF MULDERIG

    HE WAS SUPPOSE TO BE TRANSPARENT.
    under clinton will they mention that vp gore created the internet. or that his vp is a plagerist

    May 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  79. Sandee Edwards

    He is not rewriting history. He has added a "link" for heaven's sake. This President is dam if he do and damn if he don't. Why don't you ask about the lies that are being spread about him from the republicans about his tenure in the White House. I am at a lost of words when I hear some of the lies that are being up-held on this network and others without any dispute. You only state what they say and press on. Get a backbone and show what the untruths are. It is time for everyone to be what you are paid to be, supposedly a journalist.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  80. JJ

    Are you getting all of your topics from the Drudge Report? More important things going on in this Country but this latest tomfoolery is just another excuse to bash the President. Silly season it is.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  81. Chris Teet

    It is absolutely not alright for Obama to do this. If some Joe Schmoe had gotten on there and put a link to his Facebook page, it would be removed almost immediately and he would likely be charged with criminal vandalism, so what gives Obama the right to do this, aside from his very mistaken belief that he can do whatever he wants without repercussions since he's the President?

    May 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  82. Linda

    Obviously Obama has very little interest in Americas financial state if he has time to dream about what he can adds to another Presidents biography. Please give us all a break

    May 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  83. Bill of New Mexico

    And, allow future presidents to add to Obama's biography in the White House webpage.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  84. Billy Bob

    Not appropriate at all. Mr. O. has embarrassed us all, from liberal Austin, TX

    May 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  85. Cee.La

    Who visits thiose pages anyway Jack? now all you have managed to do is add fuel to the fire, some of our resident nimnulls, will have it repeated as he is changing former presidents biographies......to suit himself........

    May 17, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  86. Phyllis G. Williams

    Is it appropriate for President Obama to change the official biography pages of past presidents
    on the White House website?

    I believe it is a normal thing for all Presidents to add to the biographies and be intelligent enough
    to know not to change them.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  87. Denise Glisson - West Palm Beach Florida

    Well, Jack, I guess Obama isn't enthralled with his own accomplishments, so he has to try to latch on to whatever he can to boost the perception that he's a mover and shaker.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  88. Ed Glover

    Jack, You stated in your report that other sitting President have engaged in this same "non-issue" since Calvin Coolidge. This would include G. W. Bush, Clinton, G.H.W. Bush, Reagan, Carter, Nixon . . . . . need I continue. This is, as I stated a non-issue. It doesn't improve anyone's posture as far as WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE TO BRING THIS COUNTRY BACK TO PROMINENCE! What started as a "bit" the in office of the President 83 years ago is just a distraction.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  89. Aaron

    Jack,

    I don't see what the big deal is here if what they're adding to these bio's is actually factual information. President Obama is simply drawing a correlation between his ideas and the ideas that were once in favor by U.S. citizens when these former presidents were in office. Again, I don't see what the big deal is.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  90. Dave in CT

    I doubt the President made any decision personally to include these "snippets". That being said the occupant of the office of President should have a much greater appreciation of history and posterity. I think it's a less overly dangerous example of an inability to lead from this administration. Perhaps a bipartisan commision can be formed to receive a report following a study exploring the affects of such modifications on future generations. With luck, there's enough government jobs created to positively affect the unempoyment rate too...

    May 17, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  91. Daysie, Ontario

    All I can think of is, "Its my Presidency and I'll change it if I want to, do what I want to, do what I want to. You would too if it happened to you..." (sing to the beat of "Its My Party") Hey, he did promise change... did he not?

    May 17, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
  92. Mike

    The additional comments are a comparison to the previous presidents statements to show how this president is the same and not this strange alien from another world that the right has portrayed and he has had to overcome.

    And by the way why is it that the GOP when ask if they think their actions are ok they respond with " Well the Democrats did it also",. Just FYI that is not LEADERSHIP sounds more like more of the same. Come out of the Bushes you guys.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
  93. Stephen, TX

    It was inappropriate action on behalf of his Presidency.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
  94. steve

    Jack, Obama is using Rules for Radicals again! This is rule # 8, "Keep the pressure on, with different tactics and actions, utilize all events of the period for your purpose."

    May 17, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
  95. Dave, Orlando, FL

    If he is correcting incorrect information or facts I suppose there is no harm in that. But if he is blowing his own horn again, he has just sunk to a new low.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
  96. Diallo Atlanta,Georgia

    I am a big supporter of the president but on this one I think they screwed up. Anything partaining the government must be timeless including what former presidents left as wrintings and so on. Altering the website entries is kinda like altering history.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  97. Jim Blackwell

    I think that every politician or ad should have a link added that shows the facts. We are becoming sound-bite dumb. I spend a lot of time tracking down the rest of the story or what is true/false about what is said. A link added to every bio, ad, speech linking to those things would be helpful. I like to know who else has supported things in the past also.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  98. Pat

    Jack, we all know you don't care for the President, however stop asking questions without the proper wording. Do you see what you have done on this site. Only a few people read the question properly, but you knew this would happen. You are targeting as "Fox News" do a certain group of people. I hope you got the answer you were expecting.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  99. eddy, providence, RI

    Jack, he did not change any thing he just added a link and I see nothing wrong with it....but your question seems to suggest that he'd. Try wording your questions without bias so we can make opinions bass on facts.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:39 pm |
  100. Jim C, Fairfax California

    It's an addition of opinion in the case of Reagan, using an arcane quote to tie in a current Obama re-election talking point. It's not remotely legitimate fact for a bio. These are not the pages to do this in – it comes across as petty and self-centered.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
  101. H.R

    As you said he didn't change anything he just added a link for Heavens sake. Will you please pick on someone else for a change, this is getting a little sick reading your questions to see what you are picking on him today for. For instance Mr. etch a sketch does stupid every single day and nothing bad is ever said about him. Some people need to go to Faux News to work.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
  102. Thinkforyourself, OK

    Will somebody please, STOP the MADNESS. I am sick of everything Oblama. I would like to sue this administration for pain and suffering.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
  103. Jennifer M in Winnipeg

    Mr. Obama has not made any changes or alterations to the factual history ... he has merely added a few notes at the bottom. I'm surprised you would even bring this up.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
  104. Ed Darrell

    Personally, I think the additions have been pushed too far, and look a little clumsy.

    However: 1. The biographies have not been changed at all - they were written by Hugh Sidey and Michael Beschloss originally, and they remain solid history.

    2. The link added to the correlating First Lady's biography is good internet protocol, and it makes the site even more useful for teachers, and for the students we teach.

    3. Unlike the Republican misfire on humor, the Obama-White-House added stuff is accurate, and good history.

    I'd be happier if the "Did You Know" sections included no commentary about current White House actions.

    But, where were you guys when the Bush White House mucked with these things? They made all the links go back to the Bush stuff, and took some liberties with the photos that I was uncomfortable with.

    I don't recall anyone from CNN, nor any other news outlet, saying anything at all, then. Why are you picking on Obama, whose oversight of this history information has been stellar up to now?

    May 17, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
  105. Margot in Washington

    Why is it that everything President Obama says or does is put under such intense scrutiny??? I think, once again, it is the media trying to drum up controversy over something that just really isn't all that important........With the war in Afghanistan, budget battles again, and so many other important issues-this is a true waste of time and energy. You people in the media need to start acting like Walter Cronkite and quit acting like the "National Enquirer"..........

    May 17, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
  106. leelee

    First of all your misleading question "change the official biography pages of past presidents" belongs on Faux News. What has happened to CNN?? He did not change the pages. He only added links at the bottom that compares his info. Links that can be easily removed by the next president. The links are not part of the bios. And yes it is a common internet practice, try checking out your own CNN website. It absolutely ridiculous the way you guys focus on every little thing this president does. What's next, how he uses the bathroom?? If you gave Romney half of the scrutiny you give this pres...oh but wait, that would be too fair and balanced.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
  107. Jack - Lancaster, Ohio

    Mr. Cafferty:

    If the biographies are history, and my history professor said that history is "what happened" assuming you can read the truth, then it is okay. However, many history books have been proven wrong, controlled by government edict and government "historians" therefore many sources for history cannot be trusted, its like congress, Jack !

    May 17, 2012 at 4:45 pm |
  108. Jan in Wa. State

    Good grief! Don't we have important things to worry about. He didn't CHANGE the biographies, he added links to information. Heaven forbid someone might actually learn something. At least they are not changing textbooks like Texas to fit their view of history. I am so sick of the petty nit picking by GOP. They make themselves look like the bully in the school yard. How pathetic.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
  109. Lory

    Doesn't Obama and this "team: have more important things to be doing? Are we going to let all the presidents do this from now on???

    May 17, 2012 at 4:55 pm |