Feb. 27, 2009
"Let me say this as plainly as I can. By August 31, 2010, our combat mission in Iraq will end."
President Obama, speaking at Camp LeJeune in North Carolina as he announces his plan to withdrawal troops from Iraq
Obama fulfills one of his central campaign promises by announcing his plan to pull out most combat troops from Iraq by August 2010 and all troops by the end of 2011. He sets the scene by traveling outside the Beltway and delivering his remarks with a sea of camouflage-clad Marines standing in the background.
While some in his own party express their frustration with the number of residual troops his plan leaves behind until 2011 about 35,000 to 50,000 initially Obama gets some backing from his former election opponent John McCain, who expresses a cautious endorsement of the plan.
Meanwhile, Vice President Biden gets to work as head of the Middle Class Task Force with his first meeting in Philadelphia. He puts the focus on green jobs as part of the economic recovery during the event.