President Obama, March 18, 2011.
President Obama, March 18, 2011. AP
Republican and Democratic lawmakers alike, as well as journalists, have asked White House officials: why doesn't President Obama address the nation about Libya?
The president has heard those calls. The White House said late Friday Obama will speak Monday evening.
Their news release:
WASHINGTON—On Monday, March 28 at 7:30PM ET, the President will deliver an address at the National Defense University in Washington, DC to update the American people on the situation in Libya, including the actions we've taken with allies and partners to protect the Libyan people from the brutality of Moammar Qaddafi, the transition to NATO command and control, and our policy going forward.
Lawmakers have criticized Obama for not consulting Congress enough before sending the U.S. military into action over Libya with forces from other nations to enforce a UN-sanctioned no-fly zone.
Critics have questioned what exactly the goal is of U.S. participation in the international action against Moammar Gadhafi's regime. While the president has said U.S. policy is that the Libyan strongman should go, the military action's aim was to stop Gadhafi's forces from slaughtering the regime's opponents in Benghazi and elsewhere.
Obama spoke with a group of lawmakers Friday to update them on the Libya operation.
The White House offered the following "readout" of that meeting:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 25, 2011
REVISED: Readout of the President's Meeting with Members of Congress on Libya
On March 25, President Obama briefed a bipartisan, bicameral group of Members of Congress on the situation in Libya. The President and his team provided an update on accomplishments to date, including the full transfer of enforcement of the no-fly zone to NATO, and yesterday's unanimous agreement among NATO allies to direct planning for NATO to assume command and control of the civilian protection component in accordance with UNSCR 1973. Following the briefing, the President answered multiple questions from the Members of Congress. The discussion lasted approximately one hour and took place in the White House Situation Room.
Joining from the Administration
Chief of Staff Bill Daley
National Security Advisor Tom Donilon
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (via phone)
CJCS Mike Mullen
GEN Carter Ham (via via video conference)
Bipartisan bicameral group of members of Congress that participated (in person or by phone)
Speaker John Boehner
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor
House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi
House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer
Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell
Senate Republican Whip Jon Kyl
Representative Adam Smith
Senator Carl Levin
Senator John McCain
Senator John Kerry
Senator Richard Lugar
Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen
Representative Howard Berman
Senator Dianne Feinstein
Senator Saxby Chambliss
Representative Mike Rogers
Representative C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger
Senator Daniel Inouye
Senator Thad Cochran
Representative Hal Rogers
Representative Norm Dicks