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Ben Wolfgang

Ben Wolfgang

Ben Wolfgang covers the White House for The Washington Times.

Before joining the Times in March 2011, Ben spent four years as a political reporter at the Republican-Herald in Pottsville, Pa.

He can be reached at [email protected].

Articles by Ben Wolfgang

President Obama speaks at Justice Department headquarters in D.C. on Friday.

Obama calls for immediate checks, long-term changes to NSA snooping

The NSA will now have to go to a judge before snooping through Americans' phone records, President Obama announced Friday as he set an eventual goal of prying the phone metadata information away from the intelligence community altogether. Published January 17, 2014

FILE - In this Dec. 20, 2013 file photo, President Barack Obama speaks during an end-of-the year news conference in the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House in Washington. Capping a monthslong review, Obama is expected to back modest changes to the government’s surveillance network at home and abroad while largely leaving the framework of the controversial programs in place, including the bulk collection of phone records from millions of Americans.  (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

Obama to continue modified NSA meta-data gathering program

President Obama on Friday will announce some changes to how data gathered by the National Security Agency is stored but will allow the collection of that information to continue, according to multiple media reports. Published January 17, 2014

President Obama will announce changes to U.S. spying, surveillance and data-collection efforts in a speech at the Justice Department on Friday. Privacy advocates have low expectations from the president on whose watch U.S. surveillance has expanded. The speech is in response to a White House panel's recommendations. (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Little change expected in U.S. surveillance policy

If the skeptics are correct, President Obama is about to embrace and endorse many of the controversial national-security tools and tactics introduced by his predecessor, despite railing against those policies while campaigning for the Oval Office in 2008. Published January 16, 2014

PHOTO ILLUSTRATION President Barack Obama leans over to kiss first lady Michelle Obama after she introduced him after speaking about college education at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building across from the White House in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014. The event which is to promote opportunities for students to attend and finish college and university, was attended by college and university presidents and leaders from nonprofits, foundations, governments and businesses. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Obama collects college commitments on tuition costs

As part of a larger plan to work around a recalcitrant Congress, President Obama went after rising college tuition costs by charging an “admission” fee to the more than 100 university leaders who attended Thursday’s summit on the issue at the White House. Published January 16, 2014

Former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden "would love" to return to the U.S. "if the conditions were right," his top legal adviser Jesselyn Radack said on CBS' "Face the Nation" on Sunday. (ASSOCIATED PRESS photographs)

Obama faces 'day of action' to protest NSA reforms

With exceedingly low expectations for President Obama's long-awaited reforms to U.S. surveillance programs, critics now are planning a 'day of action' to voice their displeasure and disappointment with the White House and the National Security Agency. Published January 16, 2014

Maria Contreras-Sweet, founder and board chairman of a Latino-owned community bank in Los Angeles, accompanied by President Barack Obama, waves as they enter the South Court Auditorium of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on the White House complex in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014, where the president announced he would nominate Contreras-Sweet to head the Small Business Administration (SBA) . (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Obama announces new head of Small Business Administration

President Obama on Wednesday named his choice to lead the Small Business Administration and established an electronics technology hub in North Carolina, but those and other steps won’t bridge the gaps that still exist between his administration and the broader business community. Published January 15, 2014

President Barack Obama speaks about the economy, jobs, and manufacturing, Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014, at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, N.C. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Obama launches research hub in North Carolina

Following up on his pledge to make 2014 a year of executive action on the economy and other issues, President Obama on Wednesday designated Raleigh, N.C., as the new hotspot in electronics research. Published January 15, 2014

John Engler, president of the Business Roundtable, speaks with editors and reporters of The Washington Times in December. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times) ** FILE **

Roundtable to Obama: 'Start a business' to aid economy

President Obama has vowed to take a variety of unilateral actions in his second term to boost the economy, but one of the leading voices in the American business community said Wednesday that the president, if he truly wants to help jump-start the economy, should start his own business. Published January 15, 2014

ASSOCIATED PRESS

No Spain, no gain: Obama praises country's recovery

With the U.S. still struggling to fully rebound from the Great Recession, President Obama on Monday lauded Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy for the progress he's made in stabilizing his country's economy and shepherding Spain to back-to-back quarters of fiscal growth. Published January 13, 2014

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, left, shakes hands with President Barack Obama after their meeting in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Obama dodges questions on Gates' book

President Obama on Monday wouldn't wade into the firestorm created by Robert Gates' book and instead lauded the former defense secretary's service. Published January 13, 2014

**FILE** White House press secretary Jay Carney listens to a question during his daily news briefing at the White House in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014, where he discussed topics including former Defense Secretary Robert Gates' book and press access at the White House. (Associated Press)

White House pushes back against Gates allegations

The Obama administration pushed back Monday against former Defense Secretary Robert Gates' allegations that the president lacks "passion" when it comes to most military matters. Published January 13, 2014

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden delivers a speech next to the coffin of late Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon outside the Knesset, Israel's Parliament, in Jerusalem, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. (AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner)

Joe Biden praises the late Ariel Sharon at memorial service in Israel

President Obama may have come off as lukewarm in his praise for the late Ariel Sharon, but Vice President Joseph R. Biden on Monday praised the late Israeli prime minister in a 17-minute eulogy that included quotations from Shakespeare, the Book of Genesis and Irish novelist James Joyce. Published January 13, 2014

In this Jan. 9, 2014, photo, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie speaks during a news conference at the Statehouse in Trenton, N.J.  Christie has fired a top aide who engineered political payback against a town mayor, saying she lied. Deputy Chief of Staff Bridget Anne Kelly is the latest casualty in a widening scandal that threatens to upend Christie's second term and likely run for president in 2016. Documents show she arranged traffic jams to punish the mayor, who didn't endorse Christie for re-election.  (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

N.J. lawmaker: Christie's 'Bridgegate' denials not credible

A New Jersey lawmaker leading the investigation into the so-called "Bridgegate" scandal said Sunday that Gov. Chris Christie's claim to have known nothing about September lane closures on the George Washington Bridge simply isn't believable. Published January 12, 2014

The book titled "Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary of War," by former Defense Secretary Robert Gates is seen in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014. The White House is bristling over former Defense Secretary Robert Gates' new memoir accusing President Barack Obama of showing too little enthusiasm for the U.S. war mission in Afghanistan and sharply criticizing Vice President Joe Biden's foreign policy instincts. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

McCain, Rubio: Gates should have waited to publish book

A pair of Republican senators said Sunday that former Defense Secretary Robert Gates should've waited to publish his bombshell book that contains scathing critiques of President Obama, Vice President Joseph R. Biden and others within the administration. Published January 12, 2014

Rudolph W. Giuliani

Giuliani emerges as Christie's biggest defender

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is still under fire for the so-called "Bridgegate" scandal, but he's found a vocal ally in former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani. Published January 12, 2014

**FILE** Karl Rove (Associated Press)

Rove: Bridge scandal won't sink Christie

The presidential hopes of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie likely will survive the unfolding George Washington Bridge scandal, leading Republican strategist Karl Rove said Sunday. Published January 12, 2014