White House Defends Fundraising During Overseas Crises

A White House spokesman on Monday said it was not a mistake for President Barack Obama to attend fundraisers in New York City last week as two crises erupted abroad, insisting the president “was able to fulfill his responsibilities as commander in chief and as the leader of this country from the road.”

Obama did not change his schedule last Thursday, which included political events and fundraisers in Delaware and New York, after a passenger airliner was shot down over Ukraine and the Israeli military launched a ground operation into Gaza to combat Hamas.

Critics of the president said Obama put politics ahead of his responsibilities as commander in chief.

But White House press secretary Josh Earnest said the president had everything he needed to address the overseas crises.

“When the president travels, he travels with an array of staff and advisers and communications equipment that allows him to do his job from wherever he happens to be,” Earnest said.

Earnest added that there are no plans for the president to cancel upcoming fundraisers this week.

White House: No Regrets Over Obama's Schedule on Day of MH17 Crash 1:09

-- Andrew Rafferty