Entries in YouTube (6)


Going Beyond Cat Videos: YouTube Brings Congress to the People

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Move over C-SPAN, YouTube is now bringing Congress to the people. All members of the U.S. Congress were invited earlier this week to start live-streaming video from their YouTube channels.

“Whether it’s to share a look into your daily work, broadcast speeches and meetings, or showcase events in your district, we can’t wait to see how you connect with your constituents,” a news release from YouTube says.

Congress can hardly wait, either. The House and Senate both issued “Dear Colleague” letters to congressional members urging them to use the technology offered by YouTube.

“This technology allows Members to communicate with constituents in real time at no cost,” Reps. Candice Miller, R-Mich., and Robert Brady, D -Pa., wrote in the House “Dear Colleague" letter.

Sens. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and Lamar Alexander, R- Tenn., echoed the message in a letter addressing the upper chamber. The letter made sure to specify that “this free service complies fully with Senate Internet Regulations,” to which YouTube also adheres.

Although a congressional address has yet to go viral, YouTube’s relationship to politics is anything but random.

Chelsea Maughan, a YouTube spokeswoman, says the 2012 U.S. presidential and vice presidential debates were watched live in more than 200 countries and territories around the world. Combined, the four videos garnered more than 27 million views, which is more than double the views of the original version of the Internet hit “Charlie Bit Me.”

YouTube believes such viewership is what drives video content, and will ultimately bridge communication between politicians and constituents. Time will tell how this partnership plays out, but both parties are optimistic about the prospects.

“Video plays a powerful role in bringing us closer together, especially when it connects people in real time,” a YouTube statement read.

“By transcending borders, empowering citizens and increasing transparency, it’s one of the many ways technology allows democracy to thrive.”

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Pearl Jam Guitarist Makes Plea for Obamacare

David Becker/WireImage(NEW YORK) -- Mike McCready, the lead guitarist for the ’90s grunge band Pearl Jam, tells a personal story of his own pre-existing medical condition during a video in which he urges voters to cast their ballot for President Obama on Nov. 6.

McCready suffers from Crohn’s disease, a chronic illness of the gastrointestinal tract. In a video released Monday on Pearl Jam’s official YouTube channel and entitled “Life is a Pre-existing Condition,” he speaks about his personal struggles with insurance companies and how the Affordable Care Act has affected him.

“I’ve been denied coverage two times in my life,” McCready says, as he wanders through a wooded area. “And it’s after I’ve been in a big, successful rock band. I have met a lot of people who have been denied coverage who don’t have the resources to fight insurance companies, and they shouldn’t have to do that.”

“Because of President Obama’s Affordable Care Act, we’re about to have health care for everyone. It really means that, you know, for myself, I have a pre-existing condition and I feel like I have some hope. Anybody that doesn’t have the kind of means that I have will have it too,” he said.

The video was produced with McCready’s friend, filmmaker Jesse Dylan. It ends with encouraging voters to end discrimination against people with pre-existing conditions by casting their ballots on election day.

McReady isn’t the only Pearl Jam member supporting Obama. Last month, lead singer Eddie Vedder was spotted at a $20,000 per plate Obama fundraising dinner in Florida.

McCready went public with his illness in 2003 while he was on tour promoting Pearl Jam’s album Riot Tour.

Speaking to the Northwest Chapter of the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America in 2003, McCready described what it was like to live with Crohn’s while on the road.  “Playing onstage, I’m always aware of where the bathrooms are,” he admits. “When Crohn’s hits, I have to run, or it won’t be pretty.”

But the issues surrounding chronic illness have become especially salient this election cycle with Republican Mitt Romney promising to dismantle the Affordable Care Act without clarifying if he would keep the protections for those with pre-existing conditions.

Romney’s website says the candidate will fight to “prevent discrimination against individuals with pre-existing conditions who maintain continuous coverage.” There is still confusion on whether or not this will keep in place the protections for people who are currently uninsured, as they have not had continuous coverage.

Romney said in the first debate that he had a plan to deal with pre-existing conditions, but did not go into detail on how it would address those who have had significant gaps in their coverage.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


WATCH: Nancy Pelosi Dancing Queen at Barney Frank’s Wedding

Win McNamee/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi is known for her ability to work the House floor for votes on legislation, but it is her moves on the dance floor at Rep. Barney Frank’s wedding reception last weekend that’s drawing attention now — on Youtube.

Video from a cellphone shows Pelosi swaying and twirling with Frank’s best man, Terry Bean, to ZZ Top’s “Sharp Dressed Man” Saturday, at Frank and longtime partner Jim Ready’s wedding reception in Newton, Mass.  

The nuptials make Frank, who is retiring from Congress when his term ends in January, the first sitting congressman to enter into a same-sex marriage.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


California Democrat Boogies to 'Call Me Maybe'

YouTube(WASHINGTON) -- It's the country's reigning No. 1 hit on the Hot 100 Billboard chart, and one U.S. lawmaker apparently likes it so much that she participated in a summer intern video project, dancing to Carly Rae Jepsen's "Call Me Maybe."

The YouTube video, which was posted June 29 by the account "LorettaSanchezLive," begins outside Rep. Loretta Sanchez's Capital Hill office, as the opening bars of the popular song begin to play.

The camera enters, showing staff working hard in tight quarters in the Longworth House Office Building when Sanchez, D-Calif., is finally revealed behind her desk trying to figure out the choreography parodied in a viral video by the Harvard baseball team.

Until the song's chorus, Sanchez is struggling to get the timing of the moves down when suddenly three interns pop up from the concealed position in front of the lawmaker's desk to demonstrate how it's done.

Sanchez, 52, then catches on quickly, performing the routine in unison with her young colleagues.  

After about one minute, she is shown seated casually at her desk when she says, "Everybody have a safe and Happy Fourth of July."

The video was shot Friday as the office winded down the busy week and gave the interns a break from their regular duties of answering phones, leading tours of the Capitol and helping sort mail, according to a spokeswoman.

"The video seemed like a great way to inject lightheartedness into the week and welcome the holiday weekend," Sanchez's press secretary, Adrienne Watson, told ABC News. "We appreciate our interns so much. We want them to learn a lot, but we want them to have fun, too."

"Loretta has a sense of humor," she added. "Most Americans can't escape hearing this ultimate summer song. Out interns saw the baseball team's spoof and showed it to the congresswoman and then they spearheaded their own spoof."

There are no other intern video projects posted to Sanchez's YouTube account.  The clip was first reported by National Journal.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


President Obama Answers YouTube Users' Questions

Photo Courtesy - The White House(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama appeared on YouTube Thursday to answer a variety of questions that ranged from the serious to the frivolous.

The president had plenty of queries to choose from -- the White House was swamped with about 140,000 questions.

Asked to go more in depth about proposals made during his State of the Union address, Obama pretty much stuck to Tuesday's night script.  He vowed to draw the line on discretionary spending and said that in order for America to remain competitive, it must "out-build, out-educate, out-innovate every other country."

On the hot topic of Egypt, the president urged both sides in the growing political dispute not to respond with violence.

Obama also reiterated his support for embattled Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak as an important U.S. ally, but cautioned his counterpart that it was time to move forward on political, economic and social reforms demanded by his people.

As for the lighter side of the YouTube appearance, Obama was adamant about not picking a favorite for the upcoming Super Bowl game between the Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers, especially since his beloved Chicago Bears were eliminated last weekend by Green Bay.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


White House Goes to the Web for State of the Union Policy Push

Image Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) – While President Obama will deliver his State of the Union address Tuesday night, he and White House officials will be available online all week to talk about their current initiatives.

Major networks will be carrying Tuesday night’s speech, but it will also be available online at Following the speech, those who tweet can find four different White House officials on Twitter under the handle @whitehouse and by using the hashtag #sotu. Among those answering questions Tuesday night will be Brian Deese, Deputy Director of the National Economic Council, and Ben Rhodes, Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications.

On Wednesday night, outgoing White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs will also answer questions on Twitter. He can be reached @PressSec before his daily briefing that day, and participants are asked to use the hashtag #1Q. Gibbs will later post video responses to selected questions.

President Obama will do a live YouTube interview on Thursday at 2:30 p.m. Eastern, where users can submit questions at

Also on Thursday, there will be four discussion panels focused on the economy, foreign policy, education, and health care, which will be made available online for question submission.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio