The Presidential Planner

By Caitlin Taylor

Mar 10, 2010 7:00am

ABC News' Sunlen Miller reports: President Obama will meet with Haitian President Rene Préval in the Oval Office this morning.  Following the meeting, both presidents will make statements to the press in the Rose Garden. President Preval is in Washington for three days to discuss the rebuilding of his country ahead of a major donors conference in New York late this month. During a meeting with Secretary of State Clinton yesterday, Preval said now was the time to build a new Haiti, not like the one that existed before the quake. “Today we are faced with a historical situation that will allow us to rebuild, re-found this country,” Preval said Tuesday. “To rebuild Port au Prince as it was before would be a major historical mistake.” In attendance for the Rose Garden statements late this morning will be Members of Congress; representatives of non-governmental organizations and foundations involved in the relief effort; Haitian-American community leaders; U.S. government personnel who served in Haiti in the immediate aftermath of the earthquake, including from the USNS Comfort, International Medical Surgical Response, and Disaster Assistance Response Teams; and members of Urban Search and Rescue teams from Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, Fairfax, and Virginia Beach, the White House says. In the afternoon, the President will travel to St. Louis, Missouri, where he will hold his second event of the week devoted to health insurance reform. White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said yesterday the president thinks it’s important to get out of Washington, DC to make the case for what would happen if health care reform is not passed. “The president wants to make the case  again for what happens if we walk away, what happens if we start over.  If we walk away and start over, individuals continue to get letters watching their health insurance go up, again, 39, 60, 20  percent.  The president believes it's important to demonstrate again for the American people why health-care reform is so important.” In the evening, the President will deliver remarks at two fundraising events for Missouri Senator Claire McCaskill and then will return to Washington, DC in the late evening. –Sunlen Miller

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