ABOARD AIR FORCE ONE (AP) — The tallest mountain in North America may no longer carry the name of President William McKinley -- but the White House says it's going to work with officials in Ohio to find another way to honor the nation's 25th president.
Officials in Ohio -- which was McKinley's home state -- are voicing outrage over the announcement that Mount McKinley in Alaska will be renamed Denali. That's the name that Alaskans have used, informally, for centuries. It means, "the high one."
President Barack Obama arrives later today in Alaska for a three-day visit. On the plane to Alaska, spokesman Josh Earnest showed off new National Park Service maps with the mountain designated as Denali.
Ohio Republicans are denouncing the name change. Congressman Bob Gibbs calls it a "political stunt" that he says is "insulting to all Ohioans." He says he'll try to find a way to block it.
Obama's excursion north of the Arctic Circle will make him the first sitting president to set foot in the Alaska Arctic, home to Alaska Natives.
But the primary focus of the trip is global warming. Obama is hoping to underscore the urgency of fighting climate change in the U.S. and overseas.
191-w-36-(Mark Smith, AP White House correspondent, with Senator Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska)--President Obama is heading to Alaska for a three-day trip focused on how climate change is dramatically altering America's biggest state. AP White House Correspondent Mark Smith reports. (31 Aug 2015)
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193-a-10-(Senator Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, in video posted on Facebook)-"people of Alaska"-Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski says President Obama deserves credit for backing this change. (31 Aug 2015)
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APPHOTO WX101: FILE - In this undated file photo, William McKinley, 25th President of the United States. He was inaugurated in 1897, and again in 1901 just prior to being assassinated on Sept. 6, 1901. Even before he arrived on a historic trip to Alaska, President Barack Obama was making waves over his decision to rename its famed Mount McKinley, named for President McKinley, as Denali, a move applauded in Alaska and derided more than 3,000 miles away in Ohio. (AP Photo, File) (31 Aug 2015)
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APPHOTO LA102: FILE - This Aug. 27, 2014 file photo shows Mount McKinley in Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska. President Barack Obama on Sunday, Aug. 30, 2015 said he's changing the name of the tallest mountain in North America from Mount McKinley to Denali. (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer, File) (31 Aug 2015)
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