Archive for January 14th, 2013

14
Jan
13

This and That

Greg Sargent: So the big story of the day is that House Tea Partyers are vowing up and down that they may be willing to allow the country to default on its obligations to prove to Obama how serious they are about cutting spending.

Today, at his presser, Obama reiterated that there will be no negotiating over the debt ceiling….

…. even more so than the fiscal cliff battle, this year’s debt ceiling fight is shaping up as a kind of epic final confrontation — perhaps the Tea Party’s last chance to force Obama to do what the what American people emphatically declared in the election that don’t want, i.e., solve the country’s fiscal problems primarily by dramatically shrinking government, unraveling the safety net, and sparing the rich more sacrifice. And while we should reserve judgment until we see what happens in the end, Obama is certainly behaving like someone who is determined to break the Tea Party once and for all.

Full post here

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Charles Pierce: …  Today’s action-packed episode is another in their continuing series: Stuff Republicans Tell Us That We Will Print Verbatim….

In this installment, our intrepid gumshoes manage to pry loose quotes from various vandals and dumbasses … to the effect that they have every intention of blowing up the American economy over the next few weeks if they don’t get absolutely everything they absolutely want. (There are drug gangs in Mexico who are more open to negotiations than these people.) ….

…. Presented with a clear example of how the Republicans have become demented …. Politico instead presents this information merely as a threat to the speakership of John Boehner, as though that’s all that’s at risk here. (This problem might have been solved if the two newshounds had talked to, you know, Democrats, but this is Politico, and y’all know better than that) ….

Full post here

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Photo by Democratic Underground – read about it at ThinkProgress

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NYT: Several parents whose children were killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting joined the national debate on gun violence on Monday, gathering to begin sketching their response to the massacre by helping start a nonprofit organization intended to help prevent the kind of bloodshed that turned this quaint New England community into a national symbol of grief.

In some of their first public statements since the Dec. 14 shooting that killed 20 children and 6 staff members at the school, the families of 11 of the children and adult victims appeared at a news conference and called for a national dialogue around issues of mental health, school safety and what their organization, called Sandy Hook Promise, described as “gun responsibility.”

Full article here

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ThinkProgress

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Steve Benen: Though much of the right has been unhappy with Vice President Biden’s task force on gun violence, an unscripted comment Biden made last week caused conservatives to ring the alarm even more aggressively …. “The president is going to act. There are executive orders, executive action that can be taken….”

…. the right, without having seen the still-unwritten orders, accused President Obama of taking dictatorial actions on guns without congressional approval…

…. The fact that Bush/Quayle administration issued an executive order on guns, within its legal authority, did not mean the then-president had seized authoritarian power in a bloodless coup …. So can we stop pretending perfectly legal executive orders are evidence of creeping tyranny?

Full post here

….. meanwhile:

TPM

:roll:

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Greg Sargent: Yep: The NRA represents an extreme worldview. A new Post poll finds that 65 percent of Americans support banning high capacity magazine clips; 58 percent support an assault weapons ban; and a whopping 88 percent support closing the gun show loophole.

Also: 89 percent of Republicans support closing that loophole, and 69 percent of Republicans support requiring background checks on those buying gun ammunition.

Meanwhile, a new Pew poll finds solid to overwhelming majorities support background checks, a federal gun-tracking database, and bans on assault weapons and high capacity magazine clips….

More here

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Pierce was in spectacularly excellent form today:

Charles Pierce: The voices inside the head of Washington Post blogger Jennifer Rubin are unanimous in their dislike for Chuck Hagel … I think this is an unusual display of harmony for the voices inside Jennifer Rubin’s head since, during the presidential campaign just past, all the voices in Jennifer Rubin’s head had different opinions regarding Willard Romney. Was he merely awesome? Super awesome? Super-duper awesome? Super-duper-infinity awesome? Or was he a steaming super-duper-infinity awesome hunk of brilliantly coiffed man-meat who could make the bobsleds run on time while hitting Lady Liberty’s G-spot until she crooned “Columbia, The Gem Of The Ocean.” Now, though, all the voices hate Chuck Hagel. It must be a lot quieter around Rubin’s ears these days….

Full post here (thanks Susanne)

14
Jan
13

The News Conference

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WH press listen as President Obama answers ‘no diversity’ charge (sorry for pic quality, there was a lot of glare)

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PM Carpenter: Consider the mortifying irony: The president of the most powerful and one of the more literate nations on earth has been reduced to holding press conferences in which he must explain–and explain, and explain–for the edification of that nation’s most ignorant but also most internally powerful political faction that two and two make four and that bills accumulated really should be paid.

Full post here

Thank you Ladyhawke

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“Please proceed, Chuckie.” (Or Major Garrett? I have no clue, they all look the same, front and back)

President Obama tries to educate Chuck Todd: “So, on one side there’s spending, on the other cuts, and… are you following??”

President Obama gives up trying to educate Chuck Todd – he’s lots of things, but he’s not a miracle worker

That ‘I’m trying really, really, really hard to take you seriously, you dick, but you are not making it easy’ face

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14
Jan
13

Heads Up: President Obama news conference (11:30 EST)

11:30 AM EST: President Obama Holds a News Conference

Also at:

White House live

14
Jan
13

Rise and Shine

Ooooh, it’s nearly time again – get all the latest news at the Inauguration website

USA Today: President Obama’s second inaugural? There’s now an app for that. The Presidential Inauguration Committee plans to announce Monday it has created an iPhone and Android app that enables people to follow next week’s events as Obama is sworn in for a second term.

The app will provide livestream video of inaugural events, including the Jan. 21 swearing-in ceremony. There are also schedules for nationwide events associated with the inauguration, including the National Day of Service on Saturday.

More here

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Update: President Obama will hold a news conference at 11:15 a.m. today

Today:

11:0: VP Biden meets with Members of the House of Representatives

12:0: Jay Carney briefs the press

2:30: The President and VP meet with Secretary of State Clinton

3:0: President Obama participates in an Ambassador Credentialing Ceremony (closed press) – Ambassadors from Poland, Japan, Zambia, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Paraguay, Tuvalu, Maldives and Mexico will attend

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TPM: Vice President Joe Biden is scheduled to meet with House Democrats’ task force to reduce gun violence at 11 a.m. ET Monday. The House members joining Biden are: Rep. Mike Thompson (CA), Rep. Bobby Scott (VA), Rep. Chaka Fattah (PA), Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (NY), Rep. Jackie Speier (CA), Rep. Elizabeth Esty (CT),  Rep. William Enyart (IL), Rep. Ed Perlmutter (CO), Rep. Bennie Thompson (MS), Rep. John Conyers (MI), Rep. John Dingell (MI), Rep. Ron Barber (AZ).

Attorney General Eric Holder, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano will also attend the meeting in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building.

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NBC: Newtown Police Chief Michael Kehoe has a message for the White House: “Ban assault weapons, restrict those magazines that so have so many bullets in them, shore up any loopholes in our criminal background checks,” he said in an exclusive interview with NBC News.

As Vice President Joe Biden prepares to present his gun violence proposals to the White House this week, the residents of Newtown — including first responders and some families of the victims — are speaking out on gun policy for the first time.

Few have a more personal connection to the issue than Kehoe: He was one of the first on the scene at the Sandy Hook Elementary School ….   as a veteran law enforcement officer, what was most striking to Kehoe was that the gunman, 20-year-old Adam Lanza, had heavier firepower than Kehoe and his officers. The police had Glock pistols with 14-round magazines;  Lanza had a Bushmaster assault-style rifle, two handguns and multiple 30-round magazines that allowed him to squeeze off an estimated 150 shots….

More here

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Washington Post: Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley will seek to institute some of the nation’s strictest gun-licensing requirements, ban assault weapons and restrict visitor access to schools in one of the most expansive government responses sought to last month’s school shooting in Newtown, Conn.

Perhaps most controversially, O’Malley (D) will ask the General Assembly to force prospective gun owners to provide fingerprints to state police, complete a hands-on weapon-familiarization and gun-safety course, and undergo a background check to be licensed.

And the governor is seeking new measures to keep guns out of the hands of those with mental illness who show violent tendencies…..

Full article here

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Read Steve Benen here

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TPM: The White House’s weekend ultimatum that Congress either lift the debt ceiling cleanly or take responsibility for default puts Republicans in a bind over their goal of reforming entitlement programs.

In ruling out all executive options, such as minting a high-value platinum coin, the White House put the onus on congressional Republicans to agree to raise the nation’s borrowing limit — without spending cuts or strings attached — or permit the first ever credit default. President Obama has steadfastly rebuffed their calls to cut social spending in exchange for raising the debt ceiling, and Democratic leaders support his position.

More here

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