12
Jul
13

Rise and Shine

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Today:

The President has no public events scheduled

12:45 Jay Carney briefs the press

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NYT Editorial: In the House, a Refusal to Govern

On two crucial issues this week, the extremists who dominate the Republican majority in the House of Representatives made it clear how little interest they have in the future prosperity of their country, or its reputation for fairness and decency.

The House will refuse to consider a comprehensive immigration bill that could lead to citizenship for millions of immigrants, Republican leaders said on Wednesday, and will slowly and casually consider a few border-security measures that have no chance of passing on their own.

And, on Thursday, the House passed a farm bill that stripped out the food stamp program, breaking a pact that for decades has protected the nutrition needs of low-income Americans. It was the first time since 1973 that food stamps haven’t been part of a farm bill, and it reflected the contempt of the far right for anyone desperate enough to rely on the government for help to buy groceries.

More here

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Robert Greenstein: For several decades, legislation to reauthorize farm programs and SNAP (formerly known as the Food Stamp Program) have moved together. Now, the House Republican leadership is splitting the bills, moving a stand-alone farm bill today and planning to move a separate SNAP bill later.

The reason is clear. Even though the farm bill the House defeated a few weeks ago contained more than $20 billion in SNAP cuts (nearly all of them in food assistance benefits) as well as an unprecedented measure allowing states to cut families off SNAP if a parent wants to work but can’t find a job and letting state politicians take half of the resulting savings and use them for any purpose, that wasn’t enough for many of the most conservative House Republicans.  So the House leadership has dropped the SNAP provisions and plans to come back later with a still harsher SNAP bill designed to pass solely with Republican votes.

This turn of events is deeply disturbing….

More here

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Andrew Rosenthal (NYT): Just because there is no sign of actual governing arising from Congress, it doesn’t mean that the right-wing dominated House Republican Caucus is just sitting around doing nothing. To the contrary, in addition to plotting the demise of the first real chance at immigration reform in decades, House G.O.P. leaders are thinking of new ways to continue their long-running show of trying to stop health care reform from taking effect.

…. Nothing is going to stop Congressional Republicans from this kind of outrageous behavior. It’s worth keeping an eye on, though, if for no other reason than to see your tax dollars at work.

Full post here

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Wendy Davis: It’s the real Texans who count

I stood up and began talking on the floor of the Texas State Senate not long ago because I hoped the Republicans in power would listen to how their latest cruel health care proposal would hurt the women of Texas.

Simply put, this bill would take away access to the most fundamental form of health care women need.

It would close down almost 90% of the women’s clinics in this state. This comes after more than 50 women’s health clinics providing cancer screening and family planning services were closed because the Republicans withdrew state-financed support from them. We now have 42. Under this draconian proposal, a state as expansive as Texas would have only five clinics remaining to serve thousands and thousands of women.

Real Texans don’t want any woman to die of cancer because she can’t get decent health care or medical advice. Real Texans don’t want any woman to lose control of her life because she can’t get birth control.

More here

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Texas Tribune: The abortion fight that has engulfed the Texas Capitol this summer appears headed toward a dramatic conclusion today.

At 2 p.m., the state Senate will take up the sweeping abortion legislation that late last month fell victim to a filibuster by Sen. Wendy Davis, giving rise to two weeks of fiery protests and sustained national media attention.

The House approved the legislation — which would ban abortion after 20 weeks and potentially close up to 90 percent of the state’s abortion clinics — on Wednesday, leaving only Senate approval standing between the bill and Gov. Rick Perry’s desk.

More here

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Steve Benen: Back in April, the federal government ran a surplus of $113 billion. In case anyone’s forgotten what a surplus is – the word largely disappeared from our vernacular after Bush/Cheney took office in 2001 – it’s the opposite of a deficit. In the month of April, the federal government took in $113 billion more than it spent.

And then in June, it happened again:

The U.S. government posted an unexpectedly large budget surplus in June, a further sign of the rapid improvement in public finances that has taken the heat off Congress to find savings and raise the nation’s borrowing limit.

Rising tax revenue, public spending cuts and big payments to the Treasury from government-backed mortgage companies helped the government take in $117 billion more last month than it paid out, the U.S. Treasury said on Thursday.

It was the largest monthly surplus in the United States in over five years, and the largest June surplus in the nation’s history….

More here

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Jon Favreau: The GOP Is Terrified Obamacare Could Be a Success

I know, we’re all supposed to think the End Is Nigh because the government has decided to give the 10 percent of large employers who don’t insure their workers another 365 days to do so before levying a small penalty. This could not possibly be a reasonable accommodation to protect jobs and businesses, because as everybody knows, this president hates jobs and businesses.

No, this brief delay must be a sign that the implementation of the Affordable Care Act is destined to result in abject failure. After all, that’s what every Congressional Republican with the ability to hit send on a press release has told us, over and over again, hoping that repeating their prediction enough times will somehow make it true.

But here’s my question: if Republicans are so confident Obamacare will end badly, why not just shut up about it? It’s not like they have the votes to repeal the law — a math problem they still haven’t solved after 37 different tries. Their appeal to the Supreme Court ended in defeat at the hands of a conservative chief justice. And now the bulk of the plan will begin to take effect in just a few months.

More here

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Arizona Daily Star: Less than five months before the Affordable Care Act fully kicks in, hospitals are improving care and saving millions of dollars with one of the least touted but potentially most effective provisions of the law.

While much of the focus on the health law has been on the government rush to open insurance exchanges by Oct. 1, 252 hospitals and physician groups across the country have signed up to join the administration’s accountable-care program, in which they share the financial risk of keeping patients healthy.

…. The government expects the savings may be as much as $1.9 billion from 2012 to 2015. Early indications suggest they are starting to add up.

More here

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Jonathan Chait: Obamacare Haters Struggling to Understand What ‘Nonessential’ Means

Many of us have suggested that the employer mandate, which the Obama administration is delaying for a year, isn’t a crucial element to making the law work. Cato scholar Michael Tanner has a killer reply: “If the provision is so unimportant, one might wonder why it was included in the law in the first place, given its potential for reducing employment.” Well, then I guess Michael Tanner has proven that every single provision of the Affordable Care Act is essential to the entire thing. Why would it be in there if it wasn’t absolutely necessary?

It’s surprising to encounter such naïveté in a professional policy analyst, let alone one of staunch anti-government bent, but here goes: Sometimes laws contain provisions that are not essential to their central purpose. (I hope this revelation does not so sadden Tanner as to make him even more dogmatically anti-government than he already is.) Some of those extraneous provisions served useful ancillary purposes. For instance, Obamacare requires restaurant menus to label calories, a helpful health-related measure, but one that could be removed without harming the main functions of the law.

More here

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Business Insider: Elizabeth Warren Introducing A Bill That Would Be Wall Street’s Worst Nightmare

Elizabeth Warren is making good on her promise to scare Wall Street. Today (Thursday), she’ll introduce a bill to reenact Glass-Steagall.

Glass-Steagall is the 1933 law that separated commercial and investment banking. Back in 1999 it was repealed by the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act at the urging of Wall Street heavyweights like then-Citi CEO Sandy Weill.

Then the financial crisis happened. Many banks failed and others got swallowed up into larger banks.

…. Elizabeth Warren was elected to the Senate based in part on her crusade against Wall Street excess. For many, this is one massive way to do that….

More here

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Washington Post: Democrats offer new evidence that IRS targeted progressive groups

The House Oversight committee’s top Democrat on Friday will release new evidence that the Internal Revenue Service targeted both progressive and conservative groups for extra scrutiny during the 2010 and 2012 election cycles.

Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) said in a draft letter to committee chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif) that congressional investigators have discovered training materials from an July 2010 “Screening Workshop” that prove IRS agents were told to be on the lookout for groups from both sides of the political spectrum.

More here

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Timothy Egan (NYT): The Charade of Darrell Issa

So, this guy who made a stink-pile of money in the car alarm business, and had some youthful trouble with the law over auto-related liberties, gets the break he’s been waiting for after Republicans win control of the House in 2010. He’s given the keys to the biggest Caddie in Congress: the main oversight committee. It’s loaded with everything — subpoena power, an overhead cam worth of auditors and investigators, a hyperkinetic staff devoted to keeping shine on the boss.

He’s got plans, lots of plans. He’s going to stage television-ready hearings and investigations of the White House. He will bring Barack Obama to his knees. “I want seven hearings a week, times 40 weeks,” he says. Don’t worry about substance, he says of one subject field, “it’ll be good theater.”

… But then, after millions of dollars in investigative forays, the wheels come off the ride. Fast and Furious … Move along …. Solyndra …. Next…. Internal Revenue Service …. D’oh!

More here

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USA Today: PETA is especially happy with President Obama’s newly proclaimed love of broccoli.

So much so that the animal rights group is offering a special “Broccoli Obama” T-shirt, perhaps in an effort to discourage the president from future hamburgers, ribs or steaks.

“Now you can celebrate our veggie-loving commander-in-leaf,” PETA says on its website…..

More here

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On this day….

July 12, 2012: President Obama blows a kiss to Oren Baer, son of Ken Baer, the departing Associate Director for Communications and Strategic Planning at OMB, during a visit to the Oval Office (Photo: Lawrence Jackson)

July 12, 2011: First Lady Michelle Obama with Nancy Reagan, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Rosalynn Carter at the funeral of former First Lady Betty Ford at St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church in Palm Desert, Calif. (Photo: Chuck Kennedy)

July 12, 2011: President Obama talks with Andrew Kline, outgoing Chief of Staff, Office of Intellectual Property Enforcement, in the Oval Office. Kline’s daughter, Logan, sits atop the Resolute Desk (Photo: Pete Souza)

July 12; 2011: President Obama hugs Bertha Petry, the grandmother of Sergeant First Class Leroy Arthur Petry, U.S. Army, in the Blue Room of the White House. The President later awarded SFC Petry, left, the Medal of Honor for his courageous actions during combat operations against an armed enemy in Paktya, Afghanistan, in May 2008. (Photo: Pete Souza)

July 12, 2010: President Obama shakes hands with Cub Scout Raphael Cash from Bowie, Md., in the Oval Office (Photo: Pete Souza)

July 12, 2010: First Lady Michelle Obama walks along the beach during her visit to Panama City Beach, Fla. (Photo: Samantha Appleton)

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MoooOOOooorning! 50 gazillion thank yous to UT, LP and LL for their posts yesterday, I wasn’t (unexpectedly) able to be around at all, so endless thanks for posting such brilliant stuff and keeping the ship sailing – legends!


91 Responses to “Rise and Shine”


  1. July 12, 2013 at 9:46 am

    Good Friday Morning Chipsticks, TODers…Everyone.

    Hope everyone has a fantastic day and a good start to their weekend. And find something to smile about. It will make you feel better. :-D

  2. 8 symmetry11
    July 12, 2013 at 9:46 am

    Good morning TOD

  3. 9 isonprize
    July 12, 2013 at 9:53 am

    You know what I absolutely love about President Obama? How he concentrates directly, DIRECTLY, on the person with whom he is engaged. Kids, adults, elderly — doesn’t matter. He looks directly at them, listens intently with them, concentrates on what they are doing (…usually with his whole body, if that makes sense…) like they are the only to people that matter in the world at that moment. I just love that he is fully engaged, all of the time.

  4. 10 amk for obama
    July 12, 2013 at 9:56 am

    GM folks. Toon thread scheduled for 11 am. You have been warned.

  5. 16 Bill
    July 12, 2013 at 10:00 am

    The Guardian is reporting Snowden says he wants to stay in Russia and to be able to travel, and he wants international organizations to petition the US and EU not to interfere with that. He is truly delusional.

  6. 21 utaustinliberal
    July 12, 2013 at 10:00 am

    This is a fantastic must read Op-Ed.

    • July 12, 2013 at 10:08 am

      Just added it to the post UT, thanks a million for the heads-up.

      • 23 utaustinliberal
        July 12, 2013 at 10:14 am

        You’re welcome. How cute was that West Wing Week video? The bromance between POTUS and VP is so great to see. They have a wonderful relationship; and POTUS with kids? Sign me up anytime.

        • July 12, 2013 at 10:17 am

          Ah, loved that bit too with PBO and VP, best buddies! As for the bit at the end …. sigh!

        • 25 arkluvspbo
          July 12, 2013 at 10:44 am

          I LOVED when he crouched down and asked that little girl for a hug, at the end. OH MY, my heart is aflutter with our handsome president and his beautiful wife.

  7. 26 amk for obama
    July 12, 2013 at 10:21 am

  8. 28 amk for obama
    July 12, 2013 at 10:23 am

  9. 37 Jovie
    July 12, 2013 at 10:31 am

    Why is Nepolitano stepping down?
    Who will replace her?
    Better have that nuclear option ready?

    • 38 Bill
      July 12, 2013 at 10:37 am

      She has been offered the position of University of California System President. Not a bad gig.

    • 39 desertflower
      July 12, 2013 at 10:38 am

      She’s going to lead the Univ of California….I’m sure that she’s burnt out from these years doing that job. I can’t imagine how hard that was. PBO will find someone excellent to fill that position. He always does.

      • 40 Jovie
        July 12, 2013 at 10:42 am

        Doesn’t matter the Senate will hold her up unless Reid goes nuclear on Tuesday.
        Me thinks Republicans will cave, and allow, Cordray, NLRB appointments EPA and labor nominees.
        And then Harry will cancel at last minute after these appointments are agreed to.
        Also, a new FED chairman needs to be appointed, and senate republicans have signaled they will hold that up to they don’t like stimulus and are worried about inflation. Which is still at 2%.

  10. 41 utaustinliberal
    July 12, 2013 at 10:32 am

    • July 12, 2013 at 10:52 am

      I’m really sorry to see her leave government. She’s been a GREAT secretary. But this is a plum job at one of the greatest universities in the world. She is just the person the university needs right now. It’s a large and very complex system at a time of significant change and I know she will do a great job. As a grad and a long-time employee of UCSC and UCB, I feel a lot of pride. I also once worked at the Office of the President as a research assistant for a short time and it will be an interesting and exciting place for her, for sure. She also moves from working in DC to Oakland!

    • 43 anniebella
      July 12, 2013 at 12:25 pm

      Sorry to hear this. I wish Napolitano the best, and thank her for her service.

  11. July 12, 2013 at 10:37 am

    • 45 amk for obama
      July 12, 2013 at 10:45 am

      • July 12, 2013 at 10:57 am

        Didn’t you hear? Russia under Putin is the beacon of freedom. Or is that China? I always get those two safe havens mixed up.

        BTW I have to laugh. All Putin had to do was ship hacker Snowden back to us. But no he wanted to poke Obama in the eye. Now guess who’s getting poked?

        • 47 amk for obama
          July 12, 2013 at 11:38 am

          Now they are talking about refugee status, not asylum. Also. Too. The nut has to stop talking. Great condition for a loudmouth.

  12. 48 amk for obama
    July 12, 2013 at 10:39 am

  13. 49 Roberta in MN
    July 12, 2013 at 10:46 am

    Thanks for this mash up Chips, I just love the picture of our President with the little girl holding her dress to show him. She has the most awesome look on her face. “See my new dress” That picture has stuck with me all these years. It bring gladness and a smile to my heart. Thanks again for finding it & posting it. Have been lucking for a few days, been pretty busy outside the house. Have a great day everyone. :)

  14. 52 Jovie
    July 12, 2013 at 10:47 am

    We are only 5% better? That won’t get the 17 seats needed . We need 8% or higher.
    We were higher three months ago, with all this crap, the republicans have made up ground?
    Amazing!

  15. July 12, 2013 at 10:59 am

    OH HELL NO!!!! MSNBC showed a pic of Trayvon Martin’s dead body from on the scene photos and now some online places are posting the pic!!!!! NO NO NO!!!! That is wrong and disgusting. MSNBC should apologize and anybody who posts it on my timeline I will delete from my friends list. The family of Trayvon deserves respect in regards to the imagr of there DEAD CHILD!!!! I blame this on the sad SAW-LIKE tortute porn society that we have become.

    • July 12, 2013 at 11:03 am

      Just saw it Lamh, and wish I didn’t. On the one hand it brings home the horror of his murder, which so many seem to have conveniently forgotten, so I can understand the logic of people posting it. But it’s too much, I’d prefer the lasting image of him to be the ones where he’s a smiling, hopeful, beautiful young kid, not a body that was gunned down by a racist piece of crap.

    • July 12, 2013 at 11:05 am

      OMG. I will do everything to avoid this. This family has endured so much horrific disrespect.

      • 59 COS
        July 12, 2013 at 11:30 am

        GM Meta and everyone. This is horrible. I am surprised that they waited so long to do this. When they showed the photo during the trial, I was praying that they would not not do this. This saddens me.

  16. 60 japa21
    July 12, 2013 at 11:26 am

  17. July 12, 2013 at 11:55 am

  18. 65 donna dem 4 obama
    July 12, 2013 at 11:59 am

    Absolute truth in this response!!!

  19. 73 Don
    July 12, 2013 at 12:21 pm

    Full disclosure; as a child our family depended on food stamps for survival. How does a person in power sleep at night or look in the mirror every morning and not have a twinge of guilt or not have an ounce of shame when it comes to cutting out food stamps for our most vulnerable citizens? When those in power that deny its poorest citizens food stamps to buy a loaf of bread, those in power had better hope that their god is a forgiving one.

  20. 74 yardarm756
    July 12, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    The prosecuting attorney is on it this time. It’s a beautiful thing to see!

  21. 79 amk for obama
    July 12, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    another boeing dreamliner jet on fire on heathrow airport. Luckily it was empty. boeing has got a serious problem with their battery technology.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-23294760

  22. 81 japa21
    July 12, 2013 at 12:44 pm

    I am trying out a new hash tag #ReasonIAmOptimisticFor2014. Below is first tweet with this. More will be coming out during the day.

  23. 90 japa21
    July 12, 2013 at 12:59 pm


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