7:30: First Lady Michelle Obama will join former University of Kentucky President Dr. Charles Wethington and Kentucky author Silas House as speakers at Eastern Kentucky University’s spring commencement ceremonies
President Obama meets local Austin residence at Stubb’s Bar-B-Q restaurant in Austin, Texas – from left to right: Caroline Sweet, Tyson Simmons, Joe Alonzo, and Agnes Wommack
President Barack Obama points to an image of the White House situation room where a weather map from Stormpulse is displayed during a tour of Capital Factory, a tech start-up incubator and co-working space in Austin, Texas, May 9
President Obama speaks with Capital Factory Founder Josh Baer and U.S. Chief Technology Officer Todd Park during a tour of Capital Factory
1:45: Tours classrooms at Manor New Technology High School
2:05: Delivers remarks
4:15: The First Lady Hosts Mother’s Day Tea
6:0: The President tours Applied Materials Inc.
5.40: Delivers remarks
6:35: Departs Austin, Texas
9:45: Arrives the White House
Steve Benen: For the fourth consecutive week, the figures on initial unemployment claims from the Department of Labor offered unexpectedly good news:
The number of people who applied for regular state unemployment-insurance benefits ticked down 4,000 to 323,000 in the week ending May 4, hitting the lowest level since January 2008 ….. Economists had expected initial claims to rise slightly …. The four-week average of new jobless claims fell 6,250 to 336,750, hitting the lowest level since November 2007, near the start of the recession.
Greg Sargent: One party is threatening the recovery far more than the other is – It’s been widely pointed out by liberals that much of the discussion of fiscal issues conducted by supposedly “neutral” reporters actually does take sides in a pernicious way. It often treats it as a given that near term deficit reduction is a good thing — sometimes even cheerleading for that outcome – when in fact there is an actual policy dispute over this point, with many arguing that immediate deficit reduction is destructive to the recovery, and that dealing with the deficit should be deferred until the economy is stronger.
And that’s why today’s big New York Times piece quoting a range of economists arguing that Washington’s deficit obsession has proven a drag on the recovery is so important and welcome….
USA Today: Starting a series of “Middle Class Jobs & Opportunity Tours,” Obama travels to Austin to visit high-tech facilities and promote his plans for education and basic research funding.
…. Among his announcements: A competition to create three “Manufacturing Innovation Institutes,” partnerships among businesses, colleges, and government to help create new manufacturing jobs. The president has asked Congress for $1 billion to create a total of 15 such institutes.
Obama will also discuss plans to require the government to make its data more easily available to business people, researchers and others.
Bob Cesca: 13 Benghazis That Occurred on Bush’s Watch Without a Peep from Fox News
The Republican inquisition over the attacks against Americans in Benghazi has never really gone away, but it appears as though in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing and the House Oversight Committee’s Benghazi hearings this week there’s renewed psycho-histrionics over Benghazi…..
ThinkProgress: The “whistleblowers” at today’s House Oversight Committee hearing on what really happened in Benghazi, Libya last September were supposed to break the dam that would lead to President Obama’s eventual downfall, in the eyes of conservatives. Instead, these witness actually served to debunk several theories that the right-wing has pushed on Benghazi, leaving the hearing a fizzle for the GOP…..
Charles Pierce: There has been quite a bit of hemming and hawing about the death penalty recently. Six states in six years — Maryland most recently, thanks to Esquire’s favorite BFF, Martin O’Malley — have abolished it. Ah, but that’s not to reckon with the great state of Florida, which this week will decide to grease the wheels of state-sanctioned killing, thanks to Governor Rick Scott, who really doesn’t have fk-all to lose at this point.
Governor Bat Boy is poised to sign the Timely Justice Act — Somebody grab Orwell before he throws himself off a cloud — which will restrict the right of Death Row inmates to appeal their sentences. The bill was passed through the legislature with the usual cool reason that we’ve come to expect from Republican state legislatures since the voters of the several states decided to make monkeyhouses out of them in 2010…..
First lady Michelle Obama speaks about the nation’s libraries and museums before handing out the 2013 National Medals for Museum and Library Service to recipients in the East Room of the White House, May 8
Four years ago today: “A temporary White House staffer, Carlton Philadelphia, brought his family to the Oval Office for a farewell photo with President Obama. Carlton’s son softly told the President he had just gotten a haircut like President Obama, and asked if he could feel the President’s head to see if it felt the same as his.” May 8, 2009. (Photo by Pete Souza)
10:15: VP Biden attends President Park Geun-hye of the Republic of Korea’s address to a Joint Session of Congress
12:0: VP Biden delivers remarks at the 43rd Annual Washington Conference on the Americas at the Department of State
12:30: Jay Carney briefs the press
2:25: President Obama meets with electric utility CEOs and their trade associations
5:30: Meets with a group of Asian American and Pacific Islanders national leaders
6:30: Has dinner with members of the House Democratic Leadership at the Jefferson Hotel
7:45: VP Biden delivers keynote remarks at the Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies’ 19th Annual Gala Awards Dinner
President Barack Obama and President Park Geun-hye of the Republic of Korea, May 7. Photo: Pete Souza
USA Today: …. The president starts this afternoon at the Energy Department, where he meets with electric utility CEOs and trade associations to talk about preparations for the upcoming hurricane season….
Later, Obama and Vice President Biden discuss budget issues with Treasury Secretary Jack Lew.
Then comes a presidential meeting with a group of Asian American and Pacific Islanders national leaders. The agenda includes Obama’s efforts to win a major immigration bill and the ongoing implementation of the health care bill.
Obama caps his day with another congressional dinner, this one with House Democratic leaders. The dinner at a hotel in downtown Washington features House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Cal., and some of her colleagues: Steny Hoyer, James Clyburn, Xavier Becerra, Joe Crowley, Chris Van Hollen, Rosa DeLauro, Rob Andrew, Steve Israel, and Mike Thompson.
President Obama with South Korean President Park Geun-Hye in the Oval office today – Photo by Pete Souza
U.S. President Barack Obama and South Korean President Park Geun-hye in Bi-lateral meeting
President Obama thanked President Park, who is South Korea’s first female president, for choosing the United States for her first foreign trip. This visit “reflects South Korea’s extraordinary progress over these six decades,” President Obama said, from “the ashes of war, to one of the world’s largest economies; from a recipient of foreign aid to a donor that now helps other nations develop.”