Time: Pete Souza – “This was one of the most poignant moments of the President’s first term. He was visiting wounded warriors in the intensive care unit ICU at Bagram Air Field, Afghanistan, May 1, 2012. He had just presented a Purple Heart to Sgt. Chase Haag, who had been injured by an IED just hours before. Sgt. Haag was covered with a blanket and it was difficult to see how badly he was injured. He was also seemingly unconscious so the President whispered in his ear so not to wake him. Just then, there was a rustling under the blanket and Sgt. Haag, eyes still closed, reached his hand out to shake hands with the President.”
11:30 AM: PBO delivers remarks at the United Auto Workers conference at the Washington Marriott Wardman Park.
AP: It’s looking like President Barack Obama may be back in the good graces of women. His support dropped among this critical constituency just before the new year began and the presidential campaign got under way in earnest. But his standing with female voters is strengthening, polls show, as the economy improves and social issues, including birth control, become a bigger part of the nation’s political discourse.
…. Among women, his approval ratings on handling the economy and unemployment have jumped by 10 percentage points since December…. An AP-GfK poll conducted Feb. 16-20 showed that on overall approval Obama has gained 10 percentage points among women since December, from 43 percent to 53 percent…
Women also are the reason behind Obama’s lead over Republican hopefuls Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum: In one-on-one matchups, Obama beats Romney 54 percent to 41 percent and tops Santorum 56 percent to 40 percent among women, but virtually ties each Republican among men….
He wants religion returned to “the public square,” is opposed to contraception, premarital sex and abortion under any circumstances, wants children educated in what amounts to little red schoolhouses and called President Obama a “snob” for extolling college or some other kind of post-high school education. This is not a political platform. It’s a fatwa.
Mediaite: Monday night, Stephen Colbert turned his gaze upon the impending Michigan primary, bringing up a some recent statements by Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum and digging a little deeper into their meanings.
Colbert began with Romney, who spoke last week at Ford Field in front of tens of thousands of empty seats. “Yeah, there were a lot of empty seats,” Colbert said, “but the important thing is Mitt really connected with those empty seats by also being plastic and uncomfortable.”
First lady Michelle Obama listens to President Barack Obama speak in the State Dining Room of the White House, February 26. President Obama hosted the 2012 Governors Dinner which coincides with the yearly meeting of the National Governors Association meeting in DC.
Michelle Obama and Jill Biden also deliver remarks.
The week ahead:
Tuesday: PBO will deliver remarks at the United Auto Workers conference in Washington, DC.
Wednesday: PBO and the First Lady will host a dinner at the White House to honor Armed Forces, who served in Iraq, and their families.
Thursday: PBO will travel to Nashua, New Hampshire, and deliver remarks on the economy. In the evening, the President will attend campaign events in New York City.
Friday: PBO will travel to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, to visit with wounded service members.
Ooops – this is one poll Politico will have troubling ignoring …. because it’s their own:
A new POLITICO/George Washington University Battleground Poll reveals the prolonged nominating battle is taking a toll on the GOP candidates and finds the president’s standing significantly improved from late last year.
President Barack Obama’s approval rating is 53 percent, up 9 percentage points in four months. Matched up against his Republican opponents, he leads Mitt Romney by 10 points (53-43) and Rick Santorum by 11 (53-42). Even against a generic, unnamed Republican untarnished by attacks, Obama is up 5 percentage points. In November, he was tied.
USA Today: ….. Today …. President Obama meets with state executives from across the country and with political donors in Washington.
Obama and Vice President Joe Biden will both speak today to the National Governors Association during a meeting in the State Dining Room. Their wives, Michelle Obama and Jill Biden will also deliver remarks.
…. This afternoon, Obama and Biden will meet with Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner …. Obama ends his day with a closed-door campaign fundraiser in Washington.
CBS: Mitt Romney went to the Daytona 500 NASCAR race Sunday for what should have been a chance to show he’s one of the guys. Instead, in casual conversation with an Associated Press reporter at the Florida track, he reminded people once again that he is not exactly a regular Joe.
Asked by the AP reporter if he follows NASCAR, Romney responded, “Not as closely as some of the most ardent fans. But I have some great friends who are NASCAR team owners.”
Democrats and liberals quickly ridiculed the remark on Twitter. “I don’t know people who fish but I know people who own yachts,” tweeted Brad Woodhouse, communications director of the Democratic National Committee….
Donna Dem: I’m raising money on my grassroots fundraising page to help President Obama win in 2012. The President is counting on people like you and me giving what we can afford to build this campaign. Will you donate $5 today to help me try and reach my goal?