President Barack Obama talks with Inaugural National Citizen Co-Chairs in the Oval Office, Jan. 18, 2013. Steve Kerrigan, CEO of the Presidential Inaugural Committee, listens at right. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
Greg Sargent: So here’s where this is going. The Romney campaign is out with a new Web video hitting Obama over the “don’t build that” quote. It features a business owners who is angry at Obama for supposedly insulting his hard work. “My hands didn’t build this company?” the man asks. “Through hard work and a little bit of luck, we build this business. Why are you demonizing us for it?”
But the video deceptively edits Obama’s remarks to seamlessly link up two different parts of the speech, removing a chunk in order to make Obama’s remarks seem far worse than they are. Here is how Obama’s speech — which you hear in the background while pictures of the man driving flash on the screen — is represented in the video….
NYT: In the new blockbuster “The Dark Knight Rises,” the actor Morgan Freeman plays an aide-de-camp to Batman as the caped crusader battles the arch-villain Bane.
But in the battle for the White House, Mr. Freeman is backing President Obama. Last month, Mr. Freeman donated $1 million to Priorities USA Action, officials there said Thursday. The group, a super PAC backing Mr. Obama, has lately been broadcasting advertisements attacking the Republican candidate Mitt Romney for his tenure at Bain Capital, the private equity firm.
“President Obama has done a remarkable job in terrible circumstances,” Mr. Freeman said in a statement, adding that Mr. Obama was “being targeted by hundreds of millions of dollars in special interest money.”
“Priorities USA Action is doing a great job of protecting the values I believe in,” Mr. Freeman said. “I am happy to help them and I hope others will do so as well.”
Steve Benen: President Obama spoke from the White House’s South Lawn this morning, urging Congress to end the $4 billion in tax subsidies oil and natural gas companies receive from the government every year. Obama noted that “Exxon pocketed nearly $4.7 million every hour” last year, and simply doesn’t need taxpayer subsidies on top of companies’ massive profits.
The president added “it’s like hitting the American people twice.”
Soon after, the Senate voted on the issue, and though a majority of members agreed with the president, a majority is no longer enough in the upper chamber.
Saturday: As part of her Joining Forces initiative to honor, recognize and serve military families, First Lady Michelle Obama will travel to Coast Guard Island in Alameda, California, to participate in the commissioning ceremony (10:00 AM PT) of the Coast Guard Cutter Stratton ….. Mrs. Obama, a sponsor of the Cutter Stratton, helped christen the ship in Pascagoula, Mississippi, in 2010 by breaking a champagne bottle over the bow …. As the ship’s sponsor, the First Lady will ceremonially give the order to bring the ship to life, at which time the crew will board the Stratton with much fanfare.
The First Lady will travel to Los Angeles later on Saturday for Nickelodeon’s Kids’ Choice Awards where she will present The Big Help Award to Taylor Swift for her work with tornado and flood survivors.
I’m dizzy after watching that :???:
If anyone’s still having trouble commenting after the log-in changes made by WordPress, have a look at this link
Reuters: A surge in hiring in the world’s largest economy last month drove the Nasdaq to an 11-year high on Friday as optimism grew that the labor market is on a steady path to recovery.
The broad-based gains on solid trading volume also sent the Dow Jones industrial average near a four-year high….
The U.S. economy created jobs at the fastest pace in nine months in January and the unemployment rate dropped to nearly a three-year low of 8.3 percent, the government said.
“It is really hard to find something not to like in the jobs report,” said Andrew Goldberg, market strategist at JP Morgan Funds in New York. “There is genuine strength in this report with broad-based jobs creation.”
President Obama thanks Lt. Jacob Johnson, an Arlington County firefighter and U.S. Marine Corps veteran who served in Iraq, for introducing him at Fire Station #5 in Arlington, Virginia
President Barack Obama poses for a picture with people in the audience following his remarks on the Veterans Job Corps at Fire Station #5 in Arlington, Va., Feb. 3, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
NYT: The comeback from bankruptcy at Chrysler hit a milestone Wednesday when the smallest of the Detroit automakers reported a $183 million profit for last year, its first full year of positive earnings since 2005.
…. Last year’s results show how far Chrysler has come since 2009, when it was taken over by Fiat as part of the bailout engineered by the Obama administration.
Its revenue for the year increased 31 percent to $55 billion, and worldwide sales of its cars and trucks grew 22 percent to 1.85 million vehicles. In the United States, its market share increased to 10.5 percent, up from 9.2 percent a year earlier.
WMUR: A new poll shows that the improving economy has also raised President Barack Obama’s standing in New Hampshire.
….Obama has seen his job approval rating nearly flip from the last Granite State Poll in October, with 51 percent now saying they like the job the president is doing, compared to 43 percent who don’t. Just 41 percent said they approved in October.
…. Obama’s improved fortunes are also reflected in head-to-head matchups against the Republican field in New Hampshire. In hypothetical matchups, Obama leads Mitt Romney by 10 points, Ron Paul by eight points, and trounces Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum by 25 and 21 points respectively.
Robert Shrum: …. So it’s Romney in 2012, despite glaring weaknesses revealed in the primaries, from his animatronic awkwardness to his plutocratic profile. The latter has been a product not just of attacks from his opponents — and the attacks will be unremitting in the general election — but of gaffes that are in reality self-revelations of his actual character and conviction. When he slips the confines of his canned answers, when an off-message moment or question deflects him from toeing his adviser’s carefully formulated tropes, he tends to shift from Ken Doll to Gordon Gekko.
…. For other candidates, the verbal miscue is an episode; for him, it’s an epidemic – offering $10,000 bets, saying foreclosures should run their course, claiming he feared getting a pink slip, explaining that $400,000 isn’t much money, announcing that he likes to fire people. (And at that, Romney has had a lot of practice.) He blithered about releasing his tax returns, then released only two years — and will face intensifying scrutiny about off-shore tax havens and whether he paid any tax, or almost none, in years we haven’t seen, like 2008 and 2009.
….Romney not only looks like the face of the Republican establishment; by his own words and deeds, he has become the face of unfairness in America, a profile in numbness and indifference.
ABC: …“I don’t pay hardly any payroll taxes,” Buffett said. “Gov. Romney hardly pays any payroll taxes, Newt Gingrich hardly pays any payroll taxes. Debbie pays lots of payroll taxes.”
He lashed out at assertions from many Republican leaders that the “Buffett rule” is class warfare.
“If this is a war, my side has the nuclear bomb,” Buffett said. “We have K Street. … We have Wall Street. Debbie doesn’t have anybody. I want a government that is responsive to the people who got the short straw in life.”
Greg Sargent: The first thing you should watch this morning is this harsh new Web video from the Obama-allied Priorities USA Action. It paints a very lurid picture of “Mitt Romney’s America,” and it provides the clearest clues yet as to what kind of campaign Obama and outside groups will run against him if he’s the nominee.
Romney’s corporate background, as well as that infamous Bain picture, get top billing, and are tied to the allegation that Romney’s policies would be a boon to corporations while decimating the middle class. Obama advisers and allies intend to paint an extremely vivid and even frightening picture of what Romney’s desire to roll back Obama’s post-Bush reforms would mean for the economy, the country, and the future. Beyond his pro-corporate policies, the feeling on the Obama team is that Romney’s corporate past is an unexplored and potentially serious liability, particularly amid the intense anti-Wall Street sentiment that seems to be on the rise…..
You know how much I hate GOPolitico and how I hold my nose when I link to it – well, I’m holding my nose again because this article is worth reading: link
Quinnipiac: President Barack Obama’s job approval rating is up, from a negative 41 – 55 percent October 5, to a split today with 47 percent approving and 49 percent disapproving in a Quinnipiac University poll released today. The president has leads of 5 to 16 percentage points over likely Republican challengers.
…. “President Obama seems to be improving in voters’ eyes almost across-the-board,” said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. “He scores big gains among the groups with whom he has had the most problems – whites and men. Women also shift from a five-point negative to a four-point positive.
….. Obama also is looking better in matchups against potential Republican nominees:
47 – 42 percent over Romney, compared to a 46 – 42 percentlead October 5;
52 – 36 percent over Perry, up from a 45 – 44 percent tie last month;
50 – 40 percent over Cain, who was not included in a matchup last month;
52 – 37 percent over Gingrich, who was not matched last month.
Politicususa: … On October 7th, 1998, Matthew Shepard accepted a ride from Aaron McKinney and Russell Henderson … they drove Matthew into the country, tied him to a fence post and beat him severely … they attacked Matthew because he was gay. They left him there in the cold dark, bleeding and unconscious until a cyclist found him, almost 18 hours later. Matthew died from his injuries on October 12th, 1998…
Eleven years after Matthew’s death, President Barack Obama signed into law The Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Act … this bill makes it a federal crime to assault people based on their gender, sexual orientation and gender identity … Judy Shepard had visited President Obama in the Oval Office and he had made her a promise that this day would come. By signing The Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Act into law, President Obama kept his promise to Matthew’s family.
…. I asked many people to share their memories of Matthew Shepard with me, including Captain Stephen Snyder-Hill … the Army officer who was booed at the Republican debate…
Joshua Snyder-Hill: … A year later I was taken to DC for my first equality event. I was still not out to my family or friends. The one thing I remember most were the people picketing the concert hall cheering Matthew’s death and celebrating it as a victory. I remember all my fear of coming out melted away. I had spent three days in DC seeing nothing but hope and activism until that moment; it was then and there I decided, I had to be part of the fight for equality. Matthew’s death and the energy behind it, made me want to be proud of who I was and show love conquered hate.