June 30th at 11:59 p.m. is the first big deadline of this campaign. At that moment, we’ll close the books on this financial quarter and begin preparing our fundraising report to the Federal Election Commission, the press, and the public.
Our opponents are chasing Washington lobbyists and special-interest PACs for big checks ahead of the deadline …..we refuse money from Washington lobbyists and special-interest PACs. And rather than setting a goal of millions of dollars, we’re setting a goal of 550,000 grassroots donations by the June 30th deadline.
The number of contributions we earn in this quarter will be the definitive record of how strong our support was at the very start … Will you chip in another $15 or whatever you can afford to help us hit our goal? ….What happens between now and Thursday will shape the story of how the 2012 race began.
Help write that story with a donation of $15 or more here
Obama for America
Washington Post: Crossroads GPS, a conservative-aligned outside organization, is pledging to spend $20 million over the next two months on ads aimed at shaping the national debate on jobs, the economy and the federal debt.
….The first wave of ads will begin airing Monday with a $5 million buy that will include national cable television as well as broadcast stations in Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Carolina, New Mexico, Nevada, and Virginia. The initial flight of ads will run for two weeks.
Roll Call: Familiar faces are behind a new effort to challenge President Barack Obama. The Republican operatives who created Tea Party Express, the leading political action committee of the tea party movement, recently launched a separate PAC called the Campaign to Defeat Barack Obama.
By creating the independent group, the organizers can raise more money and be a stronger force in the upcoming presidential race.
The new group has the ambitious goal of organizing 1 million people against the president through television ads, online petitions and grass-roots events. More than 46,000 people have signed the group’s online petition “to defeat Barack Obama” since January.
President Obama at the Democratic National Committee’s Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Leadership Gala in New York, June 23
President Obama’s first scheduled event in New York is at 7 p.m. at the Democratic National Committee’s Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Gala at the Midtown Sheraton. Actor Neil Patrick Harris will be hosting the sold-out dinner
At 8 p.m. the President attends a dinner at Upper East Side restaurant Daniel.
The President finishes the night with an appearance at a fundraising performance of the Broadway musical “Sister Act” – it’s not listed on CNN’s live streaming schedule, but will check again later.
David Ignatius (Washington Post): When President Obama announced his Afghanistan troop “surge” strategy at West Point 18 months ago, he seemed to be keeping the reality of the war at arm’s length, even as he sent more soldiers into battle.
A sign of that ambivalence was the president’s announcement, in ordering 30,000 more troops into the fight, that he would begin pulling them out in July 2011 …. this conditionality was apparently the only way Obama – a president who grew up in the shadow of the Vietnam war – felt comfortable with the decision.
….tonight, Obama announced a measured withdrawal of 10,000 of those surge troops this year – more than military commanders might have wanted but far less than war critics have been demanding. In taking this course, he took ownership of the policy more decisively.
You could argue that, in choosing his own option, Obama fully became commander in chief of this war. He opted for what he thinks has worked: an aggressive counter-terrorism assault on al-Qaeda and its Afghan allies. And he implicitly rejected the more ambitious counter-insurgency goals of some of his commanders, who had hoped that by protecting the Afghan population, the United States could “take away the oxygen” from the Taliban. For all the gains in security in Helmand and Kandahar provinces, that COIN precept hasn’t proven out.
The most persuasive argument for the approach the president embraced tonight is that it will keep enough military pressure on Taliban forces to make them consider the wisdom of a negotiated settlement of the war. That’s the crucial strategic benefit of the president’s approach – that it confounds the Taliban expectation that the United States would be gone by the end of this year. And to that extent, it makes the prospect of a negotiated settlement a little more plausible.