5:20: Attends the closing ceremony of the G-20 Summit
5:45: Holds a bilateral meeting with President Hu of China
7:30: Holds a press conference
8:40: Departs Los Cabos, Mexico
TPM: A majority of voters agreed with President Obama’s decision to halt deportation of young undocumented immigrants, according to a new Bloomberg Poll out Tuesday … 64 percent of likely voters agree with the new policy, while just 30 percent disagreed.
Along party lines, only Republicans disagreed the move, with 56 percent of likely GOP voters opposed to the policy. Close to 9 in 10 Democrats (86 percent) liked the move. A large majority of independents, 66 percent, backed the decision, while just 26 percent opposed it.
…. Yesterday, a Latino Decisions poll showed that enthusiasm for Obama among Latino voters jumped significantly after the announcement.
President Obama showed last week that it’s possible to find a reasonable, humane solution for at least 800,000 young people who were illegally brought into this country as children. All you need is a moral compass and a heart.
Seems to me that Obama’s unilateral decision to let these non-citizens remain here without fear of deportation should have quieted critics who bray and whine about a supposed lack of bold presidential leadership. It didn’t, of course.
Where is Mitt Romney on all of this, you ask? Excellent question…..
…. It’s tiresome having to spend so much time trying to figure out what Romney really believes. If anything, I mean.
Steve Benen: …. It’s a safe bet the Bishops won’t be satisfied, but it’s a pretty straightforward fix: religiously-affiliated employers that don’t want to pay for contraception coverage as part of their benefits packages won’t have to, but these employees will still get the coverage because the White House will instruct insurers to pick up the costs.
…. several major stakeholders in this fight have already offered praise for the White House move. Planned Parenthood, for example, endorsed the compromise …. Similarly, EMILY’s List said it was “reassured” by the new policy, and NARAL Pro-Choice America’s statement struck a similar note.
What’s more, Sister Carol Keehan and the Catholic Health Association have also endorsed the administration’s position, which not only offers the White House some political cover, but also further isolates the Bishops…..
For the White House, having support from both the Catholic Health Association and Planned Parenthood was critical…..
Greg Sargent: …. the Obama team is betting that any further objections to this policy will unmask opponents primarily as hidebound foes of birth control at any costs, a politically difficult position to sustain, rather than as defenders of religious liberty. Indeed, this looks like an effort to reframe the debate to Obama’s advantage: If Team Obama has its way, the argument will now be about whether all women should have access to contraception, and not about whether these institutions are having their religious freedom impinged upon.
For those who freaked out about a major compromise with the Catholic church (eh, me):
When will I ever learn?
Don’t miss Liberal Librarian’s first post at The People’s View – it’s predictably brilliant
President Obama signs the Ultralight Aircraft Smuggling Prevention Act of 2012 as former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and her husband Mark Kelly look on. The bill was the last piece of legislation on which Giffords voted before she resigned in January, a year after she sustained a gunshot wound to the head.
First lady Michelle Obama high-fives the Dallas Cowboys mascot Rowdy as she arrived at the Kleberg-Rylie Recreation center in Dallas
Michelle Obama judges food, along with assistant White House chef and food initiative coordinator Sam Kass and “Top Chef” judge Tom Colicchio, during a taping of the TV cooking show “Top Chef” in Dallas
Captain Mark Kelly hugs his wife, Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, after receiving the Legion of Merit from Vice President Joe Biden during a retirement ceremony in the Secretary of War Suite in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, in Washington, D.C., Oct. 6, 2011. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann)
President Barack Obama talks with Chief of Staff Bill Daley and Jack Lew, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, before making a statement to the press in the State Dining Room of the White House, Jan. 9, 2012. The President announced Daley’s resignation and that Lew will serve as his next chief of staff. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
Mark Kelly leans on the shoulder of his wife, U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, at a memorial vigil remembering the victims and survivors of the shooting that wounded Giffords, 12 others and killed six one year ago Sunday, Jan. 8, 2012, in Tucson, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
NYT: The sun had fallen and a crowd had gathered on a chilly Sunday night on the mall at the University of Arizona, for the last event of a weekend commemorating the first anniversary of the mass shooting here one year ago. The vigil began with the Pledge of the Allegiance.
Reuters: Welcome to an unlikely beacon of hope for the global auto industry – Detroit.
Executives arriving this week for the Detroit auto show find a U.S. car market that has morphed from meltdown three years ago to a safe haven as concerns grow about the stability of other big economies, from Europe to China.
Analysts and executives expect 2012 U.S. auto sales to grow 4 percent to 9 percent, the third consecutive annual gain….
12:30: First Lady Michelle Obama will deliver remarks at a DNC luncheon in Richmond.
2:45: Mrs Obama will announce a major commitment by the country’s top medical colleges and universities to create a new generation of doctors, medical schools, and research facilities to ensure that veterans, service men and women receive the medical care that they deserve.
Prior to this announcement, the First Lady will tour the Hunter Holmes McGuire VA Medical Center’s Polytrauma Unit to visit wounded warriors and veterans receiving in-patient treatment.
5:15 PM: Mrs. Obama will deliver remarks at a DNC reception
Friday, January 13:
Morning: Mrs Obama will join the cast of Nickelodeon’s iCarly at a special screening of “iMeet The First Lady,” a new episode featuring the First Lady that honors America’s military children.
At the final event of the tour, Miranda Cosgrove and the iCarly cast will be joined by Mrs. Obama at Hayfield Secondary School, a school with a large number of military children. They will screen the episode, participate in iCarly’s “Random Dancing” and answer questions from the students.
Mrs. Obama will also appear in a Joining Forces PSA produced by Nickelodeon that will debut immediately following the airing of “iMeet the First Lady” on the 16th.”
Charles Pierce (Esquire): MANCHESTER, N.H. – Just got back to town in time to feel the entire race pivot underneath my feet. Of course, this is just a naked ploy by the Gingrich campaign to sew up the critical Unemployable Dude With A Snowmobile vote, which is not a constituency lightly overlooked in this state, although in South Carolina, political observers say, it is replaced by the Unemployable Dude With A Mullet And A Truck vote ….
CBS: The nominating process may officially be underway, but Republicans have yet to enthusiastically embrace a potential nominee for president – and despite the late date, most would like to see other candidates enter the race, according to a new CBS News poll.
The survey finds that 58 percent of Republican primary voters want more presidential choices, while just 37 percent say they are satisfied with the current field. The percentage of Republican primary voters that wants more choices has increased 12 percentage points since October.
58%?! I think that’s what you call an ‘enthusiasm gap’.
Charles P. Pierce (Esquire): And, suddenly, the dogwhistles have turned into air-raid sirens .. I think, maybe, it’s time for the nation to rise up and point out to the Republican party that, root and branch, it is a racist embarrassment to democracy and a blight on this nation that all the world can see…..
….there is a steady, noxious river of bile flowing through the entire Republican party, and through the conservative “movement” that empowers it …
… No, Rick, I don’t believe for a moment you meant to say something else and it came out “Blah people,” you Bible-banging coward. Nobody’s talking in code any more. It’s right out front there, for all the world to see. How dare these people? How dare their evil souls?
Honestly, I haven’t made this up – a Ron Paul-supporting freak actually thought it was good news that the former KKK guy endorsed the nutjob!
Jonathan Bernstein: I have to say: If I were running Mitt Romney’s campaign, I’d much prefer reporters going on today about a mini-flap involving one of Mitt’s sons going birther and then apologizing than have them reporting on the Santorum surge.
….in the long run (or perhaps even by Tuesday) this particular incident will be long forgotten, it still can’t hurt Romney with Tea Partiers to hint that his camp is on the same page with them culturally.
Of course, I’m not hinting, nor am I voicing any suspicion, that the Romney camp would actually do something like this on purpose.
Reuters: New U.S. claims for jobless benefits rose last week but the underlying trend pointed to an improving labor market, while regional factory data showed the economy gaining momentum as the year ended.
The growth picture was brightened by other data on Thursday showing pending sales of previously owned homes jumped to a 1-1/2 year high in November, adding to signs of a tentative recovery in the housing market.
Indications the economy was wrapping up the year on a much firmer footing than had been previously anticipated leaves it better positioned to deal with headwinds from the festering debt crisis in Europe and fiscal tightening at home.