Washington Post: As secretary to mega-investor Warren Buffett, Debbie Bosanek is used to being in proximity to power. But the prospect of sitting with first lady Michelle Obama at tonight’s State of the Union address apparently is something different altogether. Bosanek, who’s mostly kept an under-the-radar profile despite being the poster lady for President Obama’s tax proposals, tells us she’s a tad jittery.
“I was so excited I couldn’t sleep last night,” she says.
Greg Sargent: There seems to be widespread agreement that the half-hour documentary attacking Mitt Romney’s Bain years that was released yesterday by the pro-Gingrich Super PAC was a very effective piece of political communication. Ed Kilgore, for instance, described it as a “heat seaking missle aimed directly at the white working class id”.
But what will South Carolina voters themselves see? Will this attack translate well in the 30-second and 60-second ads based on this documentary that the Newt Super PAC ad will run in the state?
…. Rick Tyler, the GOP operative who works for Winning The Future, says the ads are part of a $3.4 million buy that includes other media. We should obviously treat that figure with serious skepticism until the money is actually spent, but if that’s true, that’s a significant buy for South Carolina.
Robert Shrum: … what he spoke on election night in New Hampshire puts the presumptive Republican nominee at odds with the essential character of America. In a well-coiffed gentrification of the racist-tinged attack on Barack Obama as “the other” – a somehow alien and illegitimate president – Flip Romney, in full pander mode to the paranoia of the far right, arraigned the president for “tak[ing] his inspiration from the capitals of Europe” — and seeking “to turn America into a European-style entitlement society.”
…. In reality, Obama has been defending and extending the nation’s long march toward fulfilling its founding ideals. It’s Romney who, on critical economic issues, takes his inspiration from the capitals of Europe….
…. I doubt Romney will give up the xenophobia anytime soon. It plays well among primary voters who are suspicious that he’s not reliably reactionary; it’s a code-coated formula to depict Barack Obama as someone from another country, another continent, another tradition. In that sense, it’s a modulated form of “birtherism.”
Romney’s right when he says this election is about “the soul of America”. With his hostility to economic justice and the social safety net, his record in business, his desertion of the American quest for equal rights, and his embrace of floundering European economics, he would, if he ever got there, be the president of a very different and lesser United States…..
TPM: If a speech Thursday morning by one of his top economists is any indication, President Barack Obama is going all in with the 2012 re-election message of stemming the rise in income inequality and reforming a system that’s increasingly perceived to be rigged in favor of the rich.
White House Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Alan Krueger rattled off a flurry of statistics illustrating the rise of inequality and its connection to the shrinking middle class. He blamed it on economic policies tilted to favor top earners – including income tax reforms (presumably during the Bush era) and the “drastic cut in the estate tax.”
He also argued that implementation of the Affordable Care Act, which Republicans are eager to repeal, will help reduce the disparities.
It’s a message that bore an uncanny resemblance to the “Teddy Roosevelt” speech President Obama delivered in early December, which was interpreted by many as laying out the grounds for his re-election campaign …. Romney has taken to decrying this message as the “politics of envy” and “class warfare” …. Krueger’s speech Thursday makes clear that that’s a fight the White House is happy to have.
Our old GOPolitico friend Byron Tau got very excited today about the date on that DoJ memo on recess appointments. Read and learn Byron:
Mother Jones: ….. The opinion itself is dated January 6, two days after the appointments were announced – but that doesn’t mean the opinion was sought retroactively. “It is common, especially where time is of the essence, to give legal advice prior to a formal written opinion,” says Marty Lederman, a former attorney with the Office of Legal Counsel. “It takes time to produce an opinion with this level of detail.”
Young Byron then updated his post with this: White House press secretary Jay Carney told reporters in the briefing that the DoJ memo was based on advice given by the president’s Office of Legal Counsel. “The opinion was rendered verbally prior to the date of the opinion itself,” Carney said, explaining the discrepancy. “The opinion was based on the advice provided by OLC”
Discrepancy? :lol: Byron? Quit while you’re that far behind behind.
President Barack Obama meets with Speaker of the House John Boehner on the patio near the Oval Office, Sunday, July 3
President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden meet with House Speaker John Boehner and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in the Oval Office to discuss ongoing efforts to find a balanced approach to the debt limit and deficit reduction, July 20
President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden walk around the South Lawn of the White House, Sunday, July 24
President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden are briefed by Rob Nabors, Assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs, during a meeting in Chief of Staff Bill Daley’s West Wing office at the White House to discuss ongoing efforts to find a balanced approach to the debt limit and deficit reduction, Saturday, July 30
President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden talk with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi following their meeting with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in the Oval Office to discuss ongoing efforts to find a balanced approach to the debt limit and deficit reduction, Saturday, July 30
President Barack Obama talks with senior advisors in the Oval Office to discuss ongoing efforts in the debt limit and deficit reduction talks, Sunday, July 31. Pictured, from left, are: Vice President Joe Biden; Rob Nabors, Assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs; OMB Director Jack Lew; Pete Rouse, Counselor to the President; and Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett
President Barack Obama talks on the phone with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in Chief of Staff Bill Daley’s West Wing Office at the White House to discuss ongoing efforts in the debt limit and deficit reduction talks, Sunday, July 31, 2011. Chief of Staff Bill Daley, National Economic Council Director Gene Sperling, and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner
President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden talk in a West Wing hallway at the White House in between meetings to discuss ongoing efforts in the debt limit and deficit reduction talks, Sunday, July 31
President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden shake hands in the Oval Office following a phone call with House Speaker John Boehner securing a bipartisan deal to reduce the nation’s deficit and avoid default, Sunday, July 31
President Barack Obama signs the Budget Control Act of 2011 in the Oval Office, Aug. 2
CNN: … The White House was feeling optimistic that it was on the verge of a deal Thursday night. John Boehner and Harry Reid left the Oval Office meeting, “there was kind of an agreement on a range and agreement on the kind of composition,” said one of five officials who briefed reporters.
But by three or four o’clock in the morning Friday, the officials described a breakdown … “There was a higher number,” said one official, “north of $80 billion dollars. There was also renewed talk about family planning.
As sharp verbal punches were thrown throughout the day on Capitol Hill, the White House kept silent. The president never made any public statements and spokesman Jay Carney never held his daily briefing. That was not by accident…
It was a “directive from him [president],” one official said. The idea was to stay out of sight, avoid finger pointing, and allow negotiators to work out a compromise.
…”Every time the process seemed to get bogged down the president picked up the phone and made clear that we had a responsibility to the American people…that we shouldn’t play politics. He did not want this to become a family planning bill he wanted it to be a spending bill”…
…on Friday the president spoke by phone with House Speaker Boehner four times. He also spoke with Senate majority leader Reid “multiple times”…
During one of the Oval Office meeting this week, one of the officials described how the president went through every controversial rider that Republicans wanted …In describing the tone of these meetings one official said “at no point did the discussions in the room get personal”. The president never scolded Boehner for public comments that appeared to contradict what was being discussed in private negotiations….
Neither side wanted a government shutdown, but the president wasn’t willing to give ground on allowing the controversial family planning rider to be part of the deal. “…we just were not going to move on this”…
….So what forced the deal? “The clock probably played the most important factor,” said one of the officials. With the clock winding down Rob Nabors, the President’s Legislative Affairs Director, was on the Hill, kept the White House informed throughout the negotiation process and signaled that a deal had been reached. It was White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley who informed the president around 10:30pm.