Archive for March 27th, 2013

27
Mar
13

Chat Away

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Thursday:

11:40: President Obama delivers remarks on gun control at the White House – he will stand with mothers who want Congress to take action on common-sense measures to protect children from gun violence. Law enforcement officials and victims of gun violence will also attend.

2:10: Meets with the leaders of Sierra Leone, Senegal, Malawi and Cape Verde

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President Obama checks Jane Hamsher’s accounts:

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27
Mar
13

This and That

President Obama watches as Julia Pierson is sworn in as the first woman Director of the Secret Service by VP Biden in the Oval Office, March 27 (Photo: Pete Souza)

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President Obama was interviewed by Univision and Telemundo today – the interviews are embargoed until 6:30PM EST

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Steve Benen: After yesterday’s Supreme Court oral arguments on marriage rights and California’s Prop 8, court watchers and those on hand for the proceedings seemed reluctant to predict the outcome. It’s not just that speculation based solely on oral arguments is inherently risky, but also that real uncertainty hangs over the case.

That seems far less true 24 hours later. NBC’s Pete Williams told viewers this afternoon, “Again with the caveat, it’s always risky to predict, it does seem that there are at least five votes on the Supreme Court to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act.” Jeffrey Toobin added, “DOMA is in trouble.”

The New York Times report noted that Justice Kennedy “joined the four liberals in posing skeptical questions.”

More here

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Charles Pierce: Today, in the second half of the marriage equality twin-bill before the Supreme Court, the Defense Of Marriage Act gets its day in front of the be-robed ladies and gentlemen, and we might at last be putting the 1996 presidential campaign, and the influence of political Svengali Dick Morris, behind us. We may see the end of the era of triangulation. Yesterday, it became clear to most observers that the Court was fully prepared to punt on the case involving California’s Proposition 8, letting the issue devolve back to the states. That is not an option here. Either DOMA’s denial of over 1000 federal benefits and protections available to straight couples is constitutional or it is not. There are a number of reasons why it may not be, most of them involving such fundamental constitutional principles as equal protection of the laws, the full faith and credit clause, and the enumerated powers of the Congress. Politically, however, the law is both preposterous and obsolete.

More here

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McClatchy: President Obama will meet Thursday with mothers who want to see gun control efforts succeed, the White House says, amid questions of whether gun control legislation is lagging, some 100 days after the school shooting in Connecticut.

Obama will meet with law enforcement officials, victims of gun violence and other “stakeholders,” spokesman Josh Earnest said. The event comes as Obama’s gun violence prevention proposals have faced a series of roadblocks: Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., last week announced that an assault weapons ban she championed won’t be included in the larger gun bill Democrats will introduce on the Senate floor next month.

More here

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Joe Deaser (The Hill): As a proud gun store owner, an avid outdoorsman, and a lifetime member of the National Rifle Association, I know that recreational firearm use can be a safe, family-friendly activity that builds community and benefits everyone who takes part. But I also know that with our constitutional right to bear arms comes a responsibility to protect our loved ones and our neighbors from the devastating effects of gun violence.

In order to do just that, my fellow gun owners must come together to support perhaps the most logical and pragmatic gun safety measure currently under consideration in Washington: expanding the existing background check system to require criminal background checks for each and every gun sale.

More here

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Charles Pierce: Senator Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota is rapidly moving to the top of the leader board for this year’s Al From Trophy, which the blog hands out annually to its least favorite putative Democrat. (The scramble for the cup has become frenzied since the retirement of perennial contenders Evan Bayh and Joe Lieberman, who were the Frazier and Ali of disreputable political sellouts.) Today, she pretty much told Michael Bloomberg to keep those (black) criminals in New York City in line before he spends all his (newyorkjew) money up in Jesusland to tell the people there what’s what about their shootin’ ‘arns.

…. according to the rookie senator, gun violence is not a national issue requiring national solutions, because that might inconvenience her in her increasingly ridiculous home state.

More here

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Sun-Times: First Lady Michelle Obama returns home to Chicago on April 10 to address youth violence in Chicago, marking her first local move to deal with reducing crime in her city.

According to the White House, Mrs. Obama will speak at a “Joint Luncheon Meeting: Working Together to Address Youth Violence in Chicago,” hosted by Mayor Rahm Emanuel, which will include members of Chicago’s leading civic organizations: the Commercial Club, the Economic Club, the Executives’ Club, and World Business Chicago.

More here

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OFA

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Steve Benen: It’s been about two weeks since Brian Beutler coined a helpful phrase: “sequestration NIMBYism.” Republicans love the sequester policy they hated as recently as last month, and think it’s terrific that these deep, mindless spending cuts have taken effect.

But they’re not at all pleased about sequestration cuts that hurt their own constituents…

More here

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Vice President Joe Biden participates in a post-game cheer with the University of Delaware’s Lady Blue Hens in their locker room after their 78-69 victory over the University of North Carolina in the 2nd round of the NCAA playoffs, at Bob Carper Arena in Newark

More here

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Morning/afternoon/evening all – HUUUUUUGE thanks again to UT for this morning’s Rise and Shine

27
Mar
13

Rise and Shine

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How Obama changed the gay marriage debate

Perry Bacon: While polls differ on the exact level of black support for gay marriage, almost half of African-Americans in Maryland backed a provision allowing gay marriages there last fall, and opposition to gay marriage has dipped below 50 percent among blacks nationally, according to the Pew Research Center. And Obama’s statement made it easier for influential African-American organizations, such as the NAACP, also to voice their support for gay marriage, as well as professional athletes, even if some influential pastors in many black communities still opposed it.

Obama’s words also caused a profound shift among his fellow politicians. It had always been expected Obama would declare his support for gay marriage, but in 2013 or 2014, after he had won re-election by focusing on other issues. Instead, the president illustrated backing gay marriage was not politically risky, declaring his support for gay unions and then winning not just in liberal states like California and New York but in Ohio, Virginia, Florida and other places with sizable blocs of conservatives and religious voters who some thought would turn out in droves to defeat a candidate who supported gay marriage.

Obama did not tout himself as the civil rights candidate in either of his two presidential runs. But if gay marriage becomes commonplace throughout America by the end of his second term, something that seems entirely possible right now, that could become an important part of his legacy as president.

Read more here

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Have the Politics of Gun Control Changed?

Jamelle Bouie: Indeed, it’s tempting to argue—as Chris Cillizza does—that national outrage notwithstanding, the Sandy Hook massacre has done little to change the political landscape on gun control.

This, to me, is the wrong way to think of the issue. The shift from a political climate that could tolerate gun control to one that couldn’t took more than a decade. Even with the tragedies at Newtown, Aurora, and other places across the country, it’s unreasonable to expect the pendulum to swing back at a more rapid pace. What’s key about Sandy Hook isn’t that it yields new legislation, it’s that it inspires new activism around gun control, and provides energy for the long effort to build a political coalition unafraid of the cultural politics that surround guns.

Sandy Hook—helped along by a new Democratic majority of urbanites and nonwhites—has changed the politics of gun control. It will just take awhile for us to see the effects.

Read more here

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How To Prove Obama LOWERED The Deficit In Four Easy And Indisputable Steps

Addicting Info: The GOP, Fox News and AM Hate Radio regularly complain that Obama has raised the deficit. This is a lie. A very VERY big lie. It’s such a big lie and so easy to prove as a big lie that the fact 90% of the country thinks it’s true is one the greatest failures of the “liberal” media since they couldn’t be bothered to vet the Iraq War. The problem is that conservatives don’t want to know, independents can’t be bothered to look and liberals should be deeply ashamed for not knowing.

But worry not! It’s very VERY easy to clear up this misperception (and piss off conservatives to boot!) in just 4 simple steps.

Read more here

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How Getting Rid Of The Defense Of Marriage Act Will Boost The Economy

ThinkProgress: The Supreme Court will today hear oral arguments in the case against the Defense of Marriage Act, the 1996 law that denies equal federal benefits to couples who are legally married under state law and also burdens families and the federal government.

The Congressional Budget Office estimates that DOMA increases the deficit by roughly $1 billion a year, and while that amount is small, striking it down would save far more than ending subsidies to NPR or some of the other “deficit reduction” ideas Republicans have pursued in the past.

Read more here

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Today in egg on face derp news from Chris Cillizza. He’s shocked that people still really really really like President Obama. 🙄

People (still) really like President Obama

Chris Cillizza: Nearly six in ten Americans have a favorable impression of President Obama in a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, numbers that suggest that even as the chief executive engages in a series of thorny policy fights his personal appeal remains strongly intact.

Fifty-seven percent of people view Obama favorably in the new Post-ABC survey while 41 percent regard him unfavorably. Those numbers are remarkably similar to the 60 percent favorable/37 percent unfavorable ratings for Obama in Post-ABC polling conducted in late January — just weeks after the president had been inaugurated for a second term.

Read more here

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As Chipsticks would say: MoooOOOOOOOOoooorning!




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