Archive for December 2nd, 2013

02
Dec
13

Night owl chat – Christmas cheer, part 1

Since this is my favorite time of year, the first in a series of posts for the season. Today, pop Christmas music.

A Charlie Brown Christmas – Christmastime Is Here

Wham! – Last Christmas

Continue reading ‘Night owl chat – Christmas cheer, part 1’

02
Dec
13

Chat Away

@petesouza: Pres Obama, with CoS Denis McDonough’s daughter, walks a birthday cake to Denis’ office in the West Wing

02
Dec
13

A Tweet or Two

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02
Dec
13

Chat Away

President Obama delivers remarks at a World AIDS Day event in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, December 2

02
Dec
13

President Obama delivers remarks at World AIDS Day Event

White House Live * C-Span

1:0 EST: White House Observation of World AIDS Day

1:20 EST: President Obama delivers remarks

02
Dec
13

Rise and Shine

On This Day: “Shortly before Olivia arrived, Frank and I noticed a blurb in one of the parenting magazines .. if you send a birth announcement to the White House, you will receive a congratulatory note from the President. Since we had nothing to lose, we gave it a try and sent an announcement …. I checked the mail and found this … What a wonderful surprise!”

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Today (all times Eastern):

1:20: The President delivers remarks at World AIDS Day Event, South Court Auditorium

1:45: Press Briefing by Jay Carney

The Week Ahead:

Tuesday: The President will welcome President Santos of Colombia to the White House for a bilateral meeting.

Wednesday: Delivers remarks on the economy at the Center for American Progress.

Thursday: Hosts a Hanukkah reception at the White House.

Friday: The President and the First Family will attend the National Christmas Tree Lighting on the Ellipse.

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Bob Cesca: As Healthcare.gov Bugs Are Fixed, the ‘Obama’s Katrina’ Script Continues To Be Shredded

It’s been 11 days since The National Journal‘s Ron Fournier wrote that Obamacare is President Obama’s Katrina. Oh, and it’s also his Iraq, Fournier wrote. Obama’s Katrina and Iraq. Both.

….The news media needs this. They need The Script to play out as planned because most of the major voices in the traditional press have argued that this is how it works. The second term curse. But in reality the only curse here is The Script. Instead of lying to readers by telling them that the response to a temporarily glitchy website is the same as the response to a deadly hurricane or an even deadlier war, when there’s absolutely no relationship between the three events is journalistically unethical and, yes, incompetent.

The incompetence is only amplified now that the problems with the ACA are being rapidly and competently resolved, contrary to the dictates of The Script. And I suspect The Script will continue to be shredded in the months to come. But I don’t expect that the Ron Fourniers of the world will acknowledge it or admit they were dead wrong.

Full post here

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Kathleen Sebelius: Improvement dramatic over Oct. 1

Wherever I go, I meet Americans who tell me how long they’ve been waiting for the security of affordable health coverage.

The new Marketplace is an opportunity for individuals without employer insurance to obtain coverage — with choice and competition that was previously unavailable. Many Americans and their families are eligible for financial assistance to make insurance even more affordable.

Yet, far too many of those who have visited HealthCare.gov have experienced problems. These problems are unacceptable.

So we’ve been working 24/7 to make improvements, and more consumers are successfully shopping online and enrolling in a health plan each week.

As a result, today’s user experience on HealthCare.gov is a dramatic improvement over where it was on Oct. 1. The site is running faster, it’s responding quicker and it can handle larger amounts of traffic.

More here

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Paul Krugman: Benghazification Begins

Healthcare.gov is much better …. the crisis is over — for Obama and the Democrats. It’s just beginning for the Republicans, who won’t be able to let go of the notion that it’s a criminal scandal, and that mobs with pitchforks will march on the White House if only they can find the right words.

They’ll try everything. They’ll hold endless hearings; they’ll get the usual suspects to publish many op-eds. Maybe they’ll get 60 Minutes to do a report that has to be retracted.

…. health reform is, almost surely, over the hump.

Full post here

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Reuters: Manufacturing growth rebounds in November to 10-month high

U.S. manufacturing growth rebounded from a one-year low in November, while factory output grew at its fastest pace in 20 months, an industry report showed on Monday.

Financial data firm Markit said its final U.S. Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index rose to 54.7 from 51.8 in October, which had been a one-year low. November’s reading was the highest for the index since January, and stronger than the preliminary reading October of 54.3. A reading above 50 indicates expansion.

The rebound in the main index from its October level, which was negatively impacted by the 16-day partial U.S. government shutdown, came amid faster growth in output and new work intakes.

More here

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Steve Benen: RNC reflects on ‘ending racism’

…. in the larger context, stories like these resonate because the party no longer qualifies for the benefit of the doubt. Too many incidents come quickly to mind: the Nevada Republican who’d embrace slavery, the North Carolina Republican whose appearance on “The Daily Show” became the stuff of legend, the birthers, the fondness for Jesse Helms, the widespread voter-suppression laws that disproportionately affect African Americans, the Maine Republican who wants the NAACP to kiss his butt, the former half-term Alaska governor who’s comfortable with “shuck and jive” rhetoric, etc.

The RNC, in other words, can’t lean on its credibility on racial issues to easily dismiss poorly worded tweets. The fact that the party can’t even say a nice thing about Rosa Parks without screwing up and getting itself in trouble only helps reinforce the extent to which race is a systemic problem for the party.

Full post here

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Washington Post: Support for gun control helped a candidate win in Virginia

Political conventional wisdom has it that in a purple state, such as Virginia, support for gun-safety legislation is best played down. As manager of Mark Herring’s campaign for attorney general, I got a lot of advice. One of the things I heard most frequently was that we should soft-pedal his strong record and advocacy for sensible gun legislation. It would hurt us outside of Northern Virginia and wasn’t a voting issue within the Beltway, I was told.

Like much conventional wisdom, this was wrong — and we not only ignored this advice but did the opposite….

…. The painful and numbing record of senseless gun violence — from Columbine High School in Colorado to Virginia Tech to Newtown, Conn., and, during the heart of the fall campaign, the Navy Yard shooting — was the real determinant of voters’ sentiments. Our campaign pointed out the contrast, and voters lined up on our side. Even the NRA’s active opposition in its home state could not change the fact that voters rejected our opponent’s radical position on gun safety. Those perpetuating the conventional wisdom should take notice: In the end, voters were calling out for action on gun violence, and they flocked to the candidate who offered progress and a sensible, mainstream approach to protecting Virginians.
More here

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ThinkProgress: How Texas’ Voter ID Law Could Lead To Six Hour Delays On Election Day

A provision of Texas’ new voter ID law could delay the amount of time required for hundreds of thousands of Texans to cast a ballot, forcing hours of delays at polling places across the state. Indeed, a ThinkProgress analysis of figures provided by the Dallas Morning News suggests that Texas voting precincts could require nearly six additional hours to process voters caught by this law in 2016.

In Dallas County, Texas, nearly 14,000 voters were delayed when attempting to cast a ballot, thanks to Texas’ new voter ID law. And that was in a low-turnout election last month where only six percent of the state’s registered voters turned out. In a presidential election year, nearly ten times as many voters are likely to turn out, likely resulting in ten times as many delays. In total, the voter ID law could force thousands of hours of delay spread across the many voting precincts in Texas.

More here

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On This Day:

President Obama departs the Outer Oval Office at the end of the day, Dec. 2, 2009 (Photo by Pete Souza)

First Lady Michelle Obama and Ken Fisher of the Fisher House Foundation cut the ribbon to open the newest Fisher House at the Bethesda Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland on December 2, 2010. The Fisher house provides free housing to military families while their loved ones receive hospitalization for an illness, disease or injury.

President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama watch Susan Retik and her daughter Molly light a Menorah on the second night of Hanukkah during a Hanukkah reception in the East Room of the White House, Dec 2, 2010

President Barack Obama delivers remarks during a meeting with newly elected governors at Blair House in Washington, D.C., Dec. 2, 2010 (Photo by Lawrence Jackson)

President Obama listens to former president Bill Clinton during a visit to a building under construction in Washington as part of the President’s Better Building Initiative to promote energy efficient buildings, Dec 2, 2011

President Obama listens as Hartford “Sonny” Black Eagle delivers remarks at the White House Tribal Nations Conference at the Interior Department in Washington, Dec. 2, 2011

President Obama smiles for a photo with a group Marine Corps Navajo Code Talkers after delivering remarks at the White House Tribal Nations Conference, Dec. 2

President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama applaud as they attend the 2012 Kennedy Center Honors at the Kennedy Center in Washington, December 2, 2012

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MoooOOOooorning!

02
Dec
13

Early Bird Chat

President Barack Obama and First Lady Michele Obama talk with the 2012 Kennedy Center Honorees in the Blue Room of the White House prior to a reception in the East Room, Dec. 2, 2012. Honorees, from left, are: Chicago bluesman Buddy Guy, Led Zeppelin keyboardist and bassist John Paul Jones, Led Zeppelin singer Robert Plant, ballerina Natalia Makarova, actor Dustin Hoffman, Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page, and television comedian David Letterman. (Photo by Pete Souza)

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MoooOOOooorning – Happy Monday!




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