On This Day: Teachers attending the Presidential Awards for Mathematics and Science applaud as President Barack Obama enters the State Dining Room of the White House, prior to the “Educate to Innovate” event for excellence in Science, Technology, Engineering & Math (STEM), Jan. 6, 2010 (Photo by Pete Souza)
The President has no public events scheduled
— EJ Dionne (@EJDionne) January 6, 2014
Al Jazeera: Senate poised to confirm Yellen as Federal Reserve chair
If confirmed, Yellen will make history by becoming the first woman to head the US central banking system
The Senate, which begins its 2014 session on Monday, intends to waste no time making history as it moves to approve Janet Yellen to be the first woman to head the Federal Reserve.
A vote is set for 5:30 p.m. on Yellen, 67, who has been vice chair of the Fed since 2010. If confirmed, Yellen would succeed Ben Bernanke, whose second four-year term ends on Jan. 31.
In an early sign that Yellen commands enough support to win confirmation, the Democratic-controlled Senate voted 59-34 on Dec. 20 to move forward with the nomination.
— ACA Success Stories (@ACASuccessStory) January 6, 2014
TPM: ALEC’s New Obamacare Obstruction Plan Won’t Work
Obamacare’s opponents are running out of options to stop the law.
The Supreme Court upheld it in the summer of 2012. President Obama was re-elected a few months later. The congressional GOP’s strategy of shutting down the federal government to de-fund the law proved a disaster.
That might help explain why the conservative movement’s latest tactics seem a little more desperate — and, according to experts, equally unlikely to succeed.
Heading into the 2014 legislative session, the American Legislative Exchange Council is pushing new model legislation that aims to undermine the federal health care reform law. The only problem is: It’s probably illegal.
The deadline to enroll in a health plan that kicks in on February 1st is January 15th. Get shopping: http://t.co/QUihgP7AVD
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) January 5, 2014
Steve Benen: Thou shalt not do paperwork
With a new contraception controversy pending at the Supreme Court, some in conservative media have suggested the Obama administration is going after a group of nuns. In an interesting twist, that’s largely the opposite of what’s happened.
…. a Colorado group of nuns, the Little Sisters of the Poor, wants to provide health care coverage to its non-profit group’s employees, but doesn’t want to cover contraception. No problem, the Obama administration says, telling the group that it can simply fill out some paperwork noting a religious objection, at which point a private insurance company can create a separate policy for workers who want access to birth control. The non-profit group wouldn’t be involved, wouldn’t condone contraception, and wouldn’t pay a penny.
The nuns have filed a federal lawsuit claiming that the paperwork itself infringes on their religious beliefs, too …. I wonder whether the Little Sisters of the Poor would object if someone filled out the paperwork for them, in a Shabbas goy kind of situation.
Full post here
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) January 5, 2014
Brian Beutler: GOP’s ulterior motive on unemployment: Economic sabotage?
Congress returns from the holidays in earnest today, more than a week after allowing emergency unemployment compensation to lapse for millions of jobless Americans, which raises the critical question of what lies behind the GOP’s reluctance to do the obviously correct thing.
Senate Democrats hope just a handful of Republicans will break away from the opposition later today, to pass legislation that would renew the lapsed benefits, and pressure John Boehner to follow suit, but they’re having a hard time finding the votes.
…. Unemployment benefits make people’s lives better and buoy a fragile, but possibly accelerating recovery. Some Republicans are apparently reluctant to give Democrats and the economy a shot in the arm right now.
Full post here
— Michael Grunwald (@MikeGrunwald) January 5, 2014
Look, @60Minutes used to do silly puff pieces about solar planes and whatnot. Now clean energy is real, so bigshots want to take it down.
— Michael Grunwald (@MikeGrunwald) January 6, 2014
ThinkProgress: 60 Minutes Hit Job On Clean Energy Ignores The Facts
Clean technology is booming by every key indicator — but you would never know that from Sunday’s absurd 60 Minutes piece touting an imaginary “Cleantech Crash.”
As documented in the recent Department of Energy (DOE) report, “Revolution Now: The Future Arrives for Four Clean Energy Technologies,” the only thing in cleantech that is crashing is the cost of key components. This price crash has enabled explosive growth in wind power, solar power, LED lights and electric vehicles, as shown in the four charts from the report reposted here.
But for 60 Minutes, this incredible boon is a bust…
Sarah Palin: “I applaud Liz Cheney for quitting halfway through her Senate bid. Just the kind of leadership and dedication our Party needs.”
— The Daily Edge (@TheDailyEdge) January 6, 2014
— Jon Lovett (@jonlovett) January 6, 2014
Steve Benen: Liz Cheney exits stage right
It’s never been entirely clear what Liz Cheney was thinking. In July, the far-right media personality launched a Senate campaign in Wyoming – a state she’d moved to only a year prior – taking on a popular, conservative incumbent, Sen. Mike Enzi (R).
The fight lacked the elements one would ordinarily expect in a high-profile primary race: Enzi and Cheney are both very conservative; they agree on the key issues; and the challenger had no specific proposals she was eager to bring to the fore with a statewide candidacy. Indeed, her most notable accomplishments as a candidate were a humiliating controversy over a fishing license and a family dispute over her opposition to her own sister’s right to get married.
This morning, Cheney’s troubled candidacy came to an abrupt end.