As a state senator in Illinois, President Obama opposed legislation providing an exception to handgun restrictions if the weapon was used in the defense of one’s home. Obama’s vote would have maintained the status quo, which made it a violation of municipal gun ban law to use a firearm to save your own life in your own home. But the bill was passed anyway without his support. The vote is a sign of how committed Obama may be to strict gun control measures. The Illinois vote is hardly ancient history, having occurred in 2004 as
The two governors leading the debate on stricter gun laws -- New York´s Andrew Cuomo and Maryland´s Martin O´Malley -- not only want to enact legislation that would make their respective states the toughest in the country, they are both widely believed to have presidential aspirations and could face each other in 2016 or a future Democratic primary. Cuomo laid out his legislation in a State of the State address last week and it was passed by the state Senate Monday, while O´Malley described his plan Monday at a gun summit at Johns Hopkins University.
President Obama has a new New Year´s favorite phrase: "I´m happy to have that conversation." He was happy to utter that very happy-to-have phrase fully five times in his 52-minute news conference Monday. According to the Democrat, he is probably the most reasonable, most friendly, most social, most compromising person he knows. And he´s always happy to have conversations, except when he isn´t. Or as long as everyone else does things his way.
New York lawmakers agreed to pass the toughest gun control law in the nation and the first since the Newtown, Conn., school shooting, calling for a tougher assault weapons ban and provisions to keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill who make threats. "This is a scourge on society," Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday night, six days after making gun control a centerpiece of his progressive agenda in his State of the State address. The bipartisan effort was fueled by the Newton tragedy that took the lives of 20 first graders and six educators.
Washington´s transparency and environmental communites were abuzz yesterday awaiting release by the Environmental Protection Agency of the first 3,000 of an expected 12,000 "Richard Windsor" emails sent to and from outgoing Administrator Lisa Jackson. After sorting through technical glitches that undermined the agency´s first attempt to post the documents ordered released by a federal court, it became obvious that EPA had only made public about 2,100 emails and "Richard Windsor" - Jackson´s admitted illegal non de plume on one of her government email accounts - was nowhere to be found. What EPA released was a collection
Why should it be permissible for President Barack Obama to threaten the nation with default by accusing the Republicans of doing so, when they have not? Why should it be tolerable for President Obama to accuse the Republicans of wanting to end Social Security and take food away from poor kids? Why, after Sandy Hook, should he be able to use gun metaphors to attack the opposition even as he pushes gun control? Why should he be allowed to make up stories about an "economic crisis" that happened during the last debt ceiling fight?
The Leftist advocacy group People for the American Way (PFAW) has launched an all-out war against Representative Michele Bachmann (R-MN). On Monday it plans to present House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) with a petition bearing 178,000 signatures, demanding that Bachmann not be reappointed to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. Michael Keegan, president of PFAW, explained Bachmann’s crime: “Michele Bachmann has used her position on the Intelligence Committee to spread baseless conspiracy theories and smear the reputations of honorable public servants. Speaker Boehner himself called her actions ‘dangerous.’ It’s mysterious, then, why he has chosen to reward
Steve Kerrigan, head honcho for the 2013 Presidential Inaugural Committee, has a message for carping congressmen, donors and Obama supporters who’ve heard there’s only one official inaugural ball this year and are afraid they won’t make the cut. It’s a mirage. One of the best-kept secrets in town is that the one public inaugural ball will be a doozy, with upward of 40,000 partying in a single bacchanalia under one roof at the Washington Convention Center. It’s the equivalent of six or seven traditional inaugural balls such as those held four years ago.
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg on Monday urged President Barack Obama to make a recess appointment for the head of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, as one of several steps that Obama can take to on gun control “without congressional approval at any time he chooses with just the stroke of a pen.” “The president can make a recess appointment to head the federal Bureau of Alcohol and Firearms. The ATF as it’s called hasn’t had a director for six years. Can you imagine how much outrage there’d be if we’d been without
Seventh-graders across the state could gain access to a free vaccination preventing certain types of cancer if lawmakers can sway Gov. Nikki Haley to support the program. State Rep. Bakari Sellers, D-Denmark, has introduced legislation that would allow the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control to administer a series of three shots that would guard against the human papillomavirus to all seventh-grade students throughout the state. HPV, the most common sexually transmitted disease, can lead to cervical cancer in women and, less commonly, is linked to other forms of cancer in both men and women, according to the
Former first daughter Chelsea Clinton has signed on to help promote President Obama´s inaugural kick-off event to get Americans engaged in serving their communities. The 32-year-old plans to headline a summit on the National Mall on Saturday that is the centerpiece of the president´s National Day of Service, a call to action meant to honor the legacy of Dr Martin Luther King Jr. on the holiday weekend celebrating his birthday. Acting as the day´s honorary chair is a new inaugural role for the woman who participated in the festivities as an adolescent, standing next to her father, Bill Clinton
Rick Scott, the governor of Florida, rescued a Labrador retriever during the 2010 GOP campaign, but gave him back after he was inaugurated, it was revealed Monday. The Republican governor only had the dog, Reagan, for the duration of his gubernatorial campaign, and gave the retriever back after he was sworn into office. [Snip] Scott was routinely congratulated for adopting a rescue and not buying a purebred, such as President Obama’s dog, Bo, a Portuguese water dog. However, reporters from the Tampa Bay Times noticed that Reagan had not been seen since Scott’s 2011 inauguration.
The German economy grew by 0.7% in 2012, a sharp slowdown on the previous year, preliminary figures show. The figure was well below the 3% growth seen in 2011 and suggests the economy contracted in the fourth quarter. "In 2012, the German economy proved to be resistant in a difficult economic environment and withstood the European recession," the federal statistics office Destatis said. Some analysts believe the German economy will enter recession itself. Destatis said economic activity "slowed down considerably" in the second half of the year, and particularly in the final quarter.
WASHINGTON — In a sour footnote to President Barack Obama´s sweeping electoral victory last November, many of his campaign staffers have been shut out of the inaugural festivities, more than a dozen of them complained to BuzzFeed Monday. "We worked our butts off, and I´m going to watch it on TV instead of being there," said one former staffer. "It´s a huge bummer."
Pakistan´s Supreme Court has ordered the arrest of PM Raja Pervez Ashraf and 15 others over corruption allegations, raising fears of a political crisis just months ahead of an election. Mr Ashraf denies accepting bribes when approving power generation projects as minister for water and power in 2010. Analysts say that the move is unlikely to lead to his immediate removal. It comes as a populist cleric led thousands of protesters in Islamabad, demanding the government resign. Television images showed demonstrators, led by Tahirul Qadri, celebrating and triumphantly applauding as news broke of the court´s order.
Ministers will today sign a landmark deal to ensure that Albanian criminals convicted in Britain are sent home to serve their jail sentences. Around £25 million is expected to be saved for taxpayers over the next 10 years by the compulsory prisoner transfer agreement, according to Whitehall figures. The move comes after Justice Secretary Chris Grayling demanded a bigger effort to reduce the number of foreign inmates in UK jails. An estimated 11,000 are behind bars here--including rapists, murderers, drug dealers and sex offenders--costing taxpayers around £420 million a year. Prisons Minister Jeremy Wright will sign the agreement
The White House has identified 19 executive actions for President Barack Obama to move unilaterally on gun control, Vice President Joe Biden told a group of House Democrats on Monday, the administration’s first definitive statements about its response to last month’s mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Later this week, Obama will formally announce his proposals to reduce gun violence, which are expected to include renewal of the assault weapons ban, universal background checks and prohibition of high-capacity magazine clips. But Biden,
The comments so far on my most recent piece (“Despair Inside the Beltway”), which ran here yesterday, have usually fit a familiar pattern: tear down the writer who voted for Mr. Obama even though he has now seen the error of his ways and is working for change. (Snip)I should have mentioned how I voted in the last election. For the first time in a long life, I voted almost exclusively for Republicans, including Mitt Romney for President. He was clearly the best qualified and most honorable candidate for the top position.
Watching the president talk about the debt ceiling and his unwillingness to give up any ransom in exchange for it, I find it impossible not to confront the point that as of now nobody seems to believe him. And the reason isn´t hard to identify: the fiscal cliff deal. Not because the fiscal cliff deal was a bad deal; I think it was a good deal. But whatever you think of the deal, it wasn´t the deal that Obama said he would agree to. The administration put a lot of emphasis on the $250,000 cutoff point,
There may come a time when Chris Christie and Andrew Cuomo, two supremely ambitious pols and potential rivals in the 2016 presidential cycle, need some distance. But that moment won’t arrive anytime soon. Instead of jockeying for advantage, the two Northeastern governors — the Republican from blue-state New Jersey and the Democrat from bluer-state New York — have developed an unexpectedly warm working relationship over the past 18 months, marked by occasional dinners and more frequent cell phone contact, aides say. Not coincidentally, both also enjoy approval ratings at the 70-percent level, a novel, post-Hurricane Sandy
President Obama likes to talk about civility in politics, but then he has a particular personal talent for attributing to his political opponents only base motives and beliefs they don´t come close to holding. Consult his Monday press conference for a classic of the genre. Mr. Obama was asked an anodyne question at one point about reducing the deficit and the long-term accumulation of debt, and perhaps you´ve noticed that the deficit is $1 trillion a year and the debt is building rapidly toward 90% of GDP. Mr. Obama acted as if solving this problem would be a pleasant stroll
A group of anti-Israel activists and journalists are engaged in a coordinated campaign to stifle criticism of controversial secretary of defense nominee Chuck Hagel by attacking the former Republican senator’s critics, according to emails obtained by the Free Beacon. Fenton communications chief executive officer David Fenton, the Atlantic’s national correspondent James Fallows, former diplomat Charles ‘Chas’ Freeman, Just Foreign Policy director Robert Naiman, and American Conservative founding editor Scott McConnell participated in a recent email exchange dedicated to silencing Hagel’s critics, the emails reveal. The emailers targeted recent comments made by Elliott Abrams, a former Bush administration National Security Council adviser
Bill Clinton is a multimillionaire, but you’re paying for the Cinemax in his office. That’s just one eyebrow-raising expense a former occupant of the White House has been allowed to put on the taxpayer tab every year, even though every living ex-president is quite wealthy. In an attempt to shed light on this little-known perk of being a former commander in chief, The Daily Caller — through a Freedom of Information Act request filed last year — has obtained thousands of pages of emails and documents from the government detailing how taxpayer money is spent on former presidents each year.
The fiscal cliff debate is on hold. Now comes the demographic cliff debate: Immigration. Former Gov. Jeb Bush hosted a Friday powwow about immigration reform. U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio and President Obama’s administration leaked details of their plans over the weekend that would give varying degrees of amnesty to those illegally in the country. And on Monday in Doral, Miami U.S. Reps. Mario Diaz-Balart and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen held a forum to gather ideas and, in Diaz-Balart’s words, give them “ammunition” to call on their colleagues to reform immigration..
Cubans lined up at passport agencies, photocopying machines and some embassies Monday on the first day of a migration reform that promises to allow them to make more personal trips abroad after almost exactly 54 years of bitterly hated restrictions. In a hint of the possibly profound impact of the changes, Havana blogger Yoani Sanchez and dissident Guillermo Fariñas, who together have been denied permission to travel abroad more than 24 times, said authorities told them they will be allowed to leave and return.