President Barack Obama says his top priority -- the "north star" of his second-term -- is to do "everything we can to grow the economy and create good, middle-class jobs." And that means taking more tax money from wealthy Americans, on top of the higher tax rates that Congress went along with a few months ago. Speaking at the White House on Tuesday, President Obama said Republicans have a choice: "Do you want to see a bunch of first responders lose their jobs because you want to protect some special interest tax loophole?"
Sen. David Vitter, R-La., revealed that he has found “widespread” use of banned, unofficial email accounts at the Environmental Protection Agency, including a regional administrator set to resign over the offense and EPA head Lisa Jackson’s acting replacement. “Region 8 Administrator [James] Martin is likely resigning this week in part because of the open investigation about his use of a non-official email account to conduct official business,” Vitter, ranking member on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW), said in a statement today. The off-site email account “may have been an attempt to circumvent the Federal Records Act,
Outgoing Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta has unilaterally issued a directive stating that the U.S. military will now extend certain benefits to unmarried domestic partners that were formerly reserved for married couples—but will only do so if the domestic partners certify in writing to the Department of Defense that they are of the same sex. Heterosexual unmarried partners do not qualify for the benefits—and thus are treated unequally by Panetta’s directive on the basis of their sexual orientation. Panetta issued his directive in a Feb. 11 memorandum to the secretaries of the military departments and the
CHARLOTTE – Barack Obama is absolutely correct, he really is the most transparent president in history. Obama’s message has been remarkably consistent for his entire presidency. Ever since he told Joe the Plumber on the rope line during the campaign of 2008 that “everybody deserves a fair shot and wealth should be distributed so that everyone is on a level playing field” Obama’s strategy has been unwavering. We have listened to the prevaricator in chief deliver speech after speech ad nauseam and the talking points are always crystal clear. That is transparency. Like it or not,
Hundreds of Pentagon-related companies large and small are preparing to lay off thousands of employees as Congress takes a recess this week, so far unable to agree on how to undo automatic military spending cuts set to begin March 1. BAE Systems Inc., a global giant that provides an array of goods and services for the military, estimates that it will have to lay off as many as 4,000 workers this year, including technicians who work on aircraft, ships and vehicles and who earn an average of $50,000 a year. Meanwhile, Ammcon Corp. of Portland, Ore., which makes
Limits on the size of ammunition magazines and universal background checks passed the Colorado House on Monday, during a second day of emotional debates that has drawn attention from the White House as lawmakers try to address recent mass shootings. The bills were among four that the Democratic-controlled House passed amid strong resistance from Republicans, who were joined by a few Democrats to make some of the votes close.
Naysayers and critics have not blunted the unapologetic enthusiasm of determined tea partyers. The grass-roots movement observes its fourth anniversary Tuesday, marking an event that resonated with many Americans on Feb 19, 2009. That was the day CNBC analyst Rick Santelli gave a “rant heard ‘round the world” on live TV, declaring that the fiscally irresponsible federal government was behaving badly, and that a tea party-style revolt might be in order. Since then, the tea party has been declared dead on several occasions by mocking pundits. But that does not appear to be so. Organizers are intent on raising
The Loudoun County School Board is reaching the denouement of a multiyear deliberation about an application for a charter school that has strong ties to Fethullah Gulen, a Turkish Islamist. His followers have already started some 135 American charter schools. Their focus is to promote an increasingly Shariah-dominated Turkey. Incredibly, the school board’s members are studiously avoiding any acknowledgment or discussion of the role of Fethullah Gulen and his movement in the charter school. They have wrestled for many months with a host of problems with the application — such as serious deficiencies with the proposed
Facing a surging homicide rate and several headline-grabbing murders, Chicago’s top cop is taking aim at lobbyists who he says prevent politicians from implementing more gun control measures. Appearing on a local Windy City Sunday morning talk show on the radio station WLSAM, Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said special interests that lobby politicians to influence their opinion on gun control are the real problem. “If there was a special interest influencing police work, I believe that would be called corruption,” McCarthy said.
If your church´s new pastor had a long and well-known history of atheism, contradicting church doctrine, or fire-bombing churches, would you trust him to serve the church community in good faith (snip) Larry Grathwohl is the military veteran who volunteered to infiltrate the Weather Underground as an FBI operative in 1969. He is probably best-known for his firsthand account of a Weatherman meeting at which the organization´s leadership, including the future Professor Ayers, discussed the logistics of how, after the communist revolution they were trying to spearhead, they would murder the ten percent of the American population
Pictures finally appeared of President Obama on Monday evening as he headed home to Washington after a relaxing golf weekend which was kept heavily under wraps. Cost of Air Force One trips to and from Florida, along with hotel rooms, greens fees and exclusive golf lessons comes to $989,207.
President Obama warned Congress that if the sequester cuts go through on Friday, significant cuts would bring about serious consequences in America. Obama asserted that F.B.I agents would be furloughed and “federal prosecutors would be forced to close cases and let those criminals go,” if the cuts went through. “These cuts are not smart, they are not fair, they will hurt our economy, they will add hundreds of thousands of Americans to the unemployment rolls,” Obama insisted.
Egypt´s main hardline Islamist party says an IMF loan agreement requires the approval of a body of Muslim scholars under the new constitution and it is considering legal action to make sure the government sticks to the law. The case could set a marker on the extent to which clerics will have a say over state affairs according to the Islamist-tinged constitution that was signed into law in December following its approval in a referendum. The Salafist Nour Party says the loan agreement, seen as vital to easing a deep economic crisis, must be approved by a body Headline split, content added by staff
A new photo released from the White House shows President Obama signing a letter from a child calling for “No Guns!” Although the President’s hand obscures most of the text of the letter, the words “No Guns!” are visible as well as the word ‘BULLETS.’ The photo shows Obama preparing to sign the letter after writing “proud of you.” According to the caption, the photo was taken while Obama was signing letters back stage after unveiling new gun control proposals on January 15. The letter shown in the photo does not appear to be one of the
President Obama will look to ratchet up pressure on congressional Republicans to strike a deal averting the sequester with an event Tuesday highlighting the impact of the $85 billion in cuts on the nation´s first-responders. Obama, returning from a vacation with just 10 days before the March 1 deadline when the across-the-board cuts are triggered, is scheduled to speak at 10:45 a.m. at the White House. According to an administration official, he will be joined at the event by emergency management personnel who could face furloughs or layoffs if the sequester takes place.
Nobody does tough-talking better than a Republican senator. It’s not easy talking tough, and the follow-through can be even harder. Last week, John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina roasted and toasted Chuck Hagel, as if the republic would be in deadly peril if he were confirmed as secretary of defense. This week, they’re assuring the White House that, well, they were just kidding. (“Can’t you guys take a joke?”) Mr. McCain, a key Republican wise man on defense issues, insists he still thinks Mr. Hagel is not qualified to be the main man of the U.S. military,
The heist at Zaventem international airport on Monday night is one of the biggest diamond robberies in history and the highly trained professional gang took just three minutes to hold up a Swiss passenger jet before making their escape. Belgian police are baffled after the robbery which took place with clockwork precision, military timing and apparent insider knowledge allowing the gang to target the delivery of a diamond consignment within a 15 minute time window. The robbers [Snip] struck at 7.47pm local time on Monday night just before the aircraft they had targeted was cleared for take-off.
Politico has a new piece insinuating that there are four GOP senators who are frustrated that they haven’t had a phone call from the White House so they can work together. Rob Portman of Ohio said this: I view this as a time to turn the page and take a fresh approach from both the White House and the congressional perspective and try to work together on these difficult political issues that have to be addressed. Doing it at the level of our leadership and the president hasn’t worked. Speaking of immigration reform, Portman said:
Steven Spielberg´s "Lincoln" has been a box-office hit and nominated for 12 Academy Awards, including best picture, best director and best actor for Daniel Day-Lewis, who portrayed our 16th president. I haven´t seen the movie; therefore, this column is not about the movie but about a man deified by many. (snip) In an 1858 letter, Lincoln said, "I have declared a thousand times, and now repeat that, in my opinion neither the General Government, nor any other power outside of the slave states, can constitutionally or rightfully interfere with slaves or slavery where it already exists."
Last month, the CEO of the nation’s largest health insurance company warned that he and his peers may balk at participating in Obamacare’s insurance exchanges — online, government-run portals where consumers and small businesses without conventional employer-sponsored coverage may shop for policies starting next year. “We will only participate in exchanges that we assess to be fair, commercially sustainable and provide a reasonable return on the capital they will require,” UnitedHealth Group Inc. CEO Stephen Hemsley said.
A Kentucky businessman has been quietly reaching out to local Tea Party and grass roots organizations, testing the waters for a primary challenge against GOP Senate Leader Mitch McConnell. Matt Bevin is owner of Bevin Manufacturing Co, a firm founded 160 years ago. He was also CEO of an investment management firm. He is potentially the first Tea Party challenger to emerge for the 2014 midterms. Sarah Duran, President of the Louisville Tea Party told The Hill, "We met with him to just discuss our feelings about the Senator, our feelings about someone running against him, what
Michelle Obama and her daughters spent Presidents Day weekend enjoying private lessons with numerous instructors at a top skiing resort in Aspen, Colorado, it has emerged. The Obama girls, shadowed by security, enjoyed the hospitality of wealthy Democratic donors Jim and Paula Crown - and angered other visitors by shutting airspace so they could land their plane. Their trip came as President Obama golfed with Tiger Woods in Florida - a day out that was kept under wraps from the public and the media despite the taxpayer
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its second batch of emails from former administrator Lisa Jackson’s secret email address Friday, but the researcher who sued the agency to obtain the records says it improperly redacted nearly all of the information. The emails, released in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request from the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), are from Jackson’s pseudonymous, secondary email account under the name “Richard Windsor.” The emails are the second of four batches of roughly 12,000 emails from the “Richard Windsor” account the EPA has been ordered to disclose.
As the clock ticks on the automatic spending cuts set to kick in on March 1, President Obama will hold an event this morning to urge Congress to come up with an alternative plan to avert the cuts. The White House says Mr. Obama will emphasize the potential negative effects of the so-called sequester - the $1.2 trillion over 10 years in cuts - by standing with first responders, people who the White House says will be directly affected by the cuts. The president "will be joined at the White House by emergency responders - the kinds of working