Gas prices continue to go in the wrong direction. Atlantans were paying an average of $3.79 a gallon for gasoline early Monday, an increase of nearly a dime since a week ago and 67 cents more than the mid-December price. The current national average price is $3.78, and the national average for the month of $3.63 is the highest ever for the month of February, according to AAA. The average has surpassed $4 a gallon in four states, “and a couple others are only a few cents shy of reaching the $4 mark,” said Jessica Brady, a spokeswoman for AAA.
Allowing the $85 billion sequester to go forward will make the United States more vulnerable to a terrorist attack, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano warned Monday. Napolitano added that the blunt nature of the $85 billion in automatic spending cuts set for March 1 “makes it awfully, awfully tough” to mitigate threats faced by the nation. “I don´t think we can maintain the same level of security at all places around the country with sequester compared to without sequester,” said Napolitano, whose agency includes the Transportation Security Administration.
At the beginning of the year, President Barack Obama´s new 501(c)4 political nonprofit, Organizing For Action, was launched with all the usual bells and whistles. But the tech wizards at OFA forgot one important rule in today´s Internet world: Register all the iterations of your website address before someone else does. Now Obama´s team is filing complaints against the folks smart enough to get the addresses before he did. As Obama´s OFA made its debut, no one in his purportedly Internet-savvy campaign had obtained the corresponding .com, .net, .org or .us sites,
San Francisco — A Sacramento man was arrested early Monday after he shot up a man´s Western Addition home with an automatic rifle, San Francisco police said. Kareem Benton, 42, got into an argument Sunday night with another man on the 1000 block of McAllister Street and followed the man to his home nearby, said Officer Albie Esparza, a police spokesman. Benton then pulled out a fully automatic AK-47 and "sprayed" the man´s home with bullets just after 7:30 p.m., Esparza said. The victim, who was in his home, was shot in the leg and is expected to survive.
Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) said Sunday that the sequester could cut millions of dollars in healthcare research in New York, which she said would lead to both job cuts in her state and less research into life-saving medical technologies. "I urge House leadership to avoid triggering a sequestration of federal funding that will impose draconian cuts to the research and development programs that are our hope for the future," Maloney said Sunday. "I am determined to join colleagues in both parties and both houses of Congress to prevent our nation from being forced into this entirely manufactured fiscal crisis."
Sen. Elizabeth Warren called the automatic cuts in federal spending slated to take effect Friday “just plain dumb,” but the Bay State’s newly minted, but still senior, senator said it’s largely up to congressional leaders to reach a compromise. “The sequester negotiations are mostly with the leadership,” she told reporters this morning before addressing the New England Council. “We all talk, but it’s not happening with every Republican reaching out to every Democrat. Right now, the White House, the leaders in the Senate and the House of Representatives are in negotiations.” Warren called the $85 billion in automatic cuts
Upping the ante in the spending showdown with Congress, the Obama administration warned Monday that looming automatic budget cuts will expose the nation to a greater risk of terrorist attack and a new influx of illegal immigrants. “I don’t think we can maintain the same level of security,” said Homeland Security Janet Napolitano. “If you have 5,000 fewer border patrol agents, you have 5,000 fewer border patrol agents.” With $85 billion in mandatory so-called “sequester” cuts due to start taking effect Friday, the administration is putting pressure on Republican lawmakers to raise more tax revenue to postpone at least
A Texas Republican on Monday said President Obama´s gun control campaign is a fraud based on fake messages over Twitter. Rep. Steve Stockman (R-Texas) accused Obama of trying to make support for his position look stronger than it really is by flooding Twitter with messages from people who don´t exist. "Obama´s anti-gun campaign is a fraud," Stockman said. "Obama´s supporters are panicking and willing to do anything to create the appearance of popular support, even if it means trying to defraud Congress," he added. "I call upon the president to denounce this phony spam campaign."
This week’s upcoming vote to confirm Chuck Hagel as Defense secretary feels joyless and anti-climatic. After a poor performance during his Senate confirmation hearings, he walks into the job looking like a dullard. And where is the victory for Republicans? They succeeded only in making themselves look petty by delaying the vote. They vainly used the time they created to seek dirt with which to smear their fellow Republican, merely because he is President Obama’s nominee. Never before has the minority party in the Senate filibustered a president’s nominee for a Cabinet post,
What a surprise in the White House list of federal outlays that will be cut in New York State because of the sequester. It turns out that the impact will be largely positive in a state with one of the highest combined tax rates in the country. The White House list is too long to include in its entirety. But the President has cut shrewdly, and here is a sense of it. One big gain will be a $42.7 million savings that taxpayers won’t have to pay to teachers and schools.
In remarks today at the White House, Vice President Joe Biden said that Americans don´t have the same economic worries they did when President Barack Obama came into office: "The are no longer traumatized by what was a traumatizing event, the great collapse of 2008," said Biden. "They are no longer worried, I think, about our economy being overwhelmed either by Europe writ large, the EU, or China somehow swallowing up every bit of innovation that exists in the world. They are no longer, I think, worried about our economy being overwhelmed beyond our shores.
In the words of George Will, “gridlock isn’t an American problem. Gridlock is an American achievement.” The media, representatives, and senators all claim to be yearning for some re-entrenchemnt of compromise in government. The American people like it, and left-leaning pundits like it. They say it’s essential to good governance, but history paints a different picture. Compromise was the cancer that kept the institution of slavery alive in the United States. The Compromises of 1820 and 1850 did little to assuage the friction between free states and slave states. Why?
MSNBC contributor Joy-Ann Reid said on Monday’s Now that the sequester cuts aimed at the Defense Department are the only effective way to cut wasteful government spending. She said that the Pentagon is “where the money is.” Beyond defense, Reid said, the only aspects of the budget that can be cut are “old peoples’ lights and heating,” food stamps, or milk for children. Both host Alex Wagner and former Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele remarked at the novelty of Congressional Republicans’ openly saying that sequester cuts to the defense department are welcome.
When asked about a possible presidential run by Hillary Clinton in 2016, DNC Chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) said, “I can tell you that I would love to see her run. I don’t know a woman or a man in the country right now who doesn’t want to see her run.” The DNC Chair was speaking at the Forum Club of the Palm Beaches late last month when she was asked about a 2016 presidential run by Hillary Clinton. “I’m going to give you the party line: Secretary Clinton is going to take a well-deserved rest.
I get a steady stream of e-mails and phone calls from readers who assert that The Post has a “pro-gay agenda” and publishes too many “puffy” stories about gay marriage, and that it even allows too many same-sex couples to appear in the Date Lab feature in Sunday’s WP Magazine. “The conservative, pro-family side gets short shrift,” as one reader recently put it, and The Post “caters slavishly to Dupont Circle.” Indeed, that reader got into a vigorous three-way e-mail dialogue with a Post reporter and me over the issue, an exchange that goes to the heart
Michelle Obama´s surprise Oscars cameo is international news, but with a slight twist. Persian Letters blogger Golnaz Esfandiari noticed this morning that Iran´s semi-state-run Fars News Agency added some sleeves and and chest coverage to the first lady´s Naeem Khan dress, perhaps in the name of modesty, or otherwise to minimize the American power apparent in Mrs. Obama´s biceps. A translation of the article makes no reference to the digital alterations, although Iran made sure to call out Best Picture winner Argo as a "Hollywood version" of historical events and an "advertisement for the CIA."
President Barack Obama spoke on Monday at the closing session of the National Governors Association’s annual meeting then cleared the room of reporters so he could “take some questions.” Obama said he looked forward to working with the nation’s governors to strengthen the economy and build a “thriving middle class” where anyone who works hard can get ahead. “That’s our goal, and I know that’s the goal of all of you as well. So I look forward to our partnering and with that, what I want to do is clear out the
Hollywood producer and Obama fundraiser Harvey Weinstein arranged First Lady Michelle Obama’s Oscars appearance, according to the Hollywood Reporter. The Silver Linings Playbook producer and promoter approached the Academy Awards’ president and Oscar show producers who “loved the idea.” Michelle Obama, who said, “we watch movies all the time at the White House,” also liked the idea. Complicated plans—which one Oscar show producer likened to a CIA mission—were then made for the surprise appearance. Weinstein also hired former Obama deputy campaign manager Stephanie Cutter to lobby for Silver Linings,
During a news conference on Monday, President Barack Obama addressed a gathering of the nation’s governors and warned about the impact that sequestration cuts could have on their states. He advocated for increased spending on infrastructure projects around the nation, and lashed out at Congressional Republicans who “reflexively oppose any idea that I put forward, even if it’s an idea that they once supported.” Obama advocated for new infrastructure spending as a way to put unemployed Americans back to work, as well as to repair up the nation’s failing roads and bridges.
It was the trip witnessed ´round the world: While making her way to the stage to accept the award for Best Actress at Sunday´s Academy Awards, Jennifer Lawrence stumbled and fell on a short flight of stairs, landing on her knees and hands. But while the world was Tweeting, updating, and pinning about the epic fall, Lawrence´s awesome night was just beginning. She got a hand from Hugh Jackman: She simultaneously addressed her mortification and dismissed it, by starting her acceptance speech with the perfect opener: "Thank you, you guys are just standing up because you feel bad that I fell.
Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano admitted that the upcoming sequester cuts would have a negative effect on her department warning of fewer border guards, longer lines at the airport, and longer waits for cargo inspections. “It’s almost an out of body experience.” Napolitano said, remarking that she was just pressured by Congress to strengthen security at the border. “The very next day, I was in the Appropriations Committee saying ‘well you’re taking it all back through sequestration,’” she added with disbelief. Napolitano added that the DHS would continue
Speaking to American governors this afternoon, President Obama insisted that spending money wasn’t the federal government’s biggest problem. “Folks who think spending really is our biggest problem should be more concerned than anybody about improving our infrastructure right now,” Obama said explaining that the nation’s infrastructure was crumbling. “We’re talking about deferred maintenance here. We know we’re going to have to spend the money. And the longer we wait, the more it’s going to cost.” Obama asked the governors in the room to pressure Congressional members to
Jerusalem - Israel carried out a successful first test on Monday of its upgraded Arrow interceptor, which is designed to destroy in space the kind of missiles held by Iran and Syria, defense officials said. The U.S.-backed Arrow III will deploy "kamikaze" satellites that track and slam into ballistic missiles above the earth´s atmosphere, high enough to allow for any chemical, biological or nuclear warheads to disintegrate safely. Monday´s test was the first flight of the system, but did not involve the interception of any target. Israel deployed the previous version, Arrow II, more than a decade ago
Lucrative union contracts have driven five Connecticut nursing homes at the center of a labor dispute into bankruptcy. HealthBridge Management has entered five of its nursing homes into Chapter 11 bankruptcy to escape labor contracts that left the company losing $1.3 million each month, according to senior vice president of labor relations Lisa Crutchfield. “The centers have a bright future if they can operate under labor agreements that reflect today’s financial realities, but the fact is the centers will not survive unless we have relief from the crushing burden of unsustainable labor costs, especially the spiraling
In an op-ed for USA Today, Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) says that a $9 per hour minimum wage is not enough. He says, “While I was heartened to hear President Obama make the minimum wage a centerpiece of his State of the Union Address, I believe that his proposal of $9 per hour does not go far enough to ensure that working families can make ends meet.” But might I ask you Mr. Harkin how the small business owners that employ these minimum wage workers will afford more than $9 an hour? What now small business owners aren’t