Describing it as "a little strange," Rep. Barney Frank is sitting out his first Congressional race in over 30 years. The veteran Newton Democrat announced his retirement and won't seek reelection in Massachusetts' fourth Congressional district. "I had originally planned to run one more term until the legislative redistricting so changed my district that I thought it would be unfair of me to go to hundreds of thousands of new people and ask them to give me just one more term," Frank said. Since his announcement, Frank has been a vocal supporter of Joseph Kennedy III
Comments: There are at least several things about Barney I find "a little strange". Sitting out an election is not one of them.
LONGMONT — Cleanup of the former production facility contaminated and abandoned by bankrupt Abound Solar Inc. is estimated to cost as much as $3.7 million, according to documents obtained by the Business Report. As lawyers, regulators, bankruptcy officials and the landlord spar over the case, the building lies in disrepair, too contaminated to lease. (snip) The company had borrowed almost $70 million on a $400 million loan guarantee from the U.S. Department of Energy. Taxpayers are expected to lose $40 million to $60 million as a result of its bankruptcy.
Cannabis is reportedly legal in North Korea as Kim Jong-un does not consider it to be a drug and grocery bags full of it can be bought in markets. Writer Darmon Richter said he purchased a plastic bag full of weed in an indoor market in North Korea and smoked it in outdoor parks, restaurants and bars. Richter´s minder told him that marijuana was legal in North Korea and that he smoked the drug himself. The writer took several pictures of his purchase showing the drug in a bag, and rolled joints inside a restaurant. Posting on his blog, he wrote: "So as
A U.S. decision to curtail military and economic aid to Egypt to promote democracy may ultimately backfire, pushing Cairo to seek assistance elsewhere and giving Washington less leverage to stabilize a country in the heart of the Middle East. Washington faces a dilemma in dealing with its major regional ally: Egypt controls the Suez Canal and has a peace treaty with neighboring Israel but its army overthrew the first freely elected president, Islamist Mohamed Mursi, in July. The United States said on Wednesday it would withhold deliveries of tanks, fighter aircraft, helicopters and missiles to Cairo as well as $260 million in
A report finds the U.S. government´s aggressive prosecution of leaks and efforts to control information are having a chilling effect on journalists and government whistle-blowers. The Committee to Protect Journalists released its first examination of U.S. press freedoms Thursday, focusing on changes under the Obama administration. Leonard Downie Jr., a former executive editor of The Washington Post, wrote the 30-page analysis entitled "The Obama Administration and the Press." Downie interviewed reporters and editors who described a chilling effect in which "government officials are increasingly afraid to talk to the press." Those suspected of discussing classified information are subject to investigation, lie-detector tests and
If you´re trying to access your Obamacare account on Healthcare.gov, you may be told your password needs to be reset. "All passwords were deleted for existing accounts as part of the upgrade process," a call center representative told CNN´s Elizabeth Cohen. The representative said users experiencing issues must call in to reset their password; it cannot be done online. Representatives can be reached at 1-800-318-2596. CNN is working to determine the scope of the password issue and has reached out to federal Health and Human Services officials. The federal site for the Affordable Care Act has been plagued by technical glitches since it launched
Rep. Michele Bachmann said Thursday the new health care law should be an optional program for people who want it. Mrs. Bachmann, Minnesota Republican, is an ardent opponent of President Obama’s signature health law, known as the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare. House Republicans demanded a delay to key provisions of the law as part of any short-term spending deal, but Democrats held firm, and the parties now are reeling from a government shutdown and an encroaching limit on the nation’s borrowing authority. Online insurance markets tied to the health care law have been plagued by technical glitches, adding fuel to critiques from
With the partial shutdown of the federal government dragging on, first lady Michelle Obama has canceled a fundraising trip to California that was scheduled for this weekend, Democratic Party officials said Tuesday.(snip)Democratic insiders said there was queasiness at the prospect of the first lady raising millions from wealthy donors and campaigning for Democratic causes while thousands of federal employees are furloughed because of the partial government shutdown.
The Internal Revenue Services is the target of a federal lawsuit filed today by the Indiana attorney general on behalf of the state and 15 school corporations. The lawsuit challenges a new IRS regulation, according to a release from the AG’s office, “that imposes the costly ‘employer mandate’ requirements of the Affordable Care Act onto state and local governments.” The state and school corporations are seeking “declaratory judgments and injunctions that would prevent the IRS from financially penalizing the State and its political subdivisions,” the release said. “This case is about the fundamental relationship between the state and federal government. We respect the
WASHINGTON — President Obama on Tuesday intensified his pressure on Republicans with a hastily scheduled news conference, calling on them to both fund and reopen the government and to raise the nation’s borrowing limit as the federal shutdown entered a second week. “Let’s lift these threats from our families and our businesses, and let’s get down to work,” Mr. Obama said in the White House briefing room before taking questions from reporters. Mr. Obama said that he was holding firm that he could not negotiate concessions to the Republican-led House for it to perform Congress’s constitutional responsibilities. “I am happy
Over the weekend, the FBI took its Amber Alert missing child website offline, blaming the shutdown. At the same time, First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” web site stayed up and running. Amber Alert is back online today, after the closure of the site generated negative publicity. So it seems that Lord Obama can pick and choose what is and isn’t getting shut down. And it seems that he is in fact picking and choosing what gets shut down, in real time. He chose to close memorials and parks, including Mount Rushmore, and Obama chose to kick a pair of senior citizens
The website dedicated to helping find kidnapped children has been turned off during the government shutdown but the First Lady´s healthy living initiative has not received the same treatment. Amber Alerts advertise national and local cases where children have been abducted, and since it is not considered an essential service like national defense, it has not been funded during the shutdown. One website that apparently is too important to unplug? First Lady Michelle Obama´s ´Let´s Move´ campaign, as that is one of the few government websites still operational. Agency websites like the Department of Agriculture, the Food and Drug Administration, the Centers for
Investors will be keeping a sharp eye on the markets Thursday after President Obama´s comments about Wall Street. Told by a CNBC interview that Wall Street is "pretty calm" about the government shutdown and political infighting, Obama said: "I think this time is different — I think they should be concerned. Obama cited concern about possible Republican objections to an increase in the debt ceiling, leading to a government default. While it´s "not unusual for Democrats and Republicans to disagree," Obama also said that "when you have a situation in which a faction is willing potentially to default on U.S. government obligations, then
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said Tuesday that he is considering running for another term in 2016, when he would be 80 years old. "I´m seriously thinking about maybe giving another opportunity for you to vote for or against me in a few years from now," McCain said on KFYI-AM in Phoenix. "I´m seriously giving that a lot of thought." [1-minute sound bite] Asked by host Barry Young to clarify if he was saying he might run again, McCain said: "That would not be wrong." The New York Times´s Mark Leibovich, who is in Arizona following McCain, first tweeted the news.
It’s past time for the media to begin asking President Obama tough questions about the IRS conservative targeting scandal. After all he was involved, publicly, from the beginning. Last Friday, the American Center for Law and Justice (where I serve as Chief Counsel) filed its Second Amended Complaint against the United States, the IRS, and a legion of IRS officials. This Complaint, in which we represent 41 organizations in 22 states, presents perhaps the most complete story yet of the IRS conservative targeting scandal. And it is an ugly story indeed. What was sold to the American public as a low-level scandal perpetrated
WASHINGTON- President Barack Obama is expected to acknowledge that widespread problems with his health care law´s rollout are unacceptable, as the administration scrambles to fix the glitches. Obama was scheduled to speak Monday from the Rose Garden, his first health care-focused event since the cascade of computer problems became apparent. The troublesome rollout of the health care exchanges has been a glaring embarrassment for Obama´s signature legislative achievement. White House officials say the president will discuss steps the administration is taking to address the glitches, including ramping up staffing at call centers where people can apply for insurance by phone.
While the president of the United States pitched his crumbling healthcare program like a late-night infomercial barker, the Army´s chief of staff made a shocking admission about national defense. Gen. Ray Odierno told a Washington conference Monday that the U.S. Army had not conducted any training in the last six months of the fiscal year ending Sept. 30. And, he said, there currently are only two Army brigades rated combat-ready. That´s less than one-third what ‘s regarded as necessary for national security. [Snip] All this to comply with Obama administration orders to drastically shrink the Army and military spending.
President Barack Obama will declare the glitches in a new healthcare website ´unacceptable´ on Monday as his team scrambles to fix problems that have tainted the roll-out of his signature healthcare law. Fresh from two weeks of budget battles that have consumed Washington, Obama will hold an event at 11:25am in the White House Rose Garden with consumers, small business owners, and pharmacists who have been affected by the new law. The move is the highest-profile step in a broad damage control effort that the administration has launched since technical problems with the website, healthcare.gov, have prevented Americans nationwide from signing up
In addition to the damage done to the GOP by his penchant for right-wing antics, of which the shutdown fiasco was only the latest, Jim DeMint, the president of Heritage Foundation, has ushered in a new era in the once-proud conservative think tank’s history. Under DeMint, Heritage Foundation has been subsumed to the interests of its sister organization, Heritage Action. As a result, Heritage Foundation is suffering a grievous slide in intellectual integrity and influence. Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) is the latest of many conservatives openly to express concern about the think tank. He told MSNBC’s Chuck Todd this week, “Right
President Obama is "frustrated" by the disastrous launch of an online computer marketplace for Obamacare, the White House says. Here are five reasons why frustration isn´t enough. He should be frightened.1. It´s worse than his team has let on. The White House has tried to position the failed first days of Obamacare as mere "glitches" caused by the site´s popularity. An administration spokesman told the Washington Post on Sunday that the "main driver of the problem is volume." That is intentionally misleading. The White House has heard complaints from insurance companies, consumers, and health policy experts about issues embedded deeply
President Obama´s long-winded speech in defense of his health care reform nearly put one audience member to sleep, with a guest standing directly behind the President almost fainting as he continued to drone on for nearly 30 minutes. A young woman, who appeared to be pregnant, dressed in a bright red frock stood at attention behind the President during his Rose Garden remarks, smiling brightly during much of the address. But Obama´s verbosity got the best of her — and she nearly toppled over, seemingly a result of the bright D.C. sun. She began to appear lightheaded, blinking several times
On ABC’s This Week with George Stephanopoulos, hosted by Martha Raddatz, reporter Jonathan Karl interviewed Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), and proceeded to body-slam him for his involvement in the government shutdown debate. “People hated this shutdown, they hated this impasse and this was seen as the Ted Cruz shutdown. You more than any single individual were seen as the one that triggered this crisis to begin with,” Karl ranted. When Cruz tried to get a word in edgewise, Karl stated, “there never would have been a shutdown if you hadn´t gone with the strategy of saying we´re not even going
The Mark Twain Prize, handed out each year in the Nation´s Capital, is generally a nonpartisan affair meant to toast the funniest people in pop culture, period. This year, both the honoree and a key presenter couldn´t resist the chance to get political during the ceremony. The night belonged to beloved sketch comedy star Carol Burnett, who used the debate over the recently ended government shutdown in her acceptance speech: This is very encouraging. I mean it was a long time in coming, but I understand because there are so many people funnier than I am, especially here in Washington. With any luck,
Paris- France and Mexico have angrily demanded prompt explanations from the United States following "shocking" new spying allegations leaked by former US security contractor Edward Snowden. The reports published in French daily Le Monde and German weekly Der Spiegel reveal that the US National Security Agency secretly monitored tens of millions of phone calls in France and hacked into former Mexican President Felipe Calderon´s email account. They come on top of revelations also leaked by Snowden and published in June that the US had a vast, secret programme called PRISM to monitor Internet users. French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, on a
President Barack Obama caught a pregnant woman who began to faint during his speech about healthcare reforms today, joking ´That´s what happens when I talk too long.´ Mr Obama reached out to help prospective Affordable Care Act beneficiary Karmel Allison who was standing directly behind him as he discussed the glitches of the new healthcare website in the Rose Garden of the White House. Around 25 minutes into the speech, Ms Allison became unsteady and started to lose consciousness and the President turned around and grabbed her by the arm before she fainted. Scroll down for video