The House of Representatives should make massive changes to the so-called fiscal cliff deal that passed the Senate 89–8 at 1:39 a.m. today. That amended measure then can proceed to a conference committee for further improvement before advancing to final passage in both houses and President Obama’s signature, if he favors the legislation. These additional steps are required for three key reasons: First, laws should be passed through regular order, rather than Soviet-style backroom discussions and near-unanimous approval by rubber-stamp legislatures. The lawmaking gyrations of the last few weeks have been unseemly and an international embarrassment unworthy
I am very disappointed in the GOP senators. Even Texas senators voted for this, included Cruz, who was specifically sent to DC not to vote for this garbage. The House GOP better get rid of this bill, or the House GOP can get ridden for being cleaned out in 2014.
Let me gaze into my crystal ball.... If Boehner needs 217 votes, he will get a squeaker of a vote. 218! Then, the most vulnerable House members will be able to vote "naaaaah", and pound their chests and say that they fought the good fight! Oh, my! If we had only had 2 more votes!
All theater. All a sham. Hope I am wrong, because I am naturally such an optimist, but I have lost all my faith in politicians doing the right thing.
FTA: Reid has refused to vote on, amend, or otherwise consider the budgets that House Republicans have passed and forwarded to the Senate for its review. Reid has done this in violation of the 1974 Congressional Budget and Impoundment Control Act (Public Law 93-344, as amended), which requires that budgets be passed calmly by April 15 each year.
If the elected Republicans were worth their salt, one or another would be shouting this at every opportunity, until even the MS-pravda had to notice.
LOS ANGELES — When the A&E network suspended "Duck Dynasty" patriarch Phil Robertson for disparaging gay people, it may have followed a time-honored TV tradition of quickly silencing a star who, for better or worse, speaks his mind. But in doing so it also ruffled the feathers of possibly millions of fans of its most popular show. Fourteen hours after it was learned that Robertson had been placed on indefinite "hiatus" for telling GQ magazine, among other things, that gays are headed to hell, more than a half-million people liked an impromptu Facebook page demanding the show be boycotted until
The Obama administration Thursday night significantly relaxed the rules of the health-care law for millions of consumers whose individual insurance policies have been canceled, saying they could buy bare-bones health plans or entirely avoid the requirement that most Americans have health insurance. The surprise announcement, four days before the Dec. 23 deadline for people to choose coverage that begins on Jan. 1, triggered an immediate backlash from the health insurance industry and raised new fairness questions about a law intended to promote affordable and comprehensive coverage. “This type of last-minute change will cause tremendous instability in the marketplace and lead
The lie of the year, according to Politifact, is “If you like your health care plan, you can keep it.” But the story of the year is a nation waking up to just how radical Obamacare is — which is why it required such outright deception to get it passed in the first place. Obamacare was sold as simply a refinement of the current system, retaining competition among independent insurers but making things more efficient, fair and generous. Free contraceptives for Sandra Fluke. Free mammograms and checkups for you and me. Free (or subsidized) insurance for some 30 million uninsured.
Few could have predicted that the story lines of the hit A&E reality show “Duck Dynasty” and the 2016 presidential contest would converge. But that unexpected mash-up played out Thursday as conservative politicians rushed to defend Phil Robertson, the shaggy-bearded, homespun star of the breakout series, who was suspended by the cable network after his published comments about gays stirred a storm of controversy. Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R), a likely White House contender whose state is home to the show about a family that runs a duck-hunting gear enterprise, called Robertson and his family “great citizens.” “The politically correct
An Air Force general in charge of nuclear weapons repeatedly drank too much and behaved like a boor last summer during an official trip to Moscow, where he insulted his Russian hosts and hung out with two suspicious women he met at a hotel bar, according to an investigative report released Thursday. Maj. Gen. Michael Carey, who was commander of the Air Force´s arsenal of land-based intercontinental ballistic missiles, “acted in a manner that exceeded the limits of accepted standards of good conduct” during a four-day visit to Moscow in July, according to an investigation conducted by the Air Force
The InvestmentWatch blog seems puzzled. They ask “Is Obama Depressed?” The health care website is a bomb. Immigration overhaul is looking more and more like a bust. The allies are aggrieved about surveillance issues. Israel feels betrayed on Iran. The first black president didn’t even bother to go to Gettysburg, where the 150th anniversary of the most important 270-word speech ever given — the 270 words that welded the nation forever to the all-men-are-created-equal doctrine of the Declaration of Independence — would have given him a respite, and maybe a reset. Puzzling issues indeed. The least-engaged, most ideologically ambitious president
As hundreds of thousands continue to occupy Kiev’s Maidan square, and protests rage across Ukraine, plenty of explanations have been offered for the unrest, which was triggered by the Ukrainian president’s considering a closer relationship with Russia. It’s about a clash of economic interests, some say, or the divide between the western and eastern halves of the country, the latter Russian-speaking and much more industrial. While those issues are important, Walter Zaryckyj, executive director for the Center for U.S.-Ukrainian Relations (CUSUR), argues that the mass protests have deeper roots: in Stalin’s great genocide by famine of the Ukrainian people in
Leaders of the nation’s biggest technology firms warned President Obama during a lengthy meeting at the White House on Tuesday that National Security Agency spying programs are damaging their reputations and could harm the broader economy. Cisco Systems has said it is seeing customers, especially overseas, back away from American-branded technology after documents revealed that the NSA enlisted tech firms and also secretly tapped into their data hubs around the world as the agency pursued terrorism suspects. Companies such as IBM, AT&T and Verizon Communications are facing angry shareholders, some of whom have filed
The Kaiser Family Foundation said Tuesday that roughly 5 million Americans will earn too much money to qualify for a government health-insurance program and too little to qualify for subsidized coverage under Obamacare next year. These Americans are in this “coverage gap” because they live in states that opted not to expand Medicaid under President Obama’s overhaul. The nonpartisan organization said the people that fall into this coverage gap are concentrated in states with the largest uninsured populations. More than a fifth of them live in Texas, 16 percent live in Florida, 8 percent in Georgia, 7 percent in North Carolina
The U.S. Army is sending roughly 19,000 active-duty captains and majors to a screening board for early separation this spring, the Army Times reported. Up to 20 percent of those screened — approximately 3,800 officers — could be scheduled to leave the service by the Officer Separation Board and Enhanced Selective Early Retirement Board. Officers with fewer than 18 years of federal active service will have their screening process done by OSB, and those with more than 18 years of service will see the E-SERB, according to the Army Times. “The Army’s drawdown plan is a balanced approach while maintaining
John Fonte’s excellent piece on the home page adds to the case made by Yuval Levin, Tim Carney, Douthat & Salam, and others for the GOP adopting what Senator Jeff Sessions calls “a humble and honest populism” as the antidote to the perception of conservatism and the Republican party as favoring big business at the expense of working people. Corporate support for big government cronyism, racial preferences, the sovereignty-undermining Law of the Sea treaty, and unlimited immigration (not to mention appeasement of the Soviet Union back in the day) highlight the anti-conservative and post-American nature of today’s big
President Obama is ending his fifth year in office matching the worst public approval ratings of his presidency, with record numbers of Americans saying they disapprove of his job performance and his once-hefty advantages over Republicans in Congress eroded in many areas, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. His position is all the more striking when compared with his standing a year ago, as he was preparing for his second inauguration after a solid reelection victory. That high note proved fleeting as the president faced a series of setbacks, culminating in the botched rollout of his Affordable Care
Is this man simply expressing his beliefs or spewing bigotry?Either way, Phil Robertson, the patriarch in A&E´s "Duck Dynasty," won´t be duck calling on air anytime soon. The network suspended him after slamming gays in a magazine interview. In the January issue of GQ, Robertson said homosexuality is a sin and puts it in the same category as bestiality and promiscuity. "It seems like, to me, a vagina -- as a man -- would be more desirable than a man´s anus. That´s just me. I´m just thinking: There´s more there! She´s got more to offer. I mean, come on, dudes! You know
A&E broke its silence on Duck Dynasty star Phil Robertson’s anti-gay comments late Wednesday. The cable network announced Robertson is off the hit show for the time being. The network issued the following statement to EW: “We are extremely disappointed to have read Phil Robertson’s comments in GQ, which are based on his own personal beliefs and are not reflected in the series Duck Dynasty. His personal views in no way reflect those of A+E Networks, who have always been strong supporters and champions of the LGBT community. The network has placed Phil under hiatus from filming indefinitely.”
President Barack Obama sent Russia a clear message about its treatment of gays and lesbians with who he is — and isn’t — sending to represent the United States at the Sochi Olympics. Billie Jean King will be one of two openly gay athletes in the U.S. delegation for the opening and closing ceremonies, Obama announced Tuesday. For the first time since 2000, however, the U.S. will not send a president, former president, first lady or vice president to the Games. Russia has come under fierce criticism for passing national laws banning “gay propaganda.” Though the White House did not specifically address
The gay and lesbian rights group GLAAD is slamming ´Duck Dynasty´ patriarch Phil Robertson for comments he made about homosexuality to GQ magazine, and challenging the show´s network, A&E, to take action against its most popular star. In a wide-ranging interview, Robertson shared his thoughts on homosexuality and religion. After stating in very graphic terms his preference for heterosexual sex over homosexual sex, Robertson launched into more thoughts about homosexuality and sinning. “Everything is blurred on what’s right and what’s wrong... Sin becomes fine,” he said.
Yes, she really said it. On CNN’s Piers Morgan Live Tuesday, in a brief discussion about President Obama, Barbara Walters actually said, “We thought that he was going to be - I shouldn´t say this at Christmastime, but - the next messiah” (video follows with transcript and commentary): PIERS MORGAN, HOST: You have interviewed every president of my lifetime. Why is Obama facing so much opposition now? Why is he struggling so much to really fulfill the great flame of ambition and excitement that he was elected on originally in 2009?
Everyone is doing thoughtful year-end pieces on President Obama. Writers and reporters agree he’s had his worst year ever. I infer from most of their essays an unstated but broadly held sense of foreboding: There’s no particular reason to believe next year will be better, and in fact signs and indications point to continued trouble. I would add that in recent weeks I have begun to worry about the basic competency of the administration, its ability to perform the most fundamental duties of executive management. One reason I worry is that I frequently speak with people who interact with the White
O ne year removed from re-election, President Obama´s approval rating has sunk to the lowest level of his presidency. Furthermore, Obama´s popularity among the Democratic Party base — whose rejuvenated support proved crucial last November — took a huge hit this past year. Only 54 percent of self-described liberals "very strongly" approve of Obama´s job performance, according to a Pew survey released this week. That´s down from an all-time high of nearly 90 percent, and a significant decline from the 73 percent who strongly approved of the president back in June. Why the steep drop? Well, the first year of Obama´s second term
John Podesta was just named as a new senior-level adviser to President Obama last week, but he´s already ruffling Republican feathers. In a profile published late Tuesday night by Politico Magazine, Podesta is quoted comparing Republicans to the infamous cult led by Jim Jones, who was responsible for the 1978 cyanide poisoning of more than 900 of his followers in Guyana. "They need to focus on executive action given that they are facing a second term against a cult worthy of Jonestown in charge of one of the houses of Congress," said Podesta of what Obama´s White House team faces.
Hours after we reported that Duck Dynasty star Phil Robertson dropped some illogical “logic” on homosexuality during his GQ interview, his home network A&E decided to indefinitely suspend him from the show. While Robertson’s comments were hilariously ignorant, they were predictable — especially given his family’s socially-conservative, Bible-loving image. Suspending the lead character for his wholly predictable comments is not only an overreaction but a gross misstep. To recap: The Duck Commander patriarch remarked to the men’s magazine that homosexuality is on par with bestiality, and used fifth-grade “logic” to imply that homosexual men should give up their ways of choosing a
The U.S. Army War College, which molds future field generals, has begun discussing whether it should remove its portraits of Confederate generals — including those of Robert E. Lee and Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson. Nestled in rural Pennsylvania on the 500-acre Carlisle Barracks, the war college is conducting an inventory of all its paintings and photographs with an eye for rehanging them in historical themes to tell a particular Army story. During the inventory, an unidentified official — not the commandant, Maj. Gen. Anthony A. Cucolo III — asked the administration why the college honors two generals who fought against the United States,
A&E has placed Duck Dynasty patriarch Phil Robertson on indefinite hiatus following anti-gay remarks he made in a recent profile in GQ. "We are extremely disappointed to have read Phil Robertson’s comments in GQ, which are based on his own personal beliefs and are not reflected in the series Duck Dynasty," A&E said in a statement. "His personal views in no way reflect those of A+E Networks, who have always been strong supporters and champions of the LGBT community. The network has placed Phil under hiatus from filming indefinitely." The news comes after Robertson compared homosexuality to bestiality in an interview
The Ivy-League educated half-brother of President Obama is publishing his autobiography in which he makes the shocking claim their father dished out alcohol-fueled beatings to him and his mother and in one terrifying instance held a knife to her throat. Mark Obama Ndesandjo, 48, also uses his new book to set the U.S. president straight on inaccuracies he claims exist in his best-selling 1995 memoir Dreams From My Father and confirms they have never seen eye-to-eye because ´Barack thought I was too white and I thought he was too black.´ The self-published book, Cultures: My Odyssey of Self-Discovery, which will be