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July 22, 2012

Going to Tampa for August’s Republican National Convention? Safety first.

  • $50 million in funding from Congress went to the RNC and the DNC each to ensure that the two major political conventions this year are safe
  • $13.6 million was spent by the RNC on big safety items ahead of the conference — like 200 bicycles, 13 electric all-terrain vehicles and one armored truck source

» Trying to learn from St. Paul: In 2008, the Republican National Convention was held in St. Paul, Minn., where protesters often got violent and police confrontations were common. No one was seriously injured, but many were arrested (including journalists). Because St. Paul was one of the smallest cities to host a national political convention, its security and enforcement was slightly unprepared. Tampa is taking no chances this year. ”We’ve extensively studied St. Paul,” said Tampa City Attorney Jim Shimberg. “We’ve had meetings with folks in St. Paul, to find out what went well and what went wrong.”

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16:21 // 2 years ago
July 12, 2012
Not doing so hot these days: Jesse Jackson, Jr., the Illinois congressman whose fortunes have declined following an extended medical absence from Congress. Jackson, the son of a civil rights icon, was expected to follow Obama into his former Senate seat. That didn’t happen — a little scandal broke out, with ties to his former fundraiser, that led to Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich going to prison, and prevented Jackson from a Senate-appointed crisis. Now, with the latest rumor-laden crisis over his health, many of his colleagues expect him to eventually resign. Anyone know what’s going on?

Not doing so hot these days: Jesse Jackson, Jr., the Illinois congressman whose fortunes have declined following an extended medical absence from Congress. Jackson, the son of a civil rights icon, was expected to follow Obama into his former Senate seat. That didn’t happen — a little scandal broke out, with ties to his former fundraiser, that led to Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich going to prison, and prevented Jackson from a Senate-appointed crisis. Now, with the latest rumor-laden crisis over his health, many of his colleagues expect him to eventually resign. Anyone know what’s going on?

22:24 // 2 years ago
July 6, 2012
The recent event’s totality of calumnies, indignities and deceits have weighed most heavily upon my family. Thus, acutely aware one cannot rebuild their hearth of home amongst the ruins of their U.S. House office, for the sake of my loved ones I must ‘strike another match, go start anew’ by embracing the promotion back from public servant to sovereign citizen.
Dylan-quoting Rep. Thaddeus McCotter • In an open letter to his constituents, revealing that he’s resigning immediately, a month after he missed the deadline to run for own seat in November. Dude has had a rough year — the guitar-wielding conservative ran for the Republican nomination for president despite the fact that he had no national profile, dropped out shortly thereafter, then suffered the indignity of having to write an op-ed about failing to secure enough signatures to run for a sixth term. The final nail in the coffin? McCotter attempted to write a script for a TV show with such good-for-your-political-career topics as drinking, sex and flatulence. McCotter may struggle to find a new career path, especially in the wake of the news about the TV script; he’s promised that he won’t become a lobbyist, however.
21:44 // 2 years ago
June 29, 2012
15:45 // 2 years ago
June 22, 2012

Immigration: Mitt Romney promises green cards he can’t cash

  • promise Mitt Romney’s finally laid out concrete immigration reform: Promising green cards to immigrants receiving advanced degrees in math or science, and the parents of permanent citizens.
  • problem  It’s unclear whether Mitt could actually reform who receives green cards, even if he was president, without the Congress’s backing, as they set the year visa limits for foreigners each year. source

» He still has options, though: He could always do what Obama did and issue an executive order, despite Republicans slamming Obama for using his executive powers to enact immigration reform. A little surprising Romney wants to help the families of the oft-decried “anchor babies” of immigrant parents. Unsurprising? Mitt still wants to build a “high-tech fence” across the Mexican-American border.

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11:06 // 2 years ago
June 20, 2012
Why today really, really sucks for Attorney General Eric Holder
Eric Holder facing contempt resolution: With the ongoing “Fast and Furious" gun-trafficking saga reaching a head in Congress, Holder will likely face a contempt resolution from the the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform — the one led by Rep. Darrell Issa, one of the harshest "Fast and Furious" critics. Holder knows what’s coming — he sent a letter to Obama asking the president to claim executive privilege on the documents in the case, which the president granted (though the committee hasn’t received). Problem is, the committee is still moving forward — in particular, Issa won’t back down. Sweat, meet brow. (photo by Ryan J. Reilly) source
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Eric Holder facing contempt resolution: With the ongoing “Fast and Furious" gun-trafficking saga reaching a head in Congress, Holder will likely face a contempt resolution from the the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform — the one led by Rep. Darrell Issa, one of the harshest "Fast and Furious" critics. Holder knows what’s coming — he sent a letter to Obama asking the president to claim executive privilege on the documents in the case, which the president granted (though the committee hasn’t received). Problem is, the committee is still moving forward — in particular, Issa won’t back down. Sweat, meet brow. (photo by Ryan J. Reilly) source

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10:37 // 2 years ago
June 13, 2012

Video of the morning: As JPMorgan Chase head Jamie Dimon was getting grilled in front of the Senate Banking Committee, a bunch of liberal activists showed up, shouting “STOP FORECLOSURES NOW!” (among other things) before getting kicked out. In case you’d like to watch this ongoing event, click over here.

11:18 // 2 years ago
1:34 // 2 years ago
May 29, 2012
Now I feel like George Bailey after Uncle Billy admitted he lost the money. Like George, knowing my misplaced trust has negatively impacted so many people is heartrending. Unlike George, I am not tempted to jump off a bridge. Instead, I remember my late father’s rule: ‘You clean up your own mess.’
Republican Rep. Thaddeus McCotter • Writing, in an op-ed piece for the Detroit News, about his plans to run as a write-in candidate for his own seat after failing to secure enough signatures to run for a sixth term. The guitar-slinging McCotter made a pretty major tactical error last year, choosing to run for president at a time when his national profile was very low and the candidate pool was already very large, and making it barely three months on the campaign trail. Now he has just $200,000 to run a write-in campaign for Congress — to put it simply, his odds don’t look very good. (The full letter is worth a gander, by the way … it’s a lengthy riff on “It’s a Wonderful Life,” which starts with a quote from John Lennon. See, this guy knows his pop culture!)
10:01 // 2 years ago
April 29, 2012
In which the WaPo’s opinion section isn’t afraid of pinning the blame for Congress’ ongoing gridlock. Note that this article, by Brookings’ Thomas E. Mann and the American Enterprise Institute Norman J. Ornstein, has 5,000+ comments.

In which the WaPo’s opinion section isn’t afraid of pinning the blame for Congress’ ongoing gridlock. Note that this article, by Brookings’ Thomas E. Mann and the American Enterprise Institute Norman J. Ornstein, has 5,000+ comments.

8:32 // 2 years ago