Essential Reads is your one-stop source for the top stories of the day as reported by your favorite Washington Week panelists. It's a simple way to save time and stay informed about the news you need to know. Check it out every day!
Jun 10, 2013
Mounting Signs of GOP Rebellion Against Immigration ReformBy Beth Reinhard, National Journal
Resistance to a sweeping immigration overhaul is moving from conservative talk shows to the corridors of power.
The Republican-controlled House of Representatives on Thursday rejected President Obama's policy to stop deporting young people brought to this country illegally as children. With all but six Republicans voting against funding a policy that lets hundreds of thousands of law-abiding but undocumented youth enrolled in high school or the military to stay in this country, the vote spotlighted the long odds facing the much broader Senate bill to allow 11 million illegal immigrants earn citizenship.Read more
Romney Talks About Post-Election LifeWith Gloria Borger, CNN Watch more
Jun 07, 2013
Despite Ambivalence, a Strong Embrace of Divisive Security ToolsBy Peter Baker, The New York Times
Two weeks ago, President Obama went before an audience of generals and spies to declare that “all wars must end” and that he could see a day when even the amorphous struggle with terrorists would essentially come to a close.
But that day is clearly not here.
The disclosure of the government’s vast surveillance of American telephone records and foreigners’ e-mail and other Internet communications on Thursday served as a potent reminder that Mr. Obama continues to deploy many of the national security tools he inherited from his predecessor even as he seeks to turn the corner in the way the United States responds to terrorism.Read more
NSA surveillance pits liberty against securityDavid Jackson, Susan Davis and Kevin Johnson , USA Today
Public disclosure of the federal government's effort to track terrorists through the telephone records of average citizens has reinvigorated a national debate over the balancing act between security and liberty.Read more
Cyber Spying Expected To Be Discussed At U.S.-China SummitWith Tom Gjelten, NPR
The Pentagon recently released a report directly accusing China of using cyberweapons to gain a military advantage with the U.S. The scope of the problem and the damage done by cyber espionage is not clear. But the issue will be on the agenda when President Obama meets China's new president Xi Jinping in California on Friday.Listen here
Obama Will Pitch Health Coverage to Young Latinos
In California on Friday, President Obama has a message for young, healthy Hispanics who could qualify for help purchasing health coverage in that state: “Get insured!”
A third of the estimated 2.7 million “young and healthy” Americans who could enroll for benefits under Obamacare beginning Oct. 1 live in just three states: California, Florida and Texas, according to administration officials.Read more
Chris Christie Doesn't Care If You Don't Like HimBy Amy Walter, Cook Political Report
Dear national party leaders and pundits: Chris Christie doesn’t care what you think of him.
Chris Christie’s first priority is to Chris Christie. Not to the national party. Not to conservative leaders. Not to primary or caucus goers in early states.
It’s what makes him a solid favorite for re-election in New Jersey. But, it’s also what makes him a decided underdog in a 2016 GOP primary.Read more
Senate Democrats Change The GuardBy Reid Wilson, National Journal's Hotline
Every decade or so, an electoral wave sends a new generation of politicians to Congress, injecting life and energy into stagnant legislative and policy realms. Such has been the case for the class of Republicans elected in 2010. Their zeal, and the GOP's control of the House of Representatives, has driven much of the Washington debate over the last two years.Read more
Why Didn't the Sequester Bite the Economy?What ever happened to the economic pain the sequester was supposed to cause? David Wessel explains. Watch more
Jun 06, 2013
In Personnel Appointments, Obama Takes Assertive TackBy Peter Baker, The New York Times
President Obama’s defiant selection of Susan E. Rice as his new national security adviser on Wednesday underscored the newly assertive approach he has taken to appointments ever since he abandoned a potential cabinet nominee named Susan E. Rice.Read more
Obama Seeks Conflict With GOP in Appointing Rice, PowerBy Alexis Simendinger, Real Clear Politics
President Obama has again practically baited congressional Republicans to wail about his appointees, betting that congressional overreach might put his administration on higher ground after weeks of scandal distractions and legislative fallbacks.Read more
Holder Says He Has No Intention of Stepping DownBy Pete Williams, NBC News
Amid calls by some congressional Republicans for his resignation, Attorney General Eric Holder told NBC News Wednesday that he has no intentions of stepping down.
Holder has been embroiled in a furor over a Justice Department subpoena of Associated Press phone records and an investigation of leaks to Fox News correspondent James Rosen.Read more
The GOP’s Free PassBy John Dickerson, Slate Magazine
Ever since the Obama administration ran aground on a series of scandals, Republicans have been trying hard to go from zero to Watergate. No matter how hard they stomp on the accelerator, the car won't go. On the left, there is a similar desire to go from zero to McCarthy. The main target: Rep. Darrell Issa, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, who has been investigating the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, and the Internal Revenue Service targeting conservative groups. On Sunday, Issa called White House spokesman Jay Carney a "paid liar," in keeping with the Republican congressman’s general temperament, which is to accuse first and find the facts later. Democrats are trying to promote the idea that Republicans are overplaying their hand with these controversies. Several times, analysts have raised the specter of the 1990s House Republicans who took their party over the cliff with mad passion in the investigations of Bill Clinton.Read more
GOP Seeks Tougher Border Security in Immigration BillBy Susan Davis, USA Today
Momentum to overhaul the nation's immigration laws hit roadblocks in Congress on Wednesday, where leading Republicans said legislation pending in the Senate needs to be much tougher on border security to stand a chance at becoming law.Read more
Mitt Romney to CNN: Rice appointment ‘disappointing’With Gloria Borger, CNN Watch more
Where's the Enemies List?By Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times
Who exactly is the enemy in the continuing U.S. war against terrorism?
In some cases, the answer is: It's a secret.
When the United States began its war against Al Qaeda after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, the identity of the enemy was clear: Osama bin Laden and his followers, and the Taliban who protected them in Afghanistan. Congress quickly passed a resolution authorizing President George W. Bush to use "all necessary and appropriate force" against anyone who "planned, authorized, committed or aided" the 9/11 attacks, plus anyone who harbored them.Read more
Jun 05, 2013
Obama's Job Approval Intact Despite Scandals: PollWith John Harwood, CNBC Watch more
Female Senators Express Outrage at Sex Assaults in MilitaryWith Martha Raddatz, ABC News Watch more
Why Congress Likely Will Move Quickly to Curb Sex Assaults in the MilitaryBy Ed O'Keefe, The Washington Post
Anyone doubtful that Congress will move quickly this year to address the rise of sexual violence in the military need only review what Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) had to say on the topic Tuesday.Read more
The Garden State’s DeciderBy John Dickerson, Slate Magazine
One of the reasons being governor is good training for the White House is that you are forced to react to unexpected and politically-sensitive events. When a hurricane hits, you must manage the emergency response, comfort the victims, and wring money from the federal government. When a senator from the other party dies, you have to appoint his successor without appearing to look politically craven. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has faced both of these tests in short succession. The former has burnished his credentials at home, while the latter, pressed on him yesterday by the death of the 89-year-old liberal stalwart Sen. Frank Lautenberg, offered a more perilous moment. Christie had been running for re-election minimizing his Republican credentials in the heavily blue state, campaigning as a can-do problem solver, but immediately he had a partisan political problem dropped in his lap.Read more