April 2013

Apr 29, 2013

Obama to Nominate Charlotte Mayor to Transportation Post

By Peter Baker, The New York Times

President Obama on Monday plans to nominate Anthony R. Foxx, the mayor of Charlotte, N.C., to be the next secretary of transportation, choosing a rising young African-American from the South to balance out a cabinet criticized for a lack of diversity.

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Apr 26, 2013

Obama Needs To Let Republicans Win Immigration Battle

By Amy Walter, Cook Political Report

In the wake of the defeat of gun control legislation, lots of DC-insiders are speculating that immigration reform will meet the same fate. The president doesn't have the juice, they say, to muscle any sort of significant, complex legislation through Congress. That may or may not be true. But, what is clear is that if Obama wants a victory on immigration, he's got to step away from the bully pulpit instead of spending all of his time behind it.

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Special Interests Shadow Immigration Reform

By Beth Reinhard, National Journal

The most important spokesman for the immigration-reform bill in the Senate, Florida Republican Marco Rubio, is promoting a “myth-busting” website. No, the legislation will not offer immigrants free phones. No, illegal immigrants will not be eligible for welfare benefits.

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‘We Stand With You,’ Obama Tells Mourners at Texas Memorial

By Peter Baker, The New York Times

A somber President Obama paid tribute on Thursday to firefighters killed in a spectacular explosion that devastated a small Texas town last week, praising their courage and vowing to help their community recover from a “time of unimaginable adversity.”

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Bush Library Dedication Both a Look Back and a Prologue

By Dan Balz, The Washington Post

All the living presidents came together here Thursday to pay tribute to one of their own, and for one brief moment, George W. Bush’s presidency was free of controversy.

In office, the nation’s 43rd president lived through eight tumultuous years. But as he and dignitaries from around the world joined to dedicate the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum on the campus of Southern Methodist University, there was no mention of Iraq, no talk of Hurricane Katrina, no reference to the financial collapse that marked his last months in office.

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Q&A on Assad's WMD Use and the U.S. Response

By Alexis Simendinger, Real Clear Politics

The White House confirmed Thursday that Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria “used chemical weapons on a small scale” in the civil war there, potentially escalating international resolve to end a violent conflict that has displaced 2 million people and killed 70,000 to 80,000 Syrians.

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White House Says Syria Used Sarin Gas on Its Own People

With Martha Raddatz, ABC News

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Doing Nothing in Syria Is Riskier Than Getting Involved

By James Kitfield

Should the United States and its allies become directly involved in Syria’s civil war, historians may well look back at Thursday’s announcement that the regime of strongman Bashar al-Assad has used chemical weapons against his own people as an important inflection point. In truth, the Obama administration has already been quietly increasing its assistance to the Syrian rebels for months, as red flags continue to mount indicating that the cost of doing almost nothing about Syria has steadily begun to outweigh the risks of doing more.

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Apr 25, 2013

The Week That Kicked Off The Battle For The Senate

By Reid Wilson, National Journal's Hotline

Stop me if you've heard this one before: Open Senate seats coupled with vulnerable Democrats seeking re-election, present Republicans with opportunities to take back control of the upper chamber, if only they can avoid shooting themselves in the foot in the process.

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Boehner-Led Cost-Cutting Saving Millions in the House

By Susan Davis, USA Today

The House of Representatives will spend 15% less on its own operations this year than it did three years ago under a cost-cutting effort launched by Speaker John Boehner that is on pace to save taxpayers more than $400 million by the end of this year.

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Dems, GOP Talk Up Deficit Reduction, But Don't Act

By Charles Babington, Associated Press

Liberals' loud objections to White House proposals for slowing the growth of huge social programs make it clear that neither political party puts a high priority on reducing the deficit, despite much talk to the contrary.

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Obama Gets Peek at His Future as a Past President

By Alexis Simendinger, Real Clear Politics

If anyone needs a reminder about the arc of the modern presidency, tell them to pay attention to the salutes, solace and, yes, the sawbucks reeled in and offered up in two Texas cities during a single 24-hour period this week.

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