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05 Sep 2011 11:05


Politics: Obama on Irene cleanup: “We are going to meet our federal obligations”

  • As president of the United States I want to make it very clear that we are going to meet our federal obligations because we are one country. When one part of the country gets affected, whether it’s a tornado in Joplin, Missouri or a hurricane that affects that eastern seaboard, then we come together as one country and make sure that everybody gets the help that they need.
  • President Barack Obama • Speaking about the need for federal disaster funding during a visit to Irene-ravaged New Jersey yesterday. This is an issue as a result of some stuff Eric Cantor said last week, suggesting that federal funding of disaster cleanup would only happen by cutting matching funding elsewhere. We like the point The Bergen Record’s Mike Kelly makes about this: “Memo to conservatives: You make good points about the need for America to get serious about government spending. But this is not a John Wayne western, with steel-eyed gunfighters making black-and-white decisions about life and death.” Conservatives are right on a surface level on this — we need to cut spending — but get down to the nitty-gritty and it’s simply not clear-cut. source

30 Aug 2011 09:57


U.S.: Hurricane Irene, Joplin tornado run into wall of tightly-funded political reality

  • Any projects that have not come in for approval, we’re not going to be able to fund those as this point. We’re going to postpone those. Our goal is to keep this disruption as short as possible, but it was prudent.
  • FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate • Describing the reasons that FEMA is putting their long-term work to repair Joplin, Mo. on hold, and instead putting that money towards Hurricane Irene. Another issue arising in the Hurricane Irene situation? They might run into yet another wall of House Republican suck. That’s because House Majority Leader Eric Cantor makes no guarantees about funding Irene cleanup unless there are budget cuts to match, which is a real jerk move which shows how out-of-touch with reality that the GOP is. Now, granted, Ron Paul pitches ideas like these all the time. But when the GOP leadership continues to do so without regard to the current situation at hand, it makes you you want to vote all the bums out en masse next year. source

29 Aug 2011 17:42


Politics: House Republicans plot major deregulatory push

  • Deregulation = jobs: A memo obtained by ShortFormBlog contains details of an upcoming Republican effort to push massive deregulatory legislation through the House of Representatives, in hopes of unshackling “costly bureaucratic handcuffs” faced by businesses. The letter, sent today by Eric Cantor to the House Republican caucus, details the “Top 10 Job-Destroying Regulations,” and how Republicans plan to address them. “By pursuing a steady repeal of job-destroying regulations,” Cantor wrote, “we can help lift the cloud of uncertainty hanging over small and large employers alike, empowering them to hire more workers.” Some key proposals:
  • Weakened emission limits  The TRAIN (Transparency in Regulatory Analysis of Impacts on the Nation) Act, along with the EPA Regulatory Relief Act, would delay implementation of EPA standards intended to limit air pollution.
  • Limiting union power The Protecting Jobs From Government Interference Act would limit the National Labor Relations Board’s power, rescinding its ability to influence relocation of manufacturing plants.
  • Farm dust for all The Farm Dust Regulation Prevention Act would, as expected, restrict the federal government’s ability to regulate farm dust, allowing it to do so only within state and local regulations. source
  • » In keeping with Republican orthodoxy, Cantor also proposes to two tax cuts (one for government contractors, another for small businesses), and the repeal of unspecified provisions of the Affordable Care Act. What do you all think of Cantor’s plan? Read the whole thing at the link. (AP Photo)

29 Aug 2011 10:51


Politics: Eric Cantor hates people who ride bikes, apparently

  • The government spends billions on cars each year. That takes many forms, including interstate highways and subsidies to oil and gas companies. You’d think House Majority Leader Eric Cantor would be happy with people being willing to ride bikes a little more often. But nooooooo — this jerk wants to ditch bikeshare programs. As part of his YouCut program, he made one of the three options municipal bikeshares. These programs are popular in their communities — you should see how many people ride them in DC — and discourage people from driving cars, which in the long run is cheaper and better for the environment. Watch your back, Cantor: Some angry cyclist might try to hit you with a Schwinn. (photo via MedillDC on Flickr) source

28 Jul 2011 23:23


Politics: An update on the debt ceiling shenanigans

  • boehner’s bill falls short: After a chaotic day of vote-whipping, vote-delaying, and vote-switching, John Boehner has decided to postpone the vote on his debt ceiling bill. Despite multiple assurances that it would be brought to a vote before tomorrow, at the end of the day, Boehner didn’t have enough votes to ensure the bill’s passage (and he wasn’t going to embarrass himself by introducing a bill that was sure to fail). In an unusual alignment, conservative Tea Partiers and House Democrats all pledged to vote against the bill, albiet for different reasons. While the legislation has virtually no chance of passing the Democratic-controlled Senate, Boehner’s ability to shepherd it through the House is seen by many as the first real test of his leadership abilities. If he doesn’t eventually pass it, there’s a good chance he’ll (eventually) be deposed as Speaker. But it’s not over yet–sources say Republicans plan to tweak the bill a bit, and re-introduce it tomorrow.  source

19 Jul 2011 01:50


Politics: The Best Two Sentences of the Night

  • Responsibility without conviction is weak, but it is sane. Conviction without responsibility, in the current incarnation of the Republican Party, is raving mad.
  • George Packer • On how each party is handling the (possible) debt ceiling increase. source

13 Jul 2011 22:34


Politics: Talk about drawing a line in the sand

  • I’ve reached my limit. This may bring my presidency down, but I will not yield on this.
  • President Obama • Toward the end of a budget meeting with Republicans. It’s not clear what policy he won’t yield on, but from the texture of the debate thus far, we’re guessing it’s the inclusion of revenue increases in the deal to raise the debt-ceiling.source

23 Jun 2011 17:13


U.S.: Eric Cantor, Jon Kyl leave negotiations on debt limit vote

  • Each side came into these talks with certain orders, and as it stands the Democrats continue to insist that any deal must include tax increases. … Given this impasse, I will not be participating in today’s meeting and I believe it is time for the President to speak clearly and resolve the tax issue.
  • Rep. Eric Cantor • Speaking on negotiations between Democrats and Republicans on raising the U.S. debt limit. Cantor, as well as Senator Jon Kyl, have abandoned the negotiations over tax raises the Democrats insist on pairing with the spending cuts the GOP is thirsting for. Speaker Boehner says that talks could continue if tax raises are off the table, which is obvious — if the Democrats abandon what they want out of this deal, it could get done, but that’s more caving than compromise. Cantor says they did find areas of compromise, though: “I believe that we have identified trillions in spending cuts, and to date, we have established a blueprint that could institute the fiscal reforms needed to start getting our fiscal house in order,” he notes. source

20 Apr 2011 09:53


Politics: Obama’s new deficit-reduction group an ultra-partisan mess

  • I remain skeptical that the administration will take this effort seriously, especially after it all but ignored its previous debt commission and President Obama had to be dragged kicking and screaming to consider minimal spending cuts for the rest of this fiscal year.
  • House Minority Whip Eric Cantor • Offering a soft touch to the news of the president’s new deficit reduction group, which was supposed to include 16 members, eight from each party. Instead, it includes six — two Republicans and four Democrats. (The “gang of six,” by the way, was left out in the cold.) Cantor’s on the list, along with a bunch of other folks known for their partisanship. If you ask us, it sounds like he’s just pissed that he had to do something he didn’t really want to do. We know, Eric, we hate meetings too! source

24 Jan 2011 01:26


Politics: Max Headroom: Andrew Wakefield denies autism study fraud

  • The autism/vaccine guy speaks out: In recent weeks, Andrew Wakefield’s name, already synonymous with a questionable autism study from over a decade ago, has been dragged through the mud further amid reports that the report is an elaborate fraud. He still stands behind his study, claims the reporting of Brian Deer was completely, utterly wrong, and emphasizes that he did not personally profit off the study as reported. Credit to Alisyn Camerota, who hits him pretty hard with questions the whole way through. It’s weird that this interview isn’t getting much attention at the moment. (Note: He said he was going to upload some proof to his blog, but we see absolutely nothing new there.)
  • Shouting at your laptop If you’re like us and do searches on newsworthy political topics on YouTube every once in a while, you might run into this guy. This guy, a conservative, likes yelling really quickly. it’s his whole schtick. Here, he’s yelling about Keith Olbermann. He’s like a combination of Billy Mays (God rest his soul) the Micro Machines guy, and Rush Limbaugh. Mostly Rush.
  • Backed into a birther corner On “Meet the Press,” our boy David Gregory was chattin’ up our good friend Eric Cantor, basically trying to get him to say something bad about birthers. Cantor, eventually realizing that he couldn’t weasel out of Gregory’s line of questioning, gave him a half-answer on the question. Honestly, Cantor was right the first time. Why are we talking about this still?