Does New Jersey Play in Iowa?

by Keith Koffler on October 30, 2014, 10:11 am

Here’s some video of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie telling a heckler to “sit down and shut up.”

Now, where I come from – New York City, originally – this what’s known as “polite conversation.” But will Christie’s directness play when he gets out in the rest of the country to campaign for president? It’s hard from me to judge. What do you think?

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Economy Grows at a Robust Pace in the Third Quarter

by Keith Koffler on October 30, 2014, 9:56 am

The U.S. economy expanded at a robust 3.5 percent rate in the third quarter, the Commerce Department said today, but poor wage growth and a global slowdown still dog the recovery.

The increase, which was broad-based and beat expectations, follows a GDP growth rate of 4.6 percent in the second quarter and a decline of 2.1 percent in the first.

The White House used the poor performance around the rest of the world to tout its own performance. “Since the financial crisis, the U.S. economy has bounced back more strongly than most others around the world, and the recent data highlight that the United States is continuing to lead the global recovery,” said Council of Economic Advisors Chairman Jason Furman.

But the worldwide economic slowdown could bring the United States economy back down. And, that the White House is still talking about a “recovery” six years after the recession ended suggests the failure of President Obama’s economic policies.

What’s more, wages continue to just barely outpace inflation, meaning most Americans are gaining little to nothing back from the losses they incurred during the recession.

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GOP GOTV Humor

by Keith Koffler on October 30, 2014, 9:38 am

This is just out. RNC appears to have a sense of humor.

Conservatives have a better sense of humor than lefties. They take themselves less seriously. And the Left always thinks the world is about to end.

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The Obama Morning News || October 30, 2014

by Keith Koffler on October 30, 2014, 9:31 am

White House tries to walk back “chickenshit” . . . The White House on Wednesday sought to tamp down the controversy over a magazine piece that detailed deep tensions between the U.S. and Israel – and quoted an unnamed senior Obama administration official calling the Israeli leader a “chickenshit.”  Administration officials did not deny the quote. They also did not signal there would be any robust effort to find out who said it. But the asserted the criticism does not reflect how the rest of the administration views Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Fox News

Boehner blasts remark . . . House Speaker John Boehner lashed out at the Obama administration for reports that a senior official described Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a “chickenshit,” while another unnamed official described him as a “coward.” Boehner said the comments suggesting Netanyahu is more concerned about his political self-interest than forging peace in the Middle East could threaten America’s relationship with Israel and the long-term security of the region. Newsmax

Jewish leader demands apology . . . Rabbi Marvin Hier, the founder and Dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, has called on President Obama to “name, apologize for, and repudiate” the anonymous official quoted in an Atlantic Magazine article describing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a “chickenshit.” Fox News

Activists fear Obama to scale back legalization . . . Immigration activists close to the White House worry that President Barack Obama could delay or scale back executive actions on immigration that he has promised to take before the year ends. Reuters

Obama scores Ebola policy opponents . . . A visibly agitated President Obama on Wednesday ripped into critics of the U.S. response to the Ebola virus, insisting that his administration was leading the charge to “snuff out” the deadly disease. “When I hear people talking about American leadership and then are promoting policies that would avoid leadership … [and have us] hiding under the covers, it makes me a little frustrated,” the president said, joined by healthcare workers who treated the disease in West Africa, including American Ebola survivor Dr. Kent Brantly. Examiner

Labor secretary likes 12-months of paid leave . . . Labor Secretary Tom Perez on Wednesday praised Germany’s policy of giving new parents a full year of paid time off from work, and suggested the U.S. should adopt similar policies. The Blaze

Holder’s one regret: targeting Rosen . . . Attorney General Eric Holder says he has one regret: his department’s court order for Fox News reporter James Rosen’s emails labeling him a criminal “co-conspirator.” Fox News

For more of today’s news each morning, subscribe to REDLINE.

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Obama Schedule || Thursday, October 30, 2014

by Keith Koffler on October 29, 2014, 10:51 pm

10:00 am || Receives the Presidential Daily Briefing
2:15 pm || Departs White House
3:55 pm || Arrives Portland, Maine
4:30 pm || Attends a DNC fundraiser; Private Residence, Cape Elizabeth, Maine
6:40 pm || Delivers remarks at a campaign event for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mike Michaud and other Maine Democrats; Portland Expo, Portland, Maine
7:40 pm || Departs Maine
8:35 pm || Arrives Warwick, Rhode Island

All times Eastern

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Live Stream || Obama Speaks to Health Workers About Ebola

by Keith Koffler on October 29, 2014, 3:01 pm

The event has concluded.

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Who is Going to Investigate Biden’s Boondoggle?

by Keith Koffler on October 29, 2014, 2:56 pm

Vice President Biden, Jill Biden, and 11 family members had a grand vacation this summer at a lodge in the Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. They spent four nights there in August, presumably doing what you do at national parks – hiking, fishing, canoeing, bothering wildlife, and taking in the marvelous views.

And until a reporter inquired about the trip, they hadn’t paid for it.

Time’s Zeke Miller exposed Biden’s sweet deal. Are any other reporters going to investigate this?

According to Time:

Vice President Joe Biden, his wife and 11 other family members spent four nights on vacation this August at a lakeside log cabin overlooking the snowcapped peaks of Mount Moran in Grand Teton National Park.

The four-bedroom Brinkerhoff Lodge, where they stayed, is owned and operated by the National Park Service. Under a policy adopted in 1992, after controversy over VIPs using the cabin for vacations, the National Park Service banned purely recreational activities by federal employees at the property, restricting its use to “official purposes.” But in recent years, the park service has interpreted that same rule so broadly as to again allow senior officials to take cheap vacations in Grand Teton with friends and family.

While visiting the park, Biden held no events, kept no public schedule, and his staff initially declined to answer a reporter’s question about where he spent the night. Last week, after TIME uncovered documents confirming his stay at the lodge, Biden’s office said the Vice President planned to personally reimburse the park $1,200 for “renting the Brinkerhoff” for his family’s vacation.

Under park service rules, the lodge is maintained for use by federal employees for “training and official conferences” and for those on “temporary duty in the park.” In practice, the superintendent of Grand Teton National Park, who has discretion over whether to demand payment for the lodge, has interpreted those rules to allow extended family vacations if there is an element of official business involved.

A Grand Teton National Park spokeswoman, Jackie Skaggs, said last week the Biden family visit met the internal criteria, since the Vice President received an official park briefing and tour while staying at the lodge. “With few, if any, exceptions, officials who stay at the Brinkerhoff are given in-depth briefings and/or issue tours,” she wrote in an email to TIME . . .

A spokesperson for the Vice President, who declined to be named, said Biden’s office was still waiting for an invoice from the park two months after the stay, when TIME made inquiries. “The office understood from the park service that personal use would cost the local per diem rate,” the spokesperson said, referring to the a schedule of overnight hotel costs maintained by the General Services Administration for a single hotel room. Biden’s office said the Vice President will now personally pay $1,200 for the four nights, a figure that includes an extra $10 per night for each additional member of his family.

That cost, which assumes that a four-bedroom lodge is comparable to a single hotel room, is far below market rate for other nearby accommodations, especially during peak summer tourism season.

Bolding is mine.

Here are the questions to be asked by an enterprising reporter, should one feel inspired somehow to investigate the Obama administration, which few seem to be.

1. Did Biden understand that all he had to do was tolerate some “briefing” and go for a tour in order to get for himself a taxpayer-subsidized vacation. Presumably, taxpayers had already paid for his travel aboard Air Force 2.

2. Why did it take him two months to pay? Who waits two months to get a bill from their place of lodging without making some kind of inquiry about why they haven’t been billed? Did Biden ever intend to pay anything?

3. Why didn’t Biden pay the market rate for his stay?

4. Did Biden’s office initially refuse to answer questions because he was hiding something?

The Interior Department has launched an investigation into the use of Brinkerhoff by public officials. Others, including former EPA administrator Lisa Jackson and Education Secretary Arne Duncan, used it as well. It’s not clear if the probe will look at Biden’s activities.

But, as they say in monkey house at the zoo, this really smells. Biden runs around the country bashing rich people. Biden himself is well off, yet he seeks as a vacation destination property where he can take advantage of his position in the government to save some money.

I guarantee Zeke didn’t discover everything in the course of assembling his story. Others should get on the case.

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Live Stream || White House Briefing – October 29, 2014

October 29, 2014

The briefing has concluded. Don’t forget to share

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Obama’s Sushi Roundtable

October 29, 2014

The battler-in-chief for the middle class decided Tuesday to hold a DNC fundraiser at an expensive sushi restaurant in downtown Milwaukee. Because, I guess when you’re golfing every week, you long ago stopped caring about appearances. At least, I assume it’s expensive. The menu on the website for the restaurant, Umami Moto, doesn’t list prices, […]

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Obama: “Only Vote Once – this isn’t Chicago”

October 29, 2014

President Obama Tuesday made a humorous, inadvertent little reference to the corrupt Chicago political machine that helped produce him. From remarks at a rally in Milwaukee for Wisconsin gubernatorial candidate Mary Burke: One week, Wisconsin. One week. One week from today you get to choose a new governor. And because early voting runs through this […]

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Crowd Walks Out on Obama – Again

October 29, 2014

Oh boy. The thrill is gone. The party’s over. And the bloom is off the rose. Like they did last week in Marlyand, listeners at an Obama rally Tuesday began to filter out before The One had even finished. This time it was during an event for Wisconsin Democratic candidate for governor Mary Burke. B.B. […]

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The Obama Morning News || October 29, 2014

October 29, 2014

Former officials: Obama did nothing to stop ISIS . . .  President Obama’s former ambassador to Iraq says in a new interview that his administration “did almost nothing” in response to intelligence warnings earlier this year that Islamic State radicals were gaining ground in Iraq and threatening the country’s stability. “The administration not only was warned […]

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