Thursday, June 11, 2015
Good morning! In the news today: Trade bill looking likely to pass; Michelle Obama finds her voice on race; report asserts al Qaeda on the verge of extinction; Fox plans a B-team debate; woman killed by ex while awaiting gun permit; and police move in on a lemonade stand.
Have a great day.
Obama, GOP on cusp on huge trade victory . . . House Republicans have set the stage for a high-stakes vote Friday to grant President Obama fast-track trade authority. While objections from some Democrats on a last-minute deal related to the trade package raised some doubts about the outcome, Obama and the GOP appear poised to earn a significant victory. “We’re moving because we feel comfortable moving,” said Ways and Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), who has led efforts to secure GOP votes for the measure. The Hill
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Book to detail administration’s hostility toward Israel . . . A new insider book by former Israeli ambassador to the United States Michael Oren will provide “an incredibly detailed account of the root hostility of the Obama administration toward the Jewish state,” according to writer John Podhoretz. White House Dossier
Obama bidding to diversify wealthy neighborhoods . . . The Obama administration is moving forward with regulations designed to help diversify America’s wealthier neighborhoods, drawing fire from critics who decry the proposal as executive overreach in search of an “unrealistic utopia.” The regulations would use grant money as an incentive for communities to build affordable housing in more affluent areas while also taking steps to upgrade poorer areas with better schools, parks, libraries, grocery stores and transportation routes as part of a gentrification of those communities. The Hill
Joe Biden returned to the White House Wednesday for lunch with President Obama and a meeting with the Ukrainian prime minister, but he’ll be back in Delaware Thursday.
WH downplays lack of clearance for Secret Service . . . White House press secretary Josh Earnest admitted that not all new agents and officers have been cleared yet, and said the problem was the result of an aggressive push for new hires after a string of security lapses were revealed last fall. Washington Examiner
Michelle finds her voice with focus on race . . . At a time of roiling debate over the issues of race and opportunity, punctuated by the events of Ferguson, Mo.; Staten Island; and Baltimore, the nation’s first African-American first lady has added her voice. It is not a new message for her, but one that has taken on special resonance and one delivered with bracing candor in recent speeches. New York Times
White House denies Obama holding pack of cigarettes . . . Earnest told reporters Wednesday that he doesn’t know what the president was holding, and said he didn’t ask Obama what it was. The Blaze
Mr. President, be the decider on Iraq . . . As an Iraq vet, I know when a mission is hopeless, and sending in more ‘advisors’ is just that. Either go to war, or get out. Clay Hanna in Politico
Non-prliferatiopn expert: Iran deal an “historic blunder” . . . “In my view, if there is an agreement along the lines that has been described by the White House and by the Iranian leadership, I believe it will represent perhaps the single greatest strategic mistake in the national security area in the past 35-plus years of my career,” said Ambassador Robert Joseph. “And this includes some real blunders,” he continued, citing the Carter administration’s botched attempt to rescue U.S. hostages in Iran in 1980; the 1994 “Agreed Framework” nuclear deal with North Korea; the Obama administration’s attempted Russian “reset” in 2009; and the 2013 Syrian chemical weapons “red line debacle.” CNS News
Al Qaeda on the verge of collapse? . . . Isis has not simply eclipsed al-Qaida on the battlefields of Syria and Iraq, and in the competition for funding and new recruits. According to a series of exclusive interviews with senior jihadi ideologues, Isis has successfully launched “a coup” against al-Qaida to destroy it from within. As a consequence, they now admit, al-Qaida – as an idea and an organisation – is now on the verge of collapse. Guardian
Fox plans JV debate for those who don’t make cut . . . Fox News has changed its plan for the first Republican presidential debate to give second-tier candidates some airtime after a New Hampshire newspaper announced its own competing forum for B-list contenders. National Journal
Hillary did favors for Foundation donors as senator . . . Hillary Rodham Clinton’s efforts to provide favors to major donors to her husband’s global charity or her own political career stretch back far earlier than her tenure as America’s top diplomat, dating to the time she served as a U.S. senator and had the power to earmark federal funds and influence legislation, records show. Washington Times
Michelle Kwan joins Clinton campaign staff . . . Kwan joined Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign as a full-time, permanent staffer Wednesday. She will be working on outreach to engage voters on issues relevant to working families. Washington Examiner
Hillary’s voting-rights fables . . . She depicts every effort to make sure voters are eligible as a plot against minorities. Hans Von Spakovsky
Rehm apologizes for claiming Sanders an Israeli citizen . . . NPR radio host Diane Rehm apologized Wednesday for accusing Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., of holding dual-citizenship with Israel, telling the Washington Examiner’s media desk Wednesday that it was just something that she read on Facebook. Washington Examiner
Nobel laureate out over “trouble with girls” comment . . . A Nobel laureate who said that scientists should work in gender-segregated labs and that the trouble with “girls” is that they cause men to fall in love with them has resigned from his position at University College London. Guardian
NJ woman killed by ex while awaiting gun permit . . . Carol Bowne knew her best shot at defending herself from a violent ex was a gun, and not a piece of paper. And it was paperwork that left her unprotected when Michael Eitel showed up at her New Jersey home last week and stabbed her to death, say Second Amendment advocates, who charge local police routinely sit on firearms applications they are supposed to rule on within 30 days. Fox News
Texas cop in viral video stressed by two earlier suicides . . . The Texas police officer filmed wrestling a teenage girl to the ground at a pool party — stoking racial tensions in a Dallas suburb — responded to two suicide calls earlier in his shift that took an emotional toll on him, his lawyer said. Fox News
Religious coalition won’t accept gay marriage ruling . . . In a full-page ad in the Washington Post on Wednesday a coalition of religious groups vowed they will not abide by the U.S. Supreme Court ruling if the majority of the nine justices decide that homosexuals have a constitutional right to marriage. CNS News
Now this will give you heartburn . . . After combing through 16 million electronic records of 2.9 million patients in two separate databases, the researchers found that people who take proton pump inhibitors like Prisolec to suppress the release of stomach acid are 16 percent to 21 percent more likely to suffer a heart attack. Washington Post
So choose your poison – heart attack or esophageal cancer.
Police force sisters to close lemonade stand . . . Police in Overton, Texas, forced a pair of little girls to shut down their makeshift lemonade stand after only an hour of business. Sisters Zoey and Andria Green, 7 and 8, were trying to raise $105 for a Father’s Day present to take their dad to Splash Kingdom. She and her sister had been open for business about an hour Monday and had made more than $25 when police showed up, said their mother, Sandi Evans. “A code enforcement officer and the chief, she called me to the side and said we needed a permit,” Ms. Evans recalled. Washington Times
We’re doomed. Seriously.
White House Dossier
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