Thursday, June 18, 2015
Good morning! In the news today: Nine dead in a possibly racially motivated killing in South Carolina; trade bill moving again; woman to appear on $10 bill; the right likes Walker; Pope issues global warming combat call; and get ready for your new AC bill.
Have a great day.
Manhunt on for killer of nine at black church in SC . . . Police in Charleston, South Carolina, were searching on Thursday for a white gunman who killed nine people in a historic African-American church including the pastor, a black state senator, in an attack the U.S. Department of Justice called a hate crime. The shooter, a 21-year-old white man with sandy blond hair, sat with churchgoers inside Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church for about an hour on Wednesday before opening fire, Police Chief Gregory Mullen said. The U.S. Department of Justice opened a hate crime investigation into the shooting, which follows a string of racially charged killings that have prompted waves of protest across the United States over the past year and sparked the “Black Lives Matter” movement. Reuters
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Obama trade bill back on track . . . The House on Thursday will attempt to revive a “Fast Track” trade bill that President Obama and Republicans are eager to complete, after days of back-room negotiations and a stunning defeat for Obama last week at the hands of House Democrats. Absent from the deal is Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., who joined with the majority of her caucus to urge Obama to nix the legislation in favor of a new bill Democrats could amend with trade enforcement provisions. Washington Examiner
Obama steps up trade lobbying . . . Okay, maybe he spent the weekend partying, but now he’s back in action, and look out, because the hangover is gone! President Obama today is meeting with House and Senate Democrats he thinks he may be able to convince to desert their leadership and join with Republicans to pass fast track trade negotiating authority. White House Dossier
The trade bill is probably too big to fail. Business wants it too much. Washington most likely will find a way to pass it. Big trade bills are always massive struggles and almost always pass. Just saying.
Woman to appear on $10 bill . . . A woman will be featured on a newly redesigned $10 bill, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew announced Wednesday. The new bill will feature a woman representative of the United States’ tradition of “inclusive democracy,” Lew said, explaining that portraying historical figures on currency has “long been a way for us to honor our past and express our values.” Alexander Hamilton, the first Treasury secretary whose image is now on the note, will remain on the bill one way or another. Washington Examiner
Obamaites cheered scolding of Israeli ambassador . . . Obama administration staffers listened in on and “cheered” the private scolding of a former Israeli ambassador by senior a State Department official, according to new disclosures by that ambassador, Michael Oren. The incident took place in 2010, when the Obama administration stoked tensions with Israel over its decision to continue building homes in Jerusalem. Washington Free Beacon
Obama retains confidence in OPM chief . . . Despite massive cyber attacks at the Office of Personnel Management, President Obama still has confidence in OPM Director Katherine Archuleta, the White House said Wednesday. “The president does have confidence that she’s the right person for that job,” said White House press secretary Josh Earnest. Washington Times
He almost never fires anyone.
Iraq may be finished as a state . . . At a hearing Wednesday focused on the strategy for Iraq, the Pentagon conceded that the hope for a multi-sectarian, unified Iraq is becoming a less likely outcome. More likely, they said, is a three-way split of the country. Washington Examiner
Walker the favorite of conservatives . . . Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker is the clear favorite of conservative voters as he readies an expected bid for the Republican Party’s presidential nomination in 2016, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll. Walker has gained little traction among the moderate voters who account for the majority of the party, the poll shows. But his strength on the right gives him a good base of support, analysts said. Reuters
Perino tries to get co-host off Planet Trump . . . Donald Trump’s rambling nonsense of an announcement “speech” was so larded with empty promises and tough-sounding demagoguery – and so devoid of actual plans to achieve his many screwball notions – that, naturally, some people got upset. One of them was Fox News commentator Dana Perino. White House Dossier
Neil Young angry Trump used his song . . . The New York real estate mogul arrived on stage at his campaign kickoff announcement Tuesday as the sounds of Young’s “Rockin’ In The Free World” blared through the atrium at Trump Tower in midtown Manhattan. The only problem? Young blasted the Republican candidate following his announcement, with the rocker claiming Trump didn’t have permission to use the music. Trump said he paid for it. Fox News
Paul proposes flat tax . . . Republican U.S. presidential candidate Rand Paul is proposing that businesses and individual Americans pay a federal flat tax of 14.5 percent in a plan that would cut the government’s tax revenue by more than $2 trillion over 10 years. Reuters
The Wall Street Journal panned Rubio’s child tax credit increase, saying it is social engineering through the tax code and it won’t stimulate the economy.
Clinton private email may have had classified info . . . Secretary of State Hillary Clinton used her personal email account to handle high level negotiations in 2011 for a no-fly zone to help topple Libyan dictator Muammar Qaddafi, according to a series of emails obtained by Fox News, challenging her claim the private server did not hold classified information. The emails, linked here, conflict with Clinton’s statement that she did not put national security at risk by using a personal account. Fox News
Hillary crafts State tenure defense . . . She is less inclined to focus on any specific achievement than to weave her time at Foggy Bottom into a larger narrative about her experience and toughness. The Hill
Shalala: Clintons were “paranoid” . . . Clinton Foundation head Donna Shalala privately expressed concerns about Bill and Hillary Clinton’s mental state in the mid-1990s, saying they had become “paranoid” and fixated on “right-wing conspiracies,” according to previously unpublished audio recordings obtained by the Washington Free Beacon. Washington Free Beacon
O’Malley to parachute into GOP debate . . . On Tuesday the conservative website IJReview announced that it would be partnering with ABC News to host a New Hampshire primary debate. The “social-first news company” hopes to aim the debate towards a younger audience, and engage more Americans in the process. A gif released by IJReview following the announcement of the debate, shows O’Malley receiving a text message reading “Want to make a cameo in the GOP debate?” O’Malley looks at the camera and responds “Sure.” Washington Examiner
GOP crafts Obamacare ruling fix . . . Senate Republicans are coalescing around a plan to extend Obamacare subsidies for up to two years if the Supreme Court strikes them this month. Politico
Pope issues left-wing manifesto . . . Pope Francis called Thursday for a bold cultural revolution to correct what he calls the “structurally perverse” economic system of the rich exploiting the poor that is turning Earth into an “immense pile of filth.” In a sweeping manifesto aimed at spurring action in U.N. climate negotiations, domestic politics and everyday life, Francis explains the science of global warming, which he blames on an unfair, fossil fuel-based industrial model that he says harms the poor most. Citing Scripture and appeals by past Popes and bishops, he urges people of all faiths and no faith to undergo an awakening to save God’s creation for future generations. It’s an indictment of big business and climate doubters alike. Associated Press
Regs to push up AC bills in the East . . . The Eastern U.S. could be bracing for bigger summer electricity bills as power plant closures due to a host of federal emission regulations kick into high gear, according to energy market analysts. Washington Examiner
Get ready to pony up in the fight against global warming.
Williams to stay at MSNBC, but with demotion . . . NBC and Williams have come to a tentative agreement that will keep Williams at the network after his six-month suspension ends in August, people with knowledge of the agreement said. It will likely be announced sometime Thursday. Williams will not be returning to the “NBC Nightly News” anchor chair; his fill-in Lester Holt will become the program’s permanent anchor. His portfolio will include a position on MSNBC. CNN
It’s fine. MSNBC frequently deals in fantasy anyway.
Clooney climate epic bombs . . . Disney’s “Tomorrowland” may be bombing at the box office, but on the plus side, it could win a Cliffie. The Cliffie awards go to films that exemplify “cli-fi,” or climate fiction, an emerging genre heating up this year as climate change themes seep from documentaries into big-budget Hollywood features. Washington Times
White House Dossier
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