In my opinion, President Obama did a tremendous job at the WHCD. See for yourself…
President Obama entered to a new rap intro and joked that this is what Rush Limbaugh warned you about in the second term. Obama thanked everybody including his wife, then said, “Everybody loves Michelle. She’s on the cover of Vogue, high poll numbers, but I got my own magazine cover.” He then joked that he had to admit that that he is not the same strapping young Muslim Socialist that he used to be. Obama joked about going 2 for 22 on the basketball court at the White House Easter Egg Roll. He said, “Two hits, twenty misses. NBC executives asked, what’s my secret?”
The president joked about needing something new for the second term, then showed a picture of First Lady Obama’s bangs on his head. The president made a joke about Conan’s Tonight Show fiasco. (That one didn’t go over so well.) Obama later took a jab at CNN say he admired them covering all sides of the story in case one of them might be accurate. He joked about Axelrod working at MSNBC, because MSNBC used to work for Axelrod. Obama got in a joke about the History Channel’s The Bible and the devil looking like him. He said Fox News thought the portrayal was unfair to the devil.
Later, the president made a Sheldon Adelson joke centered on Adelson spending $100 million to defeat him. Obama said, “You’ve got to really dislike me to spend that kind of money. That’s Oprah money. You could have bought an island and named it Nobama for that kind of money.” He said Adelson would have been better off offering him the money to drop out of the race. He said he would have thought about it, but Michelle would have taken the money.
The president also joked that if Republicans were serious about minority outreach, they could start with him. Later he joked that he is taking his Republican outreach on the road. The president said, “A Texas barbeque with Ted Cruz. A Kentucky bluegrass concert with Rand Paul, and a book burning with Michele Bachmann.”
One of the highlights was a video of Steven Spielberg announcing that his next project will be Obama, with Daniel Day Lewis as Obama (Obama playing Obama), and Tracey Morgan as Joe Biden.
Obama wound things down by quoting Groucho Marx, and reminding Ted Cruz that he said Groucho not Karl Marx. The president closed on a serious note with thoughts and optimism for the people of Boston, West, TX, those hit by flooding in the Midwest.
This was one of President Obama’s better WHCD performances. The president was funny, but sincere. It was fun to see the president poke fun at himself, and it was also interesting to note that the White House hears every unhinged crazy right wing conspiracy theory out there.
The president is a natural performer, and his joke writers were really good. The WHCD also allows the president to blow off a little frustration, and Obama did that tonight with his jokes about the Republican refusal to work with him.
In my opinion, GOP politicians see themselves as a privileged class separate from the common people. They believe they are smarter, stronger and wiser than their counterparts in both Houses of Congress. Most “outsiders” see them as manipulative, bullying, stupid, selfish oafs. I, for one, see them that way.
Could that be why they’ve only won one out of the last six elections (including mid-terms.)
The same Texas lawmakers who voted against relief money after Hurricane Sandy are looking for “all available resources” after the fertilizer plant disaster in Texas. Aid for me, not for thee? (Rachel on Facebook)
Officials are still coming to terms with the scope of the disaster in West, Texas, where a fertilizer plant exploded last week, leaving at least 14 dead. And while investigators still search for clues as to what caused the disaster, Texan lawmakers in Washington are looking for disaster aid to bolster the devastated community.
Had these same officials not opposed post-Sandy relief, their position might not seem so jarring.
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz lambasted the Sandy Aid package, voting against the measure in January…. However, in Washington Thursday, Cruz said that he was “working to ensure that all available resources are marshaled to deal with the horrific loss of life and suffering that we’ve seen” after an explosion at a fertilizer plant in Texas leveled the plant and nearby houses and business. [...]
Rep. Bill Flores, who represents West, also voted against the Sandy relief package but is now requesting federal aid for the disaster in his home district. Flores said Thursday that members of Congress with whom he has been in touch have pledged assistance.
After Flores voted against the Sandy aid package, he justified his vote by saying the package was “too large” and did “more than meet the immediate needs of Sandy victims.”
In fairness, Cruz didn’t explicitly say he wants federal emergency assistance, but the right-wing senator said he’s working to get “all available resources,” which would presumably include federal aid.
I will, of course, look forward to Cruz and Flores explaining why federal emergency aid in New Jersey and New York was unwarranted, while federal emergency aid in West, Texas, is fair.
I also, I wonder why “the stupid” is more prevalent within the GOP than anywhere else? Joe Barton is the same Representative who apologized to BP for being charged with a $20 Billion claims fund after the spill in the Gulf of Mexico. He called it a shakedown. That’s the guy who is the subject of the following Piperni post…
Is it time yet to make a double-digit IQ a prerequisite to running for public office?
Texas Rep. Joe Barton doesn’t believe in anthropogenic climate change. That’s partially because he is firmly in the pocket of Big Oil. The oil and gas industry is the largest contributor to Barton’s warchest.
However, Barton’s fervor to deny that humans have anything to do with climate change has taken a new direction. In a bizarre reference to the Great Flood of the Bible, Barton is using that as evidence that hydrocarbons don’t change the climate. How Barton draws that comparison is going to have to be left to the imagination. Barton doesn’t elaborate on what forty days of rain in antiquity has to do with the present-day earth warming.
Perhaps he is thinking that today’s rising sea levels are the same challenge that Noah had building an ark. If only the answer to climate change was so simple. Here is the great environmental insight from Barton:
“I would point out that people like me who support hydrocarbon development don’t deny that climate is changing. I think you can have an honest difference of opinion of what’s causing that change without automatically being either all in that’s all because of mankind or it’s all just natural. I think there’s a divergence of evidence.”
“I would point out that if you’re a believer in the Bible, one would have to say the Great Flood is an example of climate change and that certainly wasn’t because mankind had overdeveloped hydrocarbon energy.”
It’s probably impossible to pack more stupid into a single statement but that won’t stop Barton and his fellow Texas Republicans (Rick Perry, Louie Gohmert, Ted Cruz, Steve Stockman – to name a few) from attempting to do that very thing the next time they find themselves in front of a microphone. You can count on it.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) issued a statement Thursday vowing to use “any procedural means necessary” to thwart President Obama’s gun reforms in the Senate, after the president pushed Congress on Thursday to act.
“In any conversation about how to prevent future tragedies such as Sandy Hook, our focus should be on stopping criminals from obtaining guns. Unfortunately, the Obama Administration has failed to make this a priority — in 2010, out of more than 15,700 fugitives and felons who tried to illegally purchase a firearm, the Obama Justice Department prosecuted only 44. That is unacceptable.
“It is saddening to see the President today, once again, try to take advantage of this tragic murder to promote an agenda that will do nothing to stop violent crime, but will undermine the constitutional rights of all law-abiding Americans. I am committed to working with Sens. Rand Paul, Mike Lee, Marco Rubio, and Jim Inhofe–and I hope many other colleagues–to use any procedural means necessary to protect those fundamental rights.”
Is this really about the libertarian values of ‘smaller government‘ or is this the directive of the NRA via a couple of “campaign donations”?
Sens. Rand Paul, Ted Cruz and Mike Lee are threatening to filibuster gun-control legislation, according to a letter they plan to hand-deliver to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s office on Tuesday.
“We will oppose the motion to proceed to any legislation that will serve as a vehicle for any additional gun restrictions,” the three conservatives wrote in a copy of the signed letter obtained by POLITICO.
Reid plans to bring up a gun-control measure that focuses on broadening background checks and cracking down on interstate gun-trafficking after the current Senate recess.
Conservatives are concerned that once that bill reaches the floor, amendments could stiffen restrictions on gun control.
Moreover, they understand that Reid intends to allow liberal amendments that would limit clip capacity and ban certain assault weapons to be offered — even though they would be defeated — to give Democrats a chance to vote on them. For moderate Democrats in competitive states, that amounts to an opportunity to vote no and show allegiance to gun rights.
Though they don’t use the word “filibuster” in the letter, the conservatives are leaving no doubt that they would filibuster on an initial procedural question — the motion to proceed.
Lee staged a test vote on the issue during consideration of the Senate budget last week. He tried to amend a point of order against gun control legislation to the budget but fell short. It needed a three-fifths supermajority and failed 50-49, needing 60 votes to pass. But the final tally emboldened Lee, Paul and Cruz because they were so close to a majority and a filibuster takes just 41 votes to sustain.
I don’t know who this McCarthy-like character, Senator Ted Cruz think he is but rest assured he picked on the wrong Senator yesterday…
On Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved the so-called assault weapons ban on a party-line vote, paving the way for the full chamber to vote on the measure as early as next week. But not before Sen. Ted Cruz, the freshman Republican from Texas, aimed to give Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the five-term Democrat from California, a lesson about the Bill of Rights. He suggested that it was a slippery slope from banning bazookas to banning books. Feinstein was not impressed.
Here’s the text of some of Feinstein’s remarks:
Let me just make a couple points in response. One: I’m not a sixth-grader. Senator, I’ve been on this committee for 20 years. I was a mayor for nine years. I walked in and I saw people shot. I’ve looked at bodies that have been shot with these weapons. I’ve seen the bullets that implode. In Sandy Hook, youngsters were dismembered. Look, there were other weapons. I’m not a lawyer, but in 20 years I’ve been up close and personal to the Constitution. I have great respect for it. This doesn’t mean that weapons of war—and the Heller decision clearly points out three exceptions, two of which are pertinent here—and so I, you know, it’s fine you want to lecture me on the Constitution. I appreciate it. Just know that I’ve been here for a long time. I’ve passed on a number of bills. I’ve studied the Constitution myself. I am reasonably well educated… Incidentally, this does not prohibit—you use the word “prohibit”—it exempts two thousand two hundred and seventy one weapons. Isn’t that enough for the people of the United States? Do they need a bazooka?
I’m a bit late with this particular story but after finally reading about it, I decided to share. According to various press reports, this president can really deliver a punchline…
Did you hear the one about President Obama, Sen. John McCain, and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel?
“These days, John McCain and I are spending so much time together that he told me we were becoming friends,” Obama told member of the Gridiron press club during its annual dinner Saturday night.
“I said, ‘John, stop — Chuck Hagel warned me how this ends up!’”
Appearing at the white-tie dinner in which politicians and journalists make fun of each other, Obama cracked wise about politics, the news media, the sequester and even about himself.
“My joke writers have been placed on furlough,” Obama began. “I know a lot of you reported that no one will feel any immediate impact because of the sequester — well, you’re about to find out how wrong you are.”
He added: “Of course, there’s one thing in Washington that didn’t get cut — the length of this dinner. Yet more proof that the sequester makes no sense.”
Other topics covered by Obama and his substitute joke writers:
Complaints by reporters: “Some of you have said that I’m ignoring the Washington press corps — that we’re too controlling. You know what, you were right. I was wrong and I want to apologize in a video you can watch exclusively at whitehouse.gov.”
His agenda: “I have my top advisers working around the clock. After all, my March Madness bracket isn’t going to fill itself out. And don’t worry — there is an entire team in the situation room as we speak, planning my next golf outing, right now at this moment.”
His skeet-shooting photo: “Of course, maintaining credibility in this cynical atmosphere is harder than ever — incredibly challenging. My administration recently put out a photo of me skeet shooting and even that wasn’t enough for some people. Next week, we’re releasing a photo of me clinging to religion.”
Changes in his administration: “With all these new faces, it’s hard to keep track of who is in, who is out. And I know it’s difficult for you guys as reporters. But I can offer you an easy way of remembering the new team. If Ted Cruz calls somebody a communist, then you know they’re in my Cabinet.”
Vice President Biden: “Look, it’s no secret that my vice president is still ambitious. But let’s face it, his age is an issue. Just the other day, I had to take Joe aside and say, ‘Joe, you are way too young to be the pope. … You can’t do it. You’ve got to mature a little bit.’”
The press: “I know that there are people who get frustrated with the way journalism is practiced these days. And sometimes those people are me. But the truth is, our country needs you and our democracy needs you.”
Obama wrapped up by making fun of his recent mix-up of Star Wars and Star Trek:
“In the words of one of my favorite Star Trek characters — Capt. James T. Kirk of the USS Enterprise — ‘may the force be with you.’”
A few days ago New Yorker reporter, Jane Mayer, wrote an article on the newly seated but high-profile senator from Texas, Ted Cruz entitled Is Senator Ted Cruz Our New McCarthy? The article was based on statements Senator Cruz had made a speech in 2010 where he stated that Harvard Law School was full of “Communist Professors”.
This current article demonstrates how Senator Cruz has in fact “doubled-down” on his statement.
Senator Ted Cruz has responded to The New Yorker’s report that he accused Harvard Law School of having had “twelve” Communists who “believed in the overthrow of the U.S. Government” on its faculty when he attended in the early nineties. Cruz doesn’t deny that he said this; instead, through his spokesman, he says he was right: Harvard Law was full of Communists.
His spokeswoman Catherine Frazier told The Blaze website that the “substantive point” in Cruz’s charge, made in a speech in 2010, was “was absolutely correct.”
She went on to explain that “the Harvard Law School faculty included numerous self-described proponents of ‘critical legal studies’—a school of thought explicitly derived from Marxism—and they far outnumbered Republicans.” As my story noted, the Critical Legal Studies group consisted of left-leaning professors like Duncan Kennedy, who is a social democrat, not a Communist, and has never “believed in the overthrow of the U.S. Government.”
Among those who have taken issue with Cruz’s castigation of the Harvard Law School faculty are his former law professor, Charles Fried, who is a well-known Republican and former Solicitor General to Ronald Reagan. In his 2010 speech, Cruz had said there was only “one” Republican on the faculty, but his former professor, Fried, told The New Yorker there were at least four, including himself. A spokesman for Harvard Law School, Robb London, also described the school as “puzzled” by Cruz’s allegations.
Cruz’s spokesman called it “curious” that The New Yorker would cover Cruz’s speech “three years” after he gave it. But Cruz’s hostile questioning of Obama’s nominee for Defense Secretary, Chuck Hagel, and insinuations about Hagel’s loyalties had provided a fresh context for looking more closely at the nature of the accusations he has leveled at political opponents. Observers like Senator Barbara Boxer wondered if they were seeing a revival of McCarthyism. Judging from Cruz’s speech—and, now, his defense of it—it’s a good question.
It appears they’re too busy getting ready to impeach the POTUS if he bans their assault weapons via executive powers…
Earlier this month, Tea Party darling Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) admitted that his plan to introduce yet another Obamacare repeal bill would be unlikely to pass in the wake of President Obama’s decisive re-election. As it turns out, that was an understatement.
In a sign that the GOP’s anti-Obamacare fervor may finally be giving way to political reality, Rep. Michele Bachmann’s (R-MN) latest Obamacare repeal billdoesn’t have a single co-sponsor in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives. Bachmann made introducing the repeal billher first order of business for the 113th Congress, even as millions of Americans waited for House Republicans to act on a disaster relief package in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.
And two other anti-Obamacare bills — one to repeal the law’s individual insurance mandateand another introduced by Rep. Steve King (R-IA) to repeal the whole law — also do not have any co-sponsors. By contrast, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s (R-VA) so-called “Repealing the Job-Killing Health Care Law Act” had a total of 182 cosponsors by the fourth day of the 112th Congress, and House Republicans successfully voted to repeal Obamacare a staggering 33 times during the last session — costing taxpayers an approximate $50 million. Public support for repealing the reform law has plunged to an all-time low as Americans begin experiencing its positive effects.
But the latest repeal efforts’ lack of co-sponsors should by no means be taken as a sign that Republicans will embrace health reform altogether. House Republicans can still try to obstruct Obamacare’s implementation by putting the law’s funding mechanisms on the chopping blockand attempting to repeal measures such as the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB). In fact, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) recently advocated for doing exactly that in an editorial for his hometown paper, and former Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL) went as far as to suggest “civil disobedience” and breaking the law in order to stymie Obamacare.
Still, the full Obamacare repeal effort’s newfound loneliness in the House is a powerful demonstration of the difference an election can make.