Political reporters scrambled to reap the bounty of the Christine O'Donnell pinata bust open by her upset victory in Delaware. She thinks Obama is anti-American! She hates people with AIDS! She doesn't believe in evolution! She was really into bangs and padded shoulders in the nineties! Perhaps in an effort to counterbalance O'Donnell's antediluvian views, the Democrats unveiled their hip, new website which, once you realize it's not an outlet for ironic T-shirts, is actually quite nice. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Wednesday, September 15th, 2010 :
BREAKING: OBAMA NAMES WARREN AS MIDDLE CLASS ADVISER, SETTING UP INTERIM NOMINATION TO HEAD CFPB - The White House will tap Elizabeth Warren to be a special adviser to both the president and Treasury Department. The move allows her to act as an interim head of the CFPB and will enable her to begin setting up the agency immediately and prevent the GOP from filibustering her nomination. Warren could serve until Obama nominates a permanent director -- a nomination he's not required to make. Obama could also nominate her as the permanent director in the near future, a prospect that has been discussed among top aides, according to a person familiar with the White House deliberations. ABC's Jake Tapper got the scoop, unless you count all of those reports earlier this week that said it was happening. HuffPost Hill confirmed the report, for whatever that's worth to you. http://huff.to/dikrfV
OBAMA LIKES WARREN SO MUCH, HE'S CONSIDERING APPOINTING HER AGAIN - Sam Stein sends word to HuffPost Hill on how this will work: According to a source familiar with the administration's conversations, aides have discussed the idea of following Warren's interim appointment with a permanent one. Warren as head of the newly created Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on an interim basis. As interim director, she would remain in the office regardless of the outcome of the vote and would only be removed if the president chose to. It would be a miracle if the Senate got around to a vote in the next few months, given the pace of its confirmation process, but the downside of the strategy, of course, is that if she fails to get 60 votes, her credibility as the agency's head could be damaged. But if Republicans reject her by a filibuster, they would be in the position of having blocked her from getting a vote, rather than Obama being accused of side-stepping the Senate. Whether Warren would even want such an arrangement is an open question. Barney Frank said yesterday that he thought she would be content to set the agency up and point it in the right direction, then head on back to Harvard. (Or the Senate?)
Obama this afternoon on the ongoing debate over the Bush tax cuts: "Once again, the leaders across the aisle are saying no...They want to hold these middle-class tax cuts hostage until they get an additional tax cut for the wealthiest 2 percent of Americans." http://usat.ly/a2OBdK
Luis Gutierrez, Nydia Velazquez and Bob Menendez will meet with the president tomorrow at 2:30 to talk immigration reform. Gutierrez says he'll push Obama to use his muscle to get the DREAM Act through Congress. If Rahm Emanuel shows up, two potential Chicago mayoral candidates will be in the room together. Gutierrez, who said today that a run is "tempting," said he'd have a hard time supporting Emanuel if he doesn't, given his history of slowing down immigration reform. He still remembers, Gutierrez said, when Emanuel, as head of the DCCC, was telling Democrats to vote for a draconian Republican immigration bill in 2006. But if he helps make the DREAM Act a reality, all could be forgiven. "I would be very indebted and grateful to Rahm," he said, adding that so would the Latino community.
We're told this is the 100th edition of HuffPost Hill but are too lazy to check. Hooray!
NANCY PELOSI IS HERE TO LISTEN - House Speaker Nancy Pelosi adopted a San Francisco, lefty, talk therapy approach to today's meeting with freshman reps. The meeting usually lasts around a half hour, but this morning's gathering went well over an hour, with Pelosi hearing out each attendee on their reelection anxieties. (The meeting ran long because the morning's caucus meeting was canceled, leaving more time for questions and comments, which members of Congress are blessed with in infinite quantity.) Pelosi told the group, said a freshman in the meeting, that she had yet to decide which strategy to pursue on tax cuts -- whether to let the Senate go first using a shell House revenue bill or to press ahead regardless of the slower chamber. The night before, she let it rip in a closed caucus meeting, making the case against extending tax cuts for the gilded two percent. She met with the sophomores this afternoon, said a Pelosi aide, and continues to hear out the caucus.
Stephanie Herseth Sandlin and Jim Matheson spoke out at the caucus meeting Tuesday night, according to a member in the room, arguing that voters in their states want all of the Bush tax cuts extended. Both are on the Blue Dog letter calling for the same.
Tomorrow in The Hill: Kevin Bogardus and Sean J. Miller report on how fears that John Boehner will become the next Speaker of the House have prompted unions to rethink their opposition to Democrats who voted against the healthcare reform bill earlier this year.
Rep. Gene Taylor became the first Democrat today to add his name to a letter calling for the repeal of healthcare reform. http://bit.ly/brgfAr
AYOTTE DECLARED WINNER IN NEW HAMPSHIRE GOP PRIMARY, LAMONTAGNE WON'T CHALLENGE - We demand royalties for any and all "Wild E Ayotte" DNC mailers starting... now. "Former state Attorney General Kelly Ayotte is the official winner of the GOP primary for the open New Hampshire Senate seat. Ayotte, who was recruited by national Republicans to get into the race last year, defeated tea party favorite Ovide Lamontagne by a slim margin of 1,667 votes after a long night of vote tabulation. Despite the close margin of victory, Lamontage announced Wednesday afternoon that he was not going to request a recount and conceded the race to Ayotte. Outside the Legislative Office Building in Concord, N.H., Lamontagne told his supporters that he was endorsing Ayotte and asked them to do the same." Politico: http://politi.co/dhr7wB
PPP has Ayotte leading Paul Hodes 47 percent to 43 percent in a survey out today. "Although she remains the favorite in the race it's clear that the divisive primary has her in a much weaker position than 5 months ago and that this contest may be more competitive than has generally been accepted." http://bit.ly/cTYu7K
TODAY'S TERKEL TAKEDOWN - Amanda Terkel: "EMILY's List is launching a new ad taking aim at former Alaska governor Sarah Palin and her comments calling its supporters a 'cackle of rads.' The ad is the second in the group's 'Sarah Doesn't Speak for Me' series. The first one featured women dressed in bear costumes -- playing off the 'Mama Grizzlies' candidates Palin is endorsing in the 2010 elections. In the new video, several people address Palin, taking issue with the 'cackle' label. 'You're calling me a radical because I want to protect our wildlife and hold corporations like BP accountable?' asks one young woman." http://huff.to/aAOSJw
HuffPost has an exclusive look at Fox Business reporter Charlie Gasparino's new book on Obama's 'unholy alliance" with Wall Street. Tidbit: Goldman Sachs COO Gary Cohn once cornered Harry Reid at fundraiser: "We're getting sick of the bullshit!"
Roll Call visits Raul Grijalva's office. Won't somebody please send that man a decent burrito? http://bit.ly/9LLB1r
DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - From Arthur Delaney: "There are no plans in the Senate to take up legislation anytime soon to help the '99ers,' people who have been unable to find work after exhausting the 99 weeks of federally-funded extended unemployment insurance available in some states. 'I think that's going to be a real challenge in the next three weeks,' said Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) when asked about her bill to provide an additional 20 weeks of benefits to the long-term jobless in states with unemployment above 7.5 percent. 'We're going to continue to look for a way to get bipartisan support so we can get through a filibuster and be able to get that done.'" http://huff.to/aKOZvg
DAILY DELANEY DOWNEUR - AUSTERITY GRIPS LE FRANCE!!! French National Assembly hikes retirement age to 62. http://nyti.ms/caJ9zb To the barricades!
Don't be bashful: Send tips/stories/photos/events/fundraisers/job movement/juicy miscellanea to email@example.com. Follow us on Twitter - @HuffPostHill
CASTLE WON'T SUPPORT O'DONNELL - The morning after his upset loss to anti-palm hair activist Christine O'Donnell, Rep. Mike Castle reportedly will not endorse the Republican nominee in the race for Joe Biden's old Senate seat. A source close to Castle told The Hill that the Delaware congressman has no intention of lending weight to the candidate he recently said would essentially forfeit the seat to the Democrats. In other late-breaking news, sources close to Charlie Brown indicate he is anxious about fielding Lucy at holder in tomorrow's game of pickup football. http://bit.ly/byT7IU
Castle, unaware he was on camera: "Good luck out there with your new leader." http://huff.to/bcuR29
Charlie Cook has upgraded the race to "Likely Democratic" http://bit.ly/7tgHQ
RSC Chairman John Cornyn: "Let there be no mistake: The National Republican Senatorial Committee - and I personally as the committee's chairman - strongly stand by all of our Republican nominees, including Christine O'Donnell in Delaware."
DSCC Chairman Robert Menendez is exhibiting a giddiness that only a candidate with the authoritative air of a Mary Kay salesperson can inspire. "The Tea Party certainly saved the best for last," he said in an interview with Sam Stein. "Republicans keep making the same mistake over and over again," he added. "They tag their preferred candidate with the establishment label and even Republican voters are saying, 'Aren't those the same people who caused the problem in the first place?' More importantly, the wounds aren't healing... and that is a big problem for Republicans. There is division there and most importantly, Republicans have chosen extremist to be their nominees and that has changed the map for the next 40 days." http://huff.to/cCoVhi
@markos: My team is doing O'Donnell research. Quote: wives must "graciously submit to a servant lead, and that is God's design for the family."
Roll Call tonight previews the remaining 47 days of the campaign season.
HuffPost polling expert Mark Blumenthal on Chris Coons v. O'Donnell polling: "Coons is up big. That's the simple takeaway from the automated survey of likely general election voters in Delaware conducted this past weekend by Public Policy Polling (PPP). They found that while Republican Congressman Mike Castle would have led Democrat Chris Coons by ten points (45% to 35%), Coons leads surprise nominee Christine O'Donnell by 16 (50% to 34%). This is just one poll and we know that early horserace polling can be deceptive. Can O'Donnell close that gap? It won't be easy. Castle led in Delware, a state that Barack Obama carried by 25 points, because nearly a third of Democrats and a plurality of independents were ready to back him. Not so for O'Donnell. And her challenge is not about name recognition: Her favorable-unfavorable ratings is 29% to 50%, with just one voter in five (21%) unable to rate her." PPP survey: http://bit.ly/cJPbyt
O'DONNELL AN EVOLUTION SKEPTIC - In a 1996 appearance on CNN, O'Donnell -- then the spokesperson for the Concerned Women of America, a right-wing social issues group -- voiced skepticism about evolution. "Well, creationism, in essence, is believing that the world began as the Bible in Genesis says, that God created the Earth in six days, six 24-hour periods. And there is just as much, if not more, evidence supporting that," she said. Someone should really put O'Donnell's fears to bed by informing her that monkeys don't grow hair on the palms. Daily Intel: http://bit.ly/9LQbZA
She also thinks people with AIDS are selfish, reckless whiners. TPM: "TPM has unearthed a 1997 C-SPAN video that shows O'Donnell voicing concerns that a drag queen ball 'celebrates the type of lifestyle which leads to the disease,' objecting to terming those with AIDS 'victims' and calling AIDS a consequence of a certain 'lifestyle which brings about this disease.' After complaining that 'there is a gross disproportionate allocation of funds' going to AIDS treatment and prevention in comparison to resources designated to combat heart disease, O'Donnell compared living healthier to changing the 'lifestyle' that she said lead to AIDS." http://bit.ly/aLQQRO
Back in 2008, O'Donnell uttered the most mainstream GOP statement of her career thus far: she said Barack Obama is "anti-American.". Sam Stein: "Among the more colorful segments unearthed [featuring O'Donnell] is an appearance she did on Fox News during the 2008 presidential campaign, in which she accused then candidate Barack Obama of being anti-American; not because of theories that he was not a natural-born citizen or sympathized with the Muslim world, but because he refused to insist that English be deemed the official language of the United States."
YET MORE DELAWARE T-PARTY DRAMA - Glen Urquhart is another GOP oopsie and he can't get into the NRCC's The Three
Amigos Friends (Young Guns) club. Politico: "Newly minted Delaware Republican congressional nominee Glen Urquhart is facing the very real prospect of running without the support of his national party....Urquhart, a real estate investor who won the endorsement of the Family Research Council and has enjoyed some tea party support, dumped nearly $565,000 of his own money into the primary contest. He ran TV ads slamming Rollins as not sufficiently conservative, particularly on social issues. But the Republican, who will compete with former Democratic Lt. Gov. John Carney for the seat of retiring GOP Rep. Mike Castle, never caught the eye of the NRCC." http://bit.ly/bPz8ys
Carol Shea-Porter scored last night in N.H.-1, as Republican Frank Guinta bested his much-more-rational sounding, good-looking rival, Sean Mahoney. Internal polls have Kilroy doing better against Guinta, who was involved in a bar fight during the election that left a man with multiple fractures in his leg, requiring 30 stitches. Guinta's side of the story, as far as he's said anything about it, is that the man fell. Like they say, in politics, when you're explaining your role in a barroom brawl, you're losing. http://bit.ly/a3FP17
If the next best thing to beating Joe Lieberman is defeating the national co-chair of his ill-fated presidential campaign, then the Progressive Change Campaign Committee is loving life today, having knocked off Katrina Swett and helped elect Ann McLane Kister in N.H.-2.
IN EFFORT TO COURT NGO VOTE, DEMOCRATS UNVEIL NEW MINIMALIST WEBSITE, GIVE THEMSELVES A D - No, wait, that D with a circle around it is their new logo. The site's pared-down look, complete with cutting edge, Pitchfork-esque fonts (fedora tip: @SuzyKhimm) and stylishly cropped high-res photos, will disappoint web surfers who think they're about to buy fair trade sandals, hear the latest Vampire Weekend track, or have stumbled across the online home of a Portland, Oregon artisanal hot dog truck. Seriously, we don't know whether to contribute to Tom Perriello's fight against the far-right GOP agenda or donate to an anti-circumcision campaign. http://www.democrats.org/
Tim Kaine: "The new Democrats.org gives Democrats cutting-edge tools that will empower people to connect with one another and with the party." ...What an effing hipster.
Speaking of the intraweb, reps from Blue State Digital -- best known for designing President Obama's oft-mimicked campaign website -- send word that they have just launched BSDTools.com. Despite the suggestive URL, the website isn't the Voyeur Club's homepage -- it's actually the company's newest product. Read about it: http://bit.ly/c9rOHk
MEG WHITMAN SHATTERS SELF-FUNDING RECORD - The San Francisco Chronicle on the gubernatorial candidate MAKING IT RAIN: "[Whitman] just put another $15 million of her own money into the race -- enshrining her in the history books as the largest self-funding political candidate ever. Whitman, the former eBay CEO, made the $15 million donation to her 2010 California gubernatorial effort late Tuesday, putting her total personal donation to her campaign at a record-breaking $119 million. Whitman's 18-month campaign spending now bests New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the previous record-holder; he spent $110 million of his own dough to become NYC's top exec." -- That's roughly six million J. Geils Band concert tees she could have purchased on eBay. http://bit.ly/b5Z5Rb
CHARLIE CRIST: IT AIN'T EASY BEING
GREEN ORANGE AN INDEPENDENT CANDIDATE FOR THE U.S. SENATE - All the over-sized letters in the world couldn't ease this man's ennui: "This is hard,'' Crist said at a press conference in Miami. "This is not an easy journey to be on. It's difficult to run as an independent. I mean, tomorrow I'm going to have several million dollars dumped on me by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce for my opponent, Speaker Rubio. That just gives you one bit of evidence about how frightened they are that this change might occur."
GOP ATTEMPTING TO TARNISH BARACK 'NO, IT'S PRONOUNCED YEE-RO' OBAMA'S RELATABILITY - The Times' Matt Bai cements the CW that Republicans are engaged in a not-so-subtle campaign to portray President Obama as a guy you're not likely to see hanging around your local . "With every new swipe at President Obama's exotic background or cultural influences, a contingent of Republican leaders are signaling that they believe the coming elections are more than just a referendum on the administration's economic policies. Rather, to a degree that is striking, conservatives are also trying to make the fall campaign about the president himself and the kind of societal change he actually represents." http://nyti.ms/bo1AVs
Time Magazine really beating the Huffington Post at our own game: http://bit.ly/dqqncd
HUFFPOST HOUSING - While we don't mean to cheapen this digest of 310 million titted cows and cat fart videos by using it for personal means, HuffPost Hill could really use your help. Anyone that knows of a 4 bedroom-plus house opening up in Northwest Washington and doesn't want one of their faithful newsletter scribes to go homeless, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for your time, here's a cat in a pot: http://bit.ly/agA7te
JEREMY THE INTERN'S WEATHER REPORT - Tonight: It will stay quite nice. Tomorrow: A warm front looks to be sweeping north. Expect it to get hot and humid tomorrow (welcome back to the 90s, everybody!), but just for the day. And because of heat and humidity, there is always the chance for those thunderstorms. Enjoy 'em while you can, because it may be one of the last ones we have all year. Thanks, JB!
Hurricanes: All bark, no bite. Igor and Julia are both really strong, but are going north and will be at least a Danielle away from the East Coast (which means you can't tell there's a hurricane unless you go surfing). That leaves Karl. With a "k." Dear National Weather Service, Please stop getting your hurricane names from bowling alleys just outside of Huntsville. Thanks! The tropical storm may become a hurricane, but will most likely just dump a lot of rain over the Yucatan peninsula. So which hurricane name is more stupid: Earl or Karl?
- How to get a black belt in snapping your fingers like a diva. http://bit.ly/bvA6af
- Thanks to the magic of television, the 49ers' Frank Gore crapped his own face out of his butt. http://bit.ly/9b7naW
- Giant. Octopus. Cake. http://bit.ly/do3qZT
- This cat, literally, can has cheezburger and might make you lol. http://bit.ly/9zKZmC
- The HuffPost Comedy team put together this medley of ridiculous studio photographs. http://huff.to/an4z7p
- Apparently one of our night editors is in trouble with the law. http://huff.to/cr2bta
- Reaction: http://bit.ly/b13Nrx
- The U.K. banned an ad featuring a pregnant nun. They can do that? http://bit.ly/bl2Bd9
- Someone proposed through Super Mario World. http://bzfd.it/dp1c95
@delrayser: Delaware residents: if Christine O'Donnell comes to your door trying to raise $, there's no such thing as a "masturbation tax."
@KagroX: Christine O'Donnell's gotta be pretty suspicious about what that Invisible Hand is up to, no?
@jbinckes: RT @aterkel: Buffalo + millionaire is not something you hear Until now! | What do Goo Goo Dolls think of the win?
TONIGHT: The newly-minted front runnerChris Coons was on Hardball. Elijah Cummings is on the Ed Show. Rachel Maddow has a sit down with Joe Biden. A freaking boatload of lawmakers, too many to list here stop by Morning Joe. Tim Kaine is on Daily Rundown.
12:00 pm - 10:00 pm: To commemorate the debut of "Top Chef: Just Desserts", Open Table will pay for your dessert at 75 area restaurants. A listing of participating restaurants here: http://bit.ly/b4Sav4
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm: Whenever we hear about the Strategic Healthcare Townhouse, we always picture a bunch of dudes in Napoleon outfits fussing over hospital blueprints. We're not sure if that's true or not. What is true is that Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) will be a guest at a fundraiser benefiting Betty Sutton (D-Ohio) [Strategic Healthcare Townhouse, 230 Second Street SE].
6:00 pm: Help Pat Leahy (D-Vt.) win what may be the least exciting race this cycle [Bistro Bis, 15 E Street NW].
8:00 am: Jim "Queen" Clyburn (D-S.C) will be on hand for John Adler's (D-N.J.) fundraiser [Sonoma Restaurant and Wine Bar, 223 Pennsylvania Ave SE].
12:00 pm: Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) makes the most of having to be in town for stupid, stupid legislating and hosts a fundraiser [220 E Street NE].
5:30 pm - 7:00 pm: Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) is in town to reconnect with some of his polifriends and raise some dough. John Boehner (R-Ohio), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and John Thune (R-S.D.) are just some of the heavyweights expected to attend [The Offices of Davis and Harman, 1455 Pennsylvania Ave NW].
5:30 pm - 7:00 pm: Big ups to Bob Ethridge (D-N.C.) for being considerate enough to roast a pig and let you eat it in exchange for your hard-earned donation dollars [524 Independence Ave SE].
Got something to add? Send tips/quotes/stories/photos/events/fundraisers/job movement/juicy miscellanea to Eliot Nelson (email@example.com), Ryan Grim (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Nico Pitney (email@example.com). Follow us on Twitter @HuffPostHill (twitter.com/HuffPostHill). Sign up here: http://huff.to/an2k2e