POLITICS
11/10/2011 05:41 pm ET | Updated Jan 23, 2014

HUFFPOST HILL - BREAKING: Administration To Stand Up For Something


Rand Paul should pray that he never finds himself stranded on a melting ice floe, because the polar bears he teased today will just let him drown. Reggie Love will leave the White House later this year, knocking down the number of administration officials we'd like to have beers with to one (......the person who picks out Bo Obama's leis, if you must ask). And Rick Perry tried to revive his campaign after last night's debate by appearing on NBC, Fox News, and...um, uh, er ...let's see ...Animal Planet? No? ........I'm sorry, I can't. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Thursday, November 10th, 2011 :

ADMINISTRATION PLANNING TAX CUT SHOWDOWN - Sam Stein: "Top officials in the Obama administration on Thursday outlined a major end-of-the-year push to pass an extension of the payroll tax cut, pledging to make Republicans take a political hit for inaction. In a background briefing with reporters, two senior administration officials repeatedly warned they would make an example of GOP lawmakers adjourning in December without acting on that major component of the president's job package. 'I think it is going to be very dramatic as we count down towards the end of the year and the clock is ticking on whether the average person's taxes are going to go up $1,000 next year,' said one official. 'It is going to be certainly an organizing principle and a focusing principle for this debate, and we are going to make the argument as clearly as we can. ... Congress cannot leave town and on their way out of town wave to the American people and say, 'We just raised your taxes $1,000.''" [HuffPost]

HuffPost Hill today chatted with Jon Huntsman's wife, Mary Kaye Huntsman, in New York: "If the people we meet in the airport could decide, he'd be president of the United States." Indeed! He'd also have all his liquids in a tiny Ziploc bag!

RICK PERRY TRIES TO RECOVER FROM, UH, UM.... YOU KNOW.... THAT THING HE DID...UHHH...OOPS - Topical humor! Learn it! Anyway, the guy fighting desperately to keep Buddy Roemer out of his rear view mirror tried today to bounce back from his super embarrassing "Commerce, Education......." debate gaffe. Probably the most cringe-inducing media hit Perry made today was on Fox's "America Live with Megyn Kelly." In case you missed it, Kelly interviewed Perry in the same strained manner that a local news anchor might interview some rube who won a pie-eating contest. (You know what we're getting at: Kelly asked a lot of "So, what were you thinking when you did noteworthy thing X?" questions). "That was pretty brutal isn't it?" Perry said. "I think it's happened to everybody before. I stepped in it, that's for sure. Matter of fact some of it is still stuck on my feet." He continued: "It would not come to me. Even to the point of looking over to Mitt and Herman and Ron Paul...you guys wanna give me a hand here?" You really felt bad for Perry ... still ... 20 hours later.

Nuh-uh: "If we're electing a 'debater-in-chief,' don't elect me."

In case you needed to be told this: "...Mr. Perry's odds of winning the Republican nomination halved within seconds on Intrade, an online market where people bet on the odds of various events. The red points in the Intrade chart below show that bettors believed his chance of winning the Republican nomination fell from nearly 9 percent to a low of 3 percent...It's amazing how quickly that happened; clearly markets process information efficiently when they have it." [NYT]

JIM DEMINT MAKES A STAND WITH UNPOULAR VOTE, THEN REVERSES IT - Mike McCauliff: "Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) distinguished himself Thursday as the only senator to oppose a measure aimed at hiring veterans, calling it a 'trick' by the Obama administration. He knew it wouldn't be popular, but went ahead anyway and cast the lone vote against an amendment to give employers tax breaks worth up to $9,600 for giving a veteran a job. 'I know what I'm about to discuss won't be very popular; I'll probably be accused of not supporting veterans by the politicians pandering for their votes,' DeMint said on the Senate floor Thursday. 'But I'm not going to be intimidated to vote for something that may make sense politically but is inherently unfair.'...DeMint later voter in favor of the overall bill that the veteran amendment was added to, a measure to delay a 3 percent withholding tax that was supposed to help the federal government crack down of contractor fraud. That bill passed unanimously."

DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - Foreclosure victims abused by one of five banks would be eligible for restitution payments of around $1,500 or $2,000 under the current terms of a settlement sought by state attorneys general and the Obama administration. That amount of money could help Kathryn Johnson, 61, pay for almost a year's worth of storage space. Johnson's Huntington Beach, Calif., home was auctioned off in August, and she'll likely soon need a place to stash her furniture. She'd stopped making payments two years ago after signing up for a loan that she said unexpectedly increased her payments. She claimed her bank ignored her request for a modification this summer. Johnson is of two minds about the prospect of receiving $2,000 for her trouble. "That's hardly enough," she said. But, she added, "I suppose it would be better than nothing at all from the banks."

Don't be bashful: Send tips/stories/photos/events/fundraisers/job movement/juicy miscellanea to huffposthill@huffingtonpost.com. Follow us on Twitter - @HuffPostHill

REGGIE LOVE STEPPING DOWN - America's guy-you-don't-know-much-about-but-who-still-seems-really-chill-in-chief will step aside soon, the White House announced today. "Reggie Love, a key member of the Obama entourage, is planning to leave the White House by the end of the year, people close to the administration said. Love, 30, is a popular, gregarious figure in the White House. A onetime forward for the Duke Blue Devils basketball team, Love started out as a staff assistant in Obama's Senate office after college, rising to become his personal assistant, known as the 'body man.'" [WaPo]

Tory Mazzola is leaving the NRCC for the New Hampshire Republican State Committee where he will help remind people about the looming threat of seat belt laws and sales taxes as its executive director

@samsteinhp: [Senior White House Middle East Aide] Dennis Ross: "After nearly three years of serving in the Administration, I am going to be leaving to return to private life."

RAND PAUL MOCKS DROWNING POLAR BEARS - On the Senate floor today, Rand Paul defended a resolution that would prevent the enforcement of clean air regulations by the EPA (an agency popularly known by Rick Perry as "...._________"). In doing so, Paul made a kind of offensive anti-environmentalism comment. It wasn't "Hey, do you guys remember that crying Indian from the ads? God, I wanna punch that guy in the face." bad. But it was still a little uncouth. Mike McAuliff: "Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul mocked concerns about global warming, rising sea levels and endangered polar bears Thursday, accusing the White House of being run by 'extremists' and 'hysterics' who don't care about jobs. Paul, who was arguing for a resolution that would bar the Environmental Protection Agency from enforcing court-ordered clean air rules, argued EPA was going too far in protecting health...'If you listen to the hysterics, you would think otherwise,' Paul said. 'You would think that the Statue of Liberty will shortly be under water and the polar bears are all drowning, and that we're dying from pollution. It's absolutely and utterly untrue.'" The resolution failed 41 to 56. Ben Nelson and Joe Manchin defected and voted for the measure. [HuffPost]

CONSTRUCTION OF THAT PIPELINE EVERYONE HATES WAS DELAYED TODAY - For weeks, the liberal media conspiracy has stubbornly kept its Greenpeace dinghy tethered to the ship of state whaler of state because the Obama administration refused to scrap the Keystone XL pipeline. Now, President Obama has decided to turn the damn thing around. "The United States will study a new route for the Keystone XL Canada-to-Texas oil pipeline, U.S. officials said on Thursday, delaying any final approval beyond the 2012 election and sparing President Barack Obama a politically risky decision for now. The delay was a victory for environmentalists who say oil sands crude development emits large amounts of greenhouse gases. It would deal a blow to companies developing Alberta's oil sands and to TransCanada Corp, which planned to build and operate the conduit. Analysts have said a long delay could kill the $7 billion project because it would cause shippers and refiners to look for alternative routes to get Canadian oil sands crude." [Reuters]

IN TOTALLY NOT SURPRISING TWIST OF FATE, RICK 'MAN ON DOG' SANTORUM SPONSORED THE PENN STATE COACH ACCUSED OF CHILD RAPE - Yeah, Santorum had no way of knowing that Jerry Sandusky would drag a storied institution into a media shitstorm from which it may never recover. But man alive, could Santorum's luck and/or cosmic narrative be any worse? "Then Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum thought enough of Jerry Sandusky nine years ago to sponsor the former Penn State defense coordinator for a 'Congressional Angels in Adoption' award, citing his work with a non-profit group he founded to provide care for foster children. 'Its philosophy is simple: it is easier to develop a child than to rehabilitate an adult,' read the citation in the awards dinner program from Sept. 24, 2002. Sandusky, of course, has been charged with sexual abuse of young boys and Penn State University is under fire for its handling of reports of the coach's suspicious behavior...Santorum, a 1980 PSU graduate, is one of the school's most distinguished alumni - a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination who represented Pennsylvania in the U.S. Senate from 1995 to 2007. A social conservative and champion of adoption, Santorum is staking his candidacy on an appeal to family values." [Philadelphia Inquirer]

Herman Cain's campaign beat its $999,999 fundraising goal and celebrated by splattering blood all over its website

Jen Bendery: "Imagine that your boss is disliked by about half the people who know him, doesn't get along particularly well with the business community, is viewed unenthusiastically by some of his own supporters, and has still tasked you with raising as much as $1 billion in a year-and-a-half. Meet Rufus Gifford, chief raiser of money and informal LGBT ambassador for President Barack Obama's reelection campaign."

GINGRICH WAS SLIGHTLY MORE THAN A 'HISTORIAN' FOR FREDDIE MAC - "Good government types are getting a kick out of Newt Gingrich's claim at Wednesday's debate that he wasn't a lobbyist for Freddie Mac but was rather hired for his skills as an historian. 'I have never done any lobbying,' Gingrich said, adding that he only offered 'advice as an historian.' For some context, a full-time professor of history made an average of $63,119 per year around 2006. Newt racked up $300,000, or about 4.75 times as much...Public Citizen's Craig Holman said this was the first time he'd heard the 'ambiguous term 'strategic consultant' replaced with an academic term 'historian,'" but that regardless of the terminology, Gingrich 'was hired as a lobbyist for his rolodex built while being a public servant.'" [TPM]

IT REALLY HASN'T BEEN A GOOD 24 HOURS FOR MOST OF THE REPUBLICAN FIELD - "Michele Bachmann came to Charleston to give her foreign policy vision, but she was interrupted by more than a dozen protesters with the Occupy movement. Roughly 10 minutes into her speech, in front of roughly 60 supporters and media, the occupy group sitting amongst the crowd stood at their seats at the call from their leader, 'Mic check!' The group then began a call and response message similar to speeches at Occupy rallies throughout the country. 'You capitalize on dividing Americans, claiming people that disagree with you are unpatriotic socialists,' they said to Bachmann as local police escorted the candidate from the stage." [Mt. Pleasant Patch]

KINDHEARTED MAN OF CHRIST SIMPLY WANTS TO ALERT VOTERS TO THE FACT THAT A MUSLIM GUY IS A CIVILIZATION-UPTURNING MOSLEM - What?! He's just trying to be the Paul Revere for people concerned about the MOSQUING OF AMERICA. One if by sea! Two if by SLEEPER CELL TERRORIST ANCHOR BABIES. "Gary Boisclair, an anti-abortion activist running in Minnesota's Fifth Congressional District as a Democrat, launched an anti-Islam ad last weekend. Boisclair works for the Society for Truth and Justice, an anti-abortion group whose staffers are running primary challenges around the country in order to exploit a campaign law loophole and get graphic ads aired on broadcast television, as the Minnesota Independent first reported. In a press release titled, 'Christian challenges Muslim for congressional seat,' Boisclair announced that he had launched his first ad. 'We did not pick this fight,' Boisclair said. 'Islam's war against Christianity and human liberty has raged against us for 1,400 years. We are merely responding with the truth.'" [Minnesota Independent]

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Baby loves Biggie Smalls

JERMEY'S WEATHER REPORT - Tonight: The crummy weather continues through the early evening. But with it comes a cold snap that's going to make for a miserable night. We'll dip down into the 30s. Tomorrow: Very cool, with a high of about 50. Thanks, JB!

COMFORT FOOD

By @BradJShannon

- Joel McHale was apparently nominated for sexiest man alive and asked to make a video about it. [http://youtu.be/WZ2hYXAocTc]

- The only thing cooler than breakdancing is reeeeaaally slow breakdancing. [http://youtu.be/7ogoaPcDQbA]

- This probably isn't the first thing I'd do if I got a pet hawk, but now I'm adding it to the bucket list. [http://youtu.be/iIPmBsL3By4]

- Here's a guy who can do stuff you've only seen in Mortal Kombat movies. [http://youtu.be/iBMkrHAAjWE]

- In case you've missed the last week or so, Taiwan's NMAtv sums up that whole Penn State thing. [http://youtu.be/cewjLdYRTrE]

- Robin Williams has a tickle fight with a gorilla? [http://www.wimp.com/ticklefight/]

- These upstanding young citizens have some ideas for improving Metro. [http://youtu.be/Skh2NEM0JWg]

- What's the best way to move a rhino? You guessed it: helicopter. [http://youtu.be/pTWPg_8sK78]

TWITTERAMA

@delrayser: FUN FACT: It used to be called Texas A&M&T until they figured out Aggies are incapable of remembering more than two things.

@daveweigel: Woman asking three-part question apologizes: "I can't think of the third." Room breaks up laughing. Newt just smiles.

@TPM_dk: #tweetsthatmakeeditorscringe RT @brianstelter: Days like today make me love my job. Big, gossipy thousand-word story on the way tonight.

@toddzwillich: Capitol Hill squirrel, after long month of work, decries "nut neutrality". #hereallweek

ON TAP

With @tylerkingkade

TOMORROW

Evening: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid heads to Tulsa for a Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee dinner in a state that offers all the dust you know and love in Nevada ... but without any of the fun. [Tulsa, OK]

Tomorrow - Saturday: Noted family man David Vitter will visit a hotel he probably hasn't taken prostitutes to visit for golf, Indy Car Racing and dinner at the Disney World Westin Swan Hotel & Walt Disney Speedway. Scheduled over two days. [1200 Epcot Resort Boulevard, Lake Buena Vista, Fla. 32830]

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