Huffpost Politics

HUFFPOST HILL - Washington *Not* Consumed By Tornadoes, Nation Distraught

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Mitt Romney owns hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of gold, which could either be divided into a handful of coins or one REALLY garish birthday present from Donald Trump. Today's job report bodes ill for America's unemployed, but for fans of unending periods of national malaise, it couldn't have come sooner. And Washingtonians cowered in their basements after a tornado warning was issued for the area. On the bright side, it probably delayed the zombie apocalypse a few hours. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Friday, June 1st, 2012:

ROMNEY CAMPAIGN DISCLOSES CANDIDATE'S ASSETS - Choice bits, via @samsteinhp: "Romney made btw 50k and 100k on royalties for No Apology according to just filed personal financial disclosure form... Barclay's Bank paid Romney $42,500 for speaking fees on January 20, 2011... Goldentree Asset Management paid Romney $68k for a speech on November 4, 2010... Romney has a LOT of assets" [@Samsteinhp]

@mviser: Romney still owns between $250,001 and $500,000 in gold.

@ZekeJMIller: Romney has a "Trust established to hold extended family vacation property"

Talented group of journalists laid off, pt. 5,931: "Thursday night Good Magazine had a launch party for its newest issue. On Friday it laid off most of its editorial staff, according to two sources. At least some of the layoffs occurred at the magazine's Los Angeles headquarters. Executive Editor Ann Friedman, who was named to her post in March 2011, Senior Editor Cord Jefferson, Lifestyle Editor Amanda Hess and Associate Editor Nona Willis Aronowitz are among the people who've reportedly lost their jobs." And despite our prior jesting, we love us some Tim Fernholz, who also is leaving GOOD. [Poynter]

DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney wants to create an incentive for businesses to hire the long-term unemployed, based on a program he launched as governor of Massachusetts in 2004. "If you hire someone who's been out of work a year or more, we're gonna give you, the employer, I think it was a $2,000 check to be able to train this person in the job you've hired them for," Romney told CBSNews on Thursday. Hey, the Obama campaign said, that's our guy's idea! In the fall, President Barack Obama proposed a $4,000 tax credit for businesses that hire the long-term unemployed. "It's a good thing Mitt Romney finally came around to endorsing part of the President's approach for getting more Americans back to work -- now he should call on Congress to pass it," Obama for America's James Kvaal said in a statement. But Congress already did pass it, or at least something similar to it. The 2010 HIRE Act offered a payroll tax break and a $1,000 credit to businesses that hired and retained unemployed workers. It didn't work, but at least there's a consensus on how to deal with long-term joblessness: Throw money at businesses. [HuffPost]

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

THE JOB REPORT SUCKS - Not even 100k added in May and previous months were revised down. What's the over/under on Romney sending Marco Rubio a copy of the report with a note that just says "Eh? Ehhh???" AP: "Only 69,000 jobs were added in May, the fewest in a year, and the unemployment rate rose from 8.1 percent to 8.2 percent. The dismal jobs data will heighten fears that the economy is sputtering. It also puts President Barack Obama on the defensive five months before his re-election bid. And it could lead the Federal Reserve to take further steps to help the economy. The Labor Department also said Friday that the economy added far fewer jobs in the previous two months than first thought -- 11,000 fewer in March and 38,000 fewer in April. And the increase in unemployment was the first in 11 months." [AP]

@McDonaldsCorp: @arthurdelaneyhp Cheer up Arthur, eat some fries & smile! By the way, did you know that 1.8M people worldwide work for brand McDonald's?

@McDonalds: .@MikeBloomberg We trust our customers to make the choices that are best for them.

Uh oh: "A CNN/ORC International survey released Friday also indicates that Obama supporters are more energized right now than those backing Romney. According to the poll, 49% of registered voters say that if the November election were held today, they would vote for Obama, while 46% say they would cast a ballot for Romney, the unofficial GOP presidential nominee. The president's three point margin is within the survey's sampling error. Obama had a nine point advantage in CNN's last national poll, which was conducted in early April." [CNN]

WE WILL NEVER, EVER, EVER STOP TALKING ABOUT HEALTH CARE: OBAMA - Bloomberg: President Barack Obama is confiding to Democratic donors that he may have to revisit the health-care issue in a second term, a position at odds with his publicly expressed confidence that the U.S. Supreme Court will uphold the Affordable Care Act, according to three Democratic activists. As he previewed his agenda for donors at a May 14 fundraiser, Obama said he may be forced to try to revise parts of his health-care plan, depending on how the court rules later this month, said one activist, who requested anonymity to discuss the president's comments. Guests at the $35,800-a-plate dinner in the Manhattan apartment of Blackstone Group LP (BX) President Tony James were asked to check their smart phones and BlackBerries at the door. The president has made similar remarks, usually in response to questions, at other fundraising events since the Supreme Court heard arguments in the case during the last week of March, according to two other activists, who also requested anonymity." [Bloomberg]

UNCLE SAM DOESN'T WANT YOU TO TRAVEL IN A URINE-SOAKED TUBE OF SADNESS - Ray LaHood and Chuck Schumer are cracking down on the so-called "Chinatown bus" lines, which famously give upper middle class 20-somethings on the East Coast the chance to prove to their friends how broke they are ("No, forget Washington Deluxe, Eastern Express is WAY worse"). Times: "Citing imminent safety hazards, federal officials ordered 26 companies on Thursday to stop operating many of the inexpensive buses that pick up passengers at curbsides all over Manhattan's Chinatown and haul them to other cities up and down the East Coast. The crackdown was the most sweeping action ever taken against American passenger-bus operators and was intended to chasten other low-budget companies that might try to evade safety regulations and the relatively small pool of inspectors who enforce them, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said. The 26 companies were affiliated with three 'unscrupulous' networks of bus operators that ignored federal rules and, when they were caught, simply changed names and continued operating, said Senator Charles E. Schumer, Democrat of New York, who was also in Chinatown." We give this two cans of Four Loko out of a possible four on our "Chuck Schumer capitalizing on a groundswell of populist anger about [issue x] " grading scale. [NYT]

WOMEN CAN'T BE TRUSTED: MEDIA - Atlantic: "On abortion, eight out of every 10 commentators are male. It's only slightly better for birth control. 4th Estate, the media-tracking project that produced this graphic, says 'women's rights' is the issue with the most parity, but men are still a slight majority there, too... The three big prestige papers have nearly identical ratios of men to women, with males making up two-thirds of those quoted on women's issues. USA Today is even worse. News Corporation, with its conservative leaning Fox News and Fox Business channels, is slightly more male-dominated than other major media companies. But left-leaning MSNBC's Hardball has fewer women than Fox News' Special Report, while centrist CNN's State of the Union, though hosted by Candy Crowley, is so bad it could practically pass for the clubhouse at Augusta National." [Atlantic]

TALENTED POLITICIAN CAMPAIGNS ON BEHALF OF LESS TALENTED POLITICIAN - Amanda Terkel: "'Ordinarily, I'm against recall elections. I went to try to fight one in California,' Bill Clinton said at a rally for Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett (D) in Pere Marquette Park. 'But sometimes, it is the only way to avoid a disastrous course. Sometimes, it is the only way to avoid being misunderstood.' Clinton's last-minute visit, announced just a day ago, is the most high-profile trip to the state by a national Democratic figure pitching in on the recall battle. Barrett is hoping to unseat Gov. Scott Walker (R) in Tuesday's election. Walker is campaigning with South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R) on Friday afternoon in nearby Sussex, Wis." [HuffPost]

Steve Rothman wanted to hug it out with the president but the president only wanted to high five. Politics is difficult. Dave Jamieson: "Rep. Steve Rothman (D-N.J.) met with President Barack Obama at the White House Friday morning, giving Rothman's campaign a boost days before he faces congressional colleague Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-N.J.) in a Democratic primary forced by New Jersey redistricting. According to the Rothman campaign, the president invited Rothman to the Oval Office and 'affirmed his support' for the candidate in Tuesday's election...But on the heels of Rothman's announcement, White House spokesperson Josh Earnest was careful to note that Obama has not endorsed Rothman over Pascrell, seeing as both candidates are members of the party that the president heads." [HuffPost]

DREAM TICKET: ROMNEY/PAWLENT--*ZZZZZZZZZZZ* - Man, just saying it makes us want to brew some Sleepytime tea and put on sweatpants. ABC News: "As President Obama heads to Minnesota today, Tim Pawlenty, the state's former governor and now a national co-chairman of Mitt Romney's campaign, said he would be 'honored' to serve as Romney's running mate if asked. 'I think I can best serve Mitt in other ways, but obviously anybody would be honored to serve if asked,' Pawlenty told reporters on a conference call this morning. Pawlenty then noted that as a national co-chairman of Romney's campaign, 'we just don't talk about the VP process.' Only three weeks ago Pawlenty flatly stated that he should not be on any list of possible running mates for the GOP presidential hopeful." [ABC News]

Jeb Bush has correctly assessed his vice presidential prospects. WaPo: "Asked directly by ABC News what he would say if the call came from Mitt Romney asking him to be his running mate, Bush said, 'It's not going to come.' But if the call comes, would he say no? 'I am not a candidate,' Bush responded. 'I'm not going to be asked.'... Today when asked if he would be willing to turn over personal documents to the Romney campaign vice presidential vetting team, Bush offered firm no. 'He won't ask and I won't do it,' Bush said. 'He won't ask me because me [for vetting documents] because I am not going to be considered.'" [ABC News]

COWARD JOE WALSH WON'T JUST ADMIT HE WANTS A SYNDICATED TALK SHOW - Elise Foley: "Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Ill.) isn't backing down from controversial comments he made last week about Rev. Jesse Jackson -- instead, he's ramping them up. 'All Jesse Jackson is trying to do is to keep African Americans down on some plantation,' he said on the 'Big John & Amy' radio show Friday, as reported by Chicagoist. Walsh came under fire from Democrats earlier this week for telling constituents that the party wants Hispanics and African Americans to be dependent on government. He said Jackson, a civil rights leader, wants the same thing. 'Jesse Jackson would be out of work if [African Americans] weren't dependent on government,' he said at a town hall meeting last week." [HuffPost]

DARRELL ISSA HATES ART - This story encapsulates almost everything we hate about Washington. AP: "California Rep. Darrell Issa sent a letter Thursday to the Eisenhower Memorial Commission saying more questions must be answered about the design process for the memorial before it's approved. The project has slowed amid objections from Eisenhower's family to the layout and focus of the memorial. Issa says he hasn't received answers from the General Services Administration about how architect Frank Gehry was chosen to design the memorial. Issa is also a member of the National Capital Planning Commission, a panel that must approve the design before construction can begin. He says he won't support the design until there is a thorough examination." [AP]

Because he's Frank Gehry?

CONNECTICUT LEGALIZES MEDICAL MARIJUANA - Grinder sales are going to skyrocket. Lucia Graves: "Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy on Friday signed a bill permitting the medical use of marijuana statewide, making Connecticut the 17th state to enact such a law. A month ago, the Connecticut Senate voted 21 to 13 in favor of HB 5389, the Palliative Use of Marijuana Act. The legislation, which allows for the limited use and distribution of cannabis as medicine, comes after federal officials ramped up enforcement actions against state-sanctioned medical marijuana dispensaries last fall, with scores of raids primarily in California... Although advocates are celebrating the Connecticut victory, they've cited a number of issues with the legislation, including prohibitions against patients growing their own pot and a restrictive list of qualifying medical conditions that excludes 'chronic pain,' among other commonly cited ailments." [HuffPost]

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Nine minutes of direwolves from Game Of Thrones.

IF THE STORMS DON'T RUIN YOUR PLANS... - HuffPost DC: "Metrorail service will be sluggish just like every other weekend with reduced service, single-tracking zones and shuttle buses." [HuffPost]

COMFORT FOOD
By @bradjshannon!

- Watch out for tornados, folks. [http://bit.ly/N4jM8F]

- CollegeHumor's monthly News Feed History of the World. [http://bit.ly/NpxO2q]

- Neutral Bling Hotel is the music mashup we've been waiting for. [http://avc.lu/N4jsqj]

- Foto Friday: Meanwhile, in Afghanistan... [http://bit.ly/NpxII3]

- Foto Friday: Meanwhile, in the Congo River Basin... [http://bit.ly/KCr6Xx]

- Rescued cat and incredibly exasperated dog! [http://chzb.gr/NpCXr8]

- We've always wanted a pet camerabot. [http://bit.ly/KCr6Xx]

TWITTERAMA

@NRCC: Fashion fwd; Policy backward RT @lukerussert: I spy former Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL) walking on Independence Ave wearing white leather shoes.

@BenjySarlin: "And The Dave Matthews Band Played On" RT @vplus: JUST IN Rielle Hunter will publish a memoir June 26th

@elisefoley: Obama endorsed gay marriage weeks ago, and just now God is punishing DC with bad weather?

ON TAP
By @christinawilkie

THIS WEEKEND

Saturday 7:00pm: If there were one gala worth tolerating all the hassle of dressing to the nines for, it would probably be the Opera Ball, which breaks with tradition this year by ditching the French Embassy for the UAE. [3522 International Ct NW]

Saturday 7:00pm: If you're the type of person who brings your dog to restaurants, you'll loooove the 25th Annual Bark Ball, a Humane Society fundraiser that makes pet pet-obsessed people seem totally normal for about three hours. [1919 Connecticut Ave. NW]

Sunday 7:00pm: It's the annual Ford's Theatre Society Gala. This year, Morgan Freeman and Elie Wiesel team up for an extra super profound evening. [511 10th St NW]

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