Huffpost Politics

HUFFPOST HILL - America's Drug Policy Intercepted!

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Love may be a battlefield but we're pretty sure that doesn't give Mark Sanford license to call himself a "wounded warrior." USA Today is parting ways with Gallup, though neither party indicated how they're splitting the record collection. And a majority of Americans thinks the war on drugs, like throwing away the roach, has been a waste. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Friday, January 18th, 2013:

AMERICA WANTS TO JOIN THE CHOOM GANG: POLL - For years HuffPost Hill has been trying to organize a "Stare At Your Hands Across America" publicity campaign. Our time may have come. Emily Swanson: "Only one in five Americans think that America's war on drugs has been worth the costs, according to a new HuffPost/YouGov poll. According to the new poll, 53 percent of Americans say that the war on drugs has not been worth the costs, while only 19 percent say it has been. Another 28 percent are not sure. Among political independents, the drug war is even less popular. The term "costs" in the survey was not defined, so respondents could have been considering both qualitative and quantitative costs of the war on drugs. Democrats and Republicans in the survey said that the war on drugs has not been worth the costs by almost identical margins -- Democrats 46 percent to 24 percent and Republicans 45 percent to 25 percent. But independents said it was not worth the costs by a 65-11 margin." [HuffPost]

USA Today and Gallup are breaking up, meaning we'll never again use our seamless Brangelina fusion name, USA Galluay. Sad. WaPo: "Gallup will no longer be conducting polls for USA Today, the two organizations announced Friday. Both said the split, after 20 years of collaboration, was a mutual decision based on the changing media and polling landscape...USA Today said in its own statement that it is already in negotiations with another pollster." [WaPo]

@gov: As of today, all 100 senators as well as 398 (90%) representatives are on Twitter. pic.twitter.com/JkuJMSCI

WHEN THE ONION'S JOE BIDEN MET THE REAL JOE BIDEN - @VP: Q for @reddit AMA with my @TheOnion pal: A Trans-Am? Ever look under the hood of a Corvette? #imavetteguy -VP pic.twitter.com/xPGMBBYl

DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives announced Friday they'll seek a temporary increase in the government's borrowing limit. In return, they want the House and Senate to pass a budget in three months or else lawmakers won't get paid. "Members of Congress will not be paid by the American people for failing to do their job," House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said in a statement. "No budget, no pay." In the recent past, members of Congress have frequently offered to cut their own pay -- just like a cheapskate reaches for his wallet at the end of dinner knowing someone else reached first and will pay the tab. In the previous Congress, lawmakers introduced at least 27 bills to restrict their own pay, according to the Congressional Research Service. Several bills said lawmakers wouldn't get paid if the government shut down or defaulted on its debts. The Senate passed one such bill, and the House another, but neither almost became law. [HuffPost]

DOUBLE DOWNER - Rank-and-file members earn $174,000 annually and receive gold-plated health care and a pension that kicks in after five years. The salary's been frozen since 2009, but it hasn't been cut since 1933.

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HOUSE REPUBLICANS TO VOTE ON DEBT CEILING IN EXCHANGE FOR A SENATE BUDGET - This is just going to provoke Harry Reid into offering a budget that quadruples funding for the NEA. The Hill: "House Republican leaders on Friday announced a plan to condition a three-month increase in the debt limit on the Senate committing to pass a budget by the April 15 statutory deadline... 'Before there is any long-term debt limit increase, a budget should be passed that cuts spending,' Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) told the Republican conference in remarks to close the party's three-day retreat in Williamsburg. 'The Democratic-controlled Senate has failed to pass a budget for four years. That is a shameful run that needs to end, this year.' The House will also seek to prevent members of Congress from being paid if the two chambers do not pass a budget resolution... Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said the House would vote next week on a three-month extension of borrowing authority...Democrats have already denounced the possibility of a short-term debt limit increase, but Republicans in the House are trying to formulate a plan that Senate leaders and the White House would have a hard time credibly rejecting. That could include finding spending cuts that Obama has proposed or endorsed, rather than ones favored by conservatives that he has repeatedly rejected." [The Hill]

Oops: "The chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee said constitutional problems may doom a debt ceiling plan announced earlier Friday by House leaders, but the Republican lawmaker said he has a replacement in mind. 'That's unconstitutional,' Rep. Darrell Issa said of the plan... But legality of the 'no pay' part of the deal could run afoul of the 27th Amendment, which says: 'No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened.'" [Roll Call]

OBAMA FOR AMERICA TO SPRINKLE HOPE AND CHANGE ALL ACROSS THE LAND - Paul Blumenthal: "President Barack Obama may have run the last campaign of his career, but his political organization is not going away. In an unprecedented step for the campaign of a sitting president, Obama for America is relaunching itself ahead of the president's second inauguration as a social welfare nonprofit group called Organizing for Action... the new group will use the Obama campaign's extensive collection of data and manpower to push the president's agenda from outside the confines of the Democratic Party structure, while giving grassroots supporters a voice in deciding which issues the nonprofit will focus on. Jim Messina, Obama's 2012 campaign manager and the chair of Organizing for Action... Messina will be joined at Organizing for Action by White House Director of the Office of Public Engagement Jon Carson, who will serve as the group's executive director. As a social welfare nonprofit, organized under the 501(c)(4) section of the tax code, Organizing for Action will be able to raise unlimited sums of money from any type of donor, whether that be an individual, a union or a corporation. " [HuffPost]

The White House unveiled President Obama's new portrait. Try not to flip it the bird the next time it's grinning at you and the other 400 people in line at the DMV.

People are getting wicked scared of a Scott Brown gubernatorial bid: "Lieutenant Governor Timothy P. Murray, who had been raising money and laying the groundwork for a run for governor but faced tough political questions, said Friday that he will not seek the corner office in 2014... His decision will alter the emerging field of Democratic candidates weighing a run, which includes Steve Grossman, the state treasurer, and Donald Berwick, a former administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Notably, it could clear the way for US Representative Michael E. Capuano, an urban liberal who would draw some of the same supporters as Murray, a former mayor of Worcester. Capuano, a Somerville Democrat and former mayor of his city, said this week he will not run for Senate. State Senator Dan Wolf, a Cape Cod Democrat and founder of Cape Air, is also considering a run." [Boston Globe]

TIRED OF FAST AND FURIOUS, GOPers MOVING ON TO... AARON SWARTZ - We're fast approaching a time when Gizmodo and congressional Republicans will be in lockstep over something. Prepare yourselves. Zach Carter: "Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) sent a sharply worded letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder on Friday questioning the Department of Justice's prosecution of Internet activist Aaron Swartz, who was found dead of a suspected suicide last week after fighting federal hacking charges for two years. Cornyn wrote that he was 'saddened' by Swartz's 'tragic' death, and raised aggressive questions about the appropriateness of the federal case against him. The office of U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz charged Swartz, 26, with 13 felony counts for downloading millions of academic journal articles from the online database JSTOR." [HuffPost]

WHITE HOUSE STAFFERS CREEPED OUT BY ALL YOUR PETITIONS - Thanks to the White House's "We The People" website, staffers don't have as much time to wow their parents with West Wing tours and trips to the Off The Record bar and instead are circulating memos about the feasibility of creating a national derp registry. MoJo: "'If you had told me a year and a half ago that the White House would be devoting time writing [an official statement] on how Lord Vader could fix our economic woes, I would have just laughed loudly at you,' one White House staffer who has worked on the WTP outreach program tells Mother Jones. Another White House staffer connected with the program is more blunt: 'Sometimes, I find myself thinking, 'My god, what have we done'?'... Still, things could be bleaker: 'For the most part, it's a good public service," a White House staffer maintains, 'and, hey--isn't it nice to show people once in a while that you don't lose all sense of humor just because you start working for The Man?'" [MoJo]

Congressional candidate Mark Sanford, off to a great start: "Former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, who after battling fall-out from an extramarital affair is now running for Congress, called himself a 'wounded warrior' in an interview with a local television station earlier this week... 'I'm scared todeath in human terms. I mean, as I say, I'm a wounded warrior. I'm going to step out as best I can and try and advance ideas that I've long believed in. But it's not without fear and trepidation because you know you're going to get hit, and you're going to get hit hard.'" Hang in there! [Politico]

@MarkSanford: I meant no disrespect to our heroic men and women in uniform. I used the wrong analogy trying to make a broader point.

STEPHEN COLBERT'S SISTER RUNNING FOR CONGRESS - Unclear how Colbert will stomach having his sister running as a Democrat. WaPo: "Stephen Colbert may have 'run for president,' but his sister is actually going to run for Congress. Elizabeth Colbert-Busch's soon-to-be-official campaign has informed South Carolina Democratic Party executive director Amanda Loveday that it will file Tuesday for the special election for appointed Sen. Tim Scott's (R-S.C.) House seat, Loveday has told the Washington Post... Colbert-Busch will very likely be an underdog against basically any Republican she would face for the seat. Scott's district went just 40 percent for President Obama this year." [WaPo]

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Some babies are put to sleep with a lullaby, some with a car ride (guilty), others nearly pass out when someone tunes a guitar.

CELEBRITY CAPITAL- HuffPost DC: "The nation's capital is about to welcome hundreds of thousands of people for President Obama's second inauguration. A few hundred of those people may have appeared on TMZ or been splashed across a magazine cover at some point in their lives. Here's a detailed guide of who will be appearing and/or performing when and where." [HuffPost]

COMFORT FOOD

- Cat is introduced to snow for the first time. No one tell it that it's actually water. [http://bit.ly/13LQzpG]

- True facts about the seahorse. They hug their mates every morning, which is sweet. They're also totally disgusting. [http://bit.ly/VaEBAY]

- The 25 biggest man made explosions of the last 100 years. Way to go, people. [http://bit.ly/S8ffVS]

- As this hapless gent demonstrates, you probably shouldn't name your white clothes only laundromat "Whites Only." [http://chzb.gr/XHHxpF]

- The first newspaper advertisement for Winnie the Pooh. [http://bit.ly/XjPGhY]

- The Los Angeles Review of Books takes on Bud Light Lime. High culture, u crazy. [http://bit.ly/W3f26M]

- Children dressing up and posing as celebrities from the Golden Globe Awards. [http://bit.ly/VrFLZZ]

TWITTERAMA

@JElvisWeinstein: Yoko Ono took a tour of gas drilling sites in PA to protest fracking. Suddenly she's against breaking up rock groups.

@GlennThrush: Doesn't 'Organizing for Action' sound like someone with OCD trying to pick up chicks?

@lucia_graves: That's what Lennay Kekua said. MT @amaeryllis: Communication is the very core of a relationship, not sex.

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