POLITICS
07/30/2014 05:27 pm ET Updated Jul 30, 2014

HUFFPOST HILL - More Like Lois BURNer

The GOP has launched a “War for Women,” which until now was simply the working title of Steve King’s unfinished bodice ripper. Tom Cotton won’t impeach President Obama because it’d “make Joe Biden president,” to which the vice president responded by sticking an “impeach this!” sign on Cotton’s back, slicking his hair and yelling “c’mon, gang we don’t need him!” while walking away. And Eric Cantor has been suffering a nasty case of senioritis since his primary defeat, missing most of his votes in Congress, skipping speeches, smoking in the yearbook office and going to the A&W during history class. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Wednesday, July 30th, 2014:

OBAMA FIXIN' TO DO SOME ORDERIN' - Sam Stein scoop: "President Barack Obama is expected to issue an executive order on Thursday seeking enhanced workplace conditions and rights for federal contract workers, three separate sources have told The Huffington Post. One of those sources told The Huffington Post that 'progressive workers' rights groups are getting asked for workers who would be impacted by the executive order to be there [at the White House] tomorrow.' The exact details of the order remain unknown. The White House has not responded to repeated and numerous requests for comment. But sources outside the administration expect it to require contractors to disclose labor law violations. The order is also expected to encourage executive agencies to consider labor law violations when ordering federal contracts." [HuffPost]

LOIS LERNER CALLED REPUBLICANS A CUSS WORD - This AP story is enjoyably written: "A former IRS official at the heart of the agency's tea party controversy called Republicans 'crazies' and more in newly released emails. Lois Lerner used to head the IRS division that handles applications for tax-exempt status. In a series of emails with a colleague in November 2012, Lerner made two disparaging remarks about members of the GOP, including one remark that was profane [!!!!!!]. Republican Rep. Dave Camp, who chairs the House Ways and Means Committee, released the emails Wednesday as part of his committee's investigation. Camp says the emails show Lerner's disgust with conservatives. In one email, Lerner called them crazies. In the other, she called them 'assholes.' The committee redacted the wording to '_holes' in the material it released publicly, but a committee spokeswoman confirmed to the AP that the email said 'assholes.'" Awwwwww! But seriously Lois that is unprofessional. [AP]

@costareports: Asked Rep. Tom Cotton about impeachment. He called the idea ill-advised since it'd "make Joe Biden president."

The House passed the compromise VA reform bill. The Senate will likely vote on the measure before recess.

ALSO: The House is supposed to vote tonight on its lawsuit against Obama.

DEMOCRATS CONTINUING TO WHIP AGAINST GOP BORDER BILL - Sam Stein and Elise Foley: "House Democrats are aggressively urging members to oppose a GOP-authored bill to address the border crisis. And with Republican senators voicing opposition of their own -- both to the House bill and to a Senate Democratic alternative -- it appears increasingly unlikely that Congress will send a border bill to the president's desk before leaving for the August recess. The Senate held its first vote Wednesday on a bill to provide $2.7 billion to deal with the crisis of more than 57,500 unaccompanied minors who have crossed the border illegally since October. The measure passed by a vote of 63 to 33. But aides in the chamber cautioned that they aren't confident it will be able to clear a second filibuster that could prevent passage. The House, meanwhile, plans to vote Thursday on a package that provides only $659 million in funding, tied to a number of provisions that most Democrats oppose. House Democratic aides said leadership is whipping members 'hard' to oppose the bill. One aide, speaking on background to discuss strategy, said legislative staff was in 'late last night on this' urging members to cast 'no' votes. 'We’re still in the process of talking to members, but it won’t be many [who vote for the bill],' a Democratic leadership aide said. House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said Wednesday morning that he expects most Democrats to oppose the bill. 'There may be some; we don't think it'll be a large number,' he said, according to The Hill. Democrats have been particularly critical of some of the bill's measures, such as sending National Guard troops to the border and changing a 2008 law so the minors can be deported more quickly, with less time to make a case for why they should be allowed relief." [HuffPost]

@ChadPergram: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) to huddle with some House R's this evening in effort to get mbrs to vote against Hse GOP border pkg.

Eric Cantor is rage quitting Congress: "Cantor has not appeared at a GOP leadership news conference since June 11, the day after he was defeated for renomination, when he described the timing of his departure from the House high command. June 20 was the last time he represented the Republicans in the week-ending floor colloquy, when the party leaders trade scheduling information for the coming week — along with some of the most theatrical partisan jousting over policy that the public ever gets to see. All this month, McCarthy has stepped up early to fill one of the majority leader’s more important messaging roles. Since losing to college professor Dave Brat in the year’s biggest electoral surprise, Cantor has participated in floor debate only twice, offering brief remarks before passage of uncontroversial bills to revamp worker training programs and extend adoption incentives." [Roll Call]

DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - Last week, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said the government could better fight poverty if poor people worked with case managers on a "life plan." Liberal and conservative critics have derided Ryan's idea as government life-coaching -- something that would be both paternalistic and expensive. On Wednesday, Ryan told reporters at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast that case management is just an idea he likes, not something he'd insist on, such as work requirements or time limits for welfare recipients. "What we’re saying is we’re not mandating case management. We’re saying this is one of the things we recommend, but give the states the ability to try other ideas," Ryan said in response to a question from the Daily Delaney Downer. [HuffPost]

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SENATORS UNVEIL BIPARTISAN BILL TARGETING COLLEGE SEXUAL ASSAULT - Just ready yourself for the disappointment when this is held up by someone demanding more Benghazi documents. Tyler Kingkade and Marina Fang: "Legislation unveiled Wednesday by a bipartisan coalition of Senators would create tougher penalties for colleges that mishandle sexual assault cases, potentially levying millions of dollars in fines for schools that run afoul of its regulations. The bill was unveiled at a press conference by co-sponsors Sens. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), Dean Heller (R-Nev.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Mark Warner (D-Va.), along with advocates for sexual assault victims. Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) plans to propose sister legislation in the House. Broken into five main parts, the Senate legislation would require nationwide surveys of students, increase financial penalties for violating existing regulations while introducing new ones, create new roles for victims' advocates on campus and call for more disclosure by the Education Department about investigations it conducts under the gender equity law Title IX...Colleges that don't meet certain requirements of the bill could be fined up to 1 percent of the institution’s operating budget per violation. For a school like Harvard University, which has two colleges currently under investigation and operates on an institution-wide annual budget of $4.2 billion, that could mean millions in penalties. The fines could still add up for smaller schools -- for example, Hobart & William Smith Colleges, an institution under investigation that has an annual budget of $2.5 million, could still potentially face up to $250,000 in fines." [HuffPost]

The GOP has declared a "War for Women," which is almost as original as as that hipster it manufactured: "A group of GOP Congress members led by Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) on Wednesday unveiled a package of bills aimed at improving women's economic situations and attracting women voters. The proposals include tax credits for childcare, a bill that prevents retaliation against employees who ask about equal pay and a bill that allows employees to trade overtime pay for paid family leave and sick leave. Some of the bills are ones that have already passed the House, while others are new proposals....Republicans for years have faced accusations that they are waging a 'war on women.' But Rep. Mike Coffman (R-Colo.) said Wednesday he is proud to stand with his Republican colleagues in a 'war for women.'" [HuffPost's Laura Bassett]

ROGER WILLIAMS MAKING LONGSHOT BID FOR NRCC CHAIRMAN - Roll Call "Freshman Rep. Roger Williams of Texas is gunning to challenge current National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Greg Walden’s bid for a second term and is actively seeking meetings with members for his bid, CQ Roll Call has learned. Williams has made his intent clear to Speaker John A. Boehner, who told House GOP leadership in a private Monday meeting that he will be backing Walden as chairman, multiple sources confirmed. On Tuesday afternoon, Walden announced to reporters he plans to run for chairman of the committee again after the November elections. 'The speaker made it very clear in recent meetings that he’s going to be supporting Walden,' a Republican aide told CQ Roll Call. Without Boehner’s support, Williams’ chances of upsetting Walden are slim. House Republicans elect their NRCC chairman. The House’s Democratic leader picks the chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee." [Roll Call]

ADMINISTRATION JOINS SUIT AGAINST GOP-BACKED VOTING RESTRICTIONS - Just another indication that Obama is in the pocket of big oil business *Poor Old Black People Without Drivers Licenses*. Ryan Reilly: "The Obama administration on Wednesday sought to join two ongoing lawsuits against voting laws in Wisconsin and Ohio. In the filings, the Justice Department argued that a federal judge was right to strike down Wisconsin's voter ID law and that Ohio is incorrectly interpreting its duties under a provision of the Voting Rights Act. Attorney General Eric Holder, who talked about the filings in an interview with ABC earlier this month, said in a statement on Wednesday that they 'are necessary to confront the pernicious measures in Wisconsin and Ohio that would impose significant barriers to the most basic right of our democracy. These two states' voting laws represent the latest, misguided attempts to fix a system that isn't broken,' Holder continued. 'These restrictive state laws threaten access to the ballot box. The Justice Department will never shrink from our responsibility to protect the voting rights of every eligible American. And we will keep using every available tool at our disposal to guard against all forms of discrimination, to prevent voter disenfranchisement, and to secure the rights of every citizen.'" [HuffPost]

TIME FOR SOME NETWORK BUILDING IN NEW HAMPSHIRE - Jon Ward: "Last week, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie dismissed Rob Astorino, the GOP's gubernatorial candidate in New York, with brutal candor. 'We don't invest in lost causes,' Christie said, speaking on behalf of the Republican Governors Association, which he is chairing this year. Astorino is trailing incumbent New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo by an average of more than 30 points, and is down by as much as 40 points in some polls. Christie is scheduled travel to New Hampshire on Thursday to campaign beside Walt Havenstein, a Granite State Republican running an uphill campaign against the incumbent Democratic Gov. Maggie Hassan. It will be Christie's second trip to New Hampshire in two months on behalf of Havenstein, even though he trails Hassan by roughly 20 points in the polls. For Christie, a trip to New Hampshire to campaign for Havenstein puts him in front of a key group of voters. Coming after the Iowa caucuses, the New Hampshire primary is a critical step in winning a presidential nomination, and for Christie the state is the cornerstone of a possible run at the nomination. It is geographically closer to his home state than Iowa, and more closely aligned with him in its political temperament." [HuffPost]

Ohio may have turned blue the last two presidential elections, but its voters are still down with John Kasich: "Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) has the edge in his re-election battle against his Democratic rival, Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald, two new polls find. Kasich leads FitzGerald by 12 points, 48 percent to 36 percent, among registered voters in a Quinnipiac poll released Wednesday, and by a relatively narrow 6-point margin, 51 percent to 45 percent, in an online CBS/New York Times/YouGov survey of likely voters released Sunday. The first-term governor was on shakier ground two years ago, following his decision to sign a controversial anti-collective bargaining bill that was later repealed. A Quinnipiac poll in late 2012 found that just 36 percent of voters thought he deserved re-election." [HuffPost's Ariel Edwards-Levy]

STEVE KING IS FOR AGAINST FOR IMPEACHMENT - Don't King's supporters consider flip flops to be false flags planted by the Bilderberg group? Sara Bondioli: "Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) couldn't seem to decide his position on whether President Barack Obama should be impeached in an appearance Wednesday morning on CNN. 'I am not pushing impeachment,' King said, when 'New Day' host Chris Cuomo noted that the lawmaker has been threatening to do so if the president signs an executive order to grant amnesty to the tens of thousands of undocumented minors who have been attempting to the cross the U.S.-Mexico border. King clarified by saying he's 'trying to deter the president from violating the Constitution.' 'You have suggested impeachment,' Cuomo said. King replied: 'I have said that if the president continues to violate the Constitution, if he should -- with the stroke of his pen, as he's threatening to do, floating his trial balloons this last week -- should decide that he's going to grant amnesty in a lawless way, we've all taken an oath to uphold the Constitution. And I wouldn't want some member of Congress that would say whatever the president does, no matter how bad it is, we're not going to use the constitutional obligation.'" [HuffPost]

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Here are cats intimidating dogs.

California has first gay governor, sort of: "California has never elected a woman or LGBT individual as governor. But on Wednesday, one state politician will make history -- albeit for only a few hours. Due to Gov. Jerry Brown's (D) travel schedule this week, openly lesbian state Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins (D), along with Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) and Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg (D) will alternate as acting governor this week. Atkins will assume the role of acting governor for about eight or nine hours on Wednesday after the other acting governors have departed the Golden State on scheduled trips and before Brown returns later in the evening." [HuffPost's Alex Lazar]

COMFORT FOOD

- Feel epic with these recordings of James Earl Jones reading "The Raven" and selections from "Song of Myself." [http://bit.ly/1nSbSlK]

- Cookie-flavored cookie-flavored cookie is like staring into the abyss. [http://huff.to/1qnVAyd]

- Nathan Fielder's "Dumb Starbucks" finally aired. It's fabulous. [http://huff.to/1u0Wljd]

- Dog has excellent life hack for slowing down. [http://bit.ly/1o4UqsL]

- A compilation of Kittens learning how to walk. [http://bit.ly/1xACaZA]

- Cat gives up all hope. [http://bit.ly/UBN7NY]

- Paranormal pugtivity. [http://chzb.gr/WNvaxD]

TWITTERAMA

@daveweigel: Office of @GroverNorquist says he’s gotten “8-10” press calls about Burning Man and is sad that no one is calling about the cap gains tax.

@jasoncherkis: Web series idea: Pundits in cars apologizing for their past stances on Israel.

@jbendery: ! Asked Rep. Mica if his Thurs hearing -- "Planes, Trains & Automobiles: Operating While Stoned" -- is a how-to lesson. "Come and find out."

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