President Obama said America is not a nation of "deadbeats," obviously forgetting that our country produced blue jean sweatpants. Ann Romney turned down an offer from "Dancing with the Stars," but the show's bookers shouldn't forget that Romney owns a horse... THAT DANCES. And House Republicans want the president to know that if there's a legitimate government funding showdown, their conference has ways to shut that whole thing down. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Monday, January 14th, 2013:
:-( :-( :-( :-( :-( PRESIDENT HAS NO FRIENDS :-( :-( :-( :-( :-( - During the final press conference of his first term, President Obama was asked whether he has cultivated any bipartisan friendships on the Hill,
prompting him to break down in tears and tag everyone in the room a heartfelt Facebook note. "I'm a pretty friendly guy. I like a good party," he replied, adding that, "now that my girls are getting older, they don't want to spend that much time with me anyway, so I'll be probably calling around, looking for somebody to play cards with...I'm over here at the congressional picnic, and folks are coming up and taking pictures with their family. I promise you, Michelle and I are very nice to them, and we have a wonderful time." The president sent a mass "whats ur plan" text to everyone in his Blackberry's address book. [The Hill]
Politico checks Washington's chummyometer: "[A] Democratic source sent over a list of recent no-shows at prominent White House events by House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kent.). It was not insubstantial. Boehner has been by the White House for most holiday parties -- and he played that legendary round of golf with POTUS a couple of years back -- but he declined Obama's invitation to screen 'Lincoln.' So did McConnell, along with Sens. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Olympia Snowe (R-Maine). House Republicans have routinely turned down White House invites (as Democrats did under Obama's predecessor), with the high point of bipartisan schmoozing being a sparsely attended 2011 BBQ Obama threw for newly-elected Republicans after the 2010 midterms...Boehner, for his part, also declined Obama's invites for no fewer than six state dinners, after attending at least one thrown by former President George W. Bush, according to news reports. Boehner's excuse for most of them: He was back in his Cincinnati-area district." [Politico]
HUFFPOST HILL PROPOSES 'MIXED NUTS SUMMIT' - If President Obama wants to be friends with John Boehner, he's got to meet the speaker halfway. And that means the White House's Game Room must be transformed into "John's Place" -- somewhere the second-most powerful man in Washington can feel at home. A place where men wear fuzzy sweaters and sit in leather chairs. Art nouveau stained glass. Framed illustrations of ducks. Some lawn jockeys. A standing globe. Kleenex. And Barry, you gotta have some wine and a smoke with the guy, for crying out loud. This one's for you, John.
PRESIDENTIAL 'FRIEND' TO KEEP JOB - AP: "An Education Department official says Secretary Arne Duncan will remain in President Barack Obama's Cabinet into a second term. The official disclosed the decision Monday on the condition of anonymity because a public announcement has not been made. Duncan, a former head of Chicago public schools, was widely expected to stick around. He is a former college basketball player who often joins Obama on the court." [AP]
@cqprofiles: Missed a "birthday" from yesterday: "Schoolhouse Rock" featuring "I'm Just a Bill" debuted on Jan. 13, 1973. Happy 40th!
CLING ALERT: GUN CONTROL DEAL REACHED IN NEW YORK - Times: " Legislative leaders, nearing a deal with Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on a broad package of changes to gun laws that would expand the state's ban on assault weapons, said they expected to vote Monday night on legislation prompted by the mass shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn. Approval of the package would make New York the first state to act in response to the shooting, and would come as President Obama on Monday affirmed his desire for a federal assault weapons ban. Monday was the first full day of this year's legislative session in Albany, and the State Assembly opened its session with a moment of silence for those killed in Newtown." [NYT]
DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - With Dave Jamieson, from HuffPost's
series on Obama's second term: "On election night in Chicago two months ago, President Barack Obama triumphantly pledged to fight for a middle class he'd appealed to relentlessly -- and successfully -- on the 2012 campaign trail. 'I believe we can build on the progress we've made and continue to fight for new jobs and new opportunity and new security for the middle class,' Obama said. 'I believe we can keep the promise of our founders, the idea that if you're willing to work hard ... you can make it here in America.' The central challenge of Obama's second term is whether he can keep that founder's 'promise' to working Americans. It won't be easy, and in an era of divided government and amid cries for austerity and budget cuts, it does not seem likely that the president will offer sweeping new proposals to do so. The administration has said that its top two priorities at the outset of its second term are immigration reform and gun control. Despite an ongoing jobs crisis, creating quality jobs seems to have fallen a few slots on the president's to-do list." [HuffPost]
DOUBLE DOWNER - Reporters asked no questions about jobs during Obama's press conference today.
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OBAMA ON DEBT FIGHT: WE ARE NOT A 'DEADBEAT' NATION Sadly, he didn't don a black beret, recite a poem as Jay Carney provided bongo accompaniment and announce that we are a "beat nation." Sabrina Siddiqui: "The president also responded directly to Republicans who continue to argue that increasing the nation's borrowing limit only contributes to Washington's spending problem. He repeatedly emphasized that raising the debt ceiling does not authorize any new spending but simply allows the government to continue to pay for obligations to which Congress has already agreed... On Monday, Obama maintained that increasing the debt limit would not represent a concession by Republicans to Democrats, and said he simply would not give in to any demands in exchange for an extension." [HuffPost]
He also commented on the forthcoming gun control debate. Sam Stein: "While keeping most of the details of his proposal private, Obama did tease out a few, highlighting his desire for stronger background checks for gun purchases, limits on the availability of high-capacity magazines and some restrictions on assault weapons. The president declined to predict whether any or all of those policies would make it through Congress, particularly the Republican-controlled House of Representatives. But he urged members to weigh the moral elements of the issue alongside the politics. 'My starting point is to focus on what makes sense, what works, what should we be doing to make sure that our children are safe and that we're reducing the incidence of gun violence,' said Obama. 'And I think we can do that in a sensible way that comports with the Second Amendment and then members of Congress, I think, are going to have to have a debate and examine their own conscience.'" [HuffPost]
Because Slate is Slate, it created a Supreme Court death probability calculator.
NAPOLITANO TO STAY AT HOMELAND SECURITY - Along with avocado picker and meatpacking processor, running the Department of Homeland Security is a job that no American citizen actually wants. In this case, however, it can't be filled by an undocumented immigrant. Awk-ward. WaPo: "Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano will remain in the same post as President Obama begins a second term, a White House official said Monday. Napolitano, who has been dealing with the recent death of her father, had planned to stay and the administration confirmed that she would on Monday. While not unexpected, her remaining in place means that most of Obama's first-term Cabinet will begin the second term unchanged. A former governor of Arizona, Napolitano may play an important role in Obama's push for immigration legislation, a high early priority for the administration." [WaPo]
NeoNARAL: "NARAL Pro-Choice America announced on Monday that Ilyse Hogue has been chosen to replace Nancy Keenan as president of the organization. Hogue is the co-founder of Friends of Democracy Super PAC, a group dedicated to campaign finance reform, and formerly served as communications and political advocacy director for MoveOn.org. She is also a former senior advisor to Media Matters for America, the non-profit progressive media watchdog." [HuffPost's Laura Bassett]
Shane Harris, HuffPost Hill profiler, has a new blog on national security.
HOUSE REPUBLICANS HAPPY TO SHUT DOWN GOVERNMENT - Bad news if you're planning to alleviate the crushing despair of your continued unemployment with a trip to a Smithsonian museum. Luke Johnson: "Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) floated the possibility Monday that the House Republicans would risk a potentially catastrophic government shutdown to force spending cuts. 'We are going to look at all of these options. You know, there is the option of government shutdown. There is an option of raising the debt ceiling in short-term increments,' she said on MSNBC's 'Jansing & Co.' When asked if she supported the latter, she said, 'I don't know. I just know that that's one of the things that is being floated, as you've seen in some of the articles, is raising it in short-term in increments.'...Politico reported that 'more than half' of House Republicans are open to the possibility of shutting down the government to force spending cuts. Republicans could either refuse to raise the debt limit or extend the current continuing resolution, which expires on March 27." [HuffPost]
What happened to you, man, you used to choom hard, man: "The wife of a California medical marijuana provider who is facing 10 years in prison after being indicted by federal authorities last year is appealing to President Barack Obama to end her family's 'nightmare.' Matthew R. Davies, 34, is the former owner of a Sacramento medical marijuana dispensary known as Medizen. He was indicted last July for manufacturing marijuana, along with co-owner Lynn F. Smith and warehouse grow operation manager Robert Duncan, by federal prosecutors in the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of California." [HuffPost's Ryan Reilly]
JENNY SANFORD WON'T RUN FOR CONGRESS, DOESN'T WANT TO WORK WITH MANCHILD JOHN BOEHNER - AP: "Had she run, it likely would have set up a primary race between Sanford and her ex-husband and former Republican Gov. Mark Sanford. Mark Sanford has been looking at office space and is expected to announce soon that he will again seek the 1st District seat along South Carolina's south coast... 'The idea of killing myself to run for a seat for the privilege of serving in a dysfunctional body under John Boehner when I have an eighth-grader at home just really doesn't make sense to me,' she said. As for her husband, she said 'he did a good job as congressman and he has as much right as anybody else to run for Congress, and we'll see what happens.' But Jenny Sanford said it's too early to say who she might support. Filing for the special election for the seat doesn't open until Friday." [AP]
JUSTICE IS MUTE - Mike Sacks: "On Monday morning, Justice Clarence Thomas broke nearly seven years of silence at Supreme Court oral arguments... Justice Thomas was speaking to a lawyer representing the state of Louisiana. The state was arguing that its five-year failure to fund a lawyer for an indigent defendant facing the death penalty did not undermine the defendant's constitutional right to a speedy trial. Before Thomas spoke in Boyer v. Louisiana, Justice Antonin Scalia was asking the state's attorney about the competency and experience of the lawyers for the capital defendant, Jonathan Edward Boyer. After learning that the lawyers went to Harvard and Yale law schools, Scalia said, 'Son of a gun.' Then Thomas spoke. According to the transcript, he said, 'Well -- he did not --,' followed by laughter. Louisiana's lawyer then responded, 'I would refute that, Justice Thomas.'" [HuffPost]
Josh Romney could always sign on and just stare creepily at his partner "After a disappointing 'all star' season of 'Dancing With the Stars,' looks like ABC is trying to get the big names for the upcoming cycle, including trying lure political-themed contestantsback on the show. However, one such name has already said no -- Ann Romney has reportedly recently turned down an offer to appear on the dance competition reality show's 16th season." [WaPo]
BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Cat wants to help out with the chores.
DC SLIGHTED BY NEW YORK-BASED PUBLICATION, UPSET - HuffPost DC: "How would you describe the U Street corridor? If you're a writer or editor at The New York Times, you might think U Street is "scruffy." That's the word reporter Adam Liptak used to describe the area where Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor lives in a new feature story. 'Scruffy' was a curious description and one that was questioned and mocked on Twitter." [HuffPost]
- Fireworks exploding inside buckets of paint. Feel free to fast forward through the commentary from the cheeky British guys. [http://bit.ly/WW5dDC]
- What would hyperspace travel look like? Spoiler: There's no Chewbacca. [http://bit.ly/X7DAIy]
- Baby loves beer. [http://huff.to/10udgjx]
- Remember "STOMP?" This is like "STOMP" but with a giant piece of paper and a pair of scissors. [http://chzb.gr/VYGuiY]
- The Golden Globe Awards edited down to just the Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. [http://bit.ly/11u0gcN]
- To the gentleman playing the trombone while skiing, we salute you. [http://bit.ly/V4clUB]
- A Canadian built a train in the basement of his house. That country needs to invade somewhere. [http://bit.ly/W04GCy]
@delrayser: US Constitution to be read aloud on the House floor tomorrow. Pay attention or you'll miss the Debt Ceiling Hostage-Taking Clause.
@daveweigel: Next month, will split into 5 restaurants MT @wcp: D.C.'s first modern Balkan restaurant opens today is.gd/qy4Ukn
@reformedbroker: In 90-minute interview with Oprah today, Lance Armstrong widely expected to admit to manipulating LIBOR
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