President Obama says people won’t vote for him because he plays golf with John Boehner, though the Association For Men In Lobster Chinos Who Don’t Want To Spend Time With Their Families would beg to differ. A naked man tried to jump the White House fence but was stopped —presumably by the White House bear. And a man purporting to have heard Tupac Shakur’s last words went public. We didn’t click the link because we know they surely had something to do with finding Benghazi answers. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Friday, May 23rd, 2014:
O RLY? - @ChadPergram: Washington Redskins reply to Reid about request to change name. Say name honors Native Americans. Say logo was designed by Native American.
MCCONNELL TRYING TO DISTINGUISH KENTUCKY HEALTH EXCHANGE FROM OBAMACARE - Mitch McConnell thinks the Kentucky health exchange has about as much to do with Obamacare as coal power plants do with climate change. Sabrina Siddiqui: "Repealing Obamacare has been the focus of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's reelection campaign, though the Kentucky Republican has been coy about what exactly would happen to the thousands of people who have signed up for Kentucky's successful state health care exchange, KYnect. On Friday, McConnell offered a curious response, telling reporters the two issues are 'unconnected.' McConnell's comments were made during a press conference in Louisville, where he was joined by Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.). According to Joe Sonka, a news editor at Kentucky's LEO Weekly, reporters grilled the minority leader on what Obamacare repeal would mean for the 413,000 Kentuckians who have signed up for coverage under the state's exchange. McConnell twice tried to dodge the question, first by offering his standard talking points on how Obamacare was a premium-hiking job killer, and then by questioning the stance of his Democratic opponent, Kentucky State Secretary Alison Lundergan Grimes...Despite McConnell's assertion, the two issues are in fact directly connected, in that KYnect only exists because of the Affordable Care Act. Kentucky was one of 13 states that set up its own exchange with support from the federal government. But McConnell's agenda as minority leader has focused in large part on rallying his party around Obamacare repeal, to the point where dismantling the health care law has emerged as the central promise of his reelection campaign." [HuffPost]
A naked guy jumped the White House fence today, got tackled.
CONYERS BACK ON BALLOT - He lives! NPR: "A federal judge in Detroit has ruled that Democratic Rep. John Conyers, the second-most-senior member of the U.S. House, will appear on the August primary ballot, overturning a decision by Michigan's secretary of state who said the candidacy was invalid. Judge Matthew Leitman issued an injunction ordering Conyers' name to be placed on the ballot, The Associated Press says. Earlier Friday, Michigan's Secretary of State's office affirmed a decision by Detroit-area election officials that petition signatures gathered by at least five circulators were invalid "because they were either not registered to vote, not registered to vote while the petitions were being circulated or had addresses on the petitions that didn't match their voter registrations," The Detroit Free Press says. 'As a result, the SOS ruled Conyers had only 455 valid signatures, far short of the 1,000 required by state law,' the newspaper says. Secretary of State Ruth Johnson said the lack of valid signatures 'renders [Conyers] ineligible.'" [NPR]
It's official: "President Barack Obama nominated San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro to be his next secretary of Housing and Urban Development on Friday, a move that comes as part of a wider cabinet shake up and has stepped up interest in the rising Democratic star. The 39-year old, three-term mayor first gained national recognition when he delivered the keynote address at the 2012 Democratic National Convention - the first Hispanic to do so...If confirmed by the Senate, Castro will replace Shaun Donovan, who the President will nominate as director of the Office of Management and Budget. Donovan is an original member of Obama's cabinet, starting with the president in 2009." [CNN]
What your last name says about your political affiliation.
DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - PASTED: The Email of the Jobless: "[I] was fired from my job at age 62 and I am caught in a position of not able to get a job because of my age. Since my federal unemployment has stopped I have lost a car, had to move, had to down size and sell things just pay bills. I'm becoming a poor man slowly once again." [Hang in there!]
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KERRY TO TESTIFY TO OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE, NOT BENGHAZI PANEL - So Democrats' dream of having Alan Grayson lead a shouting match to end all shouting matches has devolved into... Elijah Cummings and John Kerry. Fun. Igor Bobic: "Secretary of State John Kerry has agreed to testify before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on the Sept. 11, 2012, Benghazi attacks in Libya, a State Department official confirmed to The Huffington Post on Friday. The decision to appear follows the creation of a separate special select committee tasked with investigating the attacks. Democrats believe the new committee is a political ploy ahead of a possible presidential run by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (D). Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), who chairs the Oversight Committee, issued two subpoenas for Kerry's appearance, the second of which called for a hearing on May 29. In a letter addressed to Issa on Friday, the State Department said Kerry is available to appear on June 12 or June 20. A spokesman said later Friday that Issa accepted the secretary’s offer to testify before the committee on June 12." [HuffPost]
ETHICS COMMITTEE INVESTIGATING MICHAEL GRIMM, KIND OF - Justice is blind... and also has a bunch of errands to run so it will totally get back to you. Roll Call: "The House Ethics Committee announced it established a special subcommittee to investigate Rep. Michael G. Grimm, already under federal indictment for allegations of misconduct, but the subcommittee members unanimously voted to wait as the Feds pursue the case against the New York Republican. Ethics Chairman Rep. K. Michael Conaway, R-Texas, was named chairman of the subcommittee and ranking Democratic Rep. Linda T. Sánchez of California will hold the same role. Also serving on the panel are Ethics members Rep. Charlie Dent, R-Pa., and Ted Deutch, D-Fla. The committee issued a brief statement Friday suggesting they will hold off in deference to the Justice Department: 'The Department of Justice has asked the Committee to defer consideration of the matters in the Investigative Subcommittee’s jurisdiction. The Committee, following precedent, unanimously voted to recommend to the Investigative Subcommittee that it defer action on its investigation at this time. No other public comment will be made on this matter except in accordance with Committee rules.' Grimm was recently slapped with a 20-count federal indictment related to the health food store he owned and operated prior to his election to Congress in 2010. He has been accused, among other things, of filing false tax returns, committing mail and wire fraud, withholding over $1 million from the government and and knowingly hiring undocumented immigrants." [Roll Call]
PRESIDENT TIRED OF PLAYING GOLF WITH BOEHNER - It would be awesome if he straight up challenged his audience, "Look, all things being equal, and we both met at a professional conference, do you really think we'd be friends?" Igor Bobic: "President Barack Obama on Thursday dismissed the notion, circulated by many lawmakers and pundits in the media, that spending more time on the green with House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) will somehow persuade a recalcitrant Congress opposed to his agenda to approve more legislation. During particularly high-stakes parlor games over the debt limit in 2011, critics often cited Obama's unwillingness to schmooze on the Hill as one reason the government was unable to come together and work out a compromise. 'That’s not the problem,' Obama told supporters at a fundraiser in Chicago. 'On every issue we are more than happy to sit down in reasonable fashion and compromise. The problem is not that we’re too mean or we’re too partisan. The problem is that I don’t have enough votes. Full stop.' He explained that legislative majorities -- which President Lyndon B. Johnson, to whom critics often compare Obama, also enjoyed -- were key to pushing through legislation. 'The first two years, when we had a Democratic House and a Democratic Senate, we had the most productive legislature since the 1960s, since Lyndon Johnson -- more significant, meaningful domestic legislation than any time since Medicare was passed,' he said." [HuffPost]
A-LIST DONORS TAKING ADVANTAGE OF NEW CAMPAIGN CONTRIBUTION LIMITS - Paul Blumenthal: "Some wealthy donors have already blown past limits on campaign contributions to political parties that were voided by the Supreme Court's McCutcheon decision last month. The court's 5-4 ruling came on April 2, and by the end of that month, at least 41 donors had plowed past the old aggregate limits restricting how much one donor could give to political parties and political action committees. Prior to the court's ruling, donors could only give $74,600 to parties and PACs in one election cycle. Now, they're giving into the six-figures. Among those taking advantage of the new rules were billionaire conservative funder David Koch, reality television star Donald Trump, two-time Republican Senate candidate and wrestling executive Linda McMahon, hedge fund executive and neoconservative Paul Singer, former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson and casino billionaire Steve Wynn. The donations were disclosed in reports filed with the Federal Election Commission on Tuesday. The Republican Party is the biggest beneficiary of the court ruling. The Republican National Committee, the party's central organ, joined the McCutcheon case against the FEC to challenge the aggregate limits to party committees. The majority of donors primed to go past the old limits after the ruling were Republicans. Just six of the donors passing the defunct limits gave primarily to Democrats. One -- John J. Megrue, Jr. -- mixed his contributions between the parties." [HuffPost]
Well, this is upsetting: "You probably have no idea who Jim Rubens is. Nor should you, really. Even the most politically savvy observer would struggle to name every obscure candidate running in a primary for a U.S. Senate seat. And that, certainly, is what Rubens is as he embarks on his long-shot campaign -- obscure. But Rubens, who is running against former Sen. Scott Brown in the GOP primary in New Hampshire, does hold a remarkable distinction that could –- perhaps, should -- make him a more familiar name. Of the 107 Republicans currently running for Senate as of this week, he is the only one whose website declares that global warming exists and is caused by human activity." [HuffPost's Sam Stein and Kate Sheppard]
WYOMING PLANNING RETURN OF FIRING SQUADS - Or they could go the "Brokeback Mountain" route and push the condemned into secretive and tortured decades-long same-sex affairs with ranchers that slowly kill them on the inside. Or not. WaPo: "A Wyoming state legislative committee has asked staff to draft a bill that would allow condemned convicts to be executed by firing squad. The bill comes as states that use the death penalty find it increasingly difficult to obtain the chemicals necessary for lethal injections. Wyoming Department of Corrections Director Bob Lampert testified before the Joint Interim Judiciary Committee this week that the state should consider alternate methods of execution, including a firing squad. Wyoming has no lethal injection drugs on hand, Lampert said, according to the Associated Press. Current law requires Wyoming to use lethal injection as a primary method of execution, but allows use of the gas chamber as a backup. But the state doesn’t have a gas chamber to use. The committee will consider bringing back the firing squad at its next scheduled meeting in July. Wyoming has only one person on death row, a 69-year-old sentenced to death in 2004 for the murder of a teenager. The national shortage of drugs used in lethal injections stems from the European drug manufacturers who produce ingredients for the three-drug cocktail most states use. The European Union, which opposes the death penalty, had threatened to limit exports of one drug if it was to be used in executions." [WaPo]
BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Here's a five-year-old with a lot of ladies.
- Man drinking water out of a flower vase in the background of a local news report is the Laurence Olivier of videobombing. [http://bit.ly/1tutfJ3]
- Cat zones out while listening to guitar. [http://huff.to/1njZ2wS]
- Lady Pockets is a blog that imagines fashion spreads on successful women in fields that aren't modeling or acting. [http://bit.ly/1kbrKgl]
- The AIA Chicago highlights America's most beautiful small buildings. [http://bitly.com/1k5TT8u]
- Cat does an incredible Busta Rhymes impression. [http://bit.ly/1t3o9kU]
- CollegeHumor urges 20-year-olds to stop calling themselves "old." [http://bit.ly/1k2pNxQ]
- What Morgan Freeman sounds like with a whole bunch of helium in his lungs. [http://bit.ly/1tumdE0]
- Bad Lip Reading sets its sights on "American Idol." [http://huff.to/TD1jq2]
@neetan: #Benakedguyzi RT @DimeStoreNinja: Another distraction from #Benghazi? RT @jbendery RT @SuzGamboa: Naked guy at WH. pic.twitter.com/zjbtwShLAl
@anamariecox: Has anyone in this movement ever even seen…
@timothypmurphy: kookookachaw! RT @ArletteSaenz: Steyer calling the Koch brothers "Chickens"
@daveweigel: Piketty lied, freedom died
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