We were hoping the start of Obama's no-shits-given lame duck presidency would've included fewer posthumous decorations for Civil War veterans and more sunglasses, Bud Light Limes and obscene hand gestures. Downton Abbey might be killing off a dog named "Isis," echoing your girlfriend's favorite "Gilmore Girls" episode where Rory went on a date with a guy named Mohamed Atta. And a jittery John Boehner rambled about matches and their propensity to burn things. When reached for comment, the speaker was too busy smoking a cigarette on the Speaker's Balcony, muttering about poisoned wells. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Thursday, November 6th, 2014:
ANTI-ABORTION ACTIVISTS GIRDING FOR RENEWED PUSH - TL;DR version: By 2016, women seeking abortions will have to watch "Frozen" with a group of children in a local church basement before having the procedure. Times: "Abortion rights supporters took solace in the defeat, in Colorado and North Dakota, of proposals to grant 'personhood' rights to human embryos and fetuses. The amendments were seen as legally unwise even by some mainstream anti-abortion groups, who feared they could lead to a crushing court defeat. Similar proposals have now been rejected by voters in Colorado three times, and by voters in the conservative bastions of Mississippi and North Dakota. But the wider Republican gains in the states are likely to add to the rush of abortion restrictions, from two-day waiting periods to bans at 20 weeks after conception to costly building requirements, that have been adopted in the last several years." [NYT]
@AP: BREAKING: Federal appeals court upholds laws against gay marriage in Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky, Tennessee.
CLINTON MIGHT HAVE CAMPAIGN HQ IN WESTCHESTER - Hell, why not just plop that thing in Stew Leonards. Everyone loves Stew Leonards. Politico: "If a second presidential campaign happens, it will not be run out of Washington, D.C. Her aides are all preparing for a campaign based in New York – and talks about where to set up shop have increasingly focused on Westchester County, according to several people familiar with the discussions. Westchester is Clinton’s home county – she lives in Chappaqua, an affluent hamlet north of New York City. Having the campaign there would not just keep it close to Clinton – but it would place it far away from New York City and the hordes of political reporters and elites who live there. It will be a far cry from Ballston, the Virginia suburb where Clinton’s campaign was based in 2008, in a onetime Immigration and Naturalization Services building. While a few of Clinton’s advisers at the time wanted her to put her campaign in upstate New York, most of her senior advisers wanted it based near Washington so they wouldn’t have to move." [Politico]
DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - Richard Kim has a great story about Ebola volunteer Ryan Boyko and the misery inflicted on him by a panicky government. After helping track Ebola contacts in Liberia, Boyko tested negative for the virus when he returned to Connecticut. "Even so, state officials insisted on placing him under a mandatory home quarantine. An armed police guard was stationed outside his apartment building, and his neighbors and landlord were told that he might have Ebola, leading to a rash of worrying e-mails. Daily routines like getting food, exercising or communicating with his colleagues have become onerous. Boyko was never told by officials exactly why he was being quarantined or when the quarantine would end." [The Nation]
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BOEHNER ISSUES OBAMA WARNING ON IMMIGRATION - It probably takes a person more time to write a speech about bipartisanship than the period of time it took for the post-election spirit of bipartisanship to wither and die. Sabrina Siddiqui and Mike McAuliff: "Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) was anything but conciliatory Thursday, chastising President Barack Obama for "playing with matches" and pledging to challenge the administration on multiple fronts...'Finding common ground is hard, but it's even harder if the president isn't willing to work with us,' Boehner said, before explaining that his members will move to repeal the Affordable Care Act, even if such a bill won't pass the Senate or be signed by the president. He warned that if Obama tries to take executive action on things like immigration reform -- as the president signaled he would Wednesday if Congress continues to stall -- it would 'poison the well' and prompt a harsh response from Republicans." [HuffPost]
LEFTIES NOT SUPER KEEN ON LANDRIEU - National Journal: "But unlike other races where competing outside groups have helped keep spending near parity, Landrieu will be going at this without the help of some of her party's biggest allies. Top-spending green groups, as well as several women's-health-focused groups known for their epic fundraising abilities, have said they won't be coming to Landrieu's aid this November, even if the Senate majority is at stake. That's partly because Landrieu has focused much of her campaign around the clout she brings to Louisiana's top industries through her position as chair of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. Though it's a position of great value to her in-state supporters—many of whom have contributed directly to her campaign—it's one that's put her at odds with some of the biggest outside spenders for Democrats." [National Journal]
GIVE US WEED - WaPo: "One conservative House Republican from neighboring Maryland immediately vowed to use all of his power to upend Initiative 71, which would allow D.C. residents and visitors to have up to 2 ounces of marijuana for personal use and would allow home cultivation of up to three plants...But advocates for the initiative took refuge in the Election Day comments of Sen. Rand Paul (R), who suggested outside a Kentucky polling precinct that he considers the matter one for D.C. voters, who ended up backing it by an overwhelming margin of more than 2 to 1: 'I haven’t really taken a stand on [Initiative 71], but I’m against the federal government telling them they can’t,' Paul told reporters. And on Wednesday, another potential pitfall emerged when Muriel E. Bowser suggested in her first press conference as D.C. mayor-elect that she would not want Initiative 71 to proceed to congressional review without accompanying legislation to establish a system for selling and taxing the plant like in Colorado and Washington state." [WaPo]
If we can't trust the peerage to fight ISIS what can we trust them with? "Islamic fundamentalism has not, so far, been an issue for the producers of Downton Abbey, and, according to Hugh Bonneville (aka Lord Robert Grantham in the hit costume drama) the rise of a certain militant group in Iraq and Syria is not behind the (potential) killing off the Downton Labrador - who just so happens to be called Isis. Suspicions that a convenient exit for the hound was being arranged spiked after this week's episode in the UK - does this need a spoiler alert? - introduced a canine cancer storyline." [Daily Beast]
Of course the dog has to get sick and Lord Grantham gets to keep screwing things up without ever having to suffer consequences.
ARMY FINALLY UPDATES 'NEGRO' REGULATION - Wonder if the Navy still has a section on shore leave featuring language about "dames with loose morals." Diane Jeanty: "The Army updated controversial regulations Thursday that had said it was acceptable to refer to African-American service members as 'Negro.' As CNN first reported, the Army's Oct. 22 'Army Command Policy' document contained a section on 'race and ethnic code definitions,' which read, 'A person having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa. Terms such as 'Haitian' or 'Negro' can be used in addition to 'Black' or 'African American.'' But when The Huffington Post checked the document Thursday, that section was gone, and the new document has an updated date of Nov. 6. The Army did not immediately have a comment when contacted Thursday afternoon." [HuffPost]
BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Here's a rescued baby otter.
BEE BUREAUCRATS: ACTIVATE! - Colony collapse disorder, just one more thing we have to thank Obamacare for. Discovery: "Worried about the bees? Got some ideas? The U.S. public soon will get a chance to weigh in on the Obama Administration's evolving strategy to protect bees and other pollinators. On Nov. 12 and 17, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Agriculture will hold public listening sessions to gather information on what can be done to stop the decline of the nation's pollinators and restore their populations to health, according to the EPA's website...Meanwhile, on Sep. 30, 60 members of the House of Representatives sent a letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, urging the agency to ban or restrict using so-called neonicotinoids, which have been linked to declining pollinator health." [Discovery]
- Demo versions of tracks from The Clash's "London Calling."
- Footage from a GoProsuspended in a water floating about in space.
- West Virginia news anchor desperately wants to go viral.
- Dog refuses to wake up.
@elisefoley: Idea: twitter function where you go to hit “tweet” and it says “that joke has been made already."
@ProffJeffJarvis: Pollsters should stop calling landlines. They should send out Snaps and see if they get a smile or a frown back.
@jasoncherkis: Snowden upended his entire life. And now ends up with Oliver Stone to tell his story. He deserves better.
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