President Obama will commit $3 billion to fight climate change, or, put another way, “commit roughly 5.2 seconds of funding the Iraq war” to fighting climate change. Orrin Hatch called his Democratic colleagues a bunch of “blunderheads,” but surprisingly didn’t do so while atop a penny farthing and wearing a frock coat. And the House voted once more to approve the Keystone XL Pipeline, moving it into second place of “things Republicans can’t stop voting on.” It currently stands ahead of “defunding ACORN” but far behind “repealing Obamacare.” This is HUFFPOST HILL for Friday, November 14th, 2014:
HOW HARRY REID KEPT HIS JOB - Aside from threatening to feed people "knuckle sandwiches," that is. Politico: "But in private, the incoming minority leader has known there were a handful of Democrats ready to boot him from his job — and he moved swiftly to keep that number from growing. Since last week’s elections, Reid spoke privately with many unnerved Democrats, promising to open up messaging and policy strategy to include more of them – an under-the-radar effort to keep control of the caucus....According to sources familiar with Reid’s one-on-one talks, the Nevada Democrat said he would open up his weekly Tuesday leadership meetings to a broader group of senators. He would overhaul how they hold their weekly policy lunches, while allowing more Democrats to drive the party’s message on individual issues, like Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) did on health care earlier this year. And he would loosen his grip on the amendment process, allowing a more free-flowing set of votes on the floor." [Politico]
WARREN DISCUSSES LEADERSHIP ROLE - Grim and Amanda Terkel: "Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) pushed back Thursday evening against the notion that her new Senate position means that she will be a "liberal liaison" between Democratic leaders and the party's progressive base. 'I don't quite understand it,' said Warren of the oft-repeated, informal title that's been used in media reports to describe her new leadership position. Warren's elevation was ratified Thursday during a more than three-hour, closed-door meeting, where Democrats elected their new Senate leaders for the next Congress...Before the meeting had ended, reporters were being told by sources outside Reid's office that Warren would be a 'liberal liaison,' and would additionally hold a policy portfolio. But Warren, in an interview with HuffPost, said the liberal part was news to her. 'Harry asked me to be a strategic policy adviser, because that's what I talk about, I talk about policy -- college affordability and minimum wage and Social Security,' she said. 'And that's what I'm supposed to do and that's what I will do. That's my portfolio.'" [HuffPost]
ORRIN HATCH GETS HILARIOUSLY IRATE - Can only Mormons use the phrases "My gosh" and "dumbass" in the same sentence? Terkel: "Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) came out swinging against Democrats Friday, telling a room of conservative lawyers that Republicans were ready to give the other party 'a taste of their own medicine.'... Hatch delivered his remarks at the Federalist Society's annual conference in downtown Washington, D.C., Friday afternoon. He also said he is in favor of keeping current filibuster reforms in place...'We should not return to the old rule. We should teach those blunderheads that they made a big mistake. And we have the votes to stop bad judges if we want to,' he said...Hatch also drew laughs from the crowd when he made fun of the left for using the term 'progressive.' 'I get a big kick out of them using the word 'progressive,'' he said. 'My gosh, they're just straight old dumb-ass liberals anyway.'" [HuffPost]
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HILLARYLAND HAS ITS OWN JOURNOLIST - God we hope there's a secret gang sign for the "Mook Mafia" and God we hope we get to see Hillary flash it at some point. ABC News: "For the past five years, a prominent Democratic operative who is a leading contender to manage a Hillary Clinton presidential campaign has maintained a private email listserv for friends and associates that carries a provocative name: the 'Mook Mafia.' The listserv, which one member said reaches more than 150 fellow campaign veterans, has been a means for Robby Mook and a close friend Marlon Marshall to stay connected with many of the operatives who would likely populate a Democratic presidential campaign in 2016. Mook and Marshall have both been mentioned as possible Hillary Clinton campaign managers." [ABC News]
OBAMA TO COMMIT $3 BILLION FOR CLIMATE CHANGE - NYT: "President Obama will soon announce that the United States will contribute $3 billion to a new international fund intended to help the world’s poorest countries address the effects of climate change, according to a senior administration official. Mr. Obama is expected to make the announcement at a summit meeting of the Group of 20 industrial powers this weekend in Brisbane, Australia, on the heels of his landmark announcement this week that the United States and China will jointly commit to curbing greenhouse gas emissions over the next decade. The two announcements, both unveiled at prominent global meetings with world leaders, highlight Mr. Obama’s intention to use the last two years of his administration to push forward on climate change policy, which he sees as a cornerstone of his legacy." [NYT]
HOUSE PASSES KEYSTONE PIPELINE BILL - It just occurred to us that someone needs to make a shotski-style group drinking activity called the Keystone Pipeline. Kate Sheppard: "The House of Representatives passed a measure Friday that would force approval of the Keystone XL pipeline. The House approved the Keystone measure by a vote of 252 to 161. Nearly all Republicans voted for the bill, along with 31 Democrats. One Republican, Rep. Justin Amash of Michigan, voted "present." This marks the ninth time that the House has voted for a measure to force approval of the 1,660-mile pipeline, which would carry oil from Canada's tar sands to refineries in Texas." [HuffPost]
CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORMERS SCORE MINOR VICTORY IN ARKANSAS - Rooting for campaign finance reform is a bit like rooting for the Blue Jays: It's the little victories that keep you going ("We finished over .500!" "Jose Batista's hip isn't totally busted!" "The Pittsfield City Council passed our amendment!"). Paul Blumenthal: "[Arkansas voters] voted in support of a broad sweep of campaign finance and ethics reforms initially proposed by a Democratic lawmaker. Warwick Sabin, the first-term state representative, said the success of the ballot initiative, which passed by a 52-47 margin, was 'a surprise to everybody.' The reforms banned direct corporate and union campaign contributions to candidates; forbid lawmakers from accepting gifts of any kind from lobbyists; and increased the amount of time departing lawmakers must wait before lobbying from one to two years." [HuffPost]
AMERICANS SUPPORT NET NEUTRALITY... IF THEY UNDERSTAND IT - Ariel Edwards-Levy: "While the fight over net neutrality has sparked a political battle, most of the public hasn't been paying close attention, according to a new HuffPost/YouGov poll. Back in May, 63 percent of Americans said they'd never even heard the term 'net neutrality.' The term has become more familiar since then, but the most recent poll -- taken after the president's speech -- finds that a 54 percent majority, including majorities of Republicans and Democrats, still say they haven't heard of it... The goals of net neutrality, however, are broadly popular with the public. Fifty-five percent of Americans, including two-thirds of those who'd heard about net neutrality, said they'd oppose allowing Internet service providers to strike deals in which some companies pay to have their online content load faster than other content. In a rare showing for American politics, there wasn't much of a divide along partisan lines: 57 percent of Democrats, 51 percent of independents and 59 percent of Republicans were opposed." [HuffPost]
UN ROFLOLing AT OBAMA'S TORTURE STANCE - Ali Watkins: "America, the Obama administration says, takes its history of torture seriously. President Barack Obama outlawed the harsh practices of the Bush era days after taking office. The government has released documents, attempting to demonstrate accountability. There’s a 6,300-page Senate report that has been given to the White House and even a Justice Department investigation into abuses of the Bush years. The United Nations doesn’t buy it. A U.S. delegation, in a first appearance before the U.N. Committee Against Torture since 2006, told the panel in Geneva this week that it rejects Bush administration interpretations of torture statutes and affirms U.S. commitment to closing the dark chapter of the CIA’s post-9/11 interrogation program. Those assertions, though, didn’t convince the U.N. panel, which hadn’t seen the U.S. crew since abuses of the Bush-era program were publicly revealed." [HuffPost]
BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Here's a compilation of cats saying "nom nom nom."
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- The definitive guide to making your pets famous on the internet.
@jonallendc: Senators call for bipartisan lunches. Only 30 out of 100 join that fight.
@ReformedBroker: It’s oxygen for millennials. They don’t want to consume the same oxygen from their parents generation.
(raises $8 billion)
@anamariecox: Thanks, Obama. RT @YahooNews: U.S. consumer sentiment at more than 7-year high: yhoo.it/1EKwKAA
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