Archives for Capitol Hillbillies

Obama: If you don’t like me, you don’t know me

President Barack Obama says he doesn’t take it personally when people say they hate him. And the thing he dislikes most about being president is the constant, intense scrutiny. “The people who dislike you don’t know you. The folks who hate you, they don’t know you,” Obama said Sunday in an interview broadcast during Fox’s pre-game coverage of the Super Bowl. “What they hate is whatever funhouse mirror image of you that’s out there. They don’t know you.” Asked by Fox News Channel host Bill O’Reilly whether his critics annoyed him, Obama said: “By the time you get here, you
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Simpson: Financial critics just a bunch of ‘jerks’

Any fiscal plan that fails to tackle military spending, Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security is “a sparrow’s belch in the midst of a typhoon,” a chairman of a presidential deficit-reduction commission said in an interview aired on Sunday. Former Senator Alan Simpson, Republican co-chair of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, also trashed certain critics as “jerks” and compared the United States to “a milk cow with 300 million teats.” “If you have a career politician get up and say, ‘I know we can get this done; we’re going to get rid of all earmarks, all waste, fraud,
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Obama tries to make peace with business community

When President Barack Obama named Gene Sperling as his chief economic adviser, two of Sperling’s early calls went to AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka and U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Thomas Donohue. Known for his pugilistic style, Donohue wasted no time. Come on over, he said. When Sperling crossed Lafayette Square, the park that separates the White House from the business lobby’s headquarters, Donohue welcomed him with characteristic bluntness: “Glad to have someone over there I’m comfortable sparring with at 10 a.m. and sitting down with at 2 p.m. to work on policy.” The story, confirmed by White House and Chamber
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Republicans launch risky gamble on budgets

The Republican drive to cut spending, which begins in earnest this week, marks a political gamble that the public’s hunger for smaller government will trump its appetite for benefits, subsidies and other federal support. Rep. Tom Price, R-Ga., calls it the “$64,000 question,” and then promptly answers it. “People will be supportive of almost any decreases in spending as long as they believe they’re done in an open, equitable and fair manner,” said Price, a member of the party leadership. Democrats, already eyeing the 2012 elections, sound disbelieving. “I’m not sure which country they’re speaking to,” said Rep. Debbie Wasserman
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Lawmaker wants betteer shoreline protection

In the wake of an historic blizzard that shut down Chicago’s lakefront highway, Illinois’ senators asked federal officials on Sunday to discuss ways to better protect the city’s shoreline. “This week’s storms showed that the proximity of Lake Shore Drive to Lake Michigan can stop even the hardiest Chicagoans,” wrote Illinois senators, Democrat Richard Durbin and Republican Mark Kirk, in a joint letter to the Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Department of Transportation. Lake Shore Drive, a major north-south artery that runs through the city, was closed for more than 30 hours due to last week’s blizzard. Hundreds
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Republicans going easy on budget cuts

Republicans now running the House are barely touching Congress’ own generous budget even as they take a cleaver to many domestic agencies. A new GOP proposal would reduce domestic agencies’ spending by 9 percent on average through September, when the current budget year ends. If that plan becomes law, it could lead to layoffs of tens of thousands of federal employees, big cuts to heating and housing subsidies for the poor, reduced grants to schools and law enforcement agencies, and a major hit to the Internal Revenue Service’s budget. Congress, on the other hand, would get nicked by only 2
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Kerry encouraged by Egyptian events

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry said on Sunday he’s encouraged by what he described as the rapid and dramatic series of events toward a new Egypt without President Hosni Mubarak. “Tally up what has happened in the last 12 days,” said Kerry, who has echoed calls by President Barack Obama and others for Mubarak to promptly end his 30-year-old rule. Kerry noted that Mubarak has promised not to run in the September election, he’s “engaged in a dialogue with the protesters (and) he’s now promising to remove the emergency law, which is a major, major opening of the
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Obama-McCain feud drifts into history

President Barack Obama and Republican Senator John McCain, bitter rivals from the 2008 election campaign whose feud festered for two years, completed a thaw on Wednesday when they sat down for Oval Office talks. Obama’s defeat of McCain in the 2008 presidential election left sour feelings on both sides that lingered through Obama’s first two years in office. Events surrounding the shooting a month ago of Democratic lawmaker Gabrielle Giffords of McCain’s home state of Arizona helped improve ties between the two leaders. Obama’s appeal at a memorial service in Tucson for a renewed era of civility between politicians in
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Threatening note to Mike Delph: ‘It should have been you’

Indiana State Sen. Mike Delph has received an e-mail saying the man suspected of shooting U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords should have instead targeted someone like him. The Indiana Senate has asked state police to investigate. The e-mail obtained by The Associated Press rails against a contentious immigration bill the Carmel Republican is pushing and refers to him and the country in derogatory terms. It is addressed to “Senator Racist Delph” and mentions Delph’s wife and five daughters by name. Delph declined to comment on the e-mail Thursday. Senate Chief of Staff Jeff Papa says the Senate gave police the e-mail
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Senator: Pentagon paid billions to ‘fraudsters’

The US military paid 285 billion dollars over three years to hundreds of military contractors that defrauded the Pentagon over the same stretch of time, a US senator charged Wednesday. Brandishing a 45-page January 2011 US Department of Defense report on the issue, Independent Senator Bernie Sanders called for “far more vigorous enforcement” by the US military “to protect taxpayers from massive fraud.” “The sad truth is that virtually all of the major defense contractors in this country for years have been engaged in systemic fraudulent behavior, while receiving hundreds of billions of dollars of taxpayer money,” he charged. [
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