Politics

Marie Harf: You Didn’t Like My Jobs for Jihadis Idea Because You’re Sexist

By on 3.20.15 | 12:33PM

I'll give one thing to State Department Spokeswoman Marie Harf: when backed into a corner, she sticks to her guns. She doesn't allow anyone or anything to force her into self-reflection. 

We knew already that Ms. Harf thought her "Jobs for Jihadis" quip - that terrorism, and specifically ISIS, attracts people because they can't find other means of financial stability - was on the money, and that she considered herself just to be repeating the company line. But now, in a speech to what appears to be a group of journalism students, Ms. Harf would like to clarify that, not only was the reaction to her comment overblown, it was overblown because you are all a bunch of sexist, ageist rubes

Obama Might Have Purchased the House from Magnum P.I.

By on 3.20.15 | 11:52AM

Now, obviously, you're all going to whine "why am I covering something so dumb? Aren't children starving in Asia? Isn't Katy Perry probably pregnant? Why aren't you devoting your precious time and energy to these world-altering things?" Besides having been a political gossip blogger for five years, this issue, America, is really important to me.

I love Magnum P.I. and Barack Obama is about to ruin it for me. And frankly, it is an insult to everything I hold dear, including but not limited to, Mr. Tom Selleck's glorious 1980s mustache, which he wore with great aplomb as he tooled around Hawaii solving mysteries and generally just making hot pants on dudes a thing. Magnum, P.I. set the standard in my life for all men to live up to. Which is why I married a guy with a huge collection of Aloha shirts. Just short of a year ago, I completed one of my bucket list missions and saw T.C.'s chopper in action, taking off across the beach at Turtle Bay and it was possibly the greatest moment of my life.

So you will understand why this is personal.

Hillary Clinton Says We Have a “Fun Deficit,” Wants to Create Adult Camp

By on 3.19.15 | 8:54PM

When I think of Hillary Clinton, I do not normally think, "fun." Turns out, the feeling is mutual.

This afternoon, speaking to the American Camp Association New York and New Jersey Tri-State CAMP Conference, she suggested that, since America has been so down in the dumps lately, with all this nonsense about emails and Iranians getting the bomb, maybe what we really need to address is our "fun deficit." And she knows precisely how to do it.

Adult camps.

Hillary Clinton would love to see sleepaway camps for adults and more relationship-building in Washington, she said Thursday at what will likely be her final paid appearance before launching her expected presidential campaign.

"We really need camps for adults,"  the former secretary of state told the American Camp Association of New York and New Jersey’s Tri-State CAMP Conference. "None of the serious stuff ... I think we have a fun deficit in America."

Obama Champions Mandatory Voting

By on 3.19.15 | 12:54PM

Apparently, not enough people vote in this country for President Obama's taste, and he knows just how to make voting both more palatable and more appealing to the 60% or so of Americans with the right to vote, but who seem to lack the ability.

Make it mandatory. Because if there's anything that Americans respond to positively, it's being told what to do. 

Obama floated the idea of mandatory voting in the U.S. while speaking to a civic group in Cleveland on Wednesday. Asked about the corrosive influence of money in U.S. elections, Obama digressed into the related topic of voting rights and said the U.S. should be making it easier — not harder— for people to vote.

Just ask Australia, where citizens have no choice but to vote, the president said.

"If everybody voted, then it would completely change the political map in this country," Obama said, calling it potentially transformative. Not only that, Obama said, but universal voting would "counteract money more than anything."

Nuclear Deal to Allow Iran 6,000 Centrifuges

By on 3.19.15 | 12:13PM

I won't spend too much time parsing this out, since I'm sure others on the site will have much to say about it, but good news everyone! We've apparently reached some sort of deal with Iran, and it appears that it will put Iran in a position where, in just under a year, they'll be able to enrich enough uranium to produce a nuclear weapon. 

We're just so good at this foreign policy thing. 

Politics

Trump Makes a Move

By 3.19.15

He fired himself. And he’s looking for a new job.

Donald Trump has announced he is departing from NBC’s The Apprentice — the show that entered “You’re fired” into the American popular lexicon — and he’s headed for New Hampshire. His goal: to fire the Obama agenda…with an eye to becoming the Republican nominee himself.

The announcement of “The Donald J. Trump Presidential Exploratory Committee” came yesterday. Said Mr. Trump: 

Donald Trump Forming Presidential Exploratory Committee

By on 3.18.15 | 1:22PM

Congratulations, America! Donald Trump is dropping the next season of his television show, The Apprentice, in order to figure out whether he'd like to serve you in our nation's highest office. 

This time, though, he's going one step further in his mission to rule us all with an iron hand and an impressive hair sculpture by forming an exploratory committee and picking up staffers in New Hampshire, one of the key primary states. Because if there's anything the Republican party needs right now, it's Donald Trump.

A senior adviser tells the New Hampshire Union Leader that Trump will not be renewing his contract with NBC for the reality television “Apprentice” series.

Combined with staff hires, Trump’s announcement that he will form an exploratory committee for the first time is a sign the billionaire is seriously considering running for the Republican nomination.

Trump’s statement on forming the exploratory committee hints at the razzle-dazzle to come for a turbo-charged personality known for skewering the political establishment.

The EPA Wants To Watch You Shower

By on 3.18.15 | 1:04PM

If you're like me, a night away at a hotel means one thing: a long, hot shower. It's not that I want to deliberately drain a Holiday Inn's water heater of its supply, it's just that it's rare, when you live in an urban area and pay out the nose for your own water, to want to spend time cleaning yourself in it. And there's the added benefit, at hotels, of not being stared at awkwardly by a group of cats who don't understand the concept of bathroom doors, or why you would willingly subject yourself to water.

But, the luxury of the long, hot hotel shower may be yet another thing lost to the prying eye of Uncle Sam. Thanks to a new proposal from the EPA, a couple of fascinated felines may be the least of your worries. In an effort to get Americans to adjust their shower behavior, the government wants to cut you off, and in service of that goal, they'll be watching you shower.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) wants hotels to monitor how much time its guests spend in the shower.

Dems Block Human Trafficking Bill Because It Doesn’t Give Everyone Free Abortions

By on 3.18.15 | 12:25PM

We're trapped in a legislative conundrum stemming from Loretta Lynch's confirmation as head of the Department of Justice. As we get closer to that landmark vote, that will probably turn out to be an easy ride, anyway, complicated only by weeks of digging in heels over legislative minutiae, Democrats and Republicans are working to wrangle themselves into positions of power for any potential compromise.

Two weeks ago, the Justice for Victims in Trafficking Act had strong bipartisan support and it looked as though the bill would pass quickly, ushering in a few affiliated bills that would directly impact the way law enforcement handled victims of sex trafficking. The VTA itself created a sort-of "slush fund" of cash to fund victims services and law enforcement efforts, collected from the fines levied on traffickers during the judicial process. While Republicans apparently meant "victims services" to mean actual victims services, Democrats decided that "victims services" meant free abortions and so, it all fell apart.

Rep. Aaron Schock to Resign

By on 3.17.15 | 6:48PM

Ah, Illinois.

We had just jogged past the two year anniversary of the last time a sitting Illinois politician entered a guilty plea on a Federal crime. Former Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. copped to a Federal wire and mail fraud charge on February 20, 2013. He was sentenced in August of 2013. And for two blissful years, we were free of the immediate taint of Federal corruption. At least, the current taint. 

And then, there's Rep. Aaron Schock, who, today, became the bazillionth Illinois politician to fall prey to the trappings of elected office. He will resign effective March 31, 2015.

Illinois Rep. Aaron Schock resigned Tuesday, less than 12 hours after POLITICO raised questions about tens of thousands of dollars in mileage reimbursements he received for his personal vehicle.

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