“I do not believe that Crimea will slip out of Russia’s hands. … Putin invaded Georgia when George W. Bush was president. Nobody ever accused George W. Bush or being weak or unwilling to use military force,” he said. “I think Putin saw an opportunity here, and he has seized it.”
Former Bush 43 and Obama Defense Secretary Bob Gates
“But it is both a relief and a disappointment that the new [job] numbers offer some assurance that the long-reliable pattern of adding a bit more than two million jobs a year continues apace. The 175,000 net jobs added in February extrapolate to a pace of 2.1 million jobs a year…. The jobs recovery in the United States is astonishingly consistent, astonishingly resilient and astonishingly underwhelming.”
“President Obama is such a weak strongman. What’s more, he is a feeble dictator and a timid tyrant.
“That, at any rate, is Republicans’ critique of him. With Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Obama’s critics pivoted seamlessly from complaining about his overreach to fretting that he is being too cautious. Call it Operation Oxymoron.”
Dana Milbank, “Obama, the feckless tyrant,” WaPo
The GOP has been behaving as shamelessly and disingenuously as Putin in all this.
So Kerry Kennedy, one of Bobby’s kids, got in trouble for driving while under the influence of Ambien. Most people resolve these things quietly with the authorities, but, no, Kennedy had to take it to trial.
In his closing argument, Kennedy’s lawyer amazingly asked these rhetorical questions of the jury: “Is this an honest person? Or is this someone who has led a life of lying and cheating?”
Kerry Kennedy used to be Kerry Kennedy Cuomo, the wife of current NY Gov Andrew Cuomo and the mother of his three children. But she lost the “Cuomo” a decade ago when she had an affair with also-married Bruce Colley, polo-playing heir to a McDonald’s franchise fortune.
So her lawyer really shouldn’t bring up lying and cheating.
“And so, the GOP strategy … is to show that the party is ‘ready to govern’ simply by avoiding destructive and chaotic governing crises while refraining from trying to pass ‘major bills,’ because GOP policies are unpopular and Republicans can’t unite behind solutions in any case.”
Greg Sargent, the Plum Line at WaPo
So the GOP has nothing — except those millions and millions in ads from the Koch Brothers’ Americans for Prosperity that are already slamming incumbent Dems.
“So what would happen if the Obama administration ditched the employer mandate altogether? Not a lot, most health economists say. Slightly more people might get coverage through the exchanges — and slightly fewer through their workplaces. The federal government would lose billions in revenue, from fees levied on companies that don’t provide coverage. But overall, the number of people with health coverage would remain nearly the same, with or without the employer mandate.
“‘At this point, getting rid of the employer mandate is more substantive politically than it is economically,’ adds Jon Gruber, an MIT economist who advised the Obama administration on the health-care law.
“‘The employer mandate has extraordinarily little impact on coverage,’ says Linda Blumberg, an economist at the Urban Institute. ‘It doesn’t effect [sic] behavior much at all.’”
From “Over 1 Million Added to Rolls of Health Plan,” Michael D. Shear and Reed Abelson, NYT:
“But industry experts and insurance officials say that the reality is murkier than either party wants to admit and that the numbers at the heart of the national political debate are largely meaningless outside of Washington’s overheated environment. The determination about whether the law works from an economic standpoint will not be clear for years, when individual insurance companies are finally able to tell whether their expectations about the health of their customers — and the premiums they set for coverage — were accurate.
“And the economic fate of the biggest health care overhaul in decades will be decided state by state, in hundreds of individual markets across the country, not in a theoretical national insurance marketplace that does not really exist.
“‘There’s going to be tremendous variation in the country,’ said Drew Altman, the president and chief executive of the Kaiser Family Foundation. He said the focus on national numbers, like reaching the target of enrolling seven million people in the first year, ‘never had anything to do with the real success or failure of the law.’”
Donald Trump graciously told the New York GOP that he’d do them the yuge honor of running for governor, IF they don’t make him do boring, beneath-him stuff like show up at a convention or compete in a primary.
The latest Quinnipiac poll shows Andrew Cuomo mussing up the Double Combover, 63-26. Now that’s what you call yuge.
The procedural vote to move the bill forward took an hour as they were having trouble getting to 60. Eventually, 12 Republicans joined with all 55 Dems, so that there were 67 votes to end the filibuster. Despite the primary challenges they face, both Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and John Cornyn of Texas were among the 12..