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Archive for February 22nd, 2009

Obama: Let’s Get to Work

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 22nd, 2009 5:38 am by HL

Obama: Let’s Get to Work

Obama

In his weekly address, President Barack Obama hailed the stimulus bill he recently signed, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, as “the most sweeping economic recovery plan in history.” Here’s what he had to say to back up this big claim.

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The Hill , UPI uncritically reported false GOP claim that Dems steered recovery money to ACORN

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 22nd, 2009 5:36 am by HL

The Hill , UPI uncritically reported false GOP claim that Dems steered recovery money to ACORN

In a February 21 article, The Hill forwarded the frequently repeated Republican falsehood that Democrats steered money to the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Discussing Rep. Dave Camp (R-MI)’s response to President Obama’s weekly address, staff writer J. Taylor Rushing uncritically reported: “Camp took a particular shot at ACORN, the controversial grassroots group that has lobbied for Democratic candidates, saying that the stimulus bill unfairly benefited the group.” Similarly, a February 21 report by United Press International quoted Camp saying, “Despite promises of openness and transparency, it was written in a backroom and rushed through Congress so quickly that few — if any — members of Congress read it,” before uncritically reporting that Camp “cited ‘billions that could go to scandal-plagued groups like ACORN’ — a grassroots voter registration group often accused by Republicans of perpetrating fraud — as an example of lack of oversight.”

In making the claim that the recovery bill steers money to ACORN, Republicans have pointed to a provision in the bill that would, in the law’s final version, appropriate $2 billion “for neighborhood stabilization activities related to emergency assistance for the redevelopment of abandoned and foreclosed homes as authorized under division B, title III of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008.” In fact, neither that provision nor any other provision in the act mentions ACORN or otherwise singles it out for funding.

Moreover, ACORN has denied that it is eligible for “neighborhood stabilization funds” and has stated that it does not intend to apply for them. After House Minority Leader John Boehner’s (R-OH) office issued press releases claiming that the recovery bill “makes groups like ACORN eligible for a $4.19 billion pot of money for ‘neighborhood stabilization activities,’ ” ACORN CEO Bertha Lewis called the claim an “obfuscation” that “was picked up across the right-wing echo chamber and has been used as a fig leaf by conservatives in their attempts to justify their opposition to progressive economic policies.” Lewis further stated: “We have not received neighborhood stabilization funds, have no plans to apply for such funds, and didn’t weigh in on the pending rule changes.” Lewis also wrote on the Huffington Post, “[L]et’s be clear. ACORN isn’t getting any of this money. Since it is set aside for non-profit housing developers to help purchase, rehab, and resell foreclosed properties, we aren’t eligible for it in the first place.”

As Media Matters documented, The Hill previously reported that ACORN is a “beneficiar[y] of the stimulus package” and uncritically reported the false suggestion by National Republican Congressional Committee communications director Ken Spain that the stimulus bill includes “a $4.2 billion bailout” for ACORN. Other outlets and media figures who have forwarded the false claim that the recovery legislation steers money to ACORN include the San Francisco Chronicle, The Washington Times, Fox News’ Dick Morris, Fox News’ Karl Rove, Fox News’ Steve Doocy, Fox News’ Carl Cameron, CNN’s Lou Dobbs (on two occasions), and conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh.

From the February 21 Hill article:

The GOP response came from Rep. Dave Camp (Mich.), ranking Republican on the House Ways and Means Committee, who accused Democrats of “railroading” the stimulus plan through Congress and adding to an “already lousy” spending record.

“Despite promises of openness and transparency, it was written in a back room and rushed through Congress so quickly that few — if any — members of Congress read it,” Camp said.

Camp took a particular shot at ACORN, the controversial grassroots group that has lobbied for Democratic candidates, saying that the stimulus bill unfairly benefited the group.

Camp said Obama and congressional Democrats have a chance to correct their oversight as early as Monday’s Fiscal Responsibility Summit at the White House, which will focus on the fiscal health of the Medicare and Social Security programs.

Camp called the summit “an important step” in determining whether the president will work with Republicans, saying the same of the budget Obama is likely to release at the end of the week.

“Republicans genuinely want to work with the president to solve those problems — in a responsible way that does not burden our children and grandchildren with a mountain of debt,” Camp said. “If he is serious about dealing with the tough issues and getting spending under control, the budget will show it.”

From the February 21 UPI article:

U.S. Rep. Dave Camp of Michigan, the ranking Republican on the House Ways and Means Committee, delivered the GOP response to U.S. President Barack Obama’s weekly radio and Internet address by blasting the process by which the Democratic-led Congress “railroaded” the measure.

“Despite promises of openness and transparency, it was written in a backroom and rushed through Congress so quickly that few — if any — members of Congress read it,” Camp said. He cited “billions that could go to scandal-plagued groups like ACORN” — a grassroots voter registration group often accused by Republicans of perpetrating fraud — as an example of lack of oversight.

Camp said Republicans were looking forward to Monday’s Fiscal Responsibility Summit at the White House as a chance to urge Obama and congressional Democrats to “solve those problems … in a responsible way that does not burden our children and grandchildren with a mountain of debt.”


SEC Vet: Agency Should Have Looked Closer At Stanford

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 22nd, 2009 5:35 am by HL

SEC Vet: Agency Should Have Looked Closer At Stanford
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BREAKING: Darrel Thompson Jumps Off Burris Ship

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 22nd, 2009 5:32 am by HL

BREAKING: Darrel Thompson Jumps Off Burris Ship
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Former Bush administration officials are having trouble finding work.

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 22nd, 2009 5:31 am by HL

Former Bush administration officials are having trouble finding work.
The Wall Street Journal reports today that “for many of the roughly 3,000 political appointees who served President George W. Bush, [f]inding work has proved a far tougher task than those appointees expected”: Only 25% to 30% of ex-Bush officials seeking full-time jobs have succeeded, estimated Eric Vautour, a Washington recruiter at Russell Reynolds Associates […]

The Wall Street Journal reports today that “for many of the roughly 3,000 political appointees who served President George W. Bush, [f]inding work has proved a far tougher task than those appointees expected”:

Only 25% to 30% of ex-Bush officials seeking full-time jobs have succeeded, estimated Eric Vautour, a Washington recruiter at Russell Reynolds Associates Inc. That “is much, much worse” than when Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton left the White House, he said. At least half those presidents’ senior staffers landed employment within a month after the administration ended, Mr. Vautour recalled.

Carlos Gutierrez, Commerce secretary under President Bush, blamed the struggling economy. “This is not a great time for anyone to be job hunting, including numerous former political appointees,” he said. Former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales feels the same way, but his successor, Michael Mukasey, didn’t seem to have any problem landing a job. (HT: Atrios)

U.S. News? absurd poll: Which female politician would run the best daycare center?
Media Matters’ County Fair points out a poll on U.S. News and World Report’s website asking readers who would run the best daycare center: First Lady Michelle Obama, Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, or Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. (Apparently, in the fantasy world of political daycare centers, only women […]

Media Matters’ County Fair points out a poll on U.S. News and World Report’s website asking readers who would run the best daycare center: First Lady Michelle Obama, Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, or Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. (Apparently, in the fantasy world of political daycare centers, only women are equipped to run them.) The poll is illustrated with action-figure-like images of the four women:

daycare-poll.jpg

As of 3:20 p.m., Sarah Palin had 47.5 percent of the vote; Michelle Obama followed with 46 percent.


Obama Targets Budget Deficit

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 22nd, 2009 5:30 am by HL

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