Ch. Capt. E.J. Kapaun, Medal of Honor Recipient

Medal of Honor

Emil J. Kapaun

Chaplain Emil J. Kapaun, while assigned to Headquarters Company, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division, distinguished himself by extraordinary heroism, patriotism, and selfless service between Nov. 1-2, 1950. During the Battle of Unsan, Kapaun was serving with the 3rd Battalion of the 8th Cavalry Regiment. As Chinese Communist forces encircled the battalion, Kapaun moved fearlessly from foxhole to foxhole under direct enemy fire in order to provide comfort and reassurance to the outnumbered Soldiers. He repeatedly exposed himself to enemy fire to recover wounded men, dragging them to safety. When he couldn’t drag them, he dug shallow trenches to shield them from enemy fire. As Chinese forces closed in, Kapaun rejected several chances to escape, instead volunteering to stay behind and care for the wounded. He was taken as a prisoner of war by Chinese forces on Nov. 2, 1950.

After he was captured, Kapaun and other prisoners were marched for several days northward toward prisoner-of-war camps. During the march Kapaun led by example in caring for injured Soldiers, refusing to take a break from carrying the stretchers of the wounded while encouraging others to do their part.

For more: http://www.army.mil/medalofhonor/kapaun

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April 11, 2013
President Barack Obama awards Chaplain (Captain) Emil J. Kapaun
the Medal of Honor posthumously for conspicuous gallantry
White House

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48 thoughts on “Ch. Capt. E.J. Kapaun, Medal of Honor Recipient

  1. WH

    Thursday, April 11, 2013

    All Times Eastern

    6:00 AM
    Vice President Biden appears on MSNBC “Morning Joe” to talk about gun legislation

    7:00 AM
    8:00 AM
    9:00 AM
    10:00 AM
    10:15 AM
    President Obama and Vice President Biden receive the presidential daily briefing

    11:00 AM
    President Obama meets with members of the Financial Services Forum
    Roosevelt Room

    11:30 AM
    White House Press Secretary Jay Carney briefs the press

    12:00 PM
    President Obama holds a conference call with more than 100 local elected officials to discuss summer and year-round pathways to youth employment
    Roosevelt Room

    1:00 PM
    2:00 PM
    2:00 PM
    President Barack Obama awards Chaplain (Captain) Emil J. Kapaun, U.S. Army, the Medal of Honor posthumously for conspicuous gallantry.
    East Room

    2:00 PM
    2:55 PM
    President Obama hosts United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon
    Oval Office

    3:00 PM
    4:00 PM
    5:00 PM
    6:00 PM
    7:00 PM
    8:00 PM
    9:00 PM
    10:00 PM

    • POTUS podium

      April 11, 2013

      WhiteHouse.gov http://www.whitehouse.gov/live

      11:30 AM ET
      White House Press Secretary Jay Carney briefs the press

      12:00 PM ET
      President Obama holds a conference call with more than 100 local elected officials to discuss summer and year-round pathways to youth employment
      Roosevelt Room

      12:15 PM ET
      White House Champions of Change: Community Resilience Leaders
      The White House

      2:00 PM ET
      President Barack Obama awards Chaplain (Captain) Emil J. Kapaun, U.S. Army, the Medal of Honor posthumously for conspicuous gallantry.
      East Room

      2:55 PM ET
      President Obama hosts United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon
      Oval Office

      —-

      ABC News http://abcnews.go.com/Live/

      9:30 AM ET
      U.S. Senate – Firearms Legislation

      10:00 AM ET
      House Committee Budget
      Jeffrey Zients, acting director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, testified about the president’s fiscal year 2014 budget request

      10:00 AM ET
      Worldwide threats hearing
      DNI chief James Clapper testifies before the House Intelligence Committee for its annual hearing on current and projected threats facing the United States.

      11:30 AM ET
      White House Press Secretary Jay Carney briefs the press

      12:00 PM ET
      President Obama holds a conference call with more than 100 local elected officials to discuss summer and year-round pathways to youth employment
      Roosevelt Room

      1:00 PM ET
      Backover accidents briefing
      Famlies of children killed and injured in car backover incidents call on the Obama administration to issue a regulation on final rear visibility.

      2:00 PM ET
      President Barack Obama awards Chaplain (Captain) Emil J. Kapaun, U.S. Army, the Medal of Honor posthumously for conspicuous gallantry.
      East Room

      2:00 PM ET
      House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) discussed the legislative agenda of the House Democrat’s during her weekly briefing with reporters.

      2:55 PM ET
      President Obama hosts United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon
      Oval Office

      2:15 PM ET
      Syria policy hearing
      The Senate Foreign Relations Committee holds a hearing on U.S. policy toward Syria. The U.S. ambassador to the war-torn country will testify.

      —-

      CSPAN http://www.cspan.org/

      9:30 AM ET
      U.S. Senate – Firearms Legislation http://www.c-span.org/Events/Senate-to-Vote-at-11am-to-Proceed-to-Gun-Control-Legislation/10737439223/

      10:00 AM ET
      House Committee Budget
      Jeffrey Zients, acting director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, testified about the president’s fiscal year 2014 budget request http://www.c-spanvideo.org/event/216984

      10:00 AM ET
      Secretary Lew on President’s FY2014 Budget
      Treasury Secretary Jack Lew testifies before the House Ways and Means Committee on President Obama’s proposed fiscal year 2014 budget. Among the topics he addresses are sequestration and deficit reduction. http://www.c-spanvideo.org/event/216987

      10:00 AM ET
      Worldwide threats hearing
      DNI chief James Clapper testifies before the House Intelligence Committee for its annual hearing on current and projected threats facing the United States. http://www.c-spanvideo.org/event/216990

      10:00 AM ET
      Defense Sec. and JCS Chairman on Defense Budget
      Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel details the Defense Department’s proposed 2014 budget. http://www.c-spanvideo.org/event/216988

      10:30 AM ET
      EPA Nominee Testifies at Senate Environment Cmte.
      Gina McCarthy, the President’s nominee to be Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) testifies before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee http://www.c-spanvideo.org/event/216982

      11:30 AM ET
      White House Press Secretary Jay Carney briefs the press

      12:00 PM ET
      President Obama holds a conference call with more than 100 local elected officials to discuss summer and year-round pathways to youth employment
      Roosevelt Room

      2:00 PM ET
      House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) discussed the legislative agenda of the House Democrat’s during her weekly briefing with reporters. http://www.c-spanvideo.org/event/216983

      2:55 PM ET
      President Obama hosts United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon
      Oval Office

      ————

      Department of Defense http://www.defense.gov/live/

      2:00 PM ET
      President Barack Obama awards Chaplain (Captain) Emil J. Kapaun, U.S. Army, the Medal of Honor posthumously for conspicuous gallantry.
      East Room

  2. March 11, 2013

    President Obama to Award Medal of Honor

    On April 11, President Barack Obama will award Chaplain (Captain) Emil J. Kapaun, U.S. Army, the Medal of Honor for conspicuous gallantry.

    Chaplain Kapaun will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his extraordinary heroism while serving with the 3d Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy at Unsan, Korea and as a prisoner of war from November 1-2, 1950.

    When Chinese Communist Forces viciously attacked friendly elements, Chaplain Kapaun calmly walked through withering enemy fire in order to provide comfort and medical aid to his comrades. When they found themselves surrounded by the enemy, the able-bodied men were ordered to evacuate. Chaplain Kapaun, fully aware of his certain capture, elected to stay behind with the wounded. As hand-to-hand combat ensued, he continued to make rounds. As enemy forces approached the American position, Chaplain Kapaun noticed an injured Chinese officer amongst the wounded and convinced him to negotiate the safe surrender of the American forces. Shortly after his capture, Chaplain Kapaun bravely pushed aside an enemy soldier preparing to execute a comrade, thus saving a life and inspiring all those present to remain and fight the enemy until captured.

    For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/03/11/president-obama-award-medal-honor

    • Obama to Award Posthumous Medal of Honor to Korean War Chaplain

      March 11, 2013 American Forces Press Service

      WASHINGTON,– President Barack Obama will award the Medal of Honor posthumously to an Army chaplain for conspicuous gallantry during the Korean War, White House officials announced today.

      The ceremony will take place April 11 at the White House.

      Chaplain (Capt.) Emil J. Kapaun served with the 1st Cavalry Division’s 3rd Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, during combat operations against an armed enemy at Unsan, Korea, Nov. 1-2, 1950.

      When Chinese communist forces viciously attacked friendly elements, Kapaun calmly walked through withering enemy fire to provide comfort and medical aid to his comrades. When they found themselves surrounded by the enemy, the able-bodied men were ordered to evacuate.

      Kapaun, fully aware of his certain capture, elected to stay behind with the wounded. As hand-to-hand combat ensued, he continued to make rounds.

      As enemy forces approached the American position, Kapaun noticed an injured Chinese officer among the wounded and convinced him to negotiate the safe surrender of the American forces. Shortly after his capture, he pushed aside an enemy soldier preparing to execute a comrade.

      The chaplain, a Roman Catholic priest, died May 23, 1951, at a prison camp in Pyoktong, Korea. His nephew, Ray Kapaun, and family members will be on hand for the ceremony.

    • ‘He Saved Hundreds’: Army Chaplain To Get Medal Of Honor

      April 11, 2013 8:00 AM by ERICA RYAN – NPR

      It took more than 60 years, but an Army chaplain who died as a prisoner during the Korean War will be awarded the Medal of Honor by President Obama on Thursday.

      Capt. Emil Kapaun was a Catholic priest serving with the 3rd Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division who died at age 35 in 1951. And he’s not only a war hero — the Catholic Church is also looking into whether he should be made a saint.

      Kapaun will be honored for “extraordinary heroism” during fighting at Unsan, Korea, and after his capture by enemy troops in November 1950. The White House says:

      “When Chinese Communist Forces viciously attacked friendly elements, Chaplain Kapaun calmly walked through withering enemy fire in order to provide comfort and medical aid to his comrades. When they found themselves surrounded by the enemy, the able-bodied men were ordered to evacuate. Chaplain Kapaun, fully aware of his certain capture, elected to stay behind with the wounded.”

      Herbert Miller, who served with Kapaun, describes in a video on The Wichita Eagle’s website what happened after he was wounded at Unsan:

      “They threw a grenade, and that’s when I got hit. I couldn’t get out of the way. Broke my ankle and I laid there in the ditch till daylight. And I [saw] Koreans and Chinese coming in that ditch, so I just laid down, played dead and they went on by me. … That afternoon, I [saw] them coming again and I said, ‘Well, this is all it.’ So I was laying there and this Korean come down through … and that Korean stood over me with a gun ready to shoot. And he stood there, he hesitated — why I don’t know — but pretty quick Father Kapaun came from across the road. I didn’t know what his name was … I did know he was a chaplain. He bent, pushed that guy aside, bent down, picked me up and carried me.”

      For the entire article and audio interview: http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2013/04/11/176668278/Army-Chaplain-Gets-Medal-Of-Honor-60-Years-After-Death

  3. UN secretary general to meet with Obama

    4/5/13 5:33 PM EDT By JENNIFER EPSTEIN – POLITICO44

    United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon will visit the White House on Thursday, press secretary Jay Carney announced Friday.

    President Obama “looks forward to welcoming the Secretary General back to the White House and consulting with him on key issues, including the crisis in Syria, and expressing his gratitude for the many sacrifices United Nations personnel have made to protect vulnerable populations and to deliver aid to those most in need,” Carney said.

    The Oval Office meeting, he added, is “a demonstration of the robust partnership between this United States and the United Nations in facing a wide array of global challenges.”

    Obama and Ban last met at the White House in March 2011.

  4. President Obama hosts George Heartwell: Grand Rapids mayor headed to White House

    April 10, 2013 By Matt Vande Bunte – mlive.com

    GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Mayor George Heartwell plans to be in the White House with President Obama for national conference call on youth employment.

    Heartwell had planned to convene members of his Mayor’s 50 job-training program to listen in on the call scheduled 11:50 a.m. Thursday, April 11. He announced Tuesday night that he instead has been invited to take part in the call from the White House along with Obama and three other mayors from around the country.

    “I’ve met him on two other occasions, but it was a shake your hand going through the line kind of thing,” Heartwell said.

    Heartwell said he will get to ask Obama a question on the call, which a White House e-mail described as an effort to “urge mayors, businesses, and non-profit leaders to work together to promote summer and year-round youth jobs initiatives and make our communities safer.”

    For more: http://www.mlive.com/business/west-michigan/index.ssf/2013/04/president_obama_meet_george_he.html

  5. 6:00 AM ET
    Vice President Biden appears on MSNBC “Morning Joe” to talk about gun legislation

    • Biden: The NRA Is Excelling At ‘Disinformation’ (VIDEO)

      APRIL 11, 2013 TOM KLUDT 7:13 AM EDT, tpm

      During a roundtable discussion on gun violence that aired Thursday on MSNBC’S “Morning Joe,” Vice President Joe Biden said the National Rifle Association is most effective at disseminating “disinformation,” pointing to the oft-invoked fear that universal background checks will lead to a national gun registry.

      “The one thing the NRA has done so well lately is the disinformation,” Biden said. “We use the word ‘registration.’ There is no registration in America.”

      When host Joe Scarborough challenged the notion that the NRA has succeeded in its efforts to push disinformation — citing public polling that shows overwhelming support for universal background checks, despite the pro-gun lobby’s opposition to the proposal — Biden said the people are out in front of lawmakers on the issue.

      “This is one of the cases where the public is so far ahead of the elected officials. I mean, so far ahead,” Biden said. “You saw it in immigration. You saw it in marriage issues. You’re seeing it now. The public has moved to a different place. And there is not one single thing we are suggesting — not one, the administration, in our proposal — not one single thing that anyone can make even a prima facie case that it impacts on the Second Amendment.”

      For the video: http://livewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/entry/biden-one-thing-nra-has-done-so-well?ref=fpb

  6. Jobless Claims in U.S. Plunged More Than Forecast Last Week

    Apr 11, 2013 5:48 AM PT By Shobhana Chandra & Lorraine Woellert – bloomberg

    Applications (INJCJC) for unemployment benefits in the U.S.
    plunged more than forecast last week unwinding a surge caused by the Easter holiday and spring break at schools.

    Jobless claims decreased by 42,000 to 346,000 in the week ended April 6, from a revised 388,000, Labor Department figures showed today in Washington. The median forecast of 49 economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for a drop to 360,000. A Labor Department official said no states were estimated and there was nothing unusual in the data.

    Holidays such as Easter that fall on different weeks from year to year make it difficult to smooth out swings in the data, leading to increased volatility, the Labor Department said as the numbers were released. Waning firings, a sign employers are retaining workers to meet sales, help lay the ground for a pickup in hiring after payroll gains slowed in March.

    “It’s heartening that these numbers have come down,” said Nariman Behravesh, chief economist at IHS Inc. in Lexington, Massachusetts, who forecast a decrease to 345,000, the closest among economists surveyed. “The weakness may have been overstated. This is an early piece of evidence that we’ll see a bounce back in the April employment numbers.”

    Stock-index futures were little changed after the report. The contract on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index maturing in June was at 1,582.7 at 8:47 a.m. in New York, the same as yesterday’s close.

    For more: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-11/jobless-claims-in-u-s-plunged-more-than-forecast-last-week.html

  7. How Obama Wants To Prevent Future Mitt Romneys From Sheltering Massive Amounts Of Wealth From Taxation

    APRIL 11, 2013, 5:58 AM BRIAN BEUTLER – tpm

    President Obama’s budget calls for preventing wealthy people — such as, cough, Mitt Romney — from deferring taxation on vast sums of money by circumventing laws that limit the amount of money people are allowed to contribute to individual retirement accounts.

    Per the budget, “Individual Retirement Accounts and other tax-preferred savings vehicles are intended to help middle class families save for retirement. But under current rules, some wealthy individuals are able to accumulate many millions of dollars in these accounts, substantially more than is needed to fund reasonable levels of retirement saving.”

    But how would they close this loophole?

    One way experts believe financial managers avoid the current annual contribution limit to IRAs is by using IRAs to participate in investments and assigning those investment interests a nominal value vastly below fair market.

    Obama wouldn’t curb this practice directly. Instead his budget calls for an overall cap of about $3 million on the net balance across all of an individuals’ tax-preferred accounts. Only have one IRA? It can hold $3 million. Have three? Their holdings must sum to $3 million or less.

    By limiting the extent to which wealthy people can skirt the current annual limits and thus hide money from the IRS, the administration expects such a rule would raise $9 billion over 10 years.

    For more: http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2013/04/how-obama-wants-to-prevent-future-mitt-romneys-from-sheltering-massive-amounts-of-wealth-from-taxati.php?ref=fpa

  8. G-8 Foreign Ministers Meetings
    April 10th – 11th
    London, England

    Secretary of State Kerry participates in the Group of Eight (G8) Foreign Ministers meeting and a series of bilateral meetings with some of the ministers on the sidelines. Under Secretary Wendy Sherman also attends

  9. Lew Says Cutting Spending ‘Too Deeply’ May Hurt Fragile Recovery

    Apr 11, 2013 7:00 AM PT By Kasia Klimasinska & Ian Katz – bloomberg

    U.S. Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew said cutting spending too severely would hurt the nation’s economic recovery and expressed confidence lawmakers can reach a bipartisan agreement on President Barack Obama’s budget proposal.

    “While deficit reduction is necessary to put our nation on a sound fiscal course, we have to bear in mind that the recovery remains fragile,” Lew said in testimony prepared for a hearing today before the House Ways and Means Committee. “Cutting spending too deeply or too soon would harm the recovery in the near term, undermining our shared fiscal goals and our ability to make necessary investments for growth over the long term.”

    Lew is testifying before Congress for the first time since he was confirmed as secretary in February, appearing first in the House and then to the Senate Finance Committee later today.

    Lew also said the U.S. must “pursue tax reform that closes loopholes and addresses deductions and exclusions that allow the wealthy to pay less in taxes as a percentage of income than many middle-class families.”

    Obama yesterday sent to Congress a $3.8 trillion budget, calling for more tax revenue and slower growth for Social Security benefits in a political gamble intended to revive deficit-reduction talks.

    Lew said the budget is based on a “conviction that an agreement is within our reach” and “there is a path to a bipartisan agreement that moves the country forward.”

    The president is proposing to replace across-the-board budget cuts known as sequestration with what White House budget officials say is $1.8 trillion in additional deficit reduction over 10 years that includes collecting more taxes from the wealthy and trimming some federal programs.

    • As federal sequester cuts hit home, the Bay Area’s long-term unemployed brace for the worst

      5/03/2013 04:35:21 PM PDT By Patrick May – mercurynews.com

      Throughout the Great Recession, California’s One-Stop Career Centers have served as way stations of hope, places where safety nets fashioned from state and federal unemployment benefits have helped the jobless stay afloat as the storm swirled around them.

      This week, as word spread that the budget stalemate in Washington would mean a nearly 18 percent cut in federal extension benefits, these refuges seemed more and more like recessionary triage centers for the wounded. Slashing both benefits for claimants and operating budgets for the culled staff trying to help them, the federal sequester is now hitting home in a big way.

      “I’m begging the government: Please don’t cut these benefits,” said Rosa Sanchez, a 50-year-old single mother from Santa Clara desperately seeking work since she was laid off after 10 years as an English development specialist for a local school district. “I share my apartment with my teenage son and my elderly mother, and we simply can’t live without that help.

      “I’m willing to work,” Sanchez said during a visit last week to the Campbell center, “and they talk about a job boom in Silicon Valley, but there are no jobs available for me.”

      There’s a lot at stake for these frustrated job-seekers. Under the law, the unemployed can collect up to 26 weeks’ worth of state benefits, and then another 47 weeks of federal extension payouts.

      But as part of the so-called sequester cuts mandated by Congress in 2011 as a way to force itself to cut the national deficit, California now will receive $250 million less from the federal government to hand out to those who have been out of work for more than 26 weeks. While another 500,000 Californians who have not reached their 27th week will continue to receive their state unemployment checks as usual, a nearly equal number of unemployed now face potentially drastic reduction in their personal budgets.

      The irony of the sequester cuts has not been lost on the long-term unemployed. While they watched lawmakers hustle to restore funding for airport security slashed by the stalemate, these residents now into their second year of job-hunting feel unfairly singled out as their benefit reduction starts to kick in this week.

      To people who’ve been unemployed for a long time and are already struggling to hold on to the little they’ve got left, these cuts will be devastating,” said Gay Plair Cobb, CEO of the Oakland Private Industry Council, which helps administer the Oakland One-Stop center. “Congress is essentially pushing people deeper into poverty.

      For more: http://www.mercurynews.com/business/ci_23166026/federal-sequester-cuts-hit-home-bay-areas-long

  10. Gain for Highest Earners Helps Bolster U.S. Consumer Confidence

    Apr 11, 2013 6:45 AM PT By Jeanna Smialek – bloomberg

    Confidence among U.S. consumers was little changed last week as gains for top earners helped overcome growing pessimism at the other end of the income scale.

    The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index was at minus 34 in the period ended April 7 compared with minus 34.1 the prior week. Those earning more than $100,000 were the most optimistic since late 2010, while households earning less than $15,000 were the most pessimistic in three months.

    Record stock prices and the rebound in housing may be helping support sentiment for the more well-off Americans. Conversely, the increase in the payroll tax and higher gasoline prices at the start of the year, combined with a slowdown in hiring, may be taking a toll on those of more modest means and the unemployed, indicating growth will cool.

    “Consumer sentiment, like the U.S. economy in the current quarter, continues to move sideways, as lower-income cohorts show signs of strain,” said Joseph Brusuelas, a senior economist at Bloomberg LP in New York. “Investors should expect the risk of further deterioration in overall sentiment as the impact of sequestration takes hold in coming weeks.”

    Another report today showed applications for unemployment benefits plunged last week, unwinding a surged caused by the Easter holiday and spring break at schools. Jobless claims decreased by 42,000 to 346,000 in the week ended April 6, according to the Labor Department in Washington.

    For more: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-11/gain-for-highest-earners-helps-bolster-u-s-consumer-confidence.html

  11. 12:00 PM ET
    President Obama holds a conference call with more than 100 local elected officials to discuss summer and year-round pathways to youth employment
    Roosevelt Room

  12. April 11, 2013

    Readout of the President’s Call with University of Louisville Men’s Basketball Coach Rick Pitino

    Yesterday, President Obama called Rick Pitino to congratulate him and the University of Louisville men’s basketball team on their 2013 NCAA championship victory. The President told Coach Pitino that it was an exciting game to watch and that he’s built quite an impressive team over the last few years. The President congratulated Coach Pitino on his recent induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame and said that he and the First Lady were very proud of Kevin Ware and the way he handled his injury with grace. The President told Coach Pitino that he looks forward to congratulating the team in person at the White House.

    ———–

    April 11, 2013

    Readout of the President’s Call with University of Connecticut Women’s Basketball Coach Geno

    Yesterday afternoon, the President called Head Coach Geno Auriemma to congratulate him and the UConn Huskies on their eighth National Championship in the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament. He commended the Huskies on an extraordinary season and run in the tournament. The President also asked Coach Auriemma to relay his congratulations to Breanna Stewart, who was named most outstanding player of the Final Four. The President said he looks forward to seeing the team at the White House to honor their victory.

  13. Senate votes 68-31 to move forward with gun control measure

    4/11/13 12:18 PM ET By Jonathan Easley and Ramsey Cox – TheHill

    The Senate voted to move forward on gun control Thursday, clearing the first of what is expected to be many 60-vote hurdles for the legislation.

    In a 68-31 vote, the Senate approved a procedural motion that will allow debate on the Democratic measure to begin. Sixty votes were required for approval.

    Sixteen Republicans voted in favor of the motion, while two Democrats — both from states President Obama lost in the 2012 election — voted against it. The two Democrats were Sens. Mark Begich (Alaska) and Mark Pryor (Ark.), both of whom face reelection next year.

    The 16 Republicans who voted to proceed were Sens. Lamar Alexander (Tenn.), Kelly Ayotte (N.H.), Richard Burr (N.C.), Saxby Chambliss (Ga.), Tom Coburn (Okla.), Susan Collins (Maine), Bob Corker (Tenn.), Jeff Flake (Ariz.), Lindsey Graham (S.C.), Dean Heller (Nev.), John Hoeven (N.D.), Johnny Isakson (Ga.), Mark Kirk (Ill.), John McCain (Ariz.), Pat Toomey (Pa.) and Roger Wicker (Miss.). Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) missed the vote.

    The vote comes nearly four months after 26 people, including 20 first-graders, were killed by a lone gunman at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

    The crime shocked the nation and changed the debate on gun control in Washington. Relatives of the victims lobbied the Senate to allow the gun bill to come to the floor, aligning themselves with the president, who also had demanded the vote.

    “Today let us decide that there will be no more Newtowns,” Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) said ahead of the vote.

    Just prior to the vote, relatives of the Newtown victims issued a joint release saying those who threatened to filibuster the bill should be “ashamed.” Some of the victims’ families watched the vote from the Senate gallery.

    “The senators who have vowed to filibuster this bill should be ashamed of their attempt to silence efforts to prevent the next American tragedy,” the group said in a statement. “Their staunch opposition to sensible gun reform is an affront to the 26 innocent children and educators who were murdered in Newtown. No one should have to experience the pain we have endured – commonsense gun laws will help spare others from the grief we live with every day.”

    The Senate bill would expand background checks on gun purchases, crack down on straw purchasers of guns and beef up security in schools.

    Immediately after the vote, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) reiterated that the first amendment to be considered for the bill will be a deal on background checks worked out by Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Toomey. Amendments to the bill are expected to need 60 votes for passage.

    Read more: http://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/senate/293283-in-vote-senate-moves-forward-with-gun-control-legislation

    • Obama calls Newtown families after Senate guns vote

      4/11/13 1:23 PM EDT By DONOVAN SLACK – POLITICO44

      President Obama reached out to Newtown family members after the Senate voted Thursday to proceed with gun-control legislation, overcoming a filibuster threat from conservatives.

      “Following the Senate’s cloture vote, President Obama spoke by phone with family members of victims of the Sandy Hook elementary school tragedy who are here in Washington, D.C., to ask Congress to pass common-sense measures to reduce gun violence,” White House press secretary Jay Carney said during a press briefing. “The president congratulated the families on this important step forward, noting that the bipartisan progress would not have been be possible without their efforts.

      “He reiterated that much work remains and pledged to continue fighting for the votes they deserved.”

      Family members flew from Connecticut to Washington with the president on Air Force One earlier this week, and they were present in the gallery when the Senate voted.

    • More Senators Vote To Loosen Gun Laws Than Tighten Them

      APRIL 18, 2013, 11:10 AM 4654  SAHIL KAPUR – tpmFifty-seven senators voted Wednesday to dramatically expand gun rights after the background check legislation was scuttled, a sign that even amid the most concerted gun control push in two decades, there remains more Senate support for loosening gun laws than tightening them.

      The National Rifle Association-backed measure, brought by Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX) as an amendment to gun legislation, would have made a concealed carry permit in one state valid in other states. In other words, if it passed, California would be forced to let someone carry a concealed weapon in public if they were permitted to do so, say, by the state of Kansas.

      The bill failed as it was subject to a filibuster-proof 60 vote threshold, like all amendments. But thirteen Democrats joined all but one Republican (Illinois Sen. Mark Kirk) in voting for it. It received more votes than background check legislation, which would have modestly tightened the nation’s gun laws and managed to find 55 supporters.

      “This amendment would wreak havoc in large portions of America — suburban and urban areas,” Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said just before the vote on Cornyn’s amendment. “Because there are no residency requirements, criminals from all states could go to states, Florida is one, get a concealed carry permit and legally — criminals, felons — concealed carry in other states.”

      “Let Wyoming do what they want to do on concealed carry, but don’t impose that on New York, and vice versa,” he said.

      Cornyn said his legislation was “designed to protect the fundamental Second Amendment rights of American citizens who are traveling or temporarily away from home while they hold a concealed handgun license.” He called it “background checks on steroids.”

      Pro-gun proponents love the measure. Similar legislation was brought in 2009 by Sen. John Thune (R-SD) and received 58 votes. Democratic leaders worked hard to ensure its defeat this time around, worrying that its inclusion could poison and likely scuttle the final legislation.

      Along with the Cornyn measure Wednesday, well over a majority of senators also voted for amendments offered by Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Richard Burr (R-NC) that contained provisions gun control advocates feared would weaken gun safety laws. By contrast, fewer than a majority of senators to ban assault weapons or restrict high-capacity ammunition clips.

      The votes reveal that the filibuster, shortly after killing expanded background checks supported by 90 percent of the public, worked to protect a priority of the gun control side.

      Fifty-five senators supported the background check bill. The final tally was 54-46 because Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), switched his vote to no in the last minute to reserve the right to bring up the bill again, which he later pledged to keep fighting for.

    • April 11, 2013

      Remarks by the President at Presentation of the Medal of Honor to Chaplain Emil J. Kapaun, U.S. Army

      East Room

      2:22 P.M. EDT

      THE PRESIDENT: Good afternoon, everybody. Please have a seat. On behalf of Michelle and myself, welcome to the White House. Thank you, Chaplain.

      This year, we mark the 60th anniversary of the end of the Korean War — a time when thousands of our prisoners of war finally came home after years of starvation and hardship and, in some cases, torture. And among the homecomings, one stood out.

      A group of our POWs emerged carrying a large wooden crucifix, nearly four feet tall. They had spent months on it, secretly collecting firewood, carving it — the cross and the body — using radio wire for a crown of thorns. It was a tribute to their friend, their chaplain, their fellow prisoner who had touched their souls and saved their lives — Father Emil Kapaun.

      This is an amazing story. Father Kapaun has been called a shepherd in combat boots. His fellow soldiers who felt his grace and his mercy called him a saint, a blessing from God. Today, we bestow another title on him — recipient of our nation’s highest military decoration, the Medal of Honor. After more than six decades of working to make this Medal a reality, I know one of Father Kapaun’s comrades spoke for a lot of folks here when he said, “it’s about time.”

      Father, as they called him, was just 35 years old when he died in that hellish prison camp. His parents and his only sibling, his brother, are no longer with us. But we are extremely proud to welcome members of the Kapaun family — his nephews, his niece, their children — two of whom currently serve in this country’s National Guard. And we are very proud of them.

      We’re also joined by members of the Kansas congressional delegation, leaders from across our armed forces, and representatives from the Catholic Church, which recognizes Father Kapaun as a “Servant of God.” And we are truly humbled to be joined by men who served alongside him — veterans and former POWs from the Korean War. (Applause.)

      For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/04/11/remarks-president-presentation-medal-honor-chaplain-emil-j-kapaun-us-arm

    • April 11, 2013

      Remarks by President Obama and U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon After Meeting

      Oval Office

      3:47 P.M. EDT

      PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, it is wonderful to have the opportunity to welcome my good friend, Secretary General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, to the Oval Office. He and I consult quite frequently and in various multilateral settings, but this has been a useful opportunity for us to talk more specifically about how the United States and the United Nations can work together.

      Let me first of all say that I think I speak for world leaders in a wide variety of countries when I say that the Secretary General has shown outstanding leadership during what has been one of the most challenging and turbulent times in international affairs. I think he’s fair-minded. I think he has shown a willingness to tackle tough issues and to speak hard truths, and I very much appreciate personally the work that he’s done.

      Sometimes people ask why the United States is so devoted to the United Nations, and, obviously, beyond the fact that we helped set up the United Nations, what was true 60, 70 years ago is still true today. And that is that without a forum for discussion, negotiation, and diplomacy, the world is a worse place, and it is very much in the United States’ interests to ensure that international norms, rules of the road, and humanitarian norms are observed. And the United Nations gives us a critical opportunity to try to prevent conflict, create peace, maintain stability — all of which ultimately is good for America’s security and America’s prosperity.

      We discussed a wide range of issues during this meeting. We started with Syria, where obviously the humanitarian crisis has gotten worse. And Secretary General Ban and I shared the view that we are at a critical juncture; that it is important for us to bring about an effective political transition that would respect the rights of all Syrians; and that, in the interim, it’s important for us to try to eliminate some of the carnage that’s been taking place directed at civilians and non-combatants.

      For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/04/11/remarks-president-obama-and-un-secretary-general-ban-ki-moon-after-meeti

  14. Biden follows Boehner in swearing in Robin Kelly

    4/11/13 3:15 PM EDT By JENNIFER EPSTEIN – POLITICO44

    Vice President Joe Biden is on Capitol Hill on Thursday afternoon to swear in Robin Kelly, the Illinois Democrat who won a race for the seat previously held by Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr.

    House Speaker John Boehner also delivered the oath of office to Kelly, who won her seat on Tuesday, earlier in the day. Biden’s is a ceremonial oath.

    Kelly won a Democratic primary in February with outside support from New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s pro-gun control super PAC. In a floor speech after being sworn in by Boehner, Kelly said she “ran for Congress so that I could work to bring about a safer, less violent and more prosperous future, one in which our children can grow up without the fear of gun violence.”

  15. Economy Bears Turn Bulls Seeing 3% GDP for U.S. Few Saw in 2012

    Apr 11, 2013 2:47 PM PT By Carlos Torres & Catarina Saraiva – bloomberg

    Bearish forecasts for the U.S. economy are giving way to more optimistic views of the nation’s ability to weather federal spending cuts and tax increases.

    At Morgan Stanley in New York, Chief U.S. Economist Vincent Reinhart now sees a 3 percent pace of growth in the first quarter, up from 0.8 percent in December. JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s Bruce Kasman raised his forecast to 3.3 percent from 1 percent.

    “What happened at the beginning of the year was a genuine surprise in terms of how well the economy held up,” Kasman, the firm’s New York-based chief economist, said in an April 5 conference call.

    Gross domestic product probably climbed at a 3 percent annualized rate from January through March, according to the median forecast in a Bloomberg survey of 69 economists from April 5 to April 9. That’s up from the 2 percent gain projected last month and 1.6 percent in December.

    Consumers overcame a 2 percentage-point increase in the payroll tax and higher gasoline prices to spend at the fastest pace in two years, the survey shows. The pickup, combined with sustained gains in housing and business investment, will help propel the expansion through the worst of the automatic government cuts that are projected to take effect this quarter.

    For more: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-11/economy-bears-turn-bulls-seeing-3-gdp-for-u-s-few-saw-in-2012.html

  16. GOP WRONG WAY

    Sen. Rand Paul Tries To Repair GOP’s Image With Minorities

    April 11, 2013 4:00 AM by MARA LIASSON – NPR

    Summary: Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky gave a speech Wednesday at Howard University in Washington, D.C. He began by posing this question to the audience at the historically black school: How did the party that elected the first black U.S. senator, the party that elected the first 20 African-American Congressmen become a party that now loses 95 percent of the black vote?

    DAVID GREENE, HOST:

    In recent elections the Republican Party has struggled to find much support among African-American voters. That though did not dissuade Kentucky’s Republican Senator Rand Paul from making a pitch yesterday at Howard University, the historically black college in the nation’s capital.

    NPR national political correspondent Mara Liasson was listening.

    MARA LIASSON, BYLINE: Rand Paul spoke carefully from a teleprompter and posed this question to his audience of young African-American students.

    SENATOR RAND PAUL: How did the party that elected the first black U.S. senator, the party that elected the first 20 African-American congressmen, how did that party become a party that now loses 95 percent of the black vote?

    LIASSON: Paul answered the question, describing how the party of Abraham Lincoln did just fine with African-Americans until the Great Depression. Then he offered an explanation similar to Mitt Romney’s election postmortem – Democrats give out free stuff while Republicans just offer freedom.

    PAUL: The Democrats promised equalizing outcome, everybody will get something through unlimited federal assistance, while Republicans offered something that seemed less tangible – the promise of equalizing opportunity through free markets.

    LIASSON: Paul acknowledged Republicans have done a bad job of presenting their own history. He argued that after the Civil War and until the 1960s, it was Democrats who were responsible for Jim Crow.

    PAUL: If I would have said, who do you think the founders of the NAACP are, do you think they were Republicans or Democrats, would everyone in here know that they were all Republicans?

    UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Yes.

    PAUL: All right, all right. You know more than I know.

    LIASSON: There were more groans from the crowd of Howard students when Paul said this…

    PAUL: The first – one of the African-American U.S. senators was a guy named uh… blanking on his name, from Massachusetts.

    UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Brooke.

    UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Brooke.

    PAUL: Edwin Brooks(ph). Yes.

    (LAUGHTER)

    LIASSON: Paul was referring to Massachusetts Senator Edward Brooke.

    As the question and answer period went on, the disconnect between Paul and his audience only grew. Here’s how Paul defended the Republican push for state voter ID laws.

    PAUL: If you liken using a driver’s license to literacy tests, you demean the horror of what happened in the ’40s and the ’50s, maybe probably from 1910 all the way through the 1960s in the South. It was horrific. Nobody is in favor of that. No Republican is in favor of that. But showing your driver’s license to have an honest election I think is not unreasonable.

    LIASSON: Howard senior Julian Lewis, who asked Paul the question about voting rights, wasn’t satisfied.

    JULIAN LEWIS: These voter ID laws disenfranchise five million black and brown people. And he blatantly ignores those facts. But he will say well, that I think everyone should have a driver’s license. And he tries to make it a minuscule issue. Like it’s just a driver’s license.

    For the entire article and audio interview: http://www.npr.org/2013/04/11/176880563/sen-rand-paul-tries-to-repair-gops-image-with-minorities

  17. Paycheck Fairness Act Vote Blocked By House GOP

    4/11/2013 4:56 pm EDT Laura Bassett – huffingtonpost

    House GOP leadership is not likely to bring the Paycheck Fairness Act up for a vote any time soon, but House Democrats used a procedural move to force them to go on record opposing the bill on Thursday.

    Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.), the sponsor of the equal pay legislation, filed a discharge petition on the bill Thursday morning that would immediately force a vote on it if she could collect 218 signatures. Democrats also put forth a motion on Thursday known as the “Previous Question,” which would have enabled them to put the Paycheck Fairness Act up for a vote, but Republicans killed the effort by a vote of 226 to 192.

    Recent Census Bureau data shows that full-time working women make 77 cents for every dollar men make per year. The Paycheck Fairness Act, which DeLauro has introduced in eight consecutive Congresses, would expand the Equal Pay Act to close certain loopholes and allow employees to share salary information with their coworkers. It would also require employers to show that pay disparities between their male and female employees are related to job performance, not gender.

    Most Republicans oppose the bill, and Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.) said on the House Floor Thursday afternoon that the bill is a “liberal plot” to perpetuate the narrative that Republicans are anti-woman. DeLauro countered that she has yet to hear a reasonable excuse for Republicans to oppose the bill.

    “I think we’re looking at a group of people who either don’t believe there is a pay gap or who just want to be contrary,” DeLauro told HuffPost in a phone interview. “This bill isn’t a liberal plot. We have enough statistical information to demonstrate that no matter what the job is, whether you’re a waitress or bus driver or civil engineer, women are paid less money.”

    Every Republican that was present for the vote on Thursday voted against the motion to bring the bill up for a vote, so DeLauro is unlikely to get the number of signatures she needs for her discharge petition. But she said she has managed to drum up bipartisan support for the bill in the past, and she is going to continue to work on her Republican colleagues this session.

    For more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/11/paycheck-fairness-act_n_3063804.html?utm_hp_ref=politics

  18. West Wing Week: 04/12/13 or “We Choose Love”

    Published on Apr 11, 2013

    This week, the President, Vice President and First Lady continued to call for action to reduce gun violence, while the President announced the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget, conferred the medal of honor, met with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, and held an Easter Prayer breakfast.

  19. WH

    Friday, April 11, 2013

    All Times Eastern

    7:00 AM
    8:00 AM
    9:00 AM
    10:00 AM
    11:00 AM
    11:15 AM
    President Obama and Vice President Biden receive the presidential daily briefing

    12:00 PM
    White House Secretary Jay Carney briefs the press.

    1:00 PM
    2:00 PM
    Vice President Biden visits the headquarters of the Central Intelligence Agency to deliver remarks at a welcome ceremony for Director John Brennan.

    2:05 PM
    President Obama presents the Commander-in-Chief Trophy to the United States Naval Academy football team

    3:00 PM
    4:00 PM
    5:00 PM
    6:00 PM
    7:00 PM
    8:00 PM
    9:00 PM
    10:00 PM

    • POTUS podium

      April 11, 2013

      WhiteHouse.gov http://www.whitehouse.gov/live

      12:00 PM ET
      White House Secretary Jay Carney briefs the press.

      2:05 PM ET
      President Obama presents the Commander-in-Chief Trophy to the United States Naval Academy football team

      —-

      ABC News http://abcnews.go.com/Live/

      9:00 AM ET
      House Committee Ways and Means
      Fiscal Year 2014 Health and Human Services Budget – Secretary Kathleen Sebelius testifies

      9:30 AM ET
      House Committee Appropriations | Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies
      Fiscal Year 2014 National Parks Service Budget – Director Jonathon Jarvis testifies

      12:00 PM ET
      White House Secretary Jay Carney briefs the press.

      2:05 PM ET
      President Obama presents the Commander-in-Chief Trophy to the United States Naval Academy football team

      —-

      CSPAN http://www.cspan.org/

      8:30 AM ET
      Council on Foreign Relations
      Discussion of Diplomacy and Defense – Asst. Secretary Andrew Shapiro http://www.c-spanvideo.org/event/217047

      9:00 AM ET
      House Committee Ways and Means
      Fiscal Year 2014 Health and Human Services Budget – Secretary Kathleen Sebelius testifies http://www.c-spanvideo.org/event/217050

      9:30 AM ET
      House Committee Appropriations | Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies
      Fiscal Year 2014 National Parks Service Budget – Director Jonathon Jarvis testifies http://www.c-spanvideo.org/event/217051

      10:00 AM ET
      House Approps. Cmte. Looks at DEA Budget
      Fiscal Year 2014 Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) Budget – Administrator Michele Leonhart testifies
      http://www.c-spanvideo.org/event/217060

      12:00 PM ET
      White House Secretary Jay Carney briefs the press. http://www.c-spanvideo.org/event/217084

      12:30 PM ET
      Federal Reserve | Banking Supervision and Regulation
      Federal Reserve Chairman on Economies of Low-Income Americans
      Ben Bernanke http://www.c-spanvideo.org/event/217048

  20. April 05, 2013

    President Obama to Welcome the 2012 Commander in Chief Bowl Winners to the White House

    WASHINGTON, DC— On Friday, April 12th, President Obama will welcome the United States Naval Academy Football Team to the White House to present them with the 2012 Commander in Chief’s Trophy.

    The Commander in Chief’s trophy was established in 1972. It is awarded to the service academy with the best overall record against the other two service academies. Every year since 1984, except 1993 when there was no outright winner, the President has personally presented the Trophy to members of the victorious Academy’s football team at the White House.

    For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/04/05/president-obama-welcome-2012-commander-chief-bowl-winners-white-house

  21. April 12th – 15th

    Secretary of State Kerry is Northeast Asia, starting in Seoul on April 12th, in Beijing on April 13th, and in Tokyo on April 14th, and then coming home on the 15th.

  22. Economy Bears Turn Bulls Seeing 3% U.S. GDP Few Saw in 2012

    Apr 12, 2013 5:59 AM PT By Carlos Torres & Catarina Saraiva – bloomberg

    Bearish forecasts for the U.S. economy are giving way to more upbeat views of the nation’s ability to weather federal spending cuts and tax increases.

    At Morgan Stanley in New York, Chief U.S. Economist Vincent Reinhart now sees a 3 percent pace of growth in the first quarter, up from 0.8 percent in December. JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s Bruce Kasman raised his forecast to 3.3 percent from 1 percent.

    “What happened at the beginning of the year was a genuine surprise in terms of how well the economy held up,” Kasman, the firm’s New York-based chief economist, said in an April 5 conference call.

    Gross domestic product probably climbed at a 3 percent annualized rate from January through March, according to the median forecast in a Bloomberg survey of 69 economists from April 5 to April 9. That’s up from the 2 percent gain projected last month and 1.6 percent in December.

    Consumers overcame a 2 percentage-point increase in the payroll tax and higher gasoline prices to spend at the fastest pace in two years, the survey shows. The pickup, combined with sustained gains in housing and business investment, will help propel the expansion through the worst of the automatic government cuts that are projected to take effect this quarter.

    “We are surprised that there wasn’t a bigger and more immediate hit to spending” by consumers, said Reinhart. “There is an underlying momentum in spending, which means that sequestration and the tax increase will only lead to a momentary pause.”

    For more: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-11/economy-bears-turn-bulls-seeing-3-gdp-for-u-s-few-saw-in-2012.html

  23. McDonough Brings Order to West Wing to Press Obama Agenda

    Apr 11, 2013 9:00 PM PT By Julianna Goldman – bloomberg

    It’s 7:45 a.m. in White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough’s office and about a dozen senior aides are focusing on two flat-screen monitors with PowerPoint slides.

    Legislative director Miguel Rodriguez is running today’s dashboard — McDonough’s term for a slide presentation on various topics — and going over the names of President Barack Obama’s cabinet nominees awaiting confirmation. A green arrow pointing up is good. A yellow horizontal arrow spells trouble. Red arrows pointing down have so far been avoided.

    On this day, Obama’s choice for budget director, Sylvia Mathews Burwell, has a green arrow next to her name, yet there’s a potential problem. Her confirmation hearings will coincide with the release of Obama’s budget, giving Republicans an opening to pose some probing questions. The slide alerts the economic, communications and legislative teams to coordinate and avoid any surprises that could jeopardize her chances.

    “What Denis is doing is making sure that two trains don’t run into each other,” said Dan Pfeiffer, a senior adviser to Obama. “He’s allowing everyone to see the whole field.”

    McDonough, 43, has brought the discipline of the White House’s Situation Room, where he helped monitor the hunt for Osama bin Laden, to the chief of staff’s office. His dashboard meetings illustrate why Obama chose his loyal and technocratic deputy national security adviser as the West Wing’s chief operating officer for the president’s second term.

    Limited Window
    With limited time to pursue an agenda that includes everything from a possible deal to rein in the nation’s debt to a new immigration policy, McDonough is making sure that objectives are defined and the organization is structured to produce results. The goal is to cement Obama’s place in history.

    Current and former administration officials, as well as onetime Republican and Democratic chiefs of staff, say a more cohesive team has been created that’s reaching outside the White House bubble. The structure, they say, compares with the frenetic days early in Obama’s first term when Rahm Emanuel had the job, or when William Daley struggled to forge a bond with the president, or Jacob Lew left political planning to others during the 2012 election year.

    McDonough “earns praise for how he manages a staff and treats people,” said Andrew Card, President George W. Bush’s former chief of staff. “He gets good reviews from people who he’s met with who do not share the president’s policy positions.”

    For more: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-12/mcdonough-brings-order-to-west-wing-to-press-obama-agenda.html

  24. Surprise! President’s Budget Has Way More New Revenue Than New Cuts

    Thursday, April 11, 2013 | Posted by Spandan C – ThePeoplesView

    Bet you haven’t heard that one in the national media yet – certainly not on the Left’s media world still in a fit over Chained CPI. I bet here’s what you’ve heard: Obama’s revenue raisers are not enough, his spending cuts are too much, and it’s not ‘balanced’ in terms of revenues and cuts. What you’re hearing is that the president is proposing $1 trillion in cuts! Here’s what they’re not telling you: the president is merely replacing the sequester:

    President Obama’s budget also replaces the across-the-board spending cuts known as the sequester with smarter ones, making long-term reforms, eliminating actual waste and programs that are no longer needed.

    The sequester, remember, is about $1.2 trillion in cuts in and of itself over 10 years, counting interest savings, and since the sequester is baked into current law, replacing them cannot count as additional cuts. Don’t tell anyone, but the president’s budget actually proposes a sum (including interest savings but excluding chained CPI savings) of total cuts slightly smaller than the $1.2 trillion. Rather than the sledge-hammer approach, here’s how the budget’s cuts work out:

    Spending cuts: The budget cuts $200 billion from discretionary spending, balanced evenly between defense and domestic programs. It also includes $200 billion in cuts from mandatory spending by reducing farm subsidies and reforming federal retiree benefit programs. It also achieves $210 billion in savings from reduced interest payments on the debt and $400 billion in health savings aimed at cutting waste and fraud and strengthening Medicare.

    It should be noted that there is no benefit cut in Medicare ($306 billion of the $400 B) in order to achieve those savings. Here’s how the President’s budget describes the savings:

    … the Budget includes a robust package of proposals that modify Medicare provider payments totaling $306 billion over the next 10 years. These include a number of measures detailed in Table S–9 (see Summary Tables section of this volume), including a proposal to align Medicare drug payment policies with Medicaid rebate policies for low-income beneficiaries, allowing Medicare to benefit from lower drug prices. This change alone will save $123 billion over the next 10 years.

    So the president wants to replace the sequester hatchet job largely with cuts to subsidies to big agribusiness, $100 billion in defense cuts, and cracking down on drug companies as well as Medicare waste and fraud. How un-progressive of him!

    For more: http://www.thepeoplesview.net/2013/04/surprise-presidents-budget-has-more-new.html

  25. Poll: U.S. in best mood since ’07

    4/12/13 10:15 AM EDT By KATIE GLUECK – POLITICO

    Half of Americans approve of the state of the country for the first time since 2007, a new poll says.

    According to a CNN/ORC poll released on Friday, 50 percent of Americans say “things are going well in the country” — but an equal percentage says the opposite.

    In January 2007, 57 percent of Americans “felt the country was in good shape,” the poll said, but the number has dipped from there.

    The survey comes as the stock market continues to perform well, the poll noted, though unemployment clocks in at 7.6 percent.

    The poll of 1,012 adults was conducted April 5-7 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

  26. Resourcing the Rebalance toward the Asia-Pacific Region

    Danny RusselApril 12, 2013 12:52 PM EDT

    At the very outset of his Administration, the President made a strategic decision to increase the United States’ focus on the Asia-Pacific region by rebalancing U.S. engagements, activities, and resources toward this vital region. The President made this plain in his speech before the Australian parliament in 2011: “the United States will play a larger and long-term role in shaping this region and its future, by upholding core principles and in close partnership with our allies and friends.” Our approach is grounded in the proposition that the United States is a historic Pacific power whose economy, strength, and interests are inextricably linked with Asia’s economic, security, and political order…and we are here to stay”

    In March of this year, National Security Advisor Tom Donilon highlighted in a speech at the Asia Society that the Administration: “has worked to make our rebalance to the Asia-Pacific a reality because the region’s success in the century ahead –and the United States’ security and prosperity in the 21st century—still depend on the presence and engagement of the United States in Asia.”

    For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2013/04/12/resourcing-rebalance-toward-asia-pacific-region

    • April 12, 2013

      Remarks by the President at Presentation of the Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy to the U.S. Naval Academy Football Team

      East Room

      2:12 P.M. EDT

      THE PRESIDENT: Hello, everybody. (Applause.) Hello. Please, everybody have a seat. Well, good afternoon. Welcome to the White House.

      I want to start by recognizing Coach Ken Niumatalolo, my fellow Hawaiian, for being here once again — where is he? There he is right here. (Laughter.) Hard to miss him. Give him a big round of applause. (Applause.) I also want to recognize Vice Admiral Mike Miller, the Superintendent of the Naval Academy, for his outstanding service to our country and for keeping all of you guys in line. (Laughter and applause.)

      It is my pleasure to welcome the Navy Midshipmen back to the White House to receive the Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy — again. They have now won 19 of their last 21 games against the other service academies, making this their 8th trip here in 10 years. (Applause.) Michelle and I were thinking about just leaving the key under the rug. (Laughter.)

      This season, you finished 8-5, earned your 9th bowl appearance in the last 10 years. But perhaps most importantly, after a two-year break, you achieved that very first goal you set at the start of every season: You beat Air Force, you beat Army, and lugged this 170-pound trophy back to Annapolis.

      Against Air Force, you lost your quarterback to an injury in the middle of the game. You trailed by eight points in the fourth quarter. But freshman quarterback Keenan Reynolds took over and led you back in overtime. That’s when an unlikely hero — offensive lineman Jake Zuzek — gave you a —

      TEAM MEMBERS: Zu!

      THE PRESIDENT: Zu! — gave you a 28-21 win when he recovered a fumbled snap in the end zone for his first-ever touchdown. (Laughter.) I’m not sure Coach called the fumblerooski, but I bet that Jake will take it anyway..

      For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/04/12/remarks-president-presentation-commander-chiefs-trophy-us-naval-academy-

  27. The STOCK Act

    The Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act (“STOCK” ActPub.L. 112–105S. 2038, 126 Stat. 291, enacted April 4, 2012), is an Act of Congress designed to combat insider trading. It was signed into law by President Barack Obama on April 4, 2012. The bill prohibits the use of non-public information for private profit, including insider trading by members of Congress and other government employees. It confirms changes to the Commodity Exchange Act, specifies reporting intervals for financial transactions.

    Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/STOCK_Act

    • President Obama Signs the STOCK Act

      Matt Compton April 04, 2012 05:16 PM EDT

      Recently, President Obama has spent a lot of time talking about fairness.

      As he says, “The powerful shouldn’t get to create one set of rules for themselves and another set of rules for everybody else.”

      That’s why he stood before Congress during the State of the Union and asked lawmakers to pass the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act.

      Today, in a ceremony at the White House, he signed their bill into law:

      The STOCK Act makes it clear that if members of Congress use nonpublic information to gain an unfair advantage in the market, then they are breaking the law. It creates new disclosure requirements and new measures of accountability and transparency for thousands of federal employees. That is a good and necessary thing. We were sent here to serve the American people and look out for their interests — not to look out for our own interests.

      But the President also said that no one’s work is done:

      There’s obviously more that we can do to close the deficit of trust and limit the corrosive influence of money in politics. We should limit any elected official from owning stocks in industries that they have the power to impact.  We should make sure people who bundle campaign contributions for Congress can’t lobby Congress, and vice versa. These are ideas that should garner bipartisan support. They certainly have wide support outside of Washington. And it’s my hope that we can build off today’s bipartisan effort to get them done.

      Read the full remarks here.

      STOCK ACT SUMMARY : http://ethics.od.nih.gov/topics/STOCK/STOCK-ACT-SUMMARY.pdf

  28. ********************
    THIS POST IS NOW CLOSED NBLB

    Come on over to my newest post titled: “Paycheck Fairness Act Vote Blocked By House GOP ”

    ********************

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