rise and shine

Reuters – New applications for unemployment benefits dropped to a near four-year low last week, a government report on Thursday showed, pointing to continued improvement in the labor market.

The Labor Department said initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 50,000 to 352,000, the lowest level since April 2008 and the biggest drop since September 2005…..

More here

Steve Benen: The general trend on initial unemployment claims over the last two months has been largely encouraging, though there have been setbacks. Last week, for example, was a step in the wrong direction. This week’s report, however, was a very pleasant surprise. Initial claims not only dropped sharply, they fell to a level unseen in nearly four years.

More here




9:15: PBO departs the White House

11:40: Arrives in Orlando

12:35: Delivers remarks

2:15: Departs Orlando

4:30: Arrives in New York City

5:30: Delivers remarks at a campaign event (Daniel Restaurant, Print Pool)

6:30: Delivers remarks at a campaign event (Daniel Restaurant, Print Pool)

7:50: Delivers remarks at a campaign event (Private Residence, Print Pool)

9:25: Delivers remarks at a campaign event (Apollo Theatre, Pooled for TV)

11:05: Departs New York en route to Joint Base Andrews

12:20 Arrives at the White House






Charles Pierce: ….. The decision by the Obama administration to scuttle (for the moment) the Keystone XL pipeline for good already has been responsible for the birthing of many public cows among the president’s Republican opponents……

This was an act of authentic political courage. The Republicans have turned the pipeline into an idiotic campaign litmus test and hung a ridiculously short deadline on the approval process, a deadline that nobody directly affected by the project thought was in any way adequate….

More here



Sun Times: President Obama’s top strategist, David Axelrod, is launching an Institute of Politics at his alma mater, the University of Chicago, to create bipartisan programs bringing big names in politics to campus and internships for students.

“If years from now I run across young people who have participated in this Institute who are now writers and staffers and yes, candidates, we’ll have done our job well,” Axelrod said in a conference call on Wednesday.

The U. of C. institute will be largely modeled on Harvard University’s Institute of Politics….

More here


The Week


Steve Benen: With Mitt Romney still refusing to release his tax returns, we can only speculate as to why he’s so afraid of disclosure. The widely held assumption has been that the Republican frontrunner is embarrassed by his “15% problem” …. But that’s not the only thing Romney’s returns might show. Reuters’ Sam Youngman reported on a related issue:

His vast fortune is invested in dozens of funds linked to Bain Capital ….. Several Bain funds have offshore connections and take advantage of tax breaks used only by the U.S. financial elite…..

It’s worth clarifying that no one has accused Romney of doing anything illegal … But it doesn’t exactly help paint a picture of Romney as a “man of the people”…..

Full post here



TPM: Turns out Mitt Romney wasn’t the first GOP candidate in 35 years to take Iowa and New Hampshire. In fact, the certification of Iowa caucus votes conducted by the state GOP shows Rick Santorum likely won – by 34 votes, though officials are officially calling it a “split decision.”

More here


In case you missed it last night:


January 17, 2012. President Barack Obama unexpectedly runs into Michelle on her birthday in the basement of the White House.

Though official duties filled much of the day, Tuesday was also Michelle Obama’s 48th birthday. As the president returned to the West Wing in the evening, he unexpectedly met the First Lady. “Obama gave her several kisses and wished her a happy birthday then walked off,” Morris says. “It was the highlight of the day for me—something you can’t plan for as a photographer. It was the most interesting photograph for me of the day by far.”

Time (more photos at the link)

Thanks aamom

Spring. In. Step:
President Obama walks towards Marine One before his trip to Florida and New York, January 19

Morning everyone 😉

269 Responses to “rise and shine”

  1. 6 Dudette
    January 19, 2012 at 8:53 am

    Good Morning TOD

  2. January 19, 2012 at 8:54 am

    A little late, aren’t we, chips ?

    (shakes finger).

  3. 8 hopefruit2
    January 19, 2012 at 8:54 am

  4. January 19, 2012 at 8:57 am

    • 16 hopefruit2
      January 19, 2012 at 9:00 am

      Yes, 3 precincts are now “missing” their data. And they have declared that Santorum up by 34 votes is in a tie with Romney, who was declared the decisive winner when he was up by just 8 votes.

      That alone should be a major WARNING to voters that we cannot elect a GOP candidate as President of the US. They are irresponsible, bad at simple arithmetic, dishonest, unscrupulous, unethical. That translates to being a DANGER to our country’s future.

      Obama/biden 2012

      • January 19, 2012 at 9:05 am

        Indeedy, df. The typical rethugs’ tactic is to engage in what you falsely accuse the opposition of doing.

      • 18 halo
        January 19, 2012 at 9:10 am


      • 20 utaustinliberal
        January 19, 2012 at 9:27 am

        I woke up to the Romney camp trying to say that the 34 vote lead by Santorum wasn’t a decisive win. It’s funny how an 8 vote win for Willard was a decisive win but for Santorum it’s not. Other news shows are all saying this wasn’t a decisive win and it’s an undeclared number blah blah blah. Santorum should claim this as a win. Romney didn’t make history. He only won the primary he was expected to win and that’s because he lives in NH. I bet the Romney camp is nervous now. Good day all around especially with the jobless claims falling by 50K.

        • January 19, 2012 at 11:20 am

          ‘the Romney camp trying to say that the 34 vote lead by Santorum wasn’t a decisive win’ Actually according to their math it was ‘a virtual tie’


          I’m not sure how this reassures us about Willard’s ability to balance the budget. The way these politicians and their minions shuffle rules/expectations etc. around is insulting and IMO shows their lack of patriotism AND their total disrespect for voters. It is very reassuring to me that they are extremely unlikely to win the presidency, so in the long run their shenanigans won’t really matter.


          ‘Morning TOD Family! I’m going to see what’s being offered for brunch. 😆 Have a great day!

        • 22 57andFemale
          January 19, 2012 at 11:22 am

          Republican reasoning: lose the popular vote but act like you have a mandate. If a Democrat wins the White House, pummel him and obstruct his entire agenda from the minority.

          Have I mentioned how much I loathe republicans?

      • January 19, 2012 at 9:30 am

        This is just mind boggling, Hope. Not only is this an obvious game on the part of the GOP, but the media is blithely playing along with it. How convenient that these three precincts “lost” their votes and that everyone in those precincts has suffered amnesia. Bet there’s a plastic garbage bag with those votes that was hastily wrapped up and run out to the trash this week. If I were Rick Santorum (Oh Lord, brain bleach) I would make a big noise about it at the next debate and also hold a press conference today. All that inevitability crap came from the so-called non-existent sweep of two states. So he didn’t win Iowa and got a relatively anemic vote in NH. Why he’s practically tearing up the ground with his voter appeal.

        • January 19, 2012 at 10:32 am

          egg.sack.lee. the fifth columnist fourth estate – root of all evils.

        • January 19, 2012 at 10:36 am

          Good morning TOD.

          You know, there’s a good chance that Mitt probably would still havel won NH. But the possibly diminishes had he lost Iowa. And he certainly wouldn’t have been able to strut around talking about he’s the ONLY candidate to ever win both Iowa AND NH. Yeah, If I were Santorium (belch) I would definitely make a big noise.

  5. 26 FiredUpInCA
    January 19, 2012 at 8:57 am

    Congrats LOL!

    Mitt after his New Hampshire victory:

    “Romney says ‘we made history’ in N.H.”

    No Mitt you did not:

    “The certified numbers: 29,839 for Santorum and 29,805 for Romney. The turnout: 121,503.

    In the near term, the results are a shot of encouragement for Santorum, as well as the other anti-Romney candidates, who no longer have to contend with the idea that Romney won an unprecedented one-two victory in Iowa and New Hampshire.”

    – Politico

    After the Iowa caucus Steve Benen wrote:

    “I’ll just note for the record that the final tally was 122,255 votes cast. Yes, that barely surpassed the 2008 totals, but it fell short of expectations, and the larger circumstances suggest this year should have been much better — if Iowa Republicans turned out 119,000 when they were depressed and uninspired, turning out 122,000 when they’re supposed to be fired up, and bolstered by the Tea Party “movement,” represents something of a setback.

    Indeed, John Avlon called last night’s participation numbers an “ominous sign.””


    It turns out the final tally was actually lower than 122,000.

    Where is the evidence for the tsunami of GOP voter enthusiasm that the media and pollsters keep trying to sell?

  6. 27 donna dem 4 obama
    January 19, 2012 at 9:00 am

    Good Morning TOD.


  7. 29 desertflower
    January 19, 2012 at 9:03 am

    Moving in the right direction! http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/political-animal/2012_01/jobless_claims_reach_a_fouryea034847.php

    The number of Americans who filed requests for jobless benefits sank by 52,000 last week to 352,000, the lowest level since April 2008, the U.S. Labor Department said Thursday. Claims from two weeks ago were revised up to 402,000 from 399,000. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had projected claims would fall to a seasonally adjusted 375,000 in the week ended Jan. 14. The average of new claims over the past four weeks, meanwhile, dropped by a much smaller 3,500 to 379,000.

  8. January 19, 2012 at 9:09 am

    Just added a couple of photos from Time that aamom spotted – thanks a million!

    • January 19, 2012 at 9:12 am

      This is what tickled me so much was what the photographer said:
      “Though official duties filled much of the day, Tuesday was also Michelle Obama’s 48th birthday. As the president returned to the West Wing in the evening, he unexpectedly met the First Lady. “Obama gave her several kisses and wished her a happy birthday then walked off,” Morris says. “It was the highlight of the day for me—something you can’t plan for as a photographer. It was the most interesting photograph for me of the day by far.”

      Read more: http://lightbox.time.com/2012/01/19/inside-barack-obamas-world/#ixzz1jugYk600

    • 36 MsKitty (@michelec64)
      January 19, 2012 at 10:47 am

      Those two should really get a room 😉

      Seriously, I can’t ever remember seeing any First Couple (for me that’s as far back Richard and Pat Nixon) having that kind of genuine connection and obvious attraction to each other. When I see pics of them like this (another one is the inaugural night photo in the elevator where FLOTUS has PBO’s jacket over her shoulders) I almost feel like a peeping Tom.

      I’m glad they have each other to lean on since they have to deal with ridiculous amounts of crap on a daily basis.

      • January 19, 2012 at 10:51 am

        My most loved photo ever MsKitty!

        Reggie and the SS crack me up, they don’t know where to look!

      • 38 april
        January 19, 2012 at 1:48 pm

        I love their intimacy. Although, the Obamas love to touch, the best photos for me are when their hands are in their pockets or by their sides and they simply look in each others eyes or Barack whispers in Michelle’s ear, are they simply kiss. Sometimes they hug and kiss, but I love the pics where they are close and connected, but they don’t touch.

  9. January 19, 2012 at 9:13 am


    CNN: Perry To Drop Out Of The Race Thursday

    Rick Perry will drop out of the presidential race on Thursday, two sources tell CNN. This is a developing story…


    • 40 hopefruit2
      January 19, 2012 at 9:14 am

      Yup I just saw that. I had a feeling it was coming..I happened to (bravely) browse a certain site (with the name “red”) and they were having a complete and utter meltdown about Perry needing to drop out soon, and neither Romney nor Gingrich being able to beat PBO.

      • 41 Bill
        January 19, 2012 at 9:25 am

        The “red” site you mention gives a better view of what the right wing tea party nuts are actually thinking than the MSM. Their dislike for Willard is evident on the site. I hate to admit it, but looking at it in the privacy of one’s own home is worthwhile. Just don’t tell anyone.

        • 42 CFK1
          January 19, 2012 at 10:33 am

          Yeah, Bill, I just visited there for the first time a few days ago. I was so surprised to read how utterly disgusted so many of them are with Fox News. Plus, a number of them WERE calling Romney a vulture capitalist.

      • 43 utaustinliberal
        January 19, 2012 at 9:32 am

        I saw this on CNN too and broke out laughing. Hahahaha. Romney must be sweating bullets now. First he finds out he didn’t win Iowa, and now with Perry dropping out of the race and Gingrich coming up in the SC polls, Romney’s going to have an even harder time on the road to becoming the GOP clown in chief. The icing on the cake will be Santorum dropping out after the SC primary. The next slate of primaries are all Southern states so that should be interesting to watch.

        • January 19, 2012 at 10:17 am

          The icing on the cake will be Santorum …… Or Perry endorsing Newt, Uh Oh, umm Is a possibility, Interesting

          • 45 Mel
            January 19, 2012 at 11:27 am

            Perry is endorsing Newt, and I will not be surprise if Sanatorioum will endorse Newy as well.
            James Dobso the Evangelical leader told politico, that he will endorse Sanatorioum, because
            Newt’s Wive calista was his mistress for 8 years no surprise ther eather.

      • 46 donna dem 4 obama
        January 19, 2012 at 9:34 am

        Ahhh confessions I go over there sometimes for a good laugh as well. Then I go bleach my eyes for purification afterwards. 😆

    • 47 donna dem 4 obama
      January 19, 2012 at 9:18 am

      Wow stuff is starting to get juicy….

    • 48 TrumpDog
      January 19, 2012 at 9:21 am

      I’m going to confess something here. I actually thought Perry would be a HUGE threat when he threw his hat in.

      Until he started speaking.

      Good riddance. That guy is DUMB. I don’t know how he’s gotten elected so many times.

      • 49 donna dem 4 obama
        January 19, 2012 at 9:24 am

        I was “concerned” about him as well TD because of all the hoopla we were hearing coming our of Texas and then, as you said, he opened his mouth and wow it was GWB on steroids.

        • 50 JojoRaze
          January 19, 2012 at 1:21 pm

          He made W look smart. W knew he wasn’t too bright and picked people smarter than him to make up his campaign and administration. He always said “I tell people Condi is the one with the Ph.D.” He had self-awareness about his limitations in that regard. Perry on the other hand really thinks that idiocy is the new smart–it ain’t and that’s why he has to drop out. The crop of Repubs have made me grudgingly respect W. He knew he had to trick people into things. Perry is like “I am stupid vote for me.”

      • January 19, 2012 at 9:25 am

        I was EXACTLY the same TrumpDog. When he declared, my heart sank – I’d heard so many pundits say he would be a major threat. And then, like you, I listened to the guy and, well, I just laughed. He is vacant.

        • 52 donna dem 4 obama
          January 19, 2012 at 9:36 am

          “he is vacant”…I love that Chips! 😆

        • January 19, 2012 at 11:28 am

          I have some friends in Austin and they’ve been badmouthing Perry for years, so I had a little hint that he wouldn’t fare well. But, GAHHHHH, I never dreamed the guy who’s gone so far in Texas politics could be that much of a total idiot. Apologies to our good TOD friends in Texas, but, seriously?

      • January 19, 2012 at 9:40 am

        Yeah, people were saying he had never lost an election, was a ruthless campaigner and formidable fundraiser. He was supposed to be the giant, the big game changer. Well whoever that Rick Perry was, it wasn’t the dumb guy who entered the national arena. This was like the great and powerful Oz being just a little man manipulating images. Talk about not being ready for prime time. Someday someone may have a plausible explanation of how such a little man got such a big image.

        • 55 JoJothecat
          January 19, 2012 at 10:35 am

          When Perry ran for Gov this last time he refused to debate…now we know why. I hope the people of Texas now know what a dope they have as Gov and vote him out!

        • January 19, 2012 at 10:52 am

          I think the final nail in Perry’s coffin were his very uninformed comments about Turkey. He almost single-handedly caused an international incident that could have had borne some very ugly results. It brought major push back from those of us who know something about U.S./Turkey affairs, but most importantly, it brought out top Turkish officials who reprimanded him like he was a two year old. I especially liked the one official’s comment about the ignorance of all of the GOP candidates in the area of foreign affairs. It felt so good having someone tell these tools what they need to hear. If PBO had said it, he would have been vilified, but he didn’t have to, high ranking Turkish officials did the job beautifully and embarrassed the h3ll out of not only Perry, but all of the GOP candidates and anyone who might be thinking of voting for them. It’s sad, but many in the Republican Party also have no clue how well-liked and respected PBO is by many leaders in other countries.

        • January 19, 2012 at 4:08 pm

          Yeah, people were saying he had never lost an election, was a ruthless campaigner and formidable fundraiser.

          And Sarah Palin had an 80 % approval rate as Governor of Alaska.

          [ Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it ]

      • January 19, 2012 at 11:13 am

        Not bragging here but I never believed it. The big tip off? He refused to debate his opponents. That means he’s rarely if ever been forced to defend or articulate his policies. He wasn’t ready for prime time.

        • 59 PoliticalJunkessa
          January 19, 2012 at 11:22 am

          I’m not bragging here right along with you. I never thought he was a threat. All I needed to hear was “governor of Texas” to know he would never make it out of the gate.

          • January 19, 2012 at 11:36 am

            Yeah and somehow all his drama about wanting to secede from the Union didn’t impress me much.

          • January 19, 2012 at 11:58 am


      • 62 57andFemale
        January 19, 2012 at 11:25 am

        I did, too. But I didn’t realize how dumb he really is. Although that’s usually a virtue to Republicans.

  10. 63 a4alice
    January 19, 2012 at 9:13 am

    holy mackeral chips you’re on fiyah. w00t!

  11. January 19, 2012 at 9:14 am

  12. 70 Linda
    January 19, 2012 at 9:17 am

    Gee the basement of the White House is really nice…..how cute they are.

  13. January 19, 2012 at 9:17 am

    Rick perry just dropped out.

    Pass the popcorn!

  14. 74 desertflower
    January 19, 2012 at 9:18 am

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line Seriously, read the whole thing:)

    • 75 a4alice
      January 19, 2012 at 9:24 am

      are you feeling better today DF?

      • 76 desertflower
        January 19, 2012 at 9:29 am

        A little better:) Still stuffy, but better:) That means I won’t be on today like yesterday…..so much going on, I’m going to miss all the stuff!
        Thanks for thinking of me, alice. Anyone know where PBO is going to be speaking in Phoenix??? This is what’s REALLY killing me!

  15. January 19, 2012 at 9:18 am

    • 78 hopefruit2
      January 19, 2012 at 9:24 am

      Perry will endorse Newt, Politico tells us.

      • 80 donna dem 4 obama
        January 19, 2012 at 9:26 am


        I want a long drawn out primary. Let them spend millions defending themselves and getting politically bloodied in the process.

        • 82 utaustinliberal
          January 19, 2012 at 9:51 am

          Me too Donna. I sincerely hope he endorses Newt. So those voters can boost Newt’s standing in the SC primary. I want a bloodied up Romney. I want him sweating bullets and realizing that there aint such a thing as a free lunch. That he can’t just make up horrific lies about PBO, dodge his record as Gov. of MA, dodge his Bain record, think he won Iowa, and coast to the nomination. Yes, he might be the eventual nominee (or not, stranger things have happened in this clown race) but his opponents; especially the angry teddy bear or angry muffin Newt will fight tooth and nail along the road to the clown convention.

  16. 83 FiredUpInCA
    January 19, 2012 at 9:19 am

    “11.57am: Jude Law has accepted a settlement of £130,000 plus legal costs from News International. Law has also issued legal action against the Sun, Amelia Hill has tweeted.

    11.52am: The BBC’s Tom Symonds has tweeted that, according to a statement read to court, Jude Law had his voicemail intercepted on US soil.


    An article about this from July:

    “Jude Law who says that the Murdoch-owned Sun hacked into his phone while he was at JFK airport in 2005 and used information from a voicemail in four articles.

    If this is confirmed along with other multiple cases of phone hacking, News Corp. could face charges for not only wiretap or wire fraud charges but also racketeering, due to the widespread violations.”


    • 84 TrumpDog
      January 19, 2012 at 9:23 am

      It would be nice if the fucking “liberal media” would report this as much as they promoted that book about FL Michelle Obama.

  17. 85 donna dem 4 obama
    January 19, 2012 at 9:22 am

    My goodness what I Good News Thursday this is turning out to be

  18. January 19, 2012 at 9:24 am

    Does anyone find mittens’ cackle more irritating than dubya’s ?

  19. 91 halo
    January 19, 2012 at 9:25 am


    BYE BYE Texas Gov. Rick Perry will drop out of the race for the Republican presidential nomination on Thursday ahead of South Carolina’s primary election, CNN reports.


    • 92 desertflower
      January 19, 2012 at 9:31 am

      So funny. I told my husband that the main thing that Perry accomplished by running for Pres. is that now the ENTIRE state of Tx. knows he’s an ass!

        January 19, 2012 at 9:44 am


        • 96 57andFemale
          January 19, 2012 at 11:30 am

          I’m Jewish. One of the things I always liked about Yom Kippur was the distinction between sins to God and sins to your fellow man. You got no simple absolution for your sins against your fellow man on the Day of Atonement. You were told to go fix that yourself, man to man.

          Always liked that.

      • 97 Cindy Sweatt
        January 19, 2012 at 11:06 am

        So funny is right. What an embarrassment.

      • 98 Pamela
        January 19, 2012 at 11:29 am

        So it was worth it! Self- undoing …. Another way of looking at the karmic package!

      • 99 lovingandlaughing
        January 19, 2012 at 12:04 pm

        good one df!

    • January 19, 2012 at 10:25 am

      Rick Perry drops out?…….. OOPS! 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  20. January 19, 2012 at 9:27 am

    • 102 donna dem 4 obama
      January 19, 2012 at 9:31 am

      I don’t even live there and heck i’m emarrassed for them 😳

    • January 19, 2012 at 9:50 am

      Okay, here’s an idea for Texas. Vote for President Obama in 2012 and turn Texas blue. Throw out your backward Republican congressman and deliver up some solid Dems. Then make sure you find the best Democratic candidate in the state and get yourself a new governor in 2014.

      • 105 JoJothecat
        January 19, 2012 at 10:44 am

        Texas used to be very blue than sometime in the 90’s they voted for “W” and it turned red and down it went….just like what “W” tried to do with america.

  21. January 19, 2012 at 9:28 am

    yeah, it’s going to twitter day alright. Hope I don’t break the innernetz today.

  22. 107 halo
    January 19, 2012 at 9:29 am


    January 19, 2012 at 9:38 am


  24. 121 FiredUpInCA
    January 19, 2012 at 9:39 am

    “People will have to judge me,” Gingrich said. “But 16- and 20-year-old stories, you know, we have real stories this week on the failure of the Obama administration.”


    Newt leave the President out of your mistress mess. You own this character issue, regardless of the letter from your kids.

    “ABC News or other campaigns may want to talk about the past, just days before an important primary election,” said the letter from Kathy Lubbers and Jackie Cushman, his two daughters from his first marriage.

    But the two women said their father was more interested in discussing creating jobs, lowering taxes and defeating President Obama. “We are confident this is the conversation the people of South Carolina are interested in having,” they said.”


    Actually, your father would rather talk about the President being a food stamp President and black people being a food stamp race and poor kids become janitors.

    So don’t try to claim a moral high ground on behalf of your father who is currently engaging in the most base appeal of anyone running for President of the United States.

    • 122 JoJothecat
      January 19, 2012 at 10:53 am

      Their father was not interested in running the government during his rein as Speaker…he was interested in trashing President Bill Clinton and Fist Lady Hillary with multiple investigations that cost the taxpayer over $25 million and all he got was the president lying about an affair with a consulting adult which Newt himself was doing at the time. I don’t know how they can defend their father with a straight face. Apparently their father felt the american public needed to know the details of president Clintons affair so I guess the people of SC and the rest of american has the right to hear about a candidate who wants to be president past affairs as well.

  25. January 19, 2012 at 9:44 am

    Someone has a spring in his step this morning:

    • 127 hopefruit2
      January 19, 2012 at 9:49 am

      Well G’morning Mr. President! A nice day today, isn’t it? We’re right with you Sir! Say hello to Florida, FLOTUS and the girls for us 🙂

    • 128 utaustinliberal
      January 19, 2012 at 9:58 am

      Shoot! If I were him I’d be doing handsprings all the way to AF1. Romney’s Bain record revealing a garage full of skeletons, Romney having secret funds and tax havens in the Cayman Islands, Bain having secret tax havens in the Cayman Islands, Romney effectively paying less taxes than the so called “middleclass” (his warped version of the 1%) he purports to want to save, Romney waking up to find out that he didn’t win Iowa, Santorum did. Perry dropping out and likely endorsing Gingrich. Jobless claims hitting a four year low and the tourism initiative PBO is undertaking will bring in about hundreds of thousands to 1 million jobs. Yep; I’d have a spring in my step too.

      January 19, 2012 at 10:11 am


    • January 19, 2012 at 10:31 am

      Oh yeah Chips, I’ll say, he’s springing, hehehe 🙂

    • 134 itgurl_29
      January 19, 2012 at 11:02 am

      Well, it was Mrs. Obama’s birthday last night. Now where did I put that naughty mat?

    • January 19, 2012 at 1:32 pm

      Well, it was his wife’s birthday last night…ahem.

  26. January 19, 2012 at 10:02 am


    • 138 JoJothecat
      January 19, 2012 at 11:00 am

      The guy who got stranded at Mt. Rainer, WA good have used those books to keep warm instead of burning his money….he survived unharmed thank goodness.

  27. January 19, 2012 at 10:02 am

  28. January 19, 2012 at 10:03 am

    January 19, 2012 at 10:07 am


  30. January 19, 2012 at 10:07 am

    I haven’t seen this asked yet, but W-T-F did Romney think he was gonna do in 2008, if he had won the GOP Nomination? did his arrogant ass really think he wasn’t gonna have to release his tax returns?

    and, he’s been running since 2007…this mofo is actually arrogant enough not to have been planning for this situation?

  31. January 19, 2012 at 10:14 am

  32. 158 donna dem 4 obama
    January 19, 2012 at 10:15 am

    Can someone else go look but did that “trashy book” drop completely off the best sellers list? 😆

    January 19, 2012 at 10:16 am


  34. January 19, 2012 at 10:19 am

  35. January 19, 2012 at 10:22 am

    I was listening to the Stephanie Miller show this morning and Steve Isreal was on. He’s very impressive. He talked about the new campaign to turn states from red to blue and talked about some of the new candidates running. They sound very impressive!

  36. 176 donna dem 4 obama
    January 19, 2012 at 10:23 am

    Elizabeth Warren is hosting a money bomb today to raise funds for her Senate campaign.
    If you can spare 5 or 10.00 please stop by her fundraiser and drop a little something in the bucket. Your donation will go a long way toward helping her to win back that Senate seat.


  37. January 19, 2012 at 10:24 am

  38. January 19, 2012 at 10:26 am

    While OFA organizes everything, the DNC has a bunch of fighters on their team.
    I am pleased with the one, two punch!

  39. 180 donna dem 4 obama
    January 19, 2012 at 10:30 am

  40. 181 PoliticalJunkessa
    January 19, 2012 at 10:32 am

    Oh my @ those beautiful photos of PBO and his sweetheart! ♥ ♥ ♥

  41. 182 dotster3
    January 19, 2012 at 10:35 am

    Caught a glance of a tweet from ABC’s George S.—–don’t know if it was a jokey or for real—-but said that Newt’s 2nd wifey reports that Mankini Newtini wanted an open marriage. There were takers? Willing participants? Ewwwwwwwww. Some women are really desperado!

    • January 19, 2012 at 10:38 am

      I think I’m going to be ill.

    • January 19, 2012 at 11:06 am

      I just saw a clip of his second wife on MSNBC saying EXACTLY that – Newt wanted her to agree to an open marriage. She said no. The guy who was being interviewed said that he believed Americans wouldn’t like this “sort of thing” coming out now from a “bitter wife”and that it probably wouldn’t hurt Newt. Really??? I think Americans would LOVE to know if their potential president (not a chance in hell) is a sleazeball.

      • 185 dotster3
        January 19, 2012 at 11:32 am

        And Brian Ross was just on The View airing that clip of Wifey #2 saying Newt wanted an open marriage and told her Calista let him do whatever he wants, that he admitted when he called her to say he loved her he was in bed with Calista. Ross also reminded that Newt asked for divorce from Wife #1 while she was undergoing cancer treatments and asked for divorce from Wife #2 right after she had been diagnosed with MS. That Newtie-Patootie, quite the guy, isn’t he? Slightly lacking in the morals department. A snake.

  42. January 19, 2012 at 10:36 am

    Lady Rothschilds??? Really? She is a bundler for Robney!

  43. 190 Bill
    January 19, 2012 at 10:42 am

    The worst woman in the world next to the half term governor, Lady Lynn Whatever, is on MSNBC saying Willard has nothing to worry about. She wenr from Hillary, to McCain, to Huntsman, and now I guess to Willard. As long as Lady Lynn Whatever is supporting Willard he is toast.

  44. January 19, 2012 at 10:51 am

    • 204 FiredUpInCA
      January 19, 2012 at 11:14 am

      The administration’s actions on SOPA were courageous too as they were receiving lots of pressure from Hollywood to support it:

      “The [anti-piracy] acts are very important to us, but no one has discussed a boycott,” an unnamed studio executive is quoted saying. “This is a personal issue for everyone. Some will support Obama. Some won’t.” Andy Spahn, the political aide to Jeffrey Katzenberg, said the DreamWorks Animation exec will continue to raise money for Obama, “although disappointed with the White House statement on SOPA.”


  45. 207 halo
    January 19, 2012 at 10:53 am

    I agree with Sullivan in that clip as to why PBO and his team hasn’t been defending them like he has. Maybe they think it’s useless in a 24/7 media cycle. Hopefully Team Chicago has lots of ads cooking up.

  46. 209 FiredUpInCA
    January 19, 2012 at 10:57 am

    Good grief. This is not a unified party:

    “Gingrich said Wednesday that “it would be helpful” if Perry and Rick Santorum dropped out of the race before the primary. “Obviously, my pitch is, if conservatives come together, we beat Romney decisively,” he said. “If conservatives are split, he might squeak through with a plurality.”


    • 210 Pamela
      January 19, 2012 at 11:15 am

      “obviously, MY PITCH IS” …….. Would you buy a used car from this man? Does he have any freaking clue how out of touch with the 3rd millennium he truly is?

    • January 19, 2012 at 11:38 am

      They might not be unified on the campaign trail, but the peeps are getting ready to fall in line.


      I didn’t speak to a single person at the Myrtle Beach convention who truly wants Romney as the nominee.
      They don’t like the fact that he once supported full equality for gay Americans and that he was once pro-choice. They absolutely hate the fact that he signed public health care — “Romneycare” — into law as governor of Massachusetts, just the way that “socialist in the White House” did two years ago.
      Plus he skipped their convention.
      “It’ll probably be Romney,” Babs Utley, from the Hilton Head Tea Party chapter, told me with a grimace. “I figure it will, but I don’t want it to be.”
      Would that not be a compromise of Tea Party principle?
      “Well, yeah,” she replied, “but what would you do? Would you vote for Obama?”

      If the deeply conservative, white, Christian, Tea-Party-inclined Republicans of South Carolina endorse him Saturday, he will almost certainly be the nominee.
      The great compromise will have been made.
      A quick note about South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley. She is a brilliant speaker and a bit of an anomaly in the Tea Party as well as in the state’s government. While she was born in South Carolina and peppers her speeches with “y’all,” she was raised Sikh before converting to Christianity.
      Conservatives who object to the all-white characterization of the movement point to Haley as proof of their diversity, and indeed, she was the only non-white at the Myrtle Beach convention. — N.M.

      • 212 prettyfoot58
        January 19, 2012 at 11:52 am

        If by Conservatives we are talking about audience that cheered Gingrich and booed Williams at the last debate….i would rename them….they are racists…

        Pressssssss ON!

  47. 213 halo
    January 19, 2012 at 11:03 am

    Time to breka out the Muppet photo! Another one bites the dust!

  48. 214 CFK1
    January 19, 2012 at 11:06 am


    2 Days of Prayer for U.S. Elections – Fri, Jan 20 & Sat, Jan 21, 2012

    Hi all,

    Please join me in 2 days of prayer (with optional fasting) for the U.S. elections.

    Dates of Special Days of Prayer: Fri, Jan 20 & Sat, Jan 21, 2012 (The South Carolina primary will be Sat, Jan 21.)

    Time: Please pray at whatever time works best for you.

    More details: Do a partial-day fast, full-day fast, or skip fasting altogether —whichever works best for you. If you don’t feel comfortable praying for a particular result in the Repub primary, then please pray for PBO to win in the general election. It’s not too early.

    I’ m sorry I’m just posting info on this now. It was a last minute idea to do this, and I made revisions to my post from yesterday. I’ll give more of a heads up next time.

    • 215 Pamela
      January 19, 2012 at 11:12 am

      No thanks.

    • 216 dotster3
      January 19, 2012 at 11:17 am

      No thanks.

      January 19, 2012 at 11:20 am


    • January 19, 2012 at 11:37 am

      Hi CFK1, again, I really don’t want to offend you, or anyone else here who is religious, but I’d honestly prefer not to have religion mixed with politics on the blog. I’m completely fine, of course, with people of faith here offering prayers for those they love. I hope you don’t mind.

      • 220 edp4bho
        January 19, 2012 at 11:52 am

        HI Chips. Didn’t know you felt this way. Of course, I love President Obama, so I will always pray for him, and keep it to myself. But, if I slip up every now and then, and use God in conjunction with PBO, his family, and his administration, as well as his supporters, will I be dejected? Just asking.

      • 221 CFK1
        January 19, 2012 at 3:12 pm

        Your clarification today helps me get a clearer idea of where you stand, Chipsticks; yesterday, the comment you wrote made it seem that you just didn’t want me specifically asking people to pray for Romney to lose the nomination. That is why I modified my post to be more general – a request for prayer for the U.S. election. And then, I thought that people could decide how specifically they wanted to pray for the election.

        I have been posting invitations to events like these since 2007 on the BarackObama blog. Many people participated in them (and similar events hosted by others) from the Iowa caucus in 2008, and throughout the 2008 primary and general election; there were also several participants during the health-care reform initiative. It’s a shame that you are choosing to sideline people who want to rally each other to use their faith to bring about an outcome desirable to you: President Obama’s re-election. Even President Obama that you support ardently has said that faith should not be banished from the public square (i.e. when discussing issues of politics and governance). Yet, that is what you are attempting to do.

        And you may say: “Well, pray about the election in private and not on the blog.” That more nuanced position is one I would be able to work with, if that’s what you actually requested it. But you have made a more far- reaching request. You are telling me, an Obama supporters, that I can’t even post an INVITATION on a blog for people to participate in special days of prayer in their own homes. That’s squashing people’s constitutional right to assemble. (During a special day of prayer people may gather with family and friends to pray.) Yes, it’s your blog, so you don’t HAVE to honor the Constitutional rights of every blog reader/commenter; but you could certainly take the high road and voluntarily honor those constitutional rights when they are being used in service of a goal that you share (PBO’s re-election).

        Additionally, don’t forget we are trying to build a coalition here, so that enough American citizens will actually vote to re-elect President Obama. If the Democratic Party were more flexible, it would be able to pick up more of the people of faith, who continually flock to the Republican Party. After all, the message of justice (economic and otherwise) resonates with the teachings of many of the world religions. But there are rigid gatekeepers like you who insist on their way or the high way on matters of faith, alienating people instead of being willing to create a bigger umbrella. It seems you’d rather be “pure” than have increased success. If the Democrats had more seats in Congress, wouldn’t it be easier for the president to push his agenda through?

        As we did successfully in the 2008 campaign, it is prudent to have a huge number of people with one goal, and give them leeway as to how they reach that goal. People can then have the choice to opt in or out of activities that they are interested in. Consider this scenario: A person from a religious background different from my own posts an invitation on an Obama blog. The person is inviting people to gather at his / her house of worship to pray for the president’s re-election. I probably wouldn’t attend, but I’d be fully supportive of their right to post such an invitation. Why? I realize that the president is not going to get elected just based on the votes of people who agree with me on every issue –including the issue of which religion to practice (if any). I have to be flexible and coalition-minded. I would recommend you do the same. My hope was that we would build upon what was done in the 2008 campaign and even expand our coalition, not drive people away. Here I am trying to convince more people of faith to vote for the president, and now you give me this ugly episode to share with them. In an election year? Yikes!!!

        Please remember that there are many people who read blogs, but rarely or never comment; your blog still has the potential to influence them to vote for the President. Don’t think that because you may not see a huge # of people of faith writing comments disagreeing you on this, that they aren’t out there reading and taking notes. Be coalition-minded. Don’t alienate where a little compromise would have worked. Isn’t that one of the reasons we lambast the tea party caucus in Congress?

        I have no hard feelings toward you, though we disagree. I wish you the best. Don’t waste the opportunity that you have with this blog. Thousands may suffer and experience untimely deaths (for example, in ill-conceived wars) if the wrong person is elected President of the U.S. Let us remember that we are not supporting a candidate who has a fabulous, earth-shattering job approval rating. We need all the votes we can reasonably get.

        • January 19, 2012 at 4:05 pm

          Hi CFK1, we’ll just have to agree to disagree on mixing religion with politics, my own view is that it’s a dangerous blend when you start calling for prayers ‘against’ a candidate, whoever they are – including Mitt Romney. It makes my skin crawl when the wingnuts do it against PBO, I think we should be better than that. And I truly doubt if God, or any benevolent higher power people believe in, would welcome prayers ‘against’ someone.

          So, that’s just the way it is here. I’m not quashing your ‘constitutional right to assemble’ at all, I’m just saying I don’t want religion put to negative use on my personal blog.

          • 223 CFK1
            January 19, 2012 at 4:51 pm

            Yesterday, you made the comment that you’d prefer if I didn’t ask people to pray against a negative situation happening. I changed the information about the event and in the changes did not ask anyone to pray that Romney loses the election. I left it open to them to decide how they would specifically pray about the election. I made the changes, then you came out and said the real issue was you don’t want any mention of religion and politics on your blog unless its people praying for family members and others they love. So, this is not about putting religion to “negative” use on your personal blog. You should just have been more straightforward in your response yesterday instead of using the smoke screen of religion being put to “negative” use on your blog. You’ve used the same smoke screen today to justify the discriminatory stance you’ve taken against an attempt for people of faith to assemble.

            (By the way, when you pray for someone to win in an election, you’re by definition also praying for someone to lose. And when you pray against a negative thing, it’s akin to praying for a positive thing. However, I’m not dogmatic about how people decide to orient their prayers; they should be allowed to organize special events to pray.)
            As you said, we’ll just agree to disagree.

        • January 19, 2012 at 4:35 pm

          if people are coming to this blog, they’ll be voting for PBO—with or without your prayer meeting. Keep on working for PBO’s re-election, believe me, we’ll be seeing you at the ballot boxes.I’m pretty sure 10 or 20 more people praying on a specified day isn’t going to increase the likelihood of Barack Obama winning a second term. The only thing that will prevent PBO having a second term is GOP cheating and we already know that we must be diligent in our monitoring.

    • 225 edp4bho
      January 19, 2012 at 11:47 am

      Thanks. I’ll do this in addition to my normal everyday prayer for PBO.

    • 227 lovingandlaughing
      January 19, 2012 at 12:00 pm

      this kind of thing does not interest me.

      • 228 CFK1
        January 19, 2012 at 3:00 pm

        Hi lovingandlaughing,

        I recognize that this will appeal to some, not to others, like so many things in life. I say, in this situation, live and let live. We are all striving for the same goal: the re-election of PBO. Some will opt for one set of activities to achieve that goal, and others may opt for another set, but we are still part of the same pluralistic coalition. No hard feelings. Ditto to Pamster and dotser3. For the record, on the BarackObama blog, I had to continually encounter a person who made what I considered to be disrespectful remarks about my Creator. But in this pluralistic coalition, I had to be willing to accommodate him because he has the right to express his atheism/agnostim, Similarly, the people who did not want to participate in special days of prayers accommodated the people who did, by recognizing our right to post invitations about a prayer event. We built a coalition that achieved the election of the first AA President in the U.S., against all odds, including the Clinton juggernaut. i hope that we continue to build a large-umbrella party, even beyond the 2008 numbers.

        • January 19, 2012 at 4:45 pm

          CFK1, I believe in God, but i ‘m pretty sure a prayer coalition did ‘achieve the election of the first AA president in the US.’—–that was hard work on the part of PBO and grassroots efforts of good, decent, hard working folks who believed in one man’s vision of the future—-many of those same people are on this blog and will work harder this election cycle than they did last time.—-As my childhood pastor would say: God helps those who helps themselves.

        • 230 EDP4BHO
          January 19, 2012 at 8:46 pm

          You have a spectacular and very generous heart CFK1. Much respect for your easy temperament. Will be joining you tomorrow…..sshhh 😀 We’ll be quiet !

    • 231 prettyfoot58
      January 19, 2012 at 12:10 pm


      it seems bad karma to me to ask for bad things to happen to folks…

      I would much rather pray for the Creator to enlighten those folks who would cheer at the racist demogogery of the Republican Party…to put love in their hearts …where there is hatred…Amen

      Pressssssssssssss ON!!

  49. January 19, 2012 at 11:13 am

    January 19, 2012 at 11:16 am


  51. 236 FiredUpInCA
    January 19, 2012 at 11:17 am

    If God told Bachmann and Perry to run, who tells them to drop out?

  52. 241 Lorraine
    January 19, 2012 at 11:23 am

    ABC wants Willard Romney to beat President Obama I hope yawl realize this one thing. I’m not a fan of Newt but I think going after him in just a personal way, reels of ABC’s motives for 2012. They are trying to move Willard’s taxes off the front page. Remember ABC were the first ones to bring up Jeremiah Wright. A hint to the wise is sufficient.

    • 242 LOL
      January 19, 2012 at 11:27 am

      Yup…they want to be a part of the story. I wonder why they never interviewed McCain’s first wife? Or the abortion doctor Karen Santorum lived with…who happened to be 30 yrs her senior and the person who delivered her.

    • 245 Britt
      January 19, 2012 at 11:39 am

      ABC sucks, especially when they host debates. I don’t like Newt, but I really don’t like what the media is trying to do, which is put Mitt on a platform, and hide all his secrets.

    • 246 itgurl_29
      January 19, 2012 at 11:42 am

      Obviously, ABC and the Romney camp are working together and I think this is actually gonna backfire on Willard. I cannot stand Newt. He’s a bigoted piece of crap and an all around disgusting, both in physical appearance and personality. But this interview with his ex-wife is just too much of a dirty trick, IMHO. Yeah, I think what Newt did to her totally matters and speaks to the horrible kind of man that he is. But the way this is being presented is just slimy. It would be one thing if she just called a press conference on her own to tell her story. But it’s so obvious that Willard and ABC got together, most certainly gave her some kind of money, and are hoping this stops Newts current surge.

      I still want Romney to win this thing because it would be particularly pleasurable to see PBO beat their number one “most electable” guy, who also happens to be a jerk of epic proportions. But I would love to see Newt give Romney a run for his money and slap that rich boy smirk off his face. A brokered convention with Romney coming out on top after being totally bloodied by Gingrich would be an ideal situation to me.

  53. 247 CTGirl
    January 19, 2012 at 11:25 am

    Kathleen Parker has a followup piece “Speaking of Michelle Obama, upon further review …”

  54. 252 FiredUpInCA
    January 19, 2012 at 11:26 am

    Open Marriage Newt:

    “Newt Gingrich’s second ex-wife told ABC News that the Republican presidential candidate sought an “open marriage” and that his campaign positions do not coincide with what she saw during their 18 years of marriage.

    Marianne Gingrich, in her first television interview since the couple’s 1999 divorce, told ABC News that when Gingrich admitted to a six-year affair with a Congressional aide, he asked her if she would share him with the other woman, Callista, who is now married to Gingrich.

    “And I just stared at him and he said, ‘Callista doesn’t care what I do,'” Marianne Gingrich told ABC News. “He wanted an open marriage and I refused.”

    – Fox

  55. 254 Linda
    January 19, 2012 at 11:27 am

    Here is an audio of the Marianne Gingrich interview from Brian Ross

    • 255 Lorraine
      January 19, 2012 at 11:40 am

      Brown Ross was the reporter who did the hit job on President Obama regarding Wright. Also as a born again Christian myself, all have sinned and come short of the glory of God, if Newton Leroy win SC that is what those voters will say as the reason they noted for Newt.

      • 256 Linda
        January 19, 2012 at 11:46 am

        I think he has also appear live on Fox

      • 257 JoJothecat
        January 19, 2012 at 11:57 am

        Funny….they did not have the same compassion for Bill Clinton.

      • 258 JoJothecat
        January 19, 2012 at 12:25 pm

        I won’t stay up to watch it. It sounds like “old” news..nothing new from the Vanity Fair article. BR’s angle is on an investigation that did not go anywhere and the reason he was investigated for ethics violations, fined, and drummed out of the Speakership…all old news but maybe new news for folks who were not around back in the 90’s.

    • January 19, 2012 at 11:41 am

      Somebody really wants Romney to win.

    • January 19, 2012 at 12:04 pm

      Thanks for that Linda, crikey, it’s all a bit ugly. Mr Family Values wanted an open marriage? Good grief.

  56. January 19, 2012 at 11:29 am

    ON THE OTHER END OF PENNSYLVANIA AVE., there was puzzlement, bordering on disgust, in the West Wing on Wednesday at all the professions of shock and outrage at Obama’s decision to reject the Keystone XL pipeline. “Um, … this came as a surprise to anybody?” said a person close to Obama. “There was never the slightest bit of doubt we were going to say no.” Samuelsohn and Glenn Thrush have the story: http://politi.co/yAmswl.

  57. January 19, 2012 at 11:37 am

    BUT AS IT TURNS OUT, the labor movement is not a monolith, and some unions backed Obama’s decision. The SEIU, CWA, United Auto Workers, Transport Workers Union and United Steelworkers Union joined NRDC and the Sierra Club in a statement attacking Republicans for blocking other White House jobs initiatives and backing Obama for his Keystone decision. The statement: http://bit.ly/AafsTn.

  58. January 19, 2012 at 11:39 am

    Msnbc breaking news has the whole Room RED.
    It’s like inboard a nuclear Submarine, all red lights! Lol!

  59. 265 lovingandlaughing
    January 19, 2012 at 11:55 am

    oh my gosh, i am completely late for this rise and shine post, but i can’t believe how many nuggets of gold it contains! outstanding chips! those pics in the basement are so special!

    romney is going down and i am loving it!

  60. 266 jacquelineoboomer
    January 19, 2012 at 12:03 pm

    Morning TOD – and Chips! Thanks for finding the delicious Andrew Sullivan interview on AC360. He was so emotional hitting back at Bay Buchanan that his voice was cracking. I think we should follow him – congratulate him – and not let him fall back into the easy trap of being “one of the guys” by putting down the man he so clearly understands and admires: President Obama.

  61. January 19, 2012 at 12:25 pm

    Wow those pics of POTUS and FLOTUS in the basement. Pres is really a romantic. May I post these on twitter, Chips?

  62. 269 MeaBloom
    January 19, 2012 at 1:40 pm

    Aww, Everyday I find myself falling deeper in love with this couple. They are simply just too adorable. Lovely photos & Thanks for sharing. I see you guys are on a roll today. Just full of good news. Today is a good day.


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