President Obama understands "the frustrations of the American people" more than anybody else. At least, that's what he told WABC in an interview:
"One thing that I've shown is that if I say I'm prepared to compromise on something, I can deliver votes and we can get it done," Obama said. "So, look: Nobody shares the frustrations of the American people more than I do because I see day in and day out the damage that something like a shutdown does."Read more
The findings of the newly released NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll are simply brutal for congressional Republicans. Not only are they getting the lion's share of the blame for the government shutdown, but President Obama's numbers have actually improved. Worse, Obamacare's numbers are improving, as well.Read more
In a letter sent yesterday to Jonathan Jarvis, director of the National Park Service, 94 members of Congress question the federal government's decision to close open-air memorials during the federal government shutdown.
All signatories are Republicans. The letter was sent to 23 Democratic offices in the House, but all refused to sign on.
The members of Congress have 6 basic question for Jarvis:Read more
Northern New England is in its glory; now and for the next week or so. The leaves are nearing peak color and until yesterday, there has been a big high pressure zone parked over the area so the weather has been what would once have been described as "heavenly." It has been raining now but in a few days, the sun will shine again and the leaves will still be there, in full. And for that, Washington can take no credit.Read more
Another open-air memorial in the Washington area is closed and barricaded off: the Iwo Jima Memorial, just across the bridge from D.C. in Rosslyn, Virginia. A source sends along this picture of the barricade set-up at the memorial, which is also called the U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial:Read more
In an attempt to dramatize the effects of the federal government shutdown, Washington state Democrats may have revealed more about their state and about the state of the economy under President Obama than they intended. The Advance, official blog of the Washington state house Democrats, posted the following :Read more
Sometimes timing is everything.Read more
The federal government is shutdown. That means only federal government employees that are deemed "essential" are going in to work.
We're led to believe it's a bare bones operation (Michelle Obama won't be tweeting, the National Park Service website is down, etc.). But in reality it appears the number of folks working is higher than half the federal employees. Or, in raw numbers, about 1,350,000 "essential" federal government employees are still working. And that does not include the 589,000 postal employees, who are working, too.Read more
At least four National Park Service workers are erecting a barricade around the World War II memorial, John McCormack reports:
4 National Park Service employees maintaining WWII memorial barricade. Guess they don't know CPR. pic.twitter.com/wOXeLbPs44— John McCormack (@McCormackJohn) October 2, 2013
Harry Reid, speaking earlier today on the Senate floor about the government shutdown:
The U.S. Energy Information Administration reports today that sales of fossil fuels produced on federal and Indian land continue to decline, dropping 4 percent in fiscal year 2012. The slide continues a decade-long trend that accelerated in 2010, as the chart accompanying the report shows:
The report explains:Read more
IRS chief Daniel Werfel says he wants to keep his health care plan, not switch to Obamacare:
Furloughed federal employees who like to play golf are in luck. There's a deal waiting for them, courtesy of the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority.
"Thousands of area federal employees will be furloughed on certain days between April and September this year as a result of the Federal Sequester. In response, the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority (NVRPA) is offering a special deal for those furloughed federal employees who enjoy the outdoors and a good round of golf," the group writes in a press release, announcing its sequester deal.Read more
First Lady Michelle Obama praised federal workers in remarks today, calling them an "invisible face." Her remarks were delivered at the Department of Interior.
"I ... know that the work that you do isn’t easy, especially right now during these times. I know that budget cuts mean that you all are juggling even more responsibilities with fewer resources. And I know that many of you are stretched thinner than ever before," said the first lady.Read more
In what may be just an eerie coincidence, the Defense Department posted a contract award notice today to Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts for research into "Methods for Explosive Detection at Standoff." Of particular concern are Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) that have become a favorite among terrorists and gained widespread attention during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.Read more
The federal government will now allow companies that sell "nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) products," such as Nicorette, not to put warning labels on their merchandise, the Food and Drug Administration announced. The change, the FDA now admits, is because the warnings, which were mandated for the last 30 years, were misguided from the very beginning.Read more
Federal welfare spending will skyrocket 80 percent over the next decade, according to new analysis by the minority side of the Senate Budget Committee. Here's a chart, provided by the committee, detailing the growth in spending:Read more
President Barack Obama issued an executive order to end the pay freeze on federal employees, in effect giving some federal workers a raise. One federal worker now to receive a pay increase is Vice President Joe Biden.
According to disclosure forms, Biden made a cool $225,521 last year. After the pay increase, he'll now make $231,900 per year.Read more
The federal government is now spending $110 billion on "all food assistance" per year, according to new analysis by the minority side of the Senate Budget Committee. The federal dollars spent on these programs has risen by nearly $70 billion in just ten years.
Here's a chart from the Republicans on the Senate Budget Committee, showing how spending has increased over the last dozen years:Read more
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