“Feel free to call me an Obamabot. I consider it a compliment”

Got this from ABL’s wonderful blog:

Over the years, I’ve been called a liberal as if it’s an insult. I’ve also been called a libtard, a Dumbocrat, a hippie, a socialist, a tree-hugger, a bleeding heart, a gay-lover, etc. And I’ve embraced each one. All these were directed at me from people on the right.

Now I find out that I’m an Obamabot. That’s someone who defends the current President of the United States, OUR president of OUR country. But this time, it comes from the left.

I embrace that word, too. But let’s examine what this “mean-spirited” insult actually means.

An Obamabot is someone who may disagree with some of the decisions our president has made, but at the same time, knows and understands why they were made. And we support him for them.

An Obamabot is someone who remembers how the president extended the Bush tax cuts to protect the unemployed from the GOP. Look it up.

An Obamabot remembers the hysteria from the left in April over the rumors that the president would defund Planned Parenthood as the GOP was demanding before they’d agree to stopping a government shutdown. An Obambot remembers those two words the president said to Boehner that finally put the issue to rest as Boehner demanded funds to Planned Parenthood cease: “Nope. Zero.” And Boehner was forced to back down. Look it up.

An Obamabot is perfectly aware of the president’s very long list of achievements and lauds him for them. And damn if we’re aren’t proud to say he’s our president. Look them up.

We also know a president can’t create jobs. That’s the responsibility of Congress, including a House that has struck down every, single job creation bill put before it and has yet to propose one of their own. Look it up.

// more. Go read it all. It’s pitch perfect.

Tuesday “most masterful rope-a-dope ever seen by a president” mishmash

Hi guys,

Today’s schedule:

10:00 AM
The President and the Vice President receive the Presidential Daily Briefing
Oval Office

10:30 AM
The President meets with senior advisors
Oval Office

2:15 PM
The President awards Sergeant First Class Leroy Arthur Petry, U.S. Army, the Medal of Honor; The Vice President also attends
East Room

3:15 PM
The President and the Vice President meet with Congressional Leadership
Cabinet Room

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All kinds of cool stuff:

First, obviously, this Lawrence O’Donnell long and awesome segment from last night – is not to be missed.

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Washington Post Editorial:

Mr. Obama’s debt deal advice: Give peas a chance

PERHAPS THE president’s pea-dissing will not stand him in good stead with the health-conscious, vegetable-growing first lady, but otherwise President Obama got just about everything right in his news conference Monday. Liberals should acknowledge, as he said, that progressive government depends on controlling the national debt. Conservatives should accept that achieving a deal in a divided government will require some give and take, including on revenue. And, yes, it is time for everyone involved in the budget debate to “eat our peas” — to stop talking about how hard this all is and actually get something done.

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NYT Editorial:

Ideology Trumps Economy

There is a huge gap in logic at the heart of the Republican intransigence on a debt-ceiling deal, and President Obama helped to illuminate it on Monday.
The party claims, as an article of faith, if not evidence, that the government’s growing debt is the reason for persistent unemployment and economic stagnation. And yet Republicans are spurning the president’s compromise offers to reduce that debt by trillions over the next decade because he is sensibly insisting that any deal include some increase in tax revenue.

“Where are they?” Mr. Obama asked at his news conference. “I mean, this is what they claim would be the single biggest boost to business certainty and confidence. So what’s the holdup?”

The holdup, of course, is that Republicans are far more committed to the ideological goals of cutting government and taxes than they are committed to cutting the deficit.

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Gerald F. Seib, WSJ:

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But perhaps most important, the big deal would clear the decks for Mr. Obama to focus on other pursuits, without having deficit problems constantly nipping at his heels. If he wins a second term, you can be sure he would rather think about alternative energy, education and immigration than be nicked and cut at every turn by deficit problems.

So those are the factors motivating Mr. Obama. But how would he handle a failure to get that big deal?

For starters, his talking points practically write themselves: I offered three dollars in spending cuts for every dollar in tax increases, and Republicans turned me down. Because Republican leaders wouldn’t accept any tax increases, everybody will pay more for Medicare and Social Security and get less in benefits down the road.

And ultimately Mr. Obama has one time-honored tactic at his disposal: He can use failure to run, Harry Truman-style, against a “do-nothing Congress.”

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Chris Cillizza:

Obama as dad-in-chief

President Obama took a paternalistic approach toward congressional Republicans in Monday’s press conference, using a more-in-sorrow-than-in-anger tone to urge GOP leaders to get something big done on the country’s debt problems.

“It’s time to pull off the Band-Aid, [to] eat our peas,” Obama told reporters gathered in the White House briefing room for the second press conference in as many weeks focused on the onrushing Aug. 2 deadline to cut a deal on raising the nation’s debt ceiling.

Obama repeatedly emphasized that while both sides were going to have to make difficult political choices to get a debt deal done, those sort of hard decisions were part and parcel of governing. Such a compromise would convince people that “this town can do something every once in a while.”

Boil Obama’s message down and you get this: Adults sometimes have to do things that they don’t want to do. This is one of those times. So, let’s get it done.

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Obama has a leg up in this fight thanks to his ability to command the attention of the national media whenever he likes. Obama is set on turning this debt fight into a broader argument about what it takes to be a responsible adult. And it’s a fight that could well serve as the main frame of the 2012 presidential campaign.

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And, I had to bring here this comment by goblue72 over at Baloon Juice:

Healthcare reform that included largest expansion in Medicaid in several generations. ARRA Stimulus with massive spending on green initiatives. Saving the American auto industry. Two liberal broads appointed to the Supreme Court – a Jew & a Puerto Rican. Lilly Ledbetter. Ending DADT. Finding Osama bin Laden and putting a bullet in his head. He even appointed some Asian physicist nerd from BERKELEY to be in charge of our nuclear program fer chrissakes.

All the while dealing with an economic DEPRESSION, with the opposition party being composed of down-and-out neo-Confedrate traitorous scumbags and the entire corporate kleptocracy allied against him.

ALL THE WHILE PRESIDENTING WHILE BLACK. With a Muslim-y name.

Let me repeat – MoFo WON the Presidency. While Black. With a Muslim name.

But no – some white dude in his pajamas and a keyboard knows the politics better than he does.

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The Economist: “The Republicans are playing a cynical political game. SHAME ON THEM”

THE ECONOMIST!

IN THREE weeks, if there is no political deal, the American government will go into default. Not, one must pray, on its sovereign debt. But the country will have to stop paying someone: perhaps pensioners, or government suppliers, or soldiers. That would be damaging enough at a time of economic fragility. And the longer such a default went on, the greater the risk of provoking a genuine bond crisis would become.

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This newspaper has a strong dislike of big government; we have long argued that the main way to right America’s finances is through spending cuts. But you cannot get there without any tax rises. In Britain, for instance, the coalition government aims to tame its deficit with a 3:1 ratio of cuts to hikes. America’s tax take is at its lowest level for decades: even Ronald Reagan raised taxes when he needed to do so.

And the closer you look, the more unprincipled the Republicans look. Earlier this year House Republicans produced a report noting that an 85%-15% split between spending cuts and tax rises was the average for successful fiscal consolidations, according to historical evidence. The White House is offering an 83%-17% split (hardly a huge distance) and a promise that none of the revenue increase will come from higher marginal rates, only from eliminating loopholes. If the Republicans were real tax reformers, they would seize this offer.

Both parties have in recent months been guilty of fiscal recklessness. Right now, though, the blame falls clearly on the Republicans. Independent voters should take note.

Homophobic President Fights DOMA In Court

Obviously, it’s not as important as PBO actually attending Rachel Maddow’s wedding, but hey, it’s something:

DOJ: Court Should Find DOMA Unconstitutional

Today, the Department of Justice filed a brief in federal court employee Karen Golinski’s federal court challenge, supporting her lawsuit seeking access to equal health benefits for her wife and arguing strongly that the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional in terms unparalleled in previous administration statements.
In a brief filed on behalf of the Office of Personnel Management and other federal defendants, DOJ acknowledged the U.S. government’s “significant and regrettable role” in discrimination in America against gays and lesbians.

The summary of the DOJ argument that Golinski’s case should not be dismissed begins simply: “Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, 1 U.S.C. Section 7 (‘DOMA’), unconstitutionally discriminates.”

Unlike in other cases where DOJ has stopped defending DOMA in accordance with President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder’s decision that Section 3 of DOMA — the federal definition of marriage — is unconstitutional, DOJ lawyers today made an expansive case in a 31-page filing that DOMA is unconstitutional.

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Michael Tomasky is just awesome.

Why the GOP Loves the Debt

Republicans portray themselves as champions of fiscal responsibility. But as Michael Tomasky argues, they need the debt to push through their radical and unpopular agenda.

/// Go read it and spread it!

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Wonkette: Mitt Romney Visits Abandoned Factory To Spread His Message of Doom

OH HEY, MITTENS. There he is, our weird stale friend Mitt Romney, hanging out in an empty field in front of an old, abandoned factory building. Is that the safest thing for a rich old white guy? No, but that is his campaign strategy! After cruising around the bombed-out parts of Detroit saying it was proof that the auto bailout was a total disaster for everybody, Romney is doing his production of “America is Terrible Part II” over in Pennsylvania, standing outside a shuttered factory where Obama once gave a stimulus speech in order to prove that factories everywhere hated Obama’s miserable stimulus dollars.

Predictably, the factory shutdown was not because of the stimulus, but Mittens just really wanted to stand in the same spot where Obama stood, just for a second, so he could also feel like president.

From the Washington Post:

Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski (D) said in an interview that Obama’s policies did not lead to the factory’s closure. The plant reportedly had longtime financial troubles.

“I don’t think Mitt Romney should be criticizing our community and this economy, because he has no clue why this plant closed — and it had nothing to do with President Obama,” Pawlowski said.

We are excited to see which terrifying place Mitt visits next and what Obama policy he blames for it. A trailer park full of children with rickets because of health care reform? A school full of illiterate seventh graders because of support for education funding? That would make an excellent third part for a “trilogy of doom.”

“Halperin showed America exactly what he thinks of America’s first black president”

Couple of incredible articles from blackamericaweb.

Michael H. Cottman:

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Halperin quickly apologized on the air Thursday. MSNBC suspended him indefinitely hours later, saying Halperin’s comment was completely inappropriate and unacceptable. The network apologized to Obama.

Not good enough.

If these are remarks that political analysts like Halperin make on the set of MSNBC, imagine what people like Halperin are saying about Obama behind closed doors. Halperin’s tainted comments may have reflected the deep-rooted feelings of some of his colleagues who are smart enough not to speak their truth on national television.

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Perhaps Halperin is just the proverbial wolf in sheep’s clothing. One Washington, D.C. insider told me that Halperin initially refused to accept responsibility for his screwball comments and tried to blame a producer for his perverted remarks.

Halperin showed America exactly what he thinks of America’s first black president. He revealed to a national audience that he has no respect for Obama or the presidency.

Maybe Halperin called the president that name because Obama stood firm Wednesday and challenged Republicans to help families who are struggling, insisting that Republicans agree to raise taxes on wealthy Americans and eliminate tax breaks for oil companies and corporate jet owners.

Halperin may have been annoyed that Obama – a black man – is pushing back against a Republican assault, and that show of steadfast determination, in Halperin’s view, was objectionable.

Whatever was going on inside Halperin’s warped mind, Obama didn’t deserve to be called a dick.

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The only way Halperin will seriously regret his comments will be if MSNBC fires him. MSNBC should send a strong message to all television political analysts that it’s not appropriate to denigrate the president of the United States.

There are many Americans who probably agree with Halperin’s characterization of Obama and are privately hoping that this calamity blows over. But if MSNBC gives Halperin a pass and he returns to his network job to analyze Obama, then MSNBC is no better than Fox.

Where do you think Roland Martin would be now if he called George Bush a dick while broadcasting on CNN?

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Tom Joyner:

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About a month ago, I wrote a blog about Tavis Smiley and decided to table it because I said some things I didn’t want to publish. You’re probably thinking I went too hard him, but no. In reality, I hadn’t gone hard enough – and I knew it. I said I’d wait until something pissed me off so bad that I would have the words harsh enough to express what I was really feeling about him and his side piece – I mean side kick – Cornel West.

Well, yesterday, when Mark Halperin – a well-respected journalist, employed by a well-respected magazine and a contributor to a well-respected news network – had the audacity to call the president of the United States a dick, that was all I needed.

While I am appalled at Halperin’s statement, I have no expectations of him as a man and know nothing about his character. I am appalled, however, that as editor-at-large of Time magazine, he is responsible for among other things, deciding what stories will be covered in that publication. As the person in charge of political content, it is upsetting to know that he probably has not been objective in his dealings with material I and so many people look forward to (until now) reading each week. Needless to say, I’ve cancelled my subscription to Time magazine and hope you will too.

But I’m even more disgusted with Smiley and West, two brothers who I did have expectations of – and thought I knew. These two have done much worse than what Halperin has done because they set the tone for it, opened the door to it, and must take much of the blame for creating a climate that would make a white, professional journalist feel comfortable verbally and vulgarly attacking the first black president of the United States.

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In case you believe I think Tavis and Cornel called the president an offensive name, I don’t. I think they did something even worse. Any black people with any sense know that racists on the job, at school, at church or on the bus wait for opportunities to feel comfortable enough to spew their evil thoughts. If a black person tells a racist joke in front of a racist or laughs at one, it won’t be long before the racist begins to fire off a couple of his own. Mark Halperin and others are no different. They hate the president because he is black, and Tavis and Cornel, by not having the sense to not give them the opening they waited for, went all in. And this is what we get.

So, yes, MSNBC, fire Mark Halperin. I hope he never works again. I’ve already fired Tavis and Cornel. There’s nothing either can ever do for me or with me again.

I’ve got a new D-word for the two of them: Done.

Ass, meet your kicker!

Okay, that press conference was sweet. And the professional left freak out over us not willing to accept their nonsense anymore is sweet. And ex-Scalia-clerk ruling health care reform constitutional is sweet.

Greg Sargent: Obama picks fight with GOP over tax cuts for the rich

The primary goal of President Obama’s presser, which just wrapped up, was obvious: He was clearly out to pick a major public fight with Republicans over tax cuts for the rich. Obama mounted a surprisingly aggressive moral case for ending high end tax cuts, casting it as a test of our society’s priorities, and argued — crucially — that anyone who fails to support ending them is fundamentally unserious about the deficit.

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Chris Cillizza: Obama the confrontational

President Obama had a simple message for congressional Republicans in a press conference Wednesday: Stand up and lead.

Obama, often in harsh and stark terms, condemned the approach that House and Senate Republicans have adopted in the final stretch of the negotiations surrounding the increase in the nation’s debt limit.

“They’re in one week, they’re out one week,” said Obama of Congress. “And then they’re saying Obama needs to step in. I’ve been here.”

He repeatedly challenged Republicans to make compromises in order to adopt a truly “balanced approach” to the debt deal; “Call me naive, but my expectation is leaders are going to lead,” he said.

Obama’s confrontational approach toward Congress extended beyond the debt negotiations — seeping into answers he gave on job creation, the broader economy and Libya.

On each issue, Obama cast himself as the adult in the room and Congress as an irresponsible child — unwilling to sacrifice their desire to score political points for the good of the country.

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politicususa: Obama Seizes The Bully Pulpit And Tells Congress To Do Their Job

Obama described the debt ceiling deadline as, “The yellow light is flashing but it hasn’t been a red light yet. . . . By August 2, we run out of tools to make sure that all our bills are paid.” If the U.S. defaults, “the consequences for the U.S. economy will be significant and unpredictable.”

The president hinted that his two daughters have a better work ethic than Congress, “Malia and Sasha generally finish their homework a day ahead of time. . . . They’re not pulling all nighters. They’re 13 and 10. You know, Congress can do the same thing. If you know you’ve got to do something, just do it.” Obama then contrasted his schedule with that of Congress, “I’m here. I’ve been dealing with Afghanistan, the debt crisis, Greece. I’m here. Congress is in one week, out the next.”

Obama then delivered the money quote of the press conference, “We have meetings and discussions and … [then] they decide they’re not happy with the fact that at some point you have to make a choice. They all step back and say — ‘The president needs to get this done.’ At a certain point they need to do their job.” Obama then hinted that Congress might be kept in session until they actually do their jobs.

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And, if you didn’t read Andrew Sullivan’s excellent defense of PBO’s gay rights record and work, you should.

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“President Obama Wants to Scrap $72 Billion Corporate Tax Break as Republicans Balk” (Updated with new Souza stuff)

Hi guys,

First, our money-bomb week is in full force: here and here.

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Today’s schedule:

9:50 AM PBO receives the presidential daily briefing.

10:30 AM PBO and VPB meet with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

12:30 PM Carney briefs the press.

1:35 PM PBO welcomes the MLS champion Colorado Rapids to the White House.
5:00 PM PBO and VPB meet with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

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You think we’ll hear anything about from the PL?

Obama Wants to Scrap $72 Billion Corporate Tax Break as Republicans Balk

Barack Obama’s proposal to end a business tax break worth $72 billion is among the tensions the president may confront as he meets today with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in an effort to revive bipartisan talks over reducing the debt, three persons familiar with the issue say.

Ending the so-called last-in-first-out, or LIFO, provision, a method of accounting for inventory costs, was among options offered by White House officials for raising $400 billion in revenue over 10 years during seven weeks of negotiations led by Vice President Joe Biden, the people said, speaking on the condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to comment publicly.

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Few excellent things to read and SPREAD:

Obama DREAMs On

The DREAM Act is dead in Congress, but the White House is quietly moving to limit deportations of undocumented immigrants with strong ties to the US.

Hamstrung by a politically deadlocked Congress, the Obama administration is using executive authority to shape immigration policy instead. Obama’s immigration chief has advised officials to take pause before moving to deport certain undocumented immigrants who are particularly vulnerable or have strong community ties to the country—some of whom may have qualified for the DREAM Act, the bill that provides a pathway to citizenship for certain students, military veterans, and other undocumented youth that’s currently stalled in Congress.

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According to the memo, there is a range of factors that federal agents, attorneys, and other officials should consider in deciding whether or not to pursue an individual undocumented immigrant for deportation. The list of “factors to consider” includes whether they are military veterans and their families, have family ties and “contributions to the community,” act as caretakers of the infirm and disabled, are very young or very old, or are pregnant or nursing.

In addition, the Obama administration instructs federal officials to weigh the circumstances of immigrants’ arrival to the US—especially if they came as young children—and whether they’ve graduated from high school, college, or are currently pursuing higher education. The memo explicitly states that no groups of immigrants are categorically excluded from deportation if they fit these criteria. But it emphasizes the need to “warrant particular care” when it comes to particular individuals, while advising officials to target serious felons, repeat offenders, known gang members and immigration fraudsters, and those “who pose a clear risk to national security.”

Pro-immigration advocates have cheered the memo for its potential to blunt the most punitive parts of the existing immigration law through the executive branch, in the face of Congressional inaction on the issue.

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Obama shifts from consensus to instincts on key calls

The Obama administration’s top national security officials were gathered around the polished wooden table of the White House Situation Room to hear Gen. David H. Petraeus argue for a slow drawdown of U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

The military needed time, he said, to secure the eastern part of the country as it had done in the south.

President Obama quickly made clear his disagreement. More important, he said, was the administration’s goal of shifting responsibility for the country’s security to the Afghan government, which would let him bring home troops.

As a senior administration official put it, “He asked everyone, if we’re serious about transition, then when? When are we going to do it?”

“Everybody came out of that meeting knowing the president wanted to go this direction,” said the official who described the scene, “even though it wasn’t the pace that Gen. Petraeus was recommending.” A week later, last Wednesday, Obama announced plans to withdraw the 33,000 “surge” troops he sent to Afghanistan.
To some who had attended the meeting, the encounter — and the president’s willingness to overrule key advisors — brought to mind another meeting four and a half months earlier.

On that occasion, Obama and his top advisors were discussing the rapidly unfolding events in Egypt. Most top administration officials had been advising the president against calling for President Hosni Mubarak to step down.

But as the discussion went along, the television monitors in the Situation Room showed an angry crowd in Cairo’s Tahrir Square yelling, “Leave! Leave! Leave!” in response to Mubarak’s televised speech refusing to resign.

Obama watched, and then told his aides, “Look, guys, this is not going to go back into the box.” The president said he would call Mubarak and tell him to step down, and he would deliver a public statement calling for a transition to begin immediately.

The decision took aides by surprise. In retrospect, it seemed a sign of things to come.

In the first two years of Obama’s presidency, his top aides had grown accustomed to a process in which Obama drew out and explored the views of his full team and searched for a consensus — decision by ballot, some called it.

Increasingly, however, that process has changed, according to a wide group of Obama’s personal friends, informal advisors and top aides interviewed during the spring. In recent months, they say, the president has been relying more heavily on his own instincts and feeling less impelled to seek accord among advisors.

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Hope still part of Obama campaign message for 2012

CHICAGO — Immediately inside President Barack Obama’s campaign headquarters is a sign counting down days to the election (507 as of Saturday ) and a poster that reads, “Respect. Empower. Include. Win.”

The words are set against familiar Obama blue but carry the feel of something from a motivational bin at Staples, a subtle reminder of the challenge facing the re-election effort taking shape on an entire floor of the Prudential building in downtown Chicago.

Voters in 2008 gravitated in waves to Obama’s promise of “hope” and “change,” transforming slogans into the powerful ethos of a movement. But Obama is an insider now — the target of Republican calls for change — and hope has been buffeted by a poor economy, spiraling national debt and relentless partisan rancor in Washington.

To persuade Americans to stick with him in 2012, an array of strategists say, Obama will have to find the right balance of past and future, emphasizing accomplishments while promising to guide the country out of a still dark time.

“At the end of the day, he’s got to talk about hope again,” said Garry South, a Democratic strategist based in California. “Not in the theoretical way he did in 2008; rather that if ‘we all pull together, there will be a better tomorrow.’ ”

Obama’s team indicates the emphasis will be along those lines, though only hints are given of an overarching theme.

“Elections are always about the future. This president has taken on some difficult issues and fights with the future in mind. We’re pressing forward here,” said David Axelrod, Obama’s chief strategist.

/// more, and very interesting.

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And how sweet is this?

Obama fulfils promise as 9/11 victim’s teen daughter meets Justin Bieber

New York, June 27: US President Barack Obama has made a 9/11 victim’s teenage daughter’s dream of meeting her heartthrob Justin Bieber come true.
For Payton Wall from New Jersey, meeting the teen music sensation was really an uplifting moment after suffering the tragic death of her father in the attacks on the Twin Towers.

Obama brightened her life by making good on his promise to set up a meeting with his ‘buddy’ Bieber, after a request from the teen at last month’s Ground Zero wreath laying ceremony.

“It was so cool. I couldn’t even believe it,” the New York Post quoted her as saying.

Wall got a private sit-down with the Canadian crooner at Macy’s in Herald Square, along with her sister Avery and best friend Madison Roberson.

They met Bieber just moments after a near-riot among fans outside the store where the singer was promoting his fragrance ‘Someday.’

“He just said ‘Hi’,” said Payton, admitting that she was more nervous being around Bieber than the president.

:)

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New Souza wonder:

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