Archive for July, 2014

This Week in Washington…

Posted on July 31, 2014. Filed under: Uncategorized |

TOP 5 STORIES THIS WEEK

WHITE HOUSE

CONGRESS

POLITICS

BUDGET & ECONOMY

ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT

  • Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., unveiled legislation that would require the fossil-fuel industry to pay for the carbon emissions it produces through a permitting program.
  • Senate Environment and Public Works Committee ranking member David Vitter, R-La., released a report alleging that a group of wealthy donors funnels money to environmental groups through a network of charitable organizations.
  • Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell invited a contestant on America’s Got Talent to accompany him at a press conference slamming the Environmental Protection Agency’s climate rule.
  • President Obama announced that the U.S. is joining the European Union in a round of fresh energy sanctions directed at Russia.
  • The Energy Department rolled out several initiatives aimed at curbing methane leaks from natural-gas transmission and distribution lines and other equipment.
  • Rising coal exports threaten to undermine President Obama’s environmental legacy.
  • Republican lawmaker Mike Kelly likened the effects of the White House climate rule on the coal sector to an act of terrorism while speaking at the conservative Heritage Foundation.

FOREIGN AFFAIRS

HEALTH CARE

TECHNOLOGY

OTHER NEWS

QUOTES

  • “Stop being mad all the time. Stop. Stop just hating all the time. C’mon … I know they’re not happy that I’m president but that’s OK. I got a couple of years left. C’mon … then you can be mad at the next president.” – President Obama, on Republicans (The Hill)
  • “What happens is they’re like an Ebola virus that spreads. And if you can keep it contained with this bunch of people that really hate the government, OK, I respect their position. But when the virus spreads and they then have a bunch of people all nervous that if they vote the way they really think they should vote then bad things are going to happen, that messes up the process.” – Former Rep. Steve LaTourette, on GOP primary challenges (Wall Street Journal)
  • “This is the most cynical – Boehner’s up there with this ridiculous lawsuit, Josh Earnest sitting at the podium trying to tick off names of, ‘Look at Republicans who want impeachment’ — it’s not serious,” Todd said. “The lawsuit’s not serious. The impeachment talk’s not serious. This is playground stuff. This is embarrassing.” – NBC White House correspondent Chuck Todd (Politico)
  • “There’s no government that organizes this. That’s what happens when nobody tells you what to do. You just figure it out. So Burning Man is a refutation of the argument that the state has a place in nature.” – Americans For Tax Reform President Grover Norquist, on why he wants to go to Burning Man (National Journal)
  • “One of my friends said, ‘Excuse me sir.’ Before we could ask, still with back turned, he says, ‘Yes, I am Mitt Romney’. We found this comical.” – Hiker Blake M., who ran into Romney in a parking lot in Utah (Washington Post)

CHARTS AND GRAPHICS

  • FiveThirtyEight graphs MSNBC’s and Fox News’s use of the words “impeach” and “impeachment” by month, showing a drastic increase in July.
  • The Wall Street Journal maps the flight path and debris of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17.
  • The Russell Sage Foundation graphs the change in U.S. household wealth since 1984.
  • Bloomberg Businessweek charts the distribution of breweries across the United States.
  • National Journal charts the voting patterns of married vs. single women, and the obstacles to voting posed by family obligations.
  • ch maps nations’ territorial claims in international waters.
  • The Washington Post documents the early years of Metrorail.
  • The New York Times charts the relationship between government estimates of college costs, listed tuition levels, and the actual tuition paid.

    Future events

  • Friday, Aug. 1 — The White House and the U.S. Agency for International Development will host an event, “Faith Works: Honoring the Contributions of the Faith Community to Peace and Prosperity in Africa,” at 8:30 a.m. at 1300 Pennsylvania Ave. NW.
  • Monday, Aug. 4 to Wednesday, Aug. 6 — The White House will host the S.-Africa Leaders Summit, “Investing in the Next Generation,” at several locations.
  • Tuesday, Aug. 5 — The Senate Special Committee on Aging will hold a field hearing, “Trust Your Instincts? Tools to Empower Seniors to Identify Scams and Fraud,” at 11:30 a.m. at 1202 East 38th St. in Indianapolis.
  • Wednesday, July 30 to Sunday, Aug. 3 — Young Americans for Liberty holds its 2014 National Convention at 3301 North Fairfax Dr. in Arlington, Va.
  • Friday, Aug. 1 — The American Enterprise Institute will hold a discussion, “Watergate Revisited: The Reforms and the Reality, 40 Years Later,” at 10:30 a.m. at 1150 17th St. NW.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 6 — The Atlantic Council will hold a discussion, “Investment and Ingenuity: Overcoming Obstacles to Doing Business in Sub-Sahara,” at noon at 1030 15th St. NW.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 6 — The Johns Hopkins University Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies will hold a discussion, “The Future of the Renminbi as an International Currency and Shanghai as an International Financial Center: Is China Dreaming?” at 12:30 p.m. at 1717 Massachusetts Ave. NW.
  • Thursday, July 31 — The Union of Concerned Scientists will hold a discussion on the report, “Cooler Smarter: Practical Steps for Low-Carbon Living,” at 6 p.m. at 1825 K St. NW.
  • Thursday, July 31 — The Center on Global Interests will host a “Ukraine Briefing: The View From Odessa,” featuring a first-person account of the crisis in Ukraine and Q&A with the audience, at 3 p.m. at 1050 Connecticut Ave. NW.
  • Thursday, July 31 — The Atlantic Council will hold a discussion, “Gaza: Breaking the Vicious Cycle,” at 3:30 p.m. at 1030 15th St. NW.
  • Friday, Aug. 1 — The Alliance for Health Reform will hold a briefing, “Health Care Behind Bars: A Key to Population Health?” at noon in 325 Russell.
  • Friday, Aug. 1 — Bloomberg Government will hold a webinar, “Can the ACA (Affordable Care Act) Withstand Another Court Challenge?” beginning at 2 p.m.
  • Thursday, July 31 — American University and Explore Mars will hold a panel discussion, “Is It Time to Search for Life on Mars?” at 5 p.m. at 4400 Massachusetts Ave. NW.

 

 

 

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This Week in Washington…

Posted on July 24, 2014. Filed under: Uncategorized |

TOP 5 STORIES THIS WEEK

WHITE HOUSE

CONGRESS

POLITICS

BUDGET & ECONOMY

ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT

  • The EPA used a proposed Clean Water Act finding to make it clear it won’t allow a massive gold- and silver-mining project in Alaska’s Bristol Bay.
  • The Interior Department on Friday said it would allow the use of seismic guns and other methods to assess oil and gas resources in Atlantic Coast waters, a potential step toward opening the region to drilling.
  • President Obama nominated Henry Waxman aide Jeffrey Baran and former Nuclear Regulatory Commission general counsel Stephen Burns to fill two looming vacancies on the nuclear-energy panel.
  • The Transportation Department unveiled plans to improve safety of trains carrying crude oil after a number of high-profile accidents.
  • Despite calls for tighter sanctions against Russian businesses, Exxon is pushing forward with a project there with state oil giant Rosneft.
  • Republicans raised questions about a green group’s influence in EPA carbon-pollution rules for existing power plants at a hearing featuring administrator Gina McCarthy.

FOREIGN AFFAIRS

HEALTH CARE

TECHNOLOGY

  • The National Conference of State Legislatures is threatening to sue to protect some states’ ban on city-run Internet networks, saying many of those networks waste money.
  • gov may have broken its own privacy rules by using a new type of online tracking that uses a “fingerprinting” technique that is harder to opt out of than normal cookies.
  • The Federal Communications Commission warned Internet providers about misleading customers about their Internet speeds, saying they could face new penalties under the Open Internet Transparency Rule.
  • Facebook surpassed expectations in its latest quarterly report, increasing its revenue by 61 percent over the same quarter last year and increasing its network to 1.32 billion users.
  • The National Security Agency tracks possible terrorist suspects using standards so broad that it sometimes continues tracking dead people on the chance that their identities might be used by someone else, according to leaked documents.

OTHER NEWS

QUOTES

  • “The only thing that the media has speculated on is that it’s going to be various men that are running,” she replied. “They haven’t speculated, for instance, that I’m going to run. What if I decide to run? And there’s a chance I could run.” — Rep. Michele Bachmann, on the possibility of running for president (RealClearPolitics)
  • “I bought 10 of them in case they run out.” — Sen. Chuck Schumer, on his “ancient” LG flip phone (Huffington Post)
  • “But the bottom line is, I think that this is hurting Israel’s moral authority. I think it looks as though they’re overdoing, which is why I think there has to be more emphasis on the fact that they have accepted the cease-fire.” – Former Secretary of State Madeline Albright, on Israel’s military operations in Gaza (The Hill)
  • “I’m in D.C., so I’m for it.” — President Obama, on statehood for the District of Columbia (Washington Post)
  • “Rand Paul’s father, Ron, is clearly anti-Semitic.” — Republican donor Richard Roberts, who has worked closely with Sheldon Adelson (National Journal)

CHARTS AND GRAPHICS

  • Quartz graphs which leaders Russian President Vladimir Putin has communicated with the most in the last six months.
  • Slate charts the relationships among friends and enemies in the Middle East.
  • The New York Times graphs whites’ dwindling share of the Georgia registered electorate.
  • Gallup graphs Americans’ beliefs on companies’ right to refuse to hire people based on their weight or whether they smoke.
  • Pew Research charts the growth of unaccompanied minors at the U.S. border.
  • The Washington Post graphs the decline of casinos in Atlantic City.

Future events

  • Monday, July 28 — President Obama will award the 2013 National Medal of Arts and National Humanities Medal in a ceremony in the East Room.
  • Friday, July 25 — The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee will hold a hearing, “White House Office of Political Affairs: Is Supporting Candidates and Campaign Fundraising an Appropriate Use of a Government Office?” at 9 a.m. in 2154 Rayburn.
  • Wednesday, July 30 — The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing, “VAWA Next Steps: Protecting Women from Gun Violence,” at 10 a.m. in 226 Dirksen.
  • Thursday, July 24 — The Cato Institute will host a debate, “Libertarianism vs. Conservatism,” between student interns at Cato and the Heritage Foundation, at 1000 Massachusetts Ave. NW.
  • Thursday, July 24 — The American Enterprise Institute will hold a discussion, “Is it Time to End the Export-Import Bank?” at 6 p.m. at 1150 17th St. NW.
  • Wednesday, July 30 — The Bipartisan Policy Center will hold a discussion, “Retirement Security: What’s Working and What’s Not?” at 10 a.m. at 1225 I St. NW.
  • Thursday, July 31 — The Cato Institute will hold a discussion, “Federal Budget Outlook: It’s Worse Than You Think,” at noon in 121 Cannon. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., is scheduled to participate.
  • Friday, July 25 — The Environmental and Energy Study Institute will hold a briefing, “Evolving Resiliency: Managing Climate Risks in the Northeast,” at 1:30 p.m. in 562 Dirksen.
  • Wednesday, July 30 — The Bipartisan Policy Center will hold a discussion, “Children and the Crisis at the Border,” at 10 a.m. at 529 14th St. NW.
  • Tuesday, July 29 — The Urban Institute will hold a discussion, “Taking Stock of the Affordable Care Act: What Are the Data Telling Us?” at noon at 2100 M St. NW.
  • Monday, July 28 to Tuesday, July 29 — The Minority Media and Telecom Council will hold its Access to Capital and Telecom Policy Conference, with the theme “Spotlight on Opportunity, Innovation, and Inclusion in the New Digital Ecosystem,” at 900 10th St. NW.

 

 

 

 

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This Week in Washington…

Posted on July 11, 2014. Filed under: Uncategorized |

TOP 5 STORIES THIS WEEK

 

WHITE HOUSE

 

 

CONGRESS

 

 

POLITICS

 

 

BUDGET & ECONOMY

 

 

ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT

  • Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker said that her department is grappling with its approach to the decades-old ban on most crude-oil exports and that “serious conversations” about the ban are underway.
  • The Natural Resources Defense Council filed a legal petition with the Environmental Protection Agency asking for a type of pesticide known as neonicotinoids to be taken off the market, citing scientific evidence that the chemicals harm honeybees.
  • Bayer hired new lobbyists to fend off criticism that its pesticides are killing honeybees.
  • The League of Conservation Voters released an ad claiming that Republican Iowa Senate nominee Joni Ernst wants to shut down the EPA.
  • European Union member countries are lobbying the United States to ease restrictions on crude-oil exports as part of a broader trade deal.
  • The United States and China signed a series of agreements to curb greenhouse-gas emissions in both countries.

 

 

FOREIGN AFFAIRS

 

 

HEALTH CARE

 

 

TECHNOLOGY

 

 

OTHER NEWS

 

QUOTES

  • “As the kids say, it is time for the Court to stfu.” — U.S. District Judge Richard G. Kopf, in a blog post criticizing the Supreme Court decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby (MSNBC)
  • “Every time I get an opponent – I mean, every time I get a chance, I’m home.” — Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts, on why he doesn’t live permanently in Kansas (NBC News)
  • “We’ll get someone who can win.” — Mitt Romney, after supporters encouraged him to run for president again in 2016 (Huffington Post)
  • “Do I look like I’m with a campaign?” — Joe Killoran, a shirtless jogger who accosted Toronto Mayor Rob Ford and was asked by a reporter if he worked for an opposing campaign (Washington Post)
  • “I don’t want to get into the debate about climate change. But I will just simply point out that I think that in academia we all agree that the temperature on Mars is exactly as it is here. Nobody will dispute that. Yet there are no coal mines on Mars, there’s no factories on Mars that I’m aware of. So I think what we’re looking at is something much greater than what we’re going to do.” — Kentucky state Sen. Brandon Smith (National Journal)
  • “I call them the Beyoncé voters, the single ladies. Obama won the single ladies by 76 percent last time, and they made up about a quarter of the electorate. You know, they depend on government because they’re not depending on their husbands. They need things like contraception, health care, and they love to talk about equal pay.” — Fox News contributor Jesse Watters (Daily Beast)
  • “Ray probably ran the worst campaign we’ve ever seen in Virginia. I really think Ray cost Eric that election.” — Virginia Republican Party Chairman Pat Mullins, on Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s campaign manager, Ray Allen (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
  • “You don’t bring a lawsuit to a gunfight, and there’s no place for lawyers on the front lines.” — Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, on the planned House lawsuit against Obama (Talking Points Memo)

 

CHARTS AND GRAPHICS

  • The New York Times maps ISIS’s progress down the Tigris and Euphrates rivers.
  • The New York Times maps the country’s evangelical and Mormon strongholds.
  • National Journal graphs the most-Googled members of the House of Representatives.
  • The Boston Globe maps the average cost of child care.
  • Scientific American maps prescription painkiller use by state.
  • Vox maps Amtrak ridership, clustered in the northeast.

 

Future events

  • Friday, July 11 – Vice President Biden will deliver remarks at the National Governors Association Summer Meeting in Nashville.
  • Thursday, July 10 – The Senate Appropriations Committee will hold a hearing, “Review of the President’s Emergency Supplemental Request for Unaccompanied Children and Related Matters,” at 2:30 p.m. in 106 Dirksen.
  • Tuesday, July 15 – The Senate Banking Committee will hold a hearing, during which Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen will present “The Semiannual Monetary Policy Report to the Congress,” at 10 a.m. in 106 Dirksen.
  • Tuesday, July 15 – The Joint Economic Committee will hold a hearing, “The Recovery at Five Years: An Assessment,” at 2 p.m. in 216 Hart.
  • Monday, July 14 – Politico will host a Playbook lunch conversation with former Vice President Dick Cheney, wife Lynne Cheney, and daughter Liz Cheney at 11:30 a.m. at 1127 Connecticut Ave. NW.
  • Tuesday, July 15 – National Journal will hold a discussion with Charlie Cook on the 2014 midterm elections at 8:30 a.m. at 555 Pennsylvania Ave. NW.
  • Monday, July 14 – The Peterson Institute for International Economics will hold a discussion on a new report, “Post-Crisis Fiscal Policy,” at 12:15 p.m. at 1750 Massachusetts Ave. NW.
  • Tuesday, July 15 – The Bipartisan Policy Center will hold a discussion, “Dodd-Frank at Four: Making Progress, Meeting Challenges, and Finding Solutions,” at 9:30 a.m. at 1225 I St. NW.
  • Tuesday, July 15 – The Bipartisan Policy Center will hold a discussion, “The Budget Act at 40: Midlife Crisis?” at 1:30 p.m. at 1225 I St. NW.
  • Friday, July 11 – The House Science, Space, and Technology Committee’s Energy Subcommittee will hold a hearing, “Fusion Energy: The World’s Most Complex Energy Project,” at 9 a.m. in 2318 Rayburn.
  • Thursday, July 10 – The Center for Strategic and International Studies will hold a discussion, “Building a ‘New Model of Major Country Relations,’ ” at 4 p.m. at 1616 Rhode Island Ave. NW.
  • Friday, July 11 – The Foundation for Defense of Democracies will hold a discussion, “Keeping our Friends Close and Our Frenemies Closer?” focusing on the complexity of American alliances in the Muslim world, at 9:30 a.m. at 1726 M St. NW.
  • Friday, July 11 – The American Enterprise Institute will hold a discussion, “How Will we Pay for the Cost of Cures?” at 7:45 a.m. at 1150 17th St. NW.
  • Friday, July 11 – The House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Health Subcommittee will hold a hearing, “21st Century Cures: Incorporating the Patient Perspective,” at 9 a.m. in 2322 Rayburn.
  • Friday, July 11 – The Alliance for Health Reform will hold a briefing, “Health Insurance Marketplaces in 2014: Behind the Numbers,” at 12:15 p.m. at 50 Massachusetts Ave. NE.
  • Thursday, July 10 – The Intelligence and National Security Alliance’s Intelligence Champions Council will hold a discussion, “Millennials, the Community, and Social Media,” at 7 p.m. at 1330 Maryland Ave. SW.
  • Monday, July 14 – The World Bank will hold a webchat, beginning at 12:30 p.m., on “Emerging Internet Trends That Will Shape the Global Economy.”
  • Tuesday, July 15 – The House Judiciary Committee’s Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet Subcommittee will hold a hearing, “Moral Rights, Termination Rights, Resale Royalty, and Copyright Term,” at 1 p.m. in 2141 Rayburn.

 

 

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