Tea Party leaders are blasting Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) for his “Tea-Party hobbits” remark yesterday by spinning their own Lord of the Rings metaphors. Tea Party Patriots’ Mark Meckler said McCain has “been corrupted by the ring of power,” and failed Senate candidate Sharron Angle (R-NV) said, “It is the hobbits who are the heroes and save the land,” while McCain’s only strategy is “name-calling.”
As the country faces the very real possibility of default, the Treasury Department is weighing which of the nation’s bills to pay when it runs out of money. Officials say Treasury does not have the legal authority to pay bills “based on political, moral or economic considerations,” meaning it cannot do what Republicans have suggested and prioritize interest payments. Officials suggest government will need to pay bills in the order that they come due.
In a Wall Street Journal op-ed today, Tea Party Nation founder Judson Phillips slammed House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) for “pushing a plan with almost nonexistent budget cuts.” Believing America is headed towards “bankruptcy,” Phillips blasted freshman Republicans for backing down, saying they “should have been having cage fights to see which representative could be first on the House floor to introduce the legislation to end that spending.”
Tea Party Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL) is being sued by his ex-wife for more than $100,000 in unpaid child support, the Chicago Sun-Times reports. Walsh’s ex-wife alleged that the freshman congressman loaned his campaign $35,000 and took foreign vacations while claiming he couldn’t pay child support because he was “out of work.” Walsh’s attorney disputed the claims.
Yesterday, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said she would urge President Obama to veto the House Foreign Relations bill that Republicans approved last week. Clinton said the bill would be “debilitating” to her efforts to conduct foreign policy. The Foreign Relations Authorization Act reinstates the ban on the use of U.S. funds for groups that promote or perform abortions and would cut off economic aid to “a staggering number of needy aid recipients.”
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said Wednesday that the Iraqi parliament will ultimately decide if the country needs U.S. troops to remain there beyond the end of this year. Al-Maliki, who will meet with Vice President Biden today, said he hoped political leaders would reach a decision at their next meeting, scheduled for Saturday.
Oil giant Exxon Mobil’s profit was up 41 percent in the second quarter. Meanwhile, Royal Dutch Shell’s second quarter financial results include “reporting profits of $8 billion, a 77 percent jump from the same period a year ago.”
President Obama will unveil ambitious new fuel economy standards for vehicles Friday “that are expected to go down as one of his biggest environmental accomplishments during his term.” With “broad support from the auto industry,” the standards will ultimately make cars and light trucks achieve 54.5 mpg by 2025.
And finally: Presidential wannabe Newt Gingrich ended up on the Jumbotron last night at an Atlanta Braves game, but the the crowd was not pleased. Gingrich got booed by his hometown team’s fans.