House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D) says her delegation to the deficit-focused super committee will oppose cuts to entitlements. “That is a priority for us,” said Pelosi of stopping entitlement cuts.
Before the ink had dried on the deal to raise the debt ceiling, K Street had already set its sights on lobbying the congressional “super committee” tasked with finding an additional $1.5 trillion in cuts. Lobby shops across town have reportedly told their clients that no one is immune from cuts and everyone should prepare, although the defense and health care industries potentially have the most to lose.
The stock market “plummeted” again yesterday despite the fact that Congress finally increased the debt ceiling, with the Dow dropping 266 points, or more than 2 percent. On top of a wave of bad economic news, “some investors are now beginning to fret that the debt ceiling deal could actually further weaken the economy by cutting government spending.”
Moderate Sen. Mark Udall (D-CO) is preparing his own version of a Balanced Budget Amendment that he says the Senate will consider in the fall. Udall’s BBA, which he called the “most responsible, thoughtful, and workable” version, protects Social Security and prohibits Congress from giving tax breaks to millionaires unless there is a budget surplus.
The list of lawyers advising Mitt Romney’s (R) presidential campaign includes at least 10 who worked in and around the Bush White House. Among those is Steven Bradbury, the former Office of Legal Counsel head who signed the torture memos that approved water boarding and other torturous interrogation techniques. Romney, according to a spokesperson, still supports using those techniques “in certain situations.”
The Obama administration will roll out a new strategy to counter U.S. radicalization today. According to reports, the strategy will focus on “working with state and local governments, nongovernmental and community organizations” to hone in on “countering extremist ideologies, enhancing social cohesion, and building resiliency within American communities.”
Little Green Footballs points out that Amazon.com’s synopsis of anti-Muslim blogger Pamela Gellar’s new book is eerily similar to the manifesto written by alleged Oslo terrorist Anders Breivik. The blog notes that the two have the “same themes, the same over-the-top paranoia, the same mindless hatred, bigotry, and conspiracy theorizing.”
The Senate is using a technical maneuver to prevent President Obama from making any recess appointments during the August break. While members are on vacation, the Senate will hold a series of “pro forma” sessions over the next month, effectively preventing Obama from appointing Richard Cordray to lead the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
And finally: A homeless man jumped the White House fence yesterday only to be subdued seconds later by Secret Service agents, all during a CNN live shot. But just 48 hours before, agents dealt with a similar threat when a “a 6-year-old girl who slipped through the bars of the fence” and wandered onto the lawn, the Los Angeles Times reports.