Earlier today, ABC reporter Jonathan Karl grilled Press secretary Josh Earnest “over the White House’s excuse that the president was too “busy” to allow television cameras into an event honoring members of Apollo 11.” Free Beacon,
Earnest told Karl it was “merely a scheduling matter,” saying the president’s multiple events and remarks Tuesday made him too busy to accommodate cameras.
“Couldn’t he have been maybe five minutes later for the fundraiser out in Seattle? He really couldn’t accommodate a few minutes for open coverage of this?” Karl asked…
“I find that explanation, frankly, a little hard to believe given that this is such a small amount of time,” Karl said. “Is it because some of those Apollo astronauts, including Neil Armstrong, was very critical of this president for the way he has handled the space program … saying that the president’s canceling of the Constellation program was lamentably embarrassing and unacceptable. Is that why the president did not want to see television cameras in this photo op?”
“Absolutely not,” Earnest said. “The president invited the crew members of Apollo 11 to the White House to honor their contribution to space exploration and innovation in the field of science.”
Two federal appellate courts issued contradictory rulings on “the legality of a central part of the Affordable Care Act that provides insurance subsidies to millions of Americans in three dozen states that rely on the new federal health insurance marketplace.” The Washington Post,
“The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the tax credits available under the 2010 health-care law may be provided only to residents of states that set up their own marketplaces. Less than two hours later, the Richmond-based 4th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in a separate case that the law’s language was ambiguous so that the Obama administration was free to allow the subsidies nationwide…
“The government immediately announced it was seeking an “en banc” hearing in the D.C. case, requesting that it be heard before the entire appeals court. The question ultimately may end up at the Supreme Court. But if subsidies for half the states are barred, it represents a potentially crippling blow to the health-care law, which relies on the subsidies to make insurance affordable for millions of low- and middle-income Americans…
“If the decision going against the government is upheld, it would be more damaging to the law than last month’s Supreme Court decision on contraceptives…”
Sen Harry Reid will be the main target of the Republican National Committee’s newest campaign (a series of robocalls) “hoping to nationalize Senate races across a slew of battleground states, arguing that each race will serve less as an individual contest and more as a referendum on the leadership of Reid.” Politico,
“The Nevada Democrat has become broadly reviled by Republicans this year, as he gleefully attacks the GOP as obstructionist and beholden to wealthy conservatives like Charles and David Koch.
“Reid has also largely ignored bills sent over from the House this year and sheltered vulnerable Senate Democrats from voting on contentious legislation proposed by the GOP. Now Republicans hope to use those examples to build a case against Reid and argue that his procedural chokehold is the reason for the Senate’s painful levels of gridlock.
“The only way to stop President Obama’s agenda and to get jobs bills out of Congress is to fire Harry Reid. And the way to fire Harry Reid is to support your Republican Senate candidate. It doesn’t matter who the Democrat candidate is. A vote for a Democrat is a vote for Harry Reid,” RNC Chairman Reince Priebus will say in a statement on Tuesday morning.”
According to Press secretary Josh Earnest, the crises erupting in various places around the world are not yet dire enough for President Obama to trouble himself with changing his fundraising plans, including his three-day trip to the West Coast. The National Review,
“Earnest asserted that President Obama is tuned in to domestic and international affairs when he travels, and will be kept informed by his staff as well. He kept the door open to the possibility that the president would be willing to cut his trip short if need be.
“If it becomes clear that there’s a need for him to come back to the White House to fulfill those functions, then we’ll make a change in his schedule,” Earnest said. “Right now, it is not apparent that is the case.”
“What the president is focused on is his ability to do his job,” Earnest said, noting that the president made calls to various officials over the course of the day. “If there were a requirement for the president to change his schedule so that he could attend to this urgent priority and fulfill his responsibilities as commander-in-chief, we would have not hesitated to make this change.”