Given the chance to vote "for" or "against" each of nine key proposals included in President Barack Obama's plan to reduce gun violence, Americans back all nine. Americans are most likely to be in favor of requiring background checks for all gun sales (91%), increasing funding for mental health programs aimed at youth (82%), increasing funding for programs to train law enforcement and schools in responding to active armed attacks (79%), and increasing criminal penalties for people who buy guns for others -- so-called straw purchasers (75%).Dana Milbank:
But Clinton’s appearance on the Hill, expected to be her last before she is succeeded by John Kerry, provided a broader vindication of the one-time (and probably future) presidential candidate. There had been concern among Democrats that the Benghazi episode would mar her otherwise successful tenure at State — but in fact she is leaving the post more popular than ever..
A new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds that 67 percent of Americans view her favorably, a career high and roughly double the popularity congressional Republicans have. So when Clinton clashed with GOP lawmakers Wednesday, it had the feeling of a Hummer colliding with a Smart Car.
Mr. Obama devoted an entire paragraph to climate change and energy, and later in the speech he pointed to several public policy issues where “our journey is not complete,” he said.That analysis sure beats this piece of crap from Politico yesterday:
Polls show that the president has at least a slim majority of Americans in his corner on almost all of the issues he highlighted. Here’s a look at the most recent polling on some of the agenda items Mr. Obama laid out:
In this light, it’s worth pondering: How will Barack Obama’s supremely self-confident second inaugural address — with its high quotient of self-regard and minimally concealed contempt for opponents — be remembered 10 years from now?It was an inaugural address and a second one at that. It was not a concession speech, as much as Politico tried to frame it as such. People like the stance on issues (see above article from Micah Cohen.) Deal with it.
We can only wish.
More punditry below the fold...
Ed Kilgore salutes Bill Galston:
Whatever else you think about the president’s second inaugural address—its combative tone, its choice of issues to emphasize or ignore, its relationship to current disputes in Washington, and even its treatment of the Declaration of Independence—all subjects of great controversy during the last two days—its basic framing deserves a bit more attention that it’s getting.Reuters:
In particular, Obama made the long-lost liberal case that collective action is necessary to the achievement of individual freedom, instead of implicitly conceding that social goals and individual interests are inherently at war...
In doing so, Obama took the advice most notably offered in a much-discussed 2007 essay by Bill Galston for the Washington Monthly entitled “Taking Liberty,” urging progressives to reclaim the rhetoric and substance of their own championship of freedom as integral to the case for collective action through government.
Ending a self-imposed silence about the November election, 2012 Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan said on Wednesday that he and presidential running mate Mitt Romney lost not because of ideas, but due to ineffective communication.Ryan, after exhaustive analysis, also thinks he might just have lost because Obama got more votes than Romney. Then again, Ryan is a numbers guy.
Ryan said Democratic President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden also prevailed because they did a better job with "technology and (voter) turnout."
Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio) warned fellow Republicans this week, saying President Barack Obama's inaugural address had convinced him that the president was undertaking an effort to "annihilate" the GOP.No need to worry about Obama, Mr. Speaker. House Republicans have already taken major steps to accomplish that all on their own.
"Given what we heard yesterday about the president's vision for his second term, it's pretty clear to me -- should be clear to all of you -- that he knows he can't do any of that as long as the House is controlled by Republicans," Boehner said during a speech at the Ripon Society on Tuesday. "So we're expecting over the next 22 months to be the focus of this administration as they attempt to annihilate the Republican Party."
Boehner continued, claiming that the broader goal of the administration was "to just shove us into the dustbin of history."
Helen Branswell, one of the best health reporters you can find anywhere:
Leading influenza scientists have ended a self-imposed moratorium on research into what it might take to make bird flu viruses transmissible among humans.
The international group announced their intention to resume work in the controversial field in a letter published jointly by the journals Nature and Science on Wednesday.