Domenici Admits Child With Colleague’s Daughter – He was a 46 year-old Republican senator. She was a 24-year-old senator’s daughter. Jimmy Carter was president. Democrats, had a filibuster-proof majority. 34 years later we find out a pretty darn shocking secret – http://abcn.ws/ZhkNNO (Walshe)
Sidebar – Politicians with Love Children - From the Founding Fathers thru “Ma ma, where’s my pa?” to this recent spate (it feels like a spate at this point, no?) – http://abcn.ws/Wb5CDk
Sequester Prep: Golf, Tramps Abroad, Townhall Meetings - Fresh off a golfing trip aboard Air Force One to Florida, President Obama seized the bully pulpit Tuesday to shame Congress into action to avert the looming sequester spending cuts poised to take effect at the end of the month. But it didn’t get him very much.
Jon Parkinson writes: An aide to the speaker ruled out any one-on-one negotiations between Boehner and President Obama unless Senate Democrats first pass legislation to establish their baseline for discussions. Only then will Republicans considering further action, the aide maintained, although the source said Boehner would welcome a phone call from the president. http://abcn.ws/ZhiiLD
Rick Scott Backs Obamacare Medicaid Expansion, Will Continue Privatization Trial – The Supreme Court decision on Obamacare made that law’s all-important Medicaid expansion optional. But a growing number of big name Republican governors who oppose Obamacare are opting to work with the law and expand their state’s Medicaid programs.
The latest is Florida Gov. Rick Scott, the former health care company exec and conservative fiscal hawk who based his 2010 campaign on opposing Obamacare.
But today he’s become the 7th Republican governor (Jan Brewer from Arizona, John Kasich from Ohio and others before him) to agree to expand their state’s Medicaid program. Governors from both sides of the aisle have warned that expanding Medicare – even with the vast majority of the bill footed by the federal government – could bankrupt states. On the other hand, one of the ways Obamacare seeks to increase coverage to millions of uninsured Americans is by expanding Medicaid.
It is also interesting that Scott agreed to back a three year trial Medicaid expansion (it still has to be okayed by the state legislature) only after federal lawmakers agreed to allow an expanded privatization trial for Medicaid in Florida.
HERE is look at Scott’s decision and HERE is a look at the other six governors.
QOTD – Border Fence: Banana - John McCain, now trying again to enact comprehensive reform, tried to defuse a testy Arizona townhall exchange by comparing a border fence to a banana. http://abcn.ws/WWMeOk
The Waldorf and Statler of Deficit Reduction – Jon Karl sat down with Simpson and Bowles, who have “gotten the band back together” for a new plan… “Simpson and Bowles call for a variety of measures that would shrink the nation’s deficit, ranging from decreasing discretionary spending to reforming government programs to make them more sustainable. Simpson gets particularly passionate when talking about reforming programs utilized by the country’s growing aging population, such as Medicare and Social Security, describing our current path as “madness.”"
“10,000 [Americans] a day are turning 65,” says the former senator from Wyoming. “This is madness. And life expectancy is 78.1, and in 5 years will be 80. Who is kidding who? This will eat a hole through America.” http://yhoo.it/13gnTSO
The Kerry Doctrine -In his first major foreign policy speech as Secretary of State, John Kerry’s message was clear: America cannot afford to treat foreign policy as foreign. He stressed throughout the one hour speech that even in these economically challenging times, foreign aid is an investment in America’s national security and economic prosperity.http://abcn.ws/W4l0XB (Dana Hughes)
Mitt Romney to Make First Post-Campaign Speech – Former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney will making his first public appearance since losing his presidential bid last November when he speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference in March. “I look forward to saying thank you to the many friends and supporters who were instrumental in helping my campaign,” Romney said in a statement. An advisor to Romney told ABC News the speech is “an opportunity for him to express his appreciation to supporters and friends.” http://abcn.ws/YGV4fw (Shushannah Walshe)
Solemn Biden Consoles Victims of Gunned - No advice for parents to buy shot guns today. Devin Dwyeer reports: One day after delivering an irascible call to “buy a shotgun!,” Vice President Joe Biden today showed his solemn and soft-spoken side as he honored 15 cops and three firefighters for extraordinary courage under fire. “To me, this is personal. To me you are … the spine of the country,” Biden told the recipients of the Medal of Valor, the nation’s highest award for public safety officers, and their families. http://abcn.ws/WXhPPY
White House Defends Biden’s Shot Gun Advice – ” I think the president does agree with the vice president that homeowners who are interested in utilizing their Second Amendment rights to own a firearm to protect themselves in their home, and their families in their home do not need a military-style assault weapon and that a shotgun would be a logical choice,” Carney told ABC’s Jon Karl. http://abcn.ws/VLzEmy
30 Days Without A U.S. Military Death in Afghanistan-A milestone was reached in Afghanistan Wednesday that has not happened in six years: 30 days without a U.S. military fatality.http://abcn.ws/155Aviq (Luis Martinez)
Public’s View of Marco Rubio Mixed, Poll Shows-The public’s view of Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., is mixed, according to a new poll conducted in the days after the Florida senator delivered the Republican response to President Obama’s State of the Union address.http://abcn.ws/WX1ris (Arlette Saenz)
Rubio, Netanyahu Bump Water Bottles in Israel - Sen. Marco Rubio’s water bottle incident turned global Wednesday when he met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Israel today.http://abcn.ws/WX1ASW (Arlette Saenz)
From Mail to Clothes: USPS Launches Apparel Line - Move over North Face, The U.S. Postal Service is dropping Saturday mail delivery and picking up a new line of clothing. On Tuesday, USPS announced plans to launch a new line of all-weather apparel and accessories.http://abcn.ws/YGqgMa (Jilian Fama)
Christie Soars, But Clinton Tops Him -”How high is up?” That’s the question today from Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. The pollsters at Quinnipiac are out with a new New Jersey polland it’s a record breaker.http://abcn.ws/YmJdT9 (Shushannah Walshe)