Honoring Our Veterans

Nov 11, 2013 9:08am

 

AP Vietnam Memorial Veterans Day DC 131111 16x9 608 Honoring Our Veterans

J. David Ake/AP Photo

By MICHAEL FALCONE (@michaelpfalcone)

NOTABLES

  • OBAMA MARKS VETERANS DAY: The president holds a private breakfast for veterans and their families at the White House and then pays a visit to Arlington National Cemetery, ABC’s DEVIN DWYER reports. This morning, the president, first lady, vice president and Dr. Jill Biden will participate in a wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel also attends. This afternoon, a Vietnam Veterans Memorial Ceremony features former Secretary of State Colin Powell and others.
  • AMONG THE GUESTS AT THE WHITE HOUSE: Is the nation’s oldest known World War II veteran – 107-year-old Richard Overton of Austin, Tex, who served with the Army’s 188th Aviation Engineer Battalion in the Pacific, according to USA Today. Overton was in his 30′s when he volunteered in 1942. USA Today’s Greg Toppo notes that when Overton was visiting Washington last summer as part of a Honor Flight group, he wondered aloud what it would take to meet President Obama and the Honor Flight organizers laid the groundwork. The centenarian still lives in the house he built after the war, and says he begins each day with a “tablespoon” of whiskey in his coffee, smokes a dozen cigars a day. http://usat.ly/1hyuzrM (h/t ABC’s DEE CARDEN)

 

THE ROUNDTABLE

ABC’s RICK KLEIN: Gov. Chris Christie isn’t a shy man, and he doesn’t lack for opinions, either. Yet there he was on the Sunday-morning rounds, displaying a message discipline that manifested itself in some determined no-commenting. On Iran, and even on immigration reform, Christie made clear that this is neither the time nor the place to be going there. “I can have an opinion on lots of things, George, but we’re not going to go through all of that this morning,” Christie said on ABC’s “This Week.” There will be mornings for that, surely. But notwithstanding his public feud with Sen. Rand Paul earlier this year, on national-security policy, Christie is making a decision that’s hard to fault: stay in his zone for a while. The national storylines will come to him, and “burnishing foreign-policy credentials” doesn’t mean having an opinion on everything. It’s a line that can’t work forever, but Christie is taking one challenge at a time.

ABC’s ABBY PHILLIP: As political operatives on the right and left gear up for 2014 elections, Emily’s List, the Democratic group that boosts female women candidates, will be one to watch. Last week, the group announced that in three years it had grown more than six times over to 3 million members. And in a new memo shared exclusively with ABC News, Emily’s List President Stephanie Schriock makes the case that some of the Democratic Party’s most promising candidates — and best pick up opportunities in the Senate — come from within their ranks of women. Emily’s List sees a new mandate for female candidates who can serve as a foil for dysfunctional government at all levels. They are touting three high profile gubernatorial races next year: Allyson Schwartz who is challenging Pa. Gov. Tom Corbett, Mary Burke who looks to oust W.I. Gov. Scott Walker, and Wendy Davis’s uphill fight to succeed Texas Gov. Rick Perry. According to the memo, these Emily’s List candidates all face “extreme, out-of-touch opponents whose agendas prove to energize our community and voters.” In the Senate, Schriock says that Democrats’ best chances to flip Senate seats lie with Michelle Nunn’s bid in Georgia and Alison Lundergan Grimes’ challenge to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in Kentucky.

 

BUZZ

CHRISTIE: ADVICE FROM ROMNEY CAMPAIGN SOMETHING NOBODY SHOULD ‘REALLY GIVE A DARN ABOUT’. Sunday morning on “This Week,” New Jersey Republican Gov. Chris Christie brushed off criticism reported in the new book “Double Down” from a member of Mitt Romney’s 2012 vice presidential vetting team, saying his advice was not something he should “give a darn about.” “First off, political advice from people who ran the Romney campaign is probably something nobody should really give a darn about, so let’s start with that,” Christie told ABC’s GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS. “But secondly, all these issues have been vetted and if I ever run for anything again, they’ll be vetted again.” Christie was responding to comments from a member of the team that vetted Christie for a possible vice-presidential spot on former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential ticket – as reported in “Double Down” by Mark Halperin and John Heilmann, which chronicles the 2012 presidential election. http://abcn.ws/19b54CQ

–CHRISTIE ON ‘ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM’ MAGAZINE COVER: ‘I COULD CARE LESS.’ Stephanopoulos also asked Christie about the TIME magazine cover this week which featured Christie’s silhouette with the headline “The Elephant in the Room,” according to ABC’s BEN BELL. Earlier this year, Christie secretly had lap band surgery in an effort to control his weight after openly admitting to struggling with his weight for years. The governor seemed to take TIME’s choice to put him on their cover in stride. “You know, George, if I’m bothered by jokes about my weight, it’s time for me to curl up into a fetal position and go home. Okay? The fact is, that, you know, if they think it’s clever, great for them. I mean, they run the magazine. They get to make the decisions,” Christie said. “Here’s the thing – the way the people of New Jersey look at this, their governor has been on the cover of TIME magazine twice in one year… Whatever they put on the cover of TIME magazine, as long as my name is with it, I could care less,” he added. http://abcn.ws/19b54CQ

RICK PERRY QUESTIONS CHRISTIE’S CONSERVATIVE APPEAL. Gov. Rick Perry of Texas credited Chris Christie for his re-election in New Jersey, but he pointedly questioned whether the 22-point victory by Christie held any greater meaning for the Republican Party. “Is a conservative in New Jersey a conservative in the rest of the country?” Perry said in an interview with ABC’s JEFF ZELENY. “We’ll have that discussion at the appropriate time.” As he made his first visit back to Iowa since the 2012 presidential race, Perry left the door open to another presidential bid. He said he believed voters would give him an opportunity to make a second impression, if he decided to run again, even though his first campaign fizzled amid a series of high-profile gaffes. “Second chances are what America has always been about,” Perry said. In a wide-ranging interview in Des Moines, during a two-day visit to Iowa, Perry said the divisions among Republicans have been healthy for the party. But he said it was time for the establishment and tea party wings to rally around at least one shared goal: supporting strong candidates who can win. “If you can’t win elections, you can’t govern,” Perry said. “So winning an election is really important.” http://abcn.ws/1cc1s6C

–PERRY ON THE TED CRUZ STRATEGY: ‘IT WOULD HAVE BEEN WISER FOR US TO HAVE LAID THE WOOD TO THE PRESIDENT.’  While he said he enjoyed listening to his fellow Texas Republican, Sen. Ted Cruz, lead a 21-hour speech on the Senate floor in September against President Obama’s health care law, he questioned the wisdom of the government shutdown. He said it took attention away from the problems in the Affordable Care Act. “It would have been wiser for us to have laid the wood to the president, so to speak,” Perry said, lapsing into a Texas euphemism. “You know, call him out on this.”

HOW TWITTER HAS TRANSFORMED POLITICS. The “This Week” roundtable debated the role of social media in politics following Twitter’s IPO. WATCH: http://abcn.ws/1ccv0kF

SEN. ROBERT MENENDEZ: U.S. SHOULD MOVE FORWARD WITH NEW IRAN SANCTIONS. Sunday morning on “This Week,” Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chair Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., told ABC’s GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS that he’s confident the U.S. should move forward with new sanctions on Iran, despite efforts by the Obama administration to delay such a move. “I think that the possibility of moving ahead with new sanctions, including wording it in such a way that if there is a deal that is acceptable that those sanctions could cease upon such a deal, is possible,” Menendez said on “This Week” Sunday, ABC’s ISOBEL MARKHAM notes. Talks in Geneva, Switzerland to suspend Iran’s controversial nuclear enrichment program fell apart Saturday with no agreement. On Thursday, Obama administration officials, including Secretary of State John Kerry, pressed Congress to hold off on any new sanctions while negotiations continued. Menendez argued that increased sanctions would offer “an insurance for the United States to make sure that Iran actually complies with an agreement that we would want to see.” “At the same time it’s also an incentive to the Iranians to know what’s coming if you don’t strike a deal,” he added. http://abcn.ws/1ccnC8O

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: IRAN NUCLEAR TALKS SPUTTER IN GENEVA. Once-promising talks ended this weekend with no deal to suspend Iran’s nuclear program, ABC’s CHRIS GOOD reports. After three days of negotiations in Geneva, top diplomats from the U.S., Iran, France, the U.K., the European Union, Germany, Russia, and China departed without an agreement to suspend or limit Iran’s nuclear enrichment in exchange for temporary relief from international sanctions, after hopes had risen that such a deal was close. Top Iranian diplomats had stoked those hopes, telling news outlets that sides would start drafting an agreement on Friday. The goal of these meetings was a “first step” agreement, as the U.S. called it, to ease tensions and relieve fears of the proliferation of nuclear weapons while a longer-term deal could be worked out over the next six months. Talks will resume in three weeks, on Nov. 20. Kerry, European Union High Representative Catherine Ashton, and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif announced the end of this round at press conferences tonight. http://abcn.ws/17nVoKI

 

WHAT WE’RE READING

“TEXTBOOKS REASSESS KENNEDY, PUTTING CAMELOT UNDER SIEGE,” by The New York Times’ Adam Clymer. “The President John F. Kennedy students learn about today is not their grandparents’ J.F.K. In a high school textbook written by John M. Blum in 1968, Kennedy was a tragic hero, cut down too soon in a transformative presidency, who in his mere 1,000 days in office ‘revived the idea of America as a young, questing, progressive land, facing the future with confidence and hope.’ By the mid-’80s, that heady excitement was a distant memory, and Kennedy a diminished one. A textbook written in 1987 by James A. Henretta and several colleagues complained of gauzy ‘mythologizing’ about his tenure and said the high hopes he generated produced only ‘rather meager legislative accomplishments.’ The first — and for many the last — in-depth lesson that American students learn about the 35th president comes from high school textbooks. And on the eve of the anniversary of his assassination 50 years ago, a review of more than two dozen written since then shows that the portrayal of him has fallen sharply over the years. In general, the picture has evolved from a charismatic young president who inspired youths around the world to a deeply flawed one whose oratory outstripped his accomplishments. Averting war in the Cuban missile crisis got less attention and respect. Legislative setbacks and a deepening commitment in Vietnam got more. The Kennedy-era glamour seemed more image than reality.” http://nyti.ms/1deSRRH

 

WHAT WE’RE WATCHING

CHASING CHAOS: THE REAL-LIFE STORY OF A HUMANITARIAN AID WORKER. Idealistic and looking to make a difference, 24-year-old Jessica Alexander set out on a career in humanitarian relief work. But after managing a camp of tens of thousands of refugees in Darfur and rebuilding in Haiti following the 2010 earthquake, Alexander said her idealism faded to cynicism for a time. “My disillusionment came from realizing that these are systemic problems, and the aid community is working to save lives in the aftermath of huge disasters,” she said. “But a lot of the roots of these conflicts and some of the natural disasters that happen are due to lack of good governance, lack of preparedness. Alexander, whose new memoir, “Chasing Chaos: My Decade In and Out of Humanitarian Aid,” traces the ups and downs of her career in aid work, told “On the Radar” that well-intentioned people can inadvertently make conditions worse, when it comes to responding to the world’s greatest tragedies and disasters. http://yhoo.it/1dgDRCR

 

WHO’S TWEETING?

@jmartNYT: Asked newt if christie can bridge the party’s factions, newt said: “no” http://nyti.ms/HP7rFJ 

@JimAcostaCNN: Jerry Brown has highest approval rating since taking office in ’11, in new USC/LA Times poll: http://dornsife.usc.edu/usc-dornsife-la-times-poll-gov-jerry-brown-nov-2013/ …

‏@HeatherRileyABC: Thinking of @abc‘s @arobach this morning and her brave announcment http://abcn.ws/1eDpfRQ 

@GovWalker: Today, and everyday, we honor the men and women who proudly wore the uniform of the US military and those that still do today.

@AlisonForKY: Veterans Day is a time to honor our men and women in uniform. To our servicemembers, both past and present – thank you for your service.

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