Abraham Lincoln’s patience for free speech was tested during the Civil War when two New York newspapers, the Journal of Commerce and the World, wrote a fake story about the president. He ordered them shut down and their publishers imprisoned.
This is Arrested Congressional Development. There’s always money in the House Ways and Means Committee
The IRS official who first disclosed the service’s targeting of conservative organizations refused to answer questions during a House oversight hearing Wednesday, insisting that she has not broken any laws.
During a House Oversight and Government Affairs Committee hearing, the IRS’ Lois Lerner invoked her Fifth Amendment right to not incriminate herself, even as she insisted she had not done anything wrong.
“I have not broken any laws… I have not provided false information to this or any other congressional committee,” Lerner said in an opening statement.
Earlier this month Lerner disclosed that the IRS had targeted conservative groups during the 2012 election. Lerner heads up the division of the IRS that conducted the extended reviews of Tea Party organizations.
The White House Counsel’s office advised senior Obama officials to keep quiet about the attack in Benghazi during the weeks preceding last year’s November presidential election, according to two administration sources.
BuzzFeed has learned that key members of President Obama’s national security team, including deputy national security advisor Ben Rhodes, pushed to release a comprehensive timeline of events documenting the attack that would also synthesize the views of the various government agencies into one report. The CIA also wanted the White House to put out such a timeline, according to sources with knowledge of the situation.
Those plans were quashed, however, when the White House Counsel’s office, which is led by Kathryn Ruemmler, advised the officials to not release any information to the public out of fear it could be used against them in any subsequent investigations and other legal complications.
Think congress isn’t a place for bros? Think again.
As news outlets and press advocates pile on the Obama administration for the Justice Department’s long-term spying operations against the Associated Press and Fox News, one group has remained conspicuously absent from the debate: the White House Correspondents Association.
The WHCA, considered the primary organization representing reporters and news outlets covering the executive branch, has so far resisted pressure to challenge the DOJ and White House on its investigations into the AP and Fox reporter James Rosen, several sources familiar with the situation said.
WHCA president Ed Henry, also a Fox News correspondent, did not respond to queries about whether or not the organization will take a formal stance on the administration’s treatment of reporters in the wake of recent revelations. Additionally, past WHCA presidents either did not respond to a request for comment or declined to comment on the record.
Some observers say the WHCA, best known for the annual dinner it hosts for press, celebrities, and the political establishment, tends to avoid formally engaging in controversies like this one. A former WHCA president suggested it might be too early for the organization to comment while the focus is still on DOJ rather than the White House in particular.
But the WHCA’s unwillingness to comment on what many in the press consider a clear case of overreach could raise questions about the organization’s function and purpose.
President Obama told the nation Tuesday that the federal government is fully engaged in dealing with the aftermath of Monday’s deadly tornado strikes in Oklahoma.
In an address from the White House, Obama said federal officials are coordinating with their state counterparts in Oklahoma. Obama dispatched the FEMA administrator, Craig Fugate, to the scene of the storms to oversee rescue and cleanup operations.
A White House official said the president was briefed through the night Monday as details on the deadly storms emerged. Obama said the federal government will stay on the scene in Oklahoma as long as is necessary.
“Our prayers are with the people of Oklahoma today, and we will back up those prayers with deeds for as long as it takes,” he said.
Obama Went Off Script To Address Gay Grads Directly At Morehouse College: A slight change in the language, but a significant change in meaning. Instead of a veiled reference to same-sex couples, Obama made the language direct.
Human rights advocates are raising questions about President Obama’s visit with President Thein Sein of Burma on Monday, the first visit of a Burmese head of state to the White House in nearly 50 years, because despite the country’s moves toward democracy, human rights abuses there haven’t abated.
“Amnesty International is not against high-level engagement with the government of Myanmar,” said Frank Jannuzi, the head of Amnesty International’s Washington office. “But we think its essential that this not be a ‘mission accomplished’ moment. There is enormous work to be done in Myanmar to address continuing human rights violations and build the rule of law, transparency and accountability. We hope both presidents will focus on the work ahead, rather than patting themselves on the backs for a job well done.”
Burma — the name preferred by the military junta is Myanmar, and the White House referred to the country as such in its announcement of the visit despite a policy against using the name — has made some democratic reforms recently, including the release of over 400 political prisoners. But the country still represses religious freedom and military forces reportedly engaged in some of the gruesome violence last year against the Rohingya ethnic group, who are Muslim and have not been granted citizenship in Burma. A Human Rights Watch report from April alleges that “The Burmese government engaged in a campaign of ethnic cleansing against the Rohingya that continues today through the denial of aid and restrictions on movement” and that 125,000 Muslims have been displaced and unable to return home.
But as Burma becomes more democratic and prosperous, its strategic value in the region from a U.S. perspective increases.
Amazing photograph of hail and tornado damage in Louisiana in the same shot.