From THE CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR:
Eric Cantor, the often combative second-ranking Republican in the U.S. House of Representatives, sought on Tuesday to rebrand himself and his party, voicing hope that they can work with President Barack Obama for the sake of all Americans.
While not wavering from his conservative principles and desire to tame the record U.S. debt, Cantor expressed a new eagerness to help the needy in such areas as education, health care, immigration and moving up the economic ladder.
“Over the next two years, the House (Republican) majority will pursue an agenda based on a shared vision of creating the conditions for health, happiness and prosperity for more Americans and their families,” Cantor said in a speech to the American Enterprise Institute, a Washington think tank.
Because Widdle Ewic and his merry band of Ayn Randian teabaggers are all about health, happiness, and prosperity for everyone [insert eyeroll here].
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(From Left to right in back, top row: Paul Broun, Trent Franks, Joe Wilson. Bottom row: Louie Gohmert, Steve King)
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From the Chicago Tribune:
For some members of a Conservative Jewish synagogue in Lakeview [Illinois], this year’s overlap of election season with the season of forgiveness presented a challenge.
During a worship service Tuesday on the eve of Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement, Rabbi Michael Siegel of Anshe Emet Synagogue offered what he called a customary greeting to a public official in the audience — U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R.-Minn. The greeting follows a synagogue policy to acknowledge the office rather than the individual or his or her politics, he said.
But the formality enraged more than a few congregants, prompting some to walk out and one to start a campaign of his own in support of Bachmann’s opponent in the race for her congressional seat, Jim Graves.
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From THINK PROGRESS LGBT:
In just her first year in office, Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-MO) has proven to be one of the most socially conservative members of Congress, and today she demonstrated just how intolerant she is of people who do not share her beliefs. In an interview, she and the Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins were condemning the Air Force Academy for creating an outdoor worship space that accommodates “Earth-based” religions. Hartzler said she believes that her rabidly conservative brand of Christianity is “the main religion in our country” and condemned any attempt to accommodate “fringe religions”:
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From THE HUFFINGTON POST:
His sniffles began during the speech, but it wasn’t until after House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) stepped down from the podium during a Wednesday ceremony at the Capitol that the bawling started.
Boehner was one of several Hill leaders who gave remarks at an event honoring astronauts John Glenn, Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Buzz Aldrin with the Congressional Gold Medal. Congress approved the medal in July 2009 to mark the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.
“Neil Armstrong was once asked: Why did you, this one man, choose to speak for all when you set foot on the lunar surface? As it turns out, there was no script, there were no notes,” Boehner said. “When the moment came, Neil’s thoughts turned to the 400,000 people who worked on the project…. He said he knew ‘it would be a big something for all those folks and a lot of others who weren’t even involved in the project.’ So it was.”
And then, as Boehner lined up to present Armstrong with his medal in front of the crowd, the weeping began.
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From THINK PROGRESS GREEN:
The Koch brothers and the foundation they fund, Americans for Prosperity, are among the biggest backers of the right’s anti-environment movement, pushing for the repeal of environmental laws and regulations on both the state and federal level. Those efforts continued at AFP’s annual Defending the American Dream Summit this weekend, as attacks on the EPA came from seemingly every prominent speaker and in multiple panels.
Former pizza magnate Herman Cain (R) drew some of his largest cheers when he declared that the EPA “needs an attitude adjustment,” while former Gov. Mitt Romney (R-MA) decried the burden of federal regulations on job creation. But while Romney has insisted in the past that Republicans aren’t “anti-regulation” and other conservatives have insisted that the party doesn’t want to defund the EPA, Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-KS) — the Congressman from Koch — made it clear during an environmental panel that that was exactly his goal [...]:
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From Newsweek/THE DAILY BEAST:
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, the Republican leadership’s tether to the Tea Party, flutters the hearts of the government-bashing, budget-slicing faithful with his relentless attacks on runaway federal spending. To Cantor, an $8 billion high-speed rail connecting Las Vegas to Disneyland is wasteful “pork-barrel spending.” The Virginia Republican set up the “You Cut” Web site to demonstrate how easy it is to slash government programs. And he made the Department of Housing and Urban Development the poster child for waste when he disclosed that the agency was paying for housing for Ph.D.s.
But away from the cameras, Cantor sometimes pulls right up to the spending trough, including the very stimulus law he panned in public. Letters obtained by Newsweek show him pressing the Transportation Department to spend nearly $3 billion in stimulus money on a high-speed-rail project—not the one he derided in Nevada, but another in his home state. “Virginia … will demonstrate that this historic investment in rail will create jobs, reduce congestion, spur economic growth and improve our environment,” says a letter he signed with other Virginia members in October 2009, cribbing President Obama’s own argument for the stimulus.
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House Majority Leader Eric Cantor abruptly canceled a speech Friday at the University of Pennsylvania that had become the target of Occupy Philly and other groups. Hundreds of protesters gathered at Penn nonetheless, carrying signs and shouting slogans.
Cantor (R., Va.) was scheduled to speak at Penn’s Wharton School at 4:30 p.m. but backed out earlier in the afternoon, indicating that it had been his understanding the speech would be open only to people affiliated with the university.
In a statement, his office said it “was informed last night by Capitol Police that the University of Pennsylvania was unable to ensure that the attendance policy previously agreed to could be met.”
The university in turn issued a statement saying it “deeply regrets” that Cantor canceled and suggesting that there had been no change in the attendance policy.
“The Wharton speaker series is typically open to the general public, and that is how the event with Majority Leader Cantor was billed. We very much regret if there was any misunderstanding with the majority leader’s office on the staging of his presentation,” the university said.