Even as they mourn the loss of Stephen Strasburg, DNC officials have a lot more to worry about than unsound elbows. A revised estimate of our economy's output indicates GDP grew at an abysmal 1.6 percent last quarter, a new analysis anticipates the GOP picking up 50 House seats this November and, in case that wound wasn't salty enough for ya', Barack Obama is wearing mom jeans again. Thankfully, the opposition party is on the case: Sarah Palin is providing a much needed boost to the private jet and bendable straw industries, Rand Paul is NOT going to be a legislative Leviathan and Michele Bachmann is single-handedly increasing the demand for assault rifle ammunition. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Friday, August 27th, 2010:
GDP GROWTH ESTIMATE REVISED DOWNWARD: OUR LONG NATIONAL :'-( PERSISTS - If America's economic malaise were a Bruce Springsteen song, this news would suggest we're transitioning from the "I'm going to tinker with my '74 Mustang until stagflation is solved" stanza to the "grab me tight, girl, and don't let go" one. "The nation's gross domestic product - the broadest measure of the economy's output - grew at a 1.6 percent annual rate in the April-to-June period, the Commerce Department said Friday. That's down from an initial estimate of 2.4 percent last month and much slower than the first quarter's 3.7 percent pace. Shortly after the revision was announced, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said the Fed will consider making another large-scale purchase of securities if the slowing economy deteriorates significantly. But the Fed chief stopped short of committing to any specific action." His comment goosed the stock market anyway. http://huff.to/cMD299
If your recession lasts for more than four quarters, consult your physician: "The U.S. birth rate has dropped for the second year in a row, and experts think the wrenching recession led many people to put off having children. The 2009 birth rate also set a record: lowest in a century." http://apne.ws/aSJcvc
Oh look, this exists: http://www.StuffAlanSimpsonSays.com/
MILLER AND MURKOWSKI BRACING FOR COURT FIGHT, POSSIBLE THIRD PARTY BID - Daily Beast: "As a tight vote count continues in the Last Frontier's Senate race, The Daily Beast's Shushannah Walshe reveals that Republicans are quietly testing a third-party path for Lisa Murkowski. The count in the Alaskan Senate Republican primary continues for the second day with Joe Miller still in the lead, but the drama is heating up. The Daily Beast has learned exclusively that an individual independent of Lisa Murkowski's campaign has commissioned a poll to see how she would fare if she ran as a third-party candidate under the Libertarian Party. The poll is being commissioned by Andrew Halcro, a former Republican state legislator, Murkowski supporter, and Sarah Palin critic. He ran against Palin in the 2006 governor's race as an independent in both the primary and general election." http://bit.ly/9wGVrP
Miller: "It concerns us any time somebody lawyers up and tries to pull an Al Franken, if you will." Yeah! Don't you hate it when other people win??? http://bit.ly/9Hpsd9
Miller also kinda, sorta called Murkowski a prostitute when he tweeted -- then quickly deleted -- the following: @JoeWMiller What's the difference between selling out your party's values and the oldest profession? http://bit.ly/93kXBr
Miller apologizes: ""Please accept my apologies. Staffer trying to encourage Libertarians not to sell out." BAD STAFFER. http://bit.ly/bxAYGq
FLORIDA GOP PRIMARY LOSER WON'T ENDORSE RIVAL - Funny, we didn't realize there were pumas on the East Coast: "Defeated Florida Republican gubernatorial hopeful Bill McCollum is declining to support former rival and newly-minted GOP nominee Rick Scott as he heads into his general election campaign. The St. Petersburg Times reports that McCollum, currently the Attorney General of Florida, signaled on Thursday that he offered his congratulations to Scott over the phone following Tuesday's election, but remains very skeptical of the self-funding contender's integrity." Elyse Siegel: http://huff.to/bYQmCh
ESTIMATE HAS GOP TAKING 50 SEATS IN THE HOUSE - Our polling expert Mark Blumenthal says the method used in this analysis is sound -- so...ruh roh. "By our reckoning, the most likely scenario is a Republican majority in the neighborhood of 229 seats versus 206 for the Democrats for a 50-seat loss for the Democrats. Taking into account the uncertainty in our model, the Republicans have a 79% chance of winning the House...The key will be to follow the generic polls from now to November. If the polls stay close, the Democrats have a decent chance to hold the House. But if the polls follow the past pattern of moving toward the 'out' party and move further toward the Republicans -- even by a little -- the Republicans should be heavily favored." Joseph Bafumi, Robert S. Erikson and Christopher Wlezien in HuffPost: http://huff.to/b4xyzi
DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - From Arthur Delaney: "Just 1,200 people have been approved so far for a new program to provide insurance coverage to people with pre-existing conditions. The program, known as the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan, launched in July as one of the immediate benefits of the new health care reform law, offering coverage to the uninsurable until 2014 when people should be able to choose from affordable policies available on an "exchange." There are roughly four million people uninsured because of pre-existing conditions, and Democrats touted the new program as one of the best immediate provisions of health care reform. But the PCIP's administrators have said they expect it to reach only 350,000 over the next three years." http://huff.to/b5LGw0
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BLUMENAUER: NO, I DON'T THINK SOCIAL SECURITY IS PAID WITH MAKE- BELIEVE MONEY - NYT reporter Matt Bai, in a profile of Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) published yesterday, paraphrased the congressman thus: "Mr. Blumenauer argues that [Social Security] can't exist on make-believe money." Au contraire, Rep. Blumenauer writes today in HuffPost: "While I appreciate Matt Bai's article in The New York Times... I would like to point out one area where I take modest exception to how my comments have been interpreted in this story. I do not believe, nor have I ever said, that the Social Security trust fund is either like a 'lottery' or 'make believe money.' ... [T]he Social Security trust fund is backed by the full faith and credit of the United States Government which has never and will never default on its commitments." http://huff.to/beUeeq
RAND PAUL MAYBE CAN'T SOLVE $2 TRILLION BUDGET DEFICIT IN ONE YEAR - Turns out a freshman senator representing a movement threatening to some members of his party's leadership can't by himself commandeer the entire federal budget, strip it of a giant fraction of its expenditures, steer it through committee and corral 60 votes for passage...in one year. AP: "Republican Senate candidate Rand Paul backtracked Thursday on his pledge to erase the federal budget deficit in a year, instead offering several options that he said could get it done within five. Paul, a tea party favorite for his limited government views, said in an interview on WHAS-AM that he'll introduce five budget-balancing options if he defeats his Democratic opponent, state Attorney General Jack Conway." http://bit.ly/9HJZiD
Sharron Angle's own supporters are tiring of their candidate's approach to policy and politics. Las Vegas Review-Journal: "Some 68 percent of those surveyed said they would have preferred if a candidate other than Angle had won the GOP primary. Among them were 71 percent of Republicans, 71 percent of nonpartisans and 64 percent Democrats. Among Angle voters, 66 percent said they would have preferred another GOP nominee, as would have 68 percent of Reid voters and 79 percent of those in neither camp." http://bit.ly/9WOC5h
PELOSI: DON'T EXTEND BUSH TAX CUTS FOR WEALTHY - Nancy Pelosi, at a San hometown briefing with reporters, including HuffPost Hill's acting San Francisco bureau chief, Lucia Graves, said that extending tax cuts for the top two percent would be a mistake. She said, however, that much would depend on the Senate.
President Obama is winning back Real America, one high waistband at a time. From WSJ's Elizabeth Williamson's pool report: "Sasha came first in white top and brown shorts followed closely by flotus in grey sleeveless top and white cropped pants. After a short break came potus in white shirt and his grey jeans looked to your pooler rather mom-like." Who knew President Obama shopped at a circa-1993 Marshalls? http://bit.ly/bEDWEg
It's Ed Shelleby's last day as comm director for Rep. Jim McDermott. He'll be spring boarding to Al Franken's press shop. Mazel tov, Ed.
GOOD OL' MODEST SARAH PALIN ASKS FOR BENDABLE STRAWS AT HER EVENTS...AND PRIVATE LEAR JETS - America's favorite hockey racquetball mom has some awfully expensive tastes, according to her speaking contract released as part of a California investigation into accounting practices by its universities. Among her list of demands to appear at an event are a "'deluxe' hotel suite, a first class ticket or a private jet ('Lear 60 or larger'), pre-selected audience questions, and 'bendable' straws - not to mention the $75,000 in cash." Palin had mocked the disclosure when college students first found part of her contract in the trash. Looks like they were telling the truth. CNN: http://bit.ly/cHrrbU
...Whereas Michele Bachmann just wants to make it rain. "Congresswoman Bachmann today toured Federal Ammunition ATK, and met with dozens of employees that have worked at the factory for many years," Bachmann spokesman Sergio Gor said. "Federal Ammunition ATK is a significant employer in the district and Congresswoman Bachmann considers these jobs very important for the district. Congresswoman Bachmann is a strong supporter of the 2nd Amendment and was able to fire several rounds of bullets produced in this factory. The Congresswoman has a great shot and did well!" Nick Wing: http://huff.to/aMZHP8
BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Here are two corgis on a treadmill: http://bit.ly/7Akgn5
JIM BUNNING: A MAJOR LEAGUE D-BAG - With the completely deflating news that Nationals phenom Stephen Strasburg will require talent-diluting Tommy John surgery, Hall of Fame pitcher-turned-Senator Jim Bunning is starting to look a tad bit insensitive for comments he made about the rookie. A few weeks ago, when Strasburg sat out a start due to shoulder soreness, Bunning -- while dramatically grabbing his arm -- exclaimed to Politico, "Five-hundred twenty starts, I never refused the ball," Bunning said. "What a joke!" Eschaton: http://bit.ly/cbj3OY
Hey, Bunning! 1964, buddy. 1964. http://bit.ly/1zBKo8
HILLARY CLINTON GETS NEW 'DO...NO WORD YET FROM PYONGYANG - "Look at this comely stateswoman!" declares WaPo, which explores the extra three inches of filamentous biomaterial shattering our patriarchal society's expectations of older women. "Clinton, at age 62, has grown out her hair. And it looks quite nice. Conventional wisdom advises that after a certain age -- 50ish -- women should cut their hair...Clinton's hair, now creeping toward below-the-shoulders territory, is practically radical for Washington's seasoned female power elite. Good for her." Big ups to @eniedowski for this one: http://bit.ly/9MTXS0
Best article sidebar...ever?: http://bit.ly/c3aa4A
Today in "Are you there God? It's me, America:" "Authorities say a car driven by the U.S. ambassador to Malta crashed into a drainage ditch in Southern California, killing a nun and injuring a 94-year-old pastor. The nun and pastor were passengers in the car driver by Ambassador Douglas Kmiec, 58, the California Highway Patrol said. Kmiec also suffered moderate injuries in Wednesday's one-vehicle crash." http://huff.to/d6aKOB
JEREMY THE INTERN'S WEATHER REPORT - So a few days ago, I cued ominous music. You all have nothing to worry about. Tonight: The beautiful weekend begins tonight. High-60s, which means not-too-hot, not-too-cold. In the words of Arthur Delaney, "It feels like there's no weather at all!" Tomorrow: The sun will be shining down, with temperatures in the upper-80s. Bring some shade or head wear... like a tri-corner hat (for no reason whatsoever). Sunday With two, count 'em, two high pressure systems in the area, the clear skies and sun will continue. It truly is a perfect weekend. Thanks, JB!
Chuck Todd and I had a bit of a Twitter back-and-forth this morning, in case you missed it. While interviewing a guest during The Daily Rundown, he asked whether Hurricane Earl (still a really stupid name) could harm New Orleans. I tweeted to him that it could not. Simply put, being an Atlantic Hurricane, it's too far out in the ocean (or at least, too far north). That's the back, JB, but where's the forth?
- That lady who dumped a cat in the trash should be on guard. http://bit.ly/a8VpqP
- Some magic, infused with the hippity and the hoppity which the kids love. http://bit.ly/b35WsW
- Hands down the best Pez dispenser of all time. http://bit.ly/bmQdij
- From CollegeHumor, the best viral videos of the year so far. http://bit.ly/cXjH6k
- A very angry take on a Carrie Underwood song. http://bit.ly/cikXLU
- Because, hey, why not: a dancing parrot. http://bit.ly/9t88mF
- A collection of rocket-powered bikes. http://bit.ly/cbXEll
- Ranting about PowerPoint might get you fired from the Army. http://bit.ly/bpJtj6
@danielradosh: And then Snuffleupagus says, "The Aristocrats!" RT @sesamestreet: Elmo: Elmo loves jokes! What's your silliest joke?
@pourmecoffee: If it does rain at @glennbeck rally, you will be able to invest in 24-carat Goldline umbrellas at a slight markup.
@kombiz Getty images puts Political campaigns, government agencies, into the same category as funeral related services.
Meet the Press: Mary Landrieu, Mitch Landrieu, Brad Pitt, Wendell Pierce, Garland Robinette, Douglas Brinkley.
This Week: Arne Duncan, Randi Weingarten, Michelle Rhee, Jaime Oliver, Donna Brazile, Susie Gharib, Richard Haass, George Will.
Face the Nation: Joe Miller, Kendrick Meek, Haley Barbour, Debbie Wasserman Schultz.
State of the Union: Shaun Donovan, Charlie Crist, Kendrick Meek.
5:00 pm: In anticipation of Michael Jackson's birthday U Street Music Hall will be hosting a King of Pop-themed Motown happy hour. Shamon, kids [U Street Music Hall, 1115 U Street NW].
5:00 pm - 8:30 pm: If you're curious what a light jazz violinist sounds like, Miles Stiebel will be demonstrating the nuances of the form on the Mall. He's performing at this week's Jazz in the Garden [Smithsonian National Sculpture Garden, 7th Street and Constitution Avenue NW].
8:00 pm: The penultimate installment of the Rosslyn Outdoor Film Festival screens "The Birdcage" [Gateway Park, 1300 Lee Highway].
7:00 pm - 10:00 pm: The Carter Barron Amphitheatre screens "Invictus" [Carter Barron Ampitheatre, 4850 Colorado Avenue NW].
9:00 pm: Chuck Brown, who's probably more D.C. than eating a half smoke while trudging up a broken escalator, celebrates his birthday alongside Be'la Dona, an all female Go-Go band [9:30 Club, 815 V Street NW].
9:30 pm: In case you can't make the Chuck Brown show but are still looking for a health dollop of soul, Black Cat will be hosting a James Brown Vs. Stevie Wonder Soul-Off [Black Cat, 1811 14th St NW].
4:00 pm: The never-ending outdoor movie opportunities are piling up: Spiderman is screened at National Harbor [Waterfront Street, National Harbor, MD].
9:00 pm: Get Nordic at Arlington Cinema and Drafthouse with their screening of "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo." Don't even pretend like you don't know [Arlington Cinema and Drafthouse, 2903 Columbia Pike, Arlington].
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