Midday open thread

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 12-10-2011-05-2008


  • Today’s comic is Protest pointers with Eric Cantor by Jen Sorensen:
    Protest pointers with Eric Cantor
  • Rep. Joe Walsh’s (R-IL) deadbeat dad follies continue:

    Freshman Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL) says he didn’t pay tens of thousands of dollars in child support payments to his ex-wife because he was under the impression they had an informal agreement that he’d keep the money.

    “He reasonably relied on [ex-wife Laura Walsh’s] representations and conduct, to his detriment,” Walsh’s lawyer said in a court filing, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

    Through his attorney, Walsh claimed he had a “verbal agreement” with his wife on child support because “Joe and his former wife were both tired of court appearances and the resulting emotional and financial impact on the family. Neither party had the financial or emotional wherewithal to continue the battle.”

    Ms. Walsh, who is suing the Congressman for over $100,000 in missed child support payments, sees things differently, however.

  • Not that this will go anywhere:

    Americans United for the Separation of Church and State believes a controversial Texas pastor who posted videos of himself endorsing Gov. Rick Perry for president on his church’s website has violated federal tax laws.

     Pastor Robert Jeffress of the Dallas-based First Baptist Church made his endorsement known over the weekend at the Values Voter Summit, where he drew direct ire from some for saying his support for Perry was based upon the candidate’s Christianity and implying that former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney isn’t a Christian due to his Mormon faith.

    At issue for Americans United isn’t the personal endorsement, but the fact that Jeffress has used the church’s tax-exempt status to spread his message about Perry. The group has asked the Internal Revenue Service to investigate.

  • File this one under bwahahahahaha!

    A Tennessee lawmaker who is a major proponent of legislation allowing gun owners to carry firearms in bars was arrested on Tuesday and charged with driving under the influence and possession of a handgun while under the influence, Davidson County Sheriff’s Office confirmed to TPM.

    Rep. Curry Todd (R) was pulled over around 11:15 p.m. Tuesday, according to the local Fox affiliate. Todd allegedly failed a roadside sobriety test and refused to take a breathalyzer test, the Associated Press reports. The gun — a Smith & Wesson 38 Special — was holstered next to the driver’s seat and loaded.

    According to the police affidavit, Todd was “very unsteady on his feet, almost falling down at times. … His speech was slurred, his eyes were red, watery and bloodshot. … The subject was obviously very impaired and not in any condition to be carrying a loaded handgun.”

  • Okay, it’s a serious subject, but that last line is pretty funny:

    A Nigerian man said Wednesday he tried to bring down an international flight over Detroit with a bomb in his underwear in retaliation for the killing of Muslims worldwide, taking a federal court by surprise as he pleaded guilty on the second day of his trial.

    Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, who had never denied the accusations against him, calmly answered questions from U.S. District Judge Nancy Edmunds before pleading guilty to all eight charges he faced, including conspiracy to commit terrorism and attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction.

    He then told the court that the underwear bomb was a “blessed weapon to save the lives of innocent Muslims.”

  • HHS issues a warning:

    HHS is warning consumers about a private website that’s posing as the central hub for health care reform’s Preexisting Condition Insurance Plan.

    The website, http://preexistingconditioninsuranceplan.com, may have the look and feel of an official website for the federal health insurance program, but HHS is warning consumers that it’s not the real thing. […]

    The private website includes a tiny disclaimer at the bottom that explains it is not maintained by the PCIP program or any government agency. It does not indicate who runs the site, and it lists a toll-free number but no other contact information.

  • Here’s hoping it helps put Michele and Marcus Bachmann out of business:

    The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) and Truth Wins Out (TWO) launched a national campaign today targeting conversion therapy, a thriving practice that claims to “convert” people from homosexuality to heterosexuality. The groups made the announcement in coordination with today’s National Coming Out Day. […]

    “Conversion therapy programs have devastated all too many lives and families by attempting to change a person’s sexual orientation,” said Christine Sun, deputy legal director, who leads the SPLC’s LGBT rights project. “This practice is based on nothing more than junk science and must stop.”

  • And yet the bigots always claim they just want to preserve “marriage.”

    The Inver Grove Heights City Council is considering a domestic partner registry, a mostly symbolic move that would provide proof of a couple’s domestic partnership in some insurance situations or public accommodations, but conservative activists are threatening to marshall the city’s pastors to block the move.

    In a public comment period at Monday night’s city council meeting, Ted Trenzeluk, a Republican activist, threatened to rally the city’s pastors to lobby the council if they didn’t drop the measure immediately.

  • This is probably a nefarious, socialist plot:

    Jumping with excitement, First Lady Michelle Obama and hundreds of local school children attempted to make their way into the next edition of the Guinness Book of World Records.

    Mrs. Obama, also known today as the “Jumper-in-Chief”, led 400 kids from schools in the DC area ages 8-14, to break the record for the most people doing jumping jacks in a 24-hour period. She kicked the challenge off at 3:00p on the South Lawn of the White House with one minute of continuous jumping jacks. The attempt will continue with groups of children around the country jumping until tomorrow afternoon. More than 20,425 jumpers are needed to break the record. […]

    Ms. Obama used the event as a way to promote her initiative “Let’s Move!” which promotes healthy eating and exercise for America’s children.

  • In case you were wondering:

    Vice President Joe Biden said he will “absolutely, positively” be on the Democratic ticket in the 2012 election during an appearance on the “Today” show Wednesday.

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