Sources with knowledge of the federal investigation into Jesse Jackson Jr. told the Chicago Sun-Times that investigators believe the former lawmaker had learned of the federal scrutiny of his financial activity prior to his June 10 medical leave from Congress.
The New York Times reports an inquiry into e-mail exchanges between Gen. John Allen and a Tampa socialite has narrowed to 60 to 70 emails that “bear a fair amount of scrutiny.”
“The official did not disclose the content of the e-mails, but senior Pentagon officials have described the voluminous correspondence between General Allen, the top NATO commander in Afghanistan, and the socialite, Jill Kelley, as potentially ‘inappropriate communication.'”
Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) said that he will “make an announcement about my future political plans” in July, the Rio Grande Guardian reports.
Gennifer Flowers, who rocked Bill Clinton’s run for the White House 20 years ago by revealing a sexual affair, tells WGNO-TV that the former President called her up in 2005 “and tried to set up a rendezvous following her divorce,” the New York Daily News reports.
Said Flowers: “I picked up the phone and it was him. And he wanted to come by my house and talk to me… I was taken aback. That was the last thing I expected.”
“I said, ‘No you can’t come over here.’ He said, ‘I’ll put on a hoodie and I’ll jog up there.’ … And I said, ‘No, I want you to leave me alone.’ And that was that.”
Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK) urged colleagues in a private session “to vote to extend the Bush tax rates for all but the highest earners before the end of the year — and to battle over the rest later,” Politico reports.
The conservative Republican said that he believes such a vote would not violate Grover Norquist’s anti-tax pledge and that he’s not alone within Republican circles. He also said it would “rob the president of the argument that Republicans are holding up tax cuts for all but the top earners.”
Said Cole: “I think we ought to take the 98 percent deal right now. It doesn’t mean I agree with raising the top 2. I don’t.”
Wonk Wire: For fiscal cliff deal, the devil is in the details.
Virginia Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R) is expected to drop out of next year’s gubernatorial race, leaving Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R) with a clear path to the GOP nomination next year, Politico reports.
CNN notes Bolling’s decision sets the table for “a titanic 2013 clash” between
Cuccinelli and former DNC chairman Terry McAuliffe.
A new Quinnipiac poll in New Jersey finds voters overwhelmingly favor Gov. Chris Christie (R) for re-election, 67% to 25%.
The strongest possible Democratic challenger, Newark Mayor Cory Booker (D), trails Christie by 18 points, 53% to 35%.
Said pollster Maurice Carroll: “Remember, we have a state election in 2013 and the only Democrat who shows any oomph against Christie, the hero of Hurricane Sandy, is Booker. Even he trails the Republican Governor by double digits.”
Smart Politics: “Ohio has been the most politically divided state in the country in presidential elections for the last 184 years — boasting the lowest average victory margin and the largest number and percentage of races decided by less than five points.”
Three women AIDS activists saying they wanted to highlight the ”naked truth” about potential spending cuts in HIV programs were arrested after taking their clothes off in the lobby of House Speaker John Boehner’s office, the AP reports.
TPM has some of their chants: “Boehner, Boehner, don’t be a dick, budget cuts will make us sick.” And: “Budget cuts are really rude, that’s why we have to be so lewd.”
BuzzFeed has photos.
Jonathan Chait: “How doomed are conservatives? Pretty doomed, if you look carefully at the Pew Research Survey’s close analysis
of the youth vote in the 2012 elections. The Republicans’ long-term
dilemma has generally been framed in racial terms, but it’s mainly a
generational one. The youngest generation of voters contains a much
smaller proportion of white voters than previous generations, and those
whites in that generation vote Republican by a much smaller margin than
their elders. What’s more, younger voters supported President Obama
during the last two election cycles for reasons that seem to go beyond
the usual reasons — social issues like gay marriage and feminism,
immigration policy, or Obama’s personal appeal — and suggest a deeper
attachment to liberalism. The proclivities of younger voters may
actually portend a full-scale sea change in American politics.”
“Our air defenses weren’t ready. They gave us a pass, for whatever reason.”
— David Axelrod, quoted by the Daily Beast, noting the Obama re-election campaign was “a bit surprised” that GOP super PACS didn’t run anti-Obama ads until May.
“A state senator from north-central Idaho is touting a scheme that’s
been circulating on tea party blogs, calling for states that supported
Mitt Romney to refuse to participate in the Electoral College in a move
backers believe would change the election result.”
Marc Ambinder gives five reasons why the conventional wisdom on Hillary Clinton might be wrong.
“If I had to bet, I’d bet that she decides to run, if only because she
will feel that destiny and circumstance have put her in the right place
at the right time. She may feel that she owes it to young women and
those who supported her to finish the marathon of American politics. But
she might well decide that her legacy is secure, her popularity is
intact, her financial prospects are bright, and her future lies with
advocacy from the outside and grand-mothering.”
Possible promotions for U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice and acting CIA
Director Michael Morell “remain in jeopardy” after the two officials met with three of their Republican critics in the U.S. Senate regarding the attacks in Benghazi, Libya, the Washington Post reports.
Sen. Lindsey Graham’s (R-SC) reaction best summarized the reaction: “Bottom line, I’m more disturbed now than I was before.”
The Wall Street Journal has a round up of reactions.
Stacie Marie Laughton (D) made history when she was elected to the New Hampshire House of Representatives earlier this month and became the first elected transgender official in the nation.
However, the Laconia Daily Sun now reports that Laughton was convicted in 2008 for “conspiracy to commit credit card fraud” and served four and a half months in jail.
While convicted felons can run for office in New Hampshire as long as they have completed their sentence, ABC News reports Republicans are calling for Laughton to step down.
Update: Several readers point out that Stu Rasmussen was the first elected transgender official as the Oregonian also points out.
“A Hungarian far-right politician urged the government to draw up lists of Jews who pose a ‘national security risk’, stirring outrage among Jewish leaders who saw echoes of fascist policies that led to the Holocaust,” Reuters reports.
Rolling Stone has a good interview with James Carville who marvels that Mitt Romney, “a businessman whose core sales pitch was competent management, entrusted his campaign to second-rate crony consultants who were so divorced from reality that they had him convinced to the bitter end that victory was all but assured.”
He also predicts that the United States could face “a surprising role reversal in 2016: Democratic voters are likely to behave like the GOP base and fall into line behind a pre-anointed candidate, while Republicans will be forced to embrace a centrist agent of change – a Republican version of Carville’s former boss.”
Former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA) tells the Weekly Standard that he is “open” to another presidential bid in 2016.
Said Santorum: “I think there’s a fight right now as to what the soul of the Republican party’s going to be and the conservative movement, and we have something to say about that. I think from our battle, we’re not going to leave the field.”
The Week: “The GOP has a long tradition of embracing, and eventually rewarding, its runners-up in the party’s presidential primary.”