FROM Matt Viser
The Fiscal Cliff, Susan Rice and Political Gamesmanship As promised, President Obama had lunch with Mitt Romney today — no press coverage, no details of their discussion. But just weeks after the election, partisanship is still the word in Washington. After days of optimism about avoiding the fiscal cliffs, hard lines are now being drawn. The President and House Speaker John Boehner spoke by telephone last night, and it appears the President is still insisting that priority number one is the bill to maintain tax breaks for the Middle Class while raising rates on the wealthy. At a news conference this morning, Boehner threw cold water on the President's much advertised return to the campaign trail to win public support.
Supreme Court Justices Weigh Future of Healthcare Law Whatever its ultimate ruling in June may be, the US Supreme Court made history this week. It's taken two years for the Affordable Care Act to reach the Court, which is lightening speed by normal standards. After three days of arguments , the fate of President Obama's most important legislative achievement is very much up in the air. Will the Supreme Court throw out the "mandate" to buy insurance? What about requirements already in effect, like insurance despite pre-existing conditions? What's the potential impact on this year's presidential election?
The Trump agenda: where's the beef? President Trump says big things are happening. After celebrating a House bill on health care, he doesn’t yet have Senate agreement. With James Comey’s public testimony scheduled tomorrow, the President today tweeted his selection of a new FBI Director. Is the Chief Executive all style and no substance? Later, terror attacks in Iran and conflicting claims about who’s behind them.
Ex-FBI Director Comey tells his side of the story Today, former FBI Director James Comey came close to calling the President who fired him a liar. The White House denied the claim and called it insulting, but Republican Senators did not challenge Comey’s truthfulness. Many questions remain: did the President try to obstruct a federal investigation? Later, we’ll go behind the “velvet rope” for a look at 5-Star health care for the richest Americans.
Trump plays scolder-in-chief with NATO allies At the opening of NATO’s dramatic new headquarters in Brussels today, President Trump acknowledged that Article 5 — promising that “an attack on one nation is an attack on all” -- has only been invoked one time: in the aftermath of September 11. But the President failed to provide what 27 other Alliance members have been waiting for: a re-commitment by America’s new leader to Article 5. Instead, they got a scolding.