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Ear to the Ground

Everybody Hates John Boehner, Piers Morgan and Alex Jones Face Off, and More

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Posted on Jan 8, 2013

He’s a Piece of Work: If there’s one thing Americans on the left and on the right can agree on, it’s that House Speaker John Boehner did a crappy job during the fiscal cliff negotiations. According to a Washington Post/ABC News poll, 52 percent of Republicans disapproved of Boehner’s handling of the crisis, while a majority of Democrats also viewed his performance unfavorably. Overall, the poll showed President Obama came out ahead in a matchup against the speaker. (Read more)

New Weapon Against Guns: On the second anniversary of the deadly Tucson, Ariz., mass shooting that nearly claimed her life, former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, Mark Kelly, are launching a political action committee. The PAC, Americans for Responsible Solutions, looks to battle against the powerful pro-gun lobby. “Until now, the gun lobby’s political contributions, advertising and lobbying have dwarfed spending from anti-gun violence groups. No longer. With Americans for Responsible Solutions engaging millions of people about ways to reduce gun violence and funding political activity nationwide, legislators will no longer have reason to fear the gun lobby,” Giffords and Kelly write in an op-ed for USA Today. (Read more)

What Gun Control? More than three weeks after the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School, Congress still has not touched the issue of gun control. And according to BuzzFeed, the chances that the “modest efforts ... to tighten access to guns” will succeed are already diminishing, thanks to the heated fiscal cliff negotiations and the much anticipated upcoming fight between the two parties over the debt ceiling. “A senior White House official acknowledged last week to BuzzFeed that Congress’ ‘limited bandwidth’ will be a challenge for Obama’s second term agenda in the short term in the aftermath of the deal—something that is especially damaging to efforts on gun control as emotions grow cooler each day after the shooting,” the site reported. (Read more)

Company Chutzpah: Newly sworn-in Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., has a major problem with insurance giant AIG’s announcement Tuesday that it might sue the government over its taxpayer-funded $182 billion bailout. “Beginning in 2008, the federal government poured billions of dollars into AIG to save it from bankruptcy. AIG’s reckless bets nearly crashed our entire economy. Taxpayers across this country saved AIG from ruin, and it would be outrageous for this company to turn around and sue the federal government because they think the deal wasn’t generous enough,” the noted consumer advocate said in a statement. “AIG should thank American taxpayers for their help, not bite the hand that fed them for helping them out in a crisis.” Exactly. (Read more)

Counting the Ways: Nate Silver, the statistician behind The New York Times’ FiveThirtyEight blog, answered questions in a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” chat Tuesday. Among the subjects he discussed: the future of his blog, what other issues he’ll tackle from a statistical perspective and whether he finds politics or sports more frustrating to analyze. On that last topic, Silver said he found politics to be the more frustrating of the two because “between the pundits and the partisans, you’re dealing with a lot of very delusional people.” (Read more)

Video of the Day: Radio host Alex Jones, one of the people behind the petition to the White House seeking the deportation of Piers Morgan over anti-gun comments he made on his CNN show, appeared on “Piers Morgan Tonight” on Monday where he proceeded to lose it, making comments to Morgan such as “1776 will commence again if you try to take our firearms!” and “I’m going to say this here, you think you’re a tough guy? Have me back with a boxing ring and I’ll wear red, white and blue, and you’ll wear your Jolly Roger.” Mind you, he said all of this after being arrested for refusing to take off his shoes at a TSA checkpoint.

Bonus Video of the Day: But wait! It gets better. Just an hour after his interview with Piers Morgan, Alex Jones posted a video to YouTube in which he said he feared for his life and suggested that New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg had sent undercover police officers dressed as crackheads to kill Jones. “If something happens to us, or we’re killed by crackheads, it was the NYPD or mafia they [Bloomberg] hired,” he said.

 

 

—Posted by Tracy Bloom.

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