Top of the Ticket

Political commentary from Andrew Malcolm

Category: Security

Sunday shows: Gates, Graham, Durbin, Lugar, Rogers

Departing Secretary of Defense Robert Gates

ABC's "This Week" with Christiane Amanpour: Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) with Elizabeth Cheney, David Ignatius and Husain Haqqani, Matthew Dowd, George Will and Amy Walter.

Bloomberg's "Political Capital with Al Hunt:" Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.).

CBS' "Face the Nation" with Bob Schieffer: Sens. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) with Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.).

CNN Fareed Zakaria "GPS": Robert Reich, David Stockman, Maziar Bahari and Fawaz Gerges.

CNN's "State of the Union" with Candy Crowley: Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates and David Axelrod.

Fox News Channel "Fox News Sunday" with Chris Wallace: Gates and Jon Stewart, with Dana Perino, Bill Kristol, Mara Liasson and Bill Burton.

NBC's "Meet the Press" with David Gregory: Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Richard Durbin (D-Ill.).

-- Andrew Malcolm

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Photo: Associated Press (Gates)

Weekly remarks: GOP's John Hoeven says trade pacts would spur new jobs; Obama salutes Father's Day

Capitol Hill

Weekly remarks by Sen. John Hoeven, as provided by Republican Party leadership

Hi, I’m Senator John Hoeven of North Dakota, and I’d like to talk to you today about our nation’s fiscal challenges –- in particular, about the vital role that international trade can play to help us create jobs and reduce our deficit.

Almost exactly one hundred years ago, at the start of another century, President Theodore Roosevelt launched a U.S. Navy mission known as the Great White Fleet on a voyage around the world.

It was a show of American strength, but it was also a show of American goodwill and prosperity. That voyage would open the doors of trade with the vast, untapped markets of Asia, and help usher in what became known as the ‘American Century.’

President Roosevelt’s leadership put the world on notice that the United States of America -- with the freest, most dynamic economy the world had ever seen -- was open for business.

It’s a legacy felt to this day -- but a legacy now in jeopardy.

We’re all keenly aware of just how serious our nation’s current fiscal situation is. No....

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First debate overview: A bunch of GOP colleagues get together to criticize President Obama

GOP New Hampshire Debate CNN Santorum, Bachmann, Gingrich, Romney, Paul, Pawlenty, Cain 6-13-11

President Obama was the big loser in Monday night's New Hampshire Republican debate, the first with the frontrunner.

Obama, of course, wasn't there. The Democrat and his wife were on opposite sides of the country doing -- guess what? -- a packet of political fundraisers. She was in Los Angeles rounding up Hollywood cash and he was in Miami for a trio of moola events, en route to another fundraiser in Puerto Rico today.

In New Hampshire the existing field of seven Republicans had different missions going into the 120-minute rhetorical tussle. There was a bothersome hectic air about the show. Being TV, host John King was constantly stressing time, time, time, as if there weren't 14 months until the convention and 512 days until the 2012 election. And who cares if Anderson Cooper's show starts late?

So the candidates had a whole 60 seconds to explain various stands plus 30-second responses. Any depth was accidental. (The full two-hour transcript is available here. Good luck with that.)

For Rick Santorum, Herman Cain, Tim Pawlenty and Michele Bachmann, it was....

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Rep. Anthony Weiner denies he sent link to photo of a man in underpants


Anthony Weiner cannot confirm nor deny that the crotch shot is of him, but the New York congressman has finally gone on the record to say that he did not send the link of the image to a 21-year-old female student via Twitter.

"I did not send that photo. My system was hacked. I was pranked," Weiner told ABC News on Wednesday.

"Somebody sent a picture of a wiener from Weiner's account. I've been hearing that joke since I was 5," the Democrat said, acknowledging the endless barrage of puns levied against him in what is being deemed Weiner-gate.

The controversy began Friday when a lewd photo of a man in gray underwear appeared on Weiner's Twitter page directed to Gennette Cordova, a student at Western Washington University [Correction: a previous version of this story said Cordova attended Washington State]. Cordova is one of the 198 people that the congressman follows on the social network. She has since deleted her original Twitter account and relaunched a new one.

The tweet in question was quickly deleted from Weiner's page but not before Dan Wolfe (who describes himself on his Twitter profile as a "Conservative Reagan Republican") retweeted the message adding "Anthony Weiner tweets X RATED PIC TO FOLLOWER!"

Weiner's defenders have gone to great lengths to discredit Wolfe using a several screen shots from a variety of websites to track the curious history of this tempest in a tweet. Others have noted that Wolfe has been obsessively tweeting about the congressman, 287 times since April.

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How President Obama barely beat the deadline to sign the Patriot Act extension -- without picking up a pen

Declaration of Independence Signing John Trumbull painting who do you suppose got to keep the historic feather?

Because extending certain provisions of the Patriot Act before they expired at midnight last night was deemed so essential to national security, the extension legislation was, of course, left until the last minutes, thanks to the political paragons of Congress.

Republicans wanted a permanent extension. Democrats didn't.

They settled on June 1, 2015.

After a feud about guns, the four-year Patriot Act Sunset Extensions of 2011 passed in the Senate Thursday 72-23.

Then, with barely 300 minutes to spare, the House passed the same measure, 250-153. Our colleague Lisa Mascaro carefully chronicles some of the bill's provisions, what all the government spooks can peek into now still with secret federal court approval.

Phew, that was close! Law-abiding terrorists were just waiting for midnight (Eastern Daylight) to start plotting on the phone.Obama Signature

But, wait! The Patriot Act extension couldn't become law until it was signed by the president.

And if this is Friday, Obama must be off on another foreign trip somewhere. Sure enough, they found him 3,719 miles away toughing out a couple of days with other G-8 leaders in the French resort of Deauville.

According to aides, Obama had to be awakened early Friday, which was after the deadline by French beach resort time.

The commander-in-chief reportedly reviewed the provisions carefully and ordered his signature affixed to said bill.

Wait! What? The president of the United States didn't actually sign it himself??

Remember, back in 2009 when Obama was so excited about the economic stimulus bill that didn't really work as well as Joe Biden promised everybody? And so Obama flew Air Force One out to Denver with the legislation to personally sign it there, for some reason?

Well, here's one of the dirty not-so-little secrets of American politics. Yes, the....

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Don't tell Obama, but Prime Minister Netanyahu got 2 dozen standing O's from Congress for this

Israeli prime minister benjamin Netanyahu addresses a joint session of congress 5-24-11

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Speech to a Joint Session of Congress

I am deeply honored by your warm welcome. And I am deeply honored that you have given me the opportunity to address Congress a second time. Mr. Vice President, do you remember the time we were the new kids in town?

And I do see a lot of old friends here. And I do see a lot of new friends of Israel here. Democrats and Republicans alike.

Israel has no better friend than America. And America has no better friend than Israel. We stand together to defend democracy. We stand together to advance peace. We stand together to fight terrorism. Congratulations America, Congratulations, Mr. President. You got bin Laden. Good riddance!
In an unstable Middle East, Israel is the one anchor of stability. In a region of shifting alliances, Israel is America’s unwavering ally. Israel has always been pro-American. Israel will always be pro-American.

My friends, you don’t need to do nation building in Israel. We’re already built. You don’t need to export democracy to Israel. We’ve already got it. You don’t need to send American troops to defend Israel. We defend ourselves. You’ve been very generous in giving us tools to do the job of defending Israel on our own. Thank you all, and thank you President Obama, for your steadfast commitment to Israel’s security. I know economic times are tough. I deeply appreciate this.

Support for Israel’s security is a wise investment in our common future.  For an epic battle is....

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How Hannah Thoreson handled Mitch Daniels' disappointing dropout decision

Hannah Thoreson with Mitch Daniels 5-11

The media spotlight has moved on from Indianapolis now, after Gov. Mitch Daniels aborted his anticipated campaign for the Republican presidential nomination in a Saturday midnight email that shocked supporters across the country.

Daniels acknowledged that his family was opposed to the grinding run, so he dropped it.

Now most of the attention focuses on Newt Gingrich's campaign here and Tim Pawlenty's newly announced bid here and Jon Huntsman's informal campaign swing through New Hampshire.

But little noticed as the political parade marches toward the state fairs this summer and the Iowa caucuses and primaries next winter are the newly abandoned supporters of Daniels.

"Well," said Max Eden, head of the Student Initiative to Draft Daniels, "the rapture took Mitch from 2012. His better angels had the last word, and he put his family first. His choice attests to half the reason why students at 65 colleges rallied to urge him to run: He is a good man."

Among those students is Hannah Thoreson, a 21-year-old physics major at ....

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Late-night's best: Obama's sunken approval rating bad news for Kadafi

As The Ticket's 65,000-plus Twitter followers here and 6,800 Facebook fans here know, we regularly share our daily picks of the late-night jokes of interest, usually before broadcast each night. Feel free to pass them on to friends using the Share buttons above. Normally, we publish these on Monday mornings.

Letterman: On Monday no more smoking in New York City public places. So after today if you’re holding something smoking in New York City, it better be a gun.

Leno: President Obama wants Israel to go back to pre-1967 borders. Now, Native Americans are demanding Obama go back to pre-1492 borders.

Leno: You heard about that whole world-coming-to-an-end thing, right? Look, I love Oprah too. But it was just a TV show.

Letterman: Oprah has taped her last show. I hope to God she's taken care of her money. I do. Because I think Steadman may be sucking her dry.

Leno: President Obama's approval rating went up after the SEALs....

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What Obama told AIPAC about Israel before flying to Ireland

President Obama caught some intense heat for his Thursday remarks at the State Department that seemed to change the staunch American support for Israel. One result was a chilly Oval Office head-to-head Friday with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Obama's full text Thursday is right here.

Not coincidentally, the Democrat spoke before the influential American Israel Public Affairs Committee crowd Sunday to reexplain his position. He was received politely, did not appear to back off his first statement and reiterated the United States' strong commitment to Israel. Full text below.

That's a commitment, not by the way, that has played a strong role in shaping the flow of political donations within American politics. Just saying.

Netanyahu is also addressing that crowd, as is Republican House Speaker John A. Boehner.


Obama, late for his own Middle East speech, keeps viewers waiting, globally

What they're saying about Obama's Middle East speech

President Obama's remarks to AIPAC about Israel, as provided by the White House

Good morning!  Thank you, Rosy, for your very kind introduction. But even more, thank you for your many years friendship. Back in Chicago, when I was just getting started in national politics, I reached out to a lot of people for advice and counsel, and Rosy was one of the very first. 

When I made my first visit to Israel, after entering the Senate, Rosy -- you were at my....

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Sunday shows: Cain, Gingrich, Durbin, Abdullah

Republican presidential candidate businessman Herman Cain 2-11

ABC's "This Week" with Christiane Amanpour: King Abdullah II, Jake Tapper, George Will, Jonathan Karl, Matthew Dowd and Donna Brazile.

Bloomberg's "Political Capital" with Al Hunt: Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.).

CBS' "Face the Nation" with Bob Schieffer: Newt Gingrich.

CNN Fareed Zakaria "GPS": Amr Moussa, Mohamed ElBaradei, Waleed Rashed, Ragia Omran, Noor Aman Nour and Sarah Abdelrahman.

CNN's "State of the Union" with Candy Crowley: Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill), Reps. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) and C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.), Dick Armey, Ron Klain, Stephen Hadley, Israeli Amb. Michael Oren and Jane Harman.

Fox News Channel "Fox News Sunday" with Chris Wallace: Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Herman Cain, with Evan Bayh, Liz Cheney, Paul Gigot and Juan Williams.

NBC's "Meet the Press" with David Gregory: House Budget Committee Chairman Paul D. Ryan (R-WI).

-- Andrew Malcolm

Why wait until Sunday for politics? Click here now to follow The Ticket via Twitter alerts of each new Ticket item. Or follow us @latimestot. Our Facebook Like page is over here. We're also available on Kindle now. Use the ReTweet buttons above to share this item with friends.

Photo: Jonathan Ernst / Reuters (Cain).



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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
President Obama
Republican Politics
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