Bill says Mitt's version of Bill is "not true"; McCaskill gets dream opponent; and other top Wednesday stories
Welfare warfare: Mitt Romney’s campaign is doubling down on its erroneous accusation that President Obama is doing away with the welfare work requirement put in place in 1996, with a new video using Bill Clinton as a cudgel against the current president. But Clinton came out yesterday to call Romney’s claims “not true.” In a statement, the former president said Obama’s waiver policy was enacted at the request of GOP governors from Utah and Nevada who wanted more flexibility in their programs, and said it will not “gut” the reform he signed into law, as Romney claimed. The Washington Post’s fact checker gave Romney’s claims “four pinocchios.”
McCaskill gets her wish: Republicans picked their nominee last night for the all-important Missouri Senate race, choosing Rep. Todd Akin, who seems to have been Democrats’ favored choice to go up against Sen. Claire McCaskill. Akin is a controversial social conservative in a the toss-up state, so McCaskill appeared to think she had the best shot against him over his two former GOP challengers. For example, Akin made headlines and got called out by Obama in April when he called federal student loans “stage three cancer of socialism.”
Meanwhile, former Rep. Pete Hoekstra — best known for running a Super Bowl ad featuring a stereotyped Chinese woman – won Michigan’s Republican Senate primary yesterday and will face off against Sen. Debbie Stabenow.
Romney’s numbers stall: A new Washington Post/ABC News poll finds that “Mitt Romney’s favorability ratings have stalled during his campaign’s bumpy summer months, with his earlier improvements as he was wrapping up the Republican presidential primaries in the spring appearing to flat-line.” The same number of voters as in May — 40 percent — say they hold a favorable view of Romney, but his unfavorables have ticked up, from 45 to 49 percent. The trend may be especially troubling to Romney among independents, where Obama holds a margin 53 percent favorable to 40 percent negative, while Romney’s is upside down, at 37 percent to 50 percent.
Bachmann’s fuel on the fire: Rep. Michele Bachmann is coming under increasing fire in the wake of this weekend’s shooting at a Sikh temple, BuzzFeed reports. “I wouldn’t go so far as to say that Bachmann’s words contributed to this guy’s actions, but an atmosphere that prejudices and denigrates a people and a faith tradition does make it easier,” said Abraham Foxman, the longtime director of the Anti-Defamation League. Democratic Rep. Andre Carson, one of two Muslim members of Congress, said Bachmann is “adding gasoline to the fire” with her witch hunt against Muslims in government. The shooting and arson of a mosque in Missouri are “the latest examples of religious and ethnic intolerance and discrimination,” which she has stoked, in part, Carson said.
Dumbest veepstakes yet: CIA director Gen. David Petraeus has no plans or desire to be vice president or run for any other elected office, a spokesman for the agency said yesterday in response to an “exclusive” report from the Drudge Report. It’s amazing that Matt Drudge’s baseless V.P. speculation still gets attention, but the scoop prompted a mini-media frenzy over Petraeus, even though both the CIA, and the White House denied the claim. Drudge claimed Obama this week “whispered to a top fundraiser” that he believed Mitt Romney would pick Petraeus.
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Lisa Montgomery embraces her nephew Thursday after a tornado tore apart her home in Cleburne, Texas. The twister killed six people and destroyed entire swaths of the North Texas town.
Credit: AP/LM Otero
Jack McMahon, the defense attorney for abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell, speaks outside the Criminal Justice Center in Philadelphia Tuesday. His client was convicted of killing three babies in his clinic, and will serve multiple life sentences.
Credit: AP/Matt Rourke
A photo taken Monday captures Vice President Joe Biden's response to a Milwaukee second-grader's innovative proposal to end America's epidemic of gun violence. This guy!
Credit: AP/Jenny Aicher
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., flanked by a grouper-eyed Michele Bachmann, addresses the IRS' admission that it targeted Tea Party groups in advance of the 2012 election. In an op-ed for CNN Thursday, the Kentucky senator slammed the president for his faux outrage.
Credit: AP/Molly Riley
Ousted IRS chief Steven Miller is sworn in on Capitol Hill Friday. Miller testified before the House Ways and Means Committee on the extra scrutiny the agency gave conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status.
Credit: AP/J. Scott Applewhite
Attorney General Eric Holder pauses as he testifies on Capitol Hill before the House Judiciary Committee Wednesday. Holder is under fire, among other things, for the Justice Department's gathering of phone records at the Associated Press.
Credit: AP/Carolyn Kaster
O.J. Simpson sits during an evidentiary hearing at Clark County District Court in Las Vegas, Nev., Thursday. Simpson, who is currently serving a nine-to-33-year sentence in state prison for armed robbery and kidnapping, is using a writ of habeas corpus to seek a new trial.
Credit: AP/Las Vegas Review-Journal/Jeff Scheid
Major Tom to ground control: On Sunday astronaut Chris Hadfield recorded the first music video from space, a cover of David Bowie's "Space Oddity."
Credit: AP/NASA/Chris Hadfield
When it rains it pours. President Barack Obama speaks during a news conference Thursday with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, inexplicably inspiring an #umbrellagate Twitter meme.
Credit: AP/Jacquelyn Martin
A smoke plume rises high above a road block at the intersection of County A and Ross Road east of Solon Springs, Wis., Tuesday. No injuries were reported, but the the wildfire caused evacuations across northwestern Wisconsin.
Credit: AP/The Duluth News-Tribune/Clint Austin
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