"Yesterday, nineteen firefighters were killed in the line of duty while fighting a wildfire outside Yarnell, Arizona," he said in a statement. "They were heroes -- highly-skilled professionals who, like so many across our country do every day, selflessly put themselves in harm's way to protect the lives and property of fellow citizens they would never meet. In recent days, hundreds of firefighters have battled extremely dangerous blazes across Arizona and the Southwest. The federal government is already assisting, and we will remain in close contact with state and local officials to provide the support they need. But today, Michelle and I join all Americans in sending our thoughts and prayers to the families of these brave firefighters and all whose lives have been upended by this terrible tragedy." TPM.com has more here.
On Sunday, two of his strongest supporters — Julian Assange of WikiLeaks and President Rafael Correa of Ecuador — said it was unlikely that Snowden would leave there anytime soon.
“The United States, by canceling his passport, has left him for the moment marooned in Russia,” said Assange, whose anti-secrecy organization has aided Snowden in his flight. The Washington Post has more here.
Strong Democratic Support for Hillary Clinton in 2016 - Early supporters of Barack Obama in 2008 are embracing the prospects of a Hillary Clinton run in 2016.
Several House Democrats who endorsed Obama over Clinton in the 2008 primary said that all signs point to widespread Democratic support for a second presidential bid for the former secretary of State.
One of Obama’s earliest supporters, Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-Pa.), said that if Clinton chooses to run, she will be the favorite.
Fattah’s sentiments come on the heels of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) contention that Democrats are coalescing behind a Clinton candidacy.
Pelosi recently told USA Today, "There's a great deal of excitement about the prospect that she would run. I don't know why she wouldn't run. She's prepared. She's well-known. She's highly respected. She knows she could do the job very, very well.” TheHill.com has more here.
The ECB holds a monetary policy meeting on Thursday, though it is expected to hold interest rates at the current record lows for the foreseeable future.
In a sign of the weak economy, unemployment in the bloc stood at a record 12.1 percent, a touch above the revised figure of 12.0 percent in April, but below Eurostat's earlier reading of 12.2 percent. It was lower than a forecast by economists polled by Reuters, who saw a reading of 12.3 percent in May. Reuters.com has more here.
Same-sex marriage opponents asked him to step in on Saturday, a day after the federal appeals court in San Francisco allowed same-sex marriages to go forward. Numerous weddings were performed at San Francisco City Hall following the court decisions.
The opponents said the appeals court had acted about three weeks too soon. Proposition 8 supporters could continue their efforts to halt gay marriage by filing their request with another Supreme Court justice. Politico.com has more here.
Project Grow, to recruit, mentor and elect more female candidates in 2014.
“We need more women to run,” Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-N.C., said. “Project Grow will plant that seed that will get them thinking of doing it.”
CQ Roll Call reported earlier this week that the National Republican Congressional Committee was in the early stages of formalizing a female candidate recruitment program for the upcoming midterm cycle. The NRCC’s announcement was part of a joint event with six GOP committees that are making an new organized effort to help female candidates.
The “Women on the Right UNITE” effort is run by the Republican National Committee, NRCC, the National Republican Senatorial Committee, Republican State Leadership Committee, College Republican National Committee and Republican Governors Association. The goal is to help female candidates ascend to all levels of government. RollCall.com has more here.