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Friday, March 15, 2013

Daily Political Wire

George Wenschhof

Obama in Chicago To Push Green Energy - President Obama will revive his green energy sales pitch Friday with a proposal to divert offshore oil-and-gas revenues to fund research into alternative fuel and vehicle technologies.

The president will highlight the plan during a visit to a clean-energy research lab in Chicago, arguing the investment is vital to reduce dependence on foreign oil and spur high-tech jobs for the United States. has more here.


Senator Portman's Support of Same-Sex Marriage Pushes GOP to Change - Ohio Republican Sen. Rob Portman's endorsement of same-sex marriage rights on Friday is the latest high-profile example of a sea change within the conservative movement toward gay rights.
A trickle of GOP leaders have begun to back the rights of gay and lesbian couples to marry, and activists at the conservative movement's signature gathering this week express tolerance for Republicans who support same-sex marriage, even if they personally disagree.

Portman, an influential senator whom Mitt Romney almost selected last year as his running mate, announced that he had changed his position toward same-sex marriage because one of his sons is gay.  First Read has more here.


Grand Jury Investigating Senator Menendez - A federal grand jury in Miami is investigating Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), examining his role in advocating for the business interests of a wealthy donor and friend, according to three people aware of the probe.

Menendez has intervened in matters affecting the financial interests of Florida ophthalmologist Salomon Melgen, seeking to apply pressure on the Dominican government to honor a contract with Melgen’s port-security company, documents and interviews show. Also, Menendez’s office has acknowledged he interceded with federal health-care officials after they said that Melgen had overbilled the U.S. government for care at his clinic.  The Washington Post has more here.


Obama Says Vows Iran will Not Develop Nuclear Weapons -  President Obama told an Israeli television station on Thursday that his administration believed it would take Iran “over a year or so” to develop a nuclear weapon, and he vowed that the United States would do whatever was necessary to prevent that from happening.

Less than a week before his first visit as president to Israel, Mr. Obama pledged to continue diplomatic efforts, but he promised that the United States would keep all options on the table to ensure that Iran did not become a nuclear threat to its neighbors. The NY Times has more here.


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