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Friday, April 12, 2013

Daily Political Wire

George Wenschhof

Obama Calls On N. Korea To End Belligerence - President Obama called on North Korea on Thursday to end its belligerence after months of escalating rhetoric and actions related to its nuclear program.
Obama also pledged that “the United States will take all necessary steps to protect its people and to meet our obligations under our alliances in the region.” The United States has defense treaties with South Korea and Japan.

“Now is the time for North Korea to end the kind of belligerent approach that they’ve been taking and to try to lower temperatures,” Obama said after an Oval Office meeting with U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.  The Washington Post has more here.


Obama, GOP Senators Agree To Exchange Proposals on Budget - President Obama and a dozen Republican senators he met with Wednesday evening agreed the two sides should begin exchanging papers to explore a possible deficit-reduction deal, according to two lawmakers who attended.

But both sides acknowledged over dinner at the White House they have only modest expectations for success.
One lawmaker who attended the dinner in the Old Family Room said the consensus at the meeting was that the chances of a grand bargain on the deficit is “less than 50-50.” has more here.


Giffords To Meet with Members of Congress on Gun Control - Giffords, who was shot in the head as she met with constituents at a Tucson Safeway supermarket in January 2011, had already planned to be in Washington to dedicate a meeting room in the Capitol in honor of aide Gabe Zimmerman, who was killed in the shooting that wounded her.

She plans to ask for meetings with a number of Republicans — and Democrats — who the group believes might be open to supporting the background check compromise amendment to the gun legislation. Senators Pat Toomey and Joe Manchin announced their compromise proposal on Wednesday.

For former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, gun violence is personal -- so she's going to begin her own in-person push for a new compromise to expand background checks for gun sales when she returns to Capitol Hill next week, NBC News has learned.

And the gun safety group she founded with husband, Mark Kelly, will begin making robocalls Thursday in Pennsylvania and West Virginia, looking to support the two senators who crafted the deal -- an attempt to demonstrate that the organization is committed to challenging the gun lobby's political infrastructure.  NBC News has more here.


Majority of Americans Support Same Sex Marriage - Two weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in two highly publicized gay-marriage cases, a majority of Americans continue to say they support same-sex marriage, according to a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.

Fifty-three percent of respondents favor allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry, which is up 2 points since the NBC/WSJ survey last asked this question in December, though that increase is within the poll’s margin of error.

Forty-two percent oppose gay marriage – also up 2 points since late last year.

By party, 73 percent of Democrats and 54 percent of independents back gay marriage, while 66 percent of Republicans oppose it.  You can read more here.


Organizing For Action Earns $4.8 Million First Quarter - President Obama’s political arm raised about $4.8 million during the first quarter of 2013, according to an email sent to supporters Friday morning.

“There are 109,582 founding members of OFA, who chipped in an average gift of $44,” Organizing for Action executive director Jon Carson wrote. “That's incredible -- our supporters are fired up and ready to keep this movement going.”

OFA’s number is a small fraction of what Obama’s campaign typical quarterly fundraising figures. The campaign’s fundraising was governed by individual contribution limits, while OFA can raise unlimited amounts. has more here.


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