At a White House briefing this morning, President Barack Obama’s Press Secretary, Jay Carney, was asked to respond to Mitt Romney’s charge the president is running an “angry and desperate” re-election campaign. Team Romney’s complaints about the negative nature of the Obama campaign have focused on an ad run by a pro-Obama super PAC that attempted to tie Mr. Romney’s work at Bain Capital to a woman’s death from cancer, a suggestion by a top Obama campaign staffer that Mr. Romney may have committed a felony by claiming he left Bain earlier than he did and a recent remark from Vice President Joe Biden that Mr. Romney’s economic policies would enable banks to put people “back in chains.”
Mr. Carney told the reporters in attendance the complaints about the super PAC ad were an “obvious attempt to distract attention by focusing so much of your attention on an ad that never ran as I understood it.” When the reporter who asked about the Romney campaign’s complaints corrected Mr. Carney and informed him the commercial did indeed appear on television, he said it only ran “inadvertently, according to a press report and a stationery record.”
Yesterday, President Obama and his team had an 18-and-a-half hour day that included stops in Colorado and California for a commencement speech at the Air Force Academy and several fundraisers. Today, the president headed to Iowa and White House Press Secretary Jay Carney was clearly feeling the effects of the grueling schedule.
White House Press Secretary Jay Carney addressed ex-Secretary of State Colin Powell’s comments that he’s not ready to endorse President Barack Obama again in his daily press briefing today. Mr. Powell, a Republican, broke ranks and announced his support for Mr. Obama in 2008. He said he’s not making an endorsement in this year’s race yet on NBC’s Today this morning.
“I think that the President’s appreciated General Powell’s support four years ago. Obviously, he had served in numerous–several Republican administrations; was a self-identified, I believe, Republican,” Mr. Carney said. “And it’s up to him and every American to decide whom they will support going forward.”
In a gaggle with reporters aboard Air Force One this morning, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney was asked about the controversial Newsweek cover depicting President Barack Obama with a rainbow halo and identifying him as the “First Gay President.” Mr. Carney said he wasn’t sure whether the president was aware of the cover.
“I don’t know if he’s seen it and I haven’t spoken to him about it,” he said.
As Air Force Once flew President Barack Obama to New York for a commencement speech at Barnard College, a pair of fundraisers and a taping of The View, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney held a brief mid-air gaggle with reporters where he discussed J.P. Morgan’s $2 billion loss. Though Mr. Carney would not comment on the S.E.C.’s investigationinto the firm, he said the incident proves the need for the Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform bill that was signed into law by the president in 2010.
“What I can say is this event reinforces why it is so important to pass Wall Street reform,” Mr. Carney said according to the press pool report. “The president fought very hard against Republicans and Wall Street lobbyists to get Wall Street reform passed and also worked very hard to ensure the protection bureau was part of it and fought hard to make sure the Volcker rule was part of it.”
President Barack Obama infamously said he decided to make his big announcement in support of gay marriage yesterday after “evolving” on the issue. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney briefed reporters aboard Air Force One this afternoon as the president flew to Seattle for a brief visit prior to his fundraiser this evening at George Clooney’s house near Los Angeles. During that briefing, Mr. Carney (sort of) explained when the president decided to express support for same sex marriage.
“I don’t have a specific date for you. … This was not a policy debate within the White House or the administration. This was a personal decision about his personal views,” Mr. Carney said.
Today, political types were focused on polls, same sex marriage and softball. Here’s our roundup of the day’s best Tweets from the campaign trail.
At the daily White House press briefing this afternoon, Press Secretary Jay Carney spent over 20 minutes fielding questions about Vice President Joe Biden’s comment he’s “absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women, and heterosexual men and women marrying another are entitled to the same exact rights” as heterosexual couples. Mr. Carney reiterated the point made by the President Barack Obama’s campaign advisors that Mr. Biden’s remarks don’t represent a departurefrom the president’s policies on same sex marriage.
“The president is comfortable with same-sex couples, as the Vice President said, being entitled to the same rights and the civil rights and civil liberties as other Americans,” Mr. Carney said. “The record has long been clear that the president opposed divisive and discriminatory efforts to deny rights and benefits to same-sex couples.”
There’s an interesting detail in the Associated Press’ scoop about a new plot by an Al Qaeda affiliate in Yemen to mark the anniversary of Osama bin Laden’s death by blowing up a passenger plane with “an upgrade of the underwear bomb that failed to detonate aboard a jetliner over Detroit on Christmas 2009.” According to AP reporter Adam Goldman, the White House and the CIA both asked the news organization to keep quiet about the upgraded underwear bomb story.
“The AP learned about the thwarted plot last week but agreed to White House and CIA requests not to publish it immediately because the sensitive intelligence operation was still under way,” Mr. Goldman wrote. “Once officials said those concerns were allayed, the AP decided to disclose the plot Monday despite requests from the Obama administration to wait for an official announcement Tuesday.”
Charlie Rangel said he isn’t retiring any time soon.
State Senator Liz Krueger said she has some concerns about Governor Cuomo’s new tax plan.
Occupy Wall Street protesters launched an effort to take over foreclosed homes.