Philip Rucker of the Washington Post: "President Obama on Sunday summoned the graduates of historically black Morehouse College to 'transform the way we think about manhood,' urging the young men to avoid the temptation to make excuses and to take responsibility for their families and their communities. Delivering a commencement address at the all-male private liberal arts college in Atlanta, Obama spoke in deeply personal terms about the 'special obligation' he feels as a black man to help those left behind":
CNN: "President Barack Obama comes out of what was arguably the worst week of his presidency with his approval rating holding steady, according to a new national poll.... According to the survey, which was conducted Friday and Saturday, 53% of Americans say they approve of the job the president is doing, with 45% saying they disapprove. The president's approval rating was at 51% in CNN's last poll, which was conducted in early April."
Meghashyam Mali of the Hill: "White House senior adviser Dan Pfeiffer on Sunday defended the White House handling of the Internal Revenue Service scandal, saying the legality of the political targeting was 'irrelevant' and vowing the administration would ensure it 'never happens again.' Pfeiffer, who made the full round of Sunday talk shows, as the administration seeks to calm anger over the IRS, the Justice Department’s seizure of reporters phone records and lingering GOP questions about the Benghazi attacks, vowed that the administration would act quickly to address the tax scandal."
Igor Volsky of Think Progress: "On Sunday, during an appearance on Meet The Press, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) — the GOP leader in the senate — distanced himself from Republican efforts to portray the Obama administration’s response to the attacks on a U.S. diplomatic issue in Benghazi, Libya as a Watergate-level scandal that should result in impeachment." ...
... MEANWHILE ... Zack Colman of the Hill: on "Face the Nation," "Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) said the Obama administration owes its recent troubles and controversies to a 'culture of cover ups and intimidation' within the White House." CW: both McConnell & Cornyn are up for re-election in 2014 & both face the prospect of winger primary challenges.
CNN: "Jonathan Karl, chief White House correspondent for ABC News, addressed criticism of his reporting on the Benghazi talking points controversy, saying in a statement to CNN that he regrets the inaccuracy of his report. 'Clearly, I regret the email was quoted incorrectly and I regret that it’s become a distraction from the story, which still entirely stands. I should have been clearer about the attribution. We updated our story immediately,' he said in the statement to Howard Kurtz, host of CNN's 'Reliable Sources.'" CW: yeah, the story still stands; it's just substantially different from what you wrote. Jerk. ...
... John Cole of Balloon Juice: "I guess when it is someone as ethically challenged as Howard Kurtz holding your feet to the fire, you probably just think you can tell people to piss off and be done with the whole matter.... Karl lied to us because he trusted his source. His source, however, burned him, and Karl’s lie was exposed.... If the editors at ABC News had any damned integrity, Karl would be forced to expose his source, apologize, and then take a couple weeks off. Maybe some summer school ethics course." ...
... Just Who Is ABC News's Chief White House Correspondent? Peter Hart of FAIR says he's "a right-wing mole at ABC News": "Karl came to mainstream journalism via the Collegiate Network, an organization primarily devoted to promoting and supporting right-leaning newspapers on college campuses ... such as the Rutgers paper launched by the infamous James O’Keefe .... The network, founded in 1979, is one of several projects of the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, which seeks to strengthen conservative ideology on college campuses. William F. Buckley was the ISI’s first president, and the current board chair is American Spectator publisher Alfred Regnery.... He was a board member at the right-leaning youth-oriented Third Millennium group and at the Madison Center for Educational Affairs — which ... seeks to strengthen young conservative journalism. After moving to ABC in 2003, Karl contributed several pieces to the neo-con Weekly Standard." Read on.
CW: a couple of weeks ago I wrote that doctoral committees of most major universities would not approve a doctoral dissertation built on discredited assumptions that intelligence is race-based. Well, a thousand-plus Harvard students are wondering why their particular university isn't up to snuff. Jeff Spross of Think Progress: "Over 1,000 Harvard students delivered a petition to Harvard University’s JFK School on Saturday, demanding an investigation into how and why the school approved a 2009 doctoral thesis arguing that Hispanics have lower IQs. The thesis was written by Jason Richwine, a co-author of a paper by the conservative Heritage Foundation that argued immigration reform would cost taxpayers $6.3 trillion. The discovery of Richwine’s paper by the Washington Post sparked a firestorm around the Heritage study, and several days later Richwine resigned from the think tank."
New York Times Editors: "New rules to regulate derivatives, adopted last week by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, are a victory for Wall Street and a setback for financial reform. They may also signal worse things to come." CW: Read the whole editorial. I think the fix is in -- and it's another swell career move for Barack & Michelle Obama.
Paul Krugman: "In elite mythology, the origins of the [economic] crisis of the 70s, like the supposed origins of our current crisis, lay in excess: too much debt, too much coddling of those slovenly proles via a strong welfare state. The suffering of 1979-82 was necessary payback. None of that is remotely true.... It would be bad enough if we were basing policy today on lessons from the 70s. It’s even worse that we’re basing policy today on a mythical 70s that never was."
Steve M. of No More Mister Nice Blog has a good critique of MoDo's latest advice for Obama. Dowd has "written thirty columns so far this year, but hasn't once published the same kind of 'smackdown' of the Republicans that she's recommending to the president."
Nicole Flatow of Think Progress: "The Virginia Republican Party this weekend nominated for lieutenant governor [E. W. Jackson,] a minister who has a history of virulent anti-gay statements, accuses the Democratic Party of enslaving African Americans, and criticized President Obama for having 'Muslim sensibilities.' The former Senate candidate ,who in 2012 garnered less than 5 percent of the vote in the Republican primary, bested six other candidates during the Virginia GOP convention, and will join conservative Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli on the Republican ticket. He is the first black candidate the state party has endorsed since 1988."