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Monday, February 23, 2015
624 Days Until Election Day 2016It's Monday, February 23, 2015, I'm Gabe Fleisher for Wake Up To Politics, and reporting from WUTP world HQ in my bedroom - Good morning: THIS IS YOUR WAKE UP CALL!!!
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White House Watch
- The President’s Schedule At 10 AM, President Obama will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing.
- At 11:10 AM, he will speak about the economy to a meeting of the National Governors Association at the White House State Dining Room.
- At 12:30 PM, Obama will have lunch with Vice President Joe Biden.
- At 2:05 PM, the President will go to AARP headquarters in Washington to announce plans to order the Labor Department to write new rules for financial managers who handle the retirement accounts of Americans.
- Finally, at 5:15 PM, President Obama will participate in an Ambassador Credentialing Ceremony, where he receives credentials from foreign ambassadors who recently arrived in Washington. The traditional ceremony begins an ambassador’s service in Washington, and U.S. ambassadors must go through similar ceremonies with foreign heads of state to serve in foreign capitals.
- The ambassadors Obama will credential today represent Vietnam, Iceland, the Dominican Republic, South Africa, Serbia, Peru, Niger, Algeria, South Sudan, Kyrgyzstan, Equatorial Guinea, Hungary, and Thailand.
Capitol Hill News
- House: Status Update The House is not in session today
- Senate: Status Update The Senate will open today with a reading of Washington’s Farewell Address. The letter, one of Washington’s most famous writing, was addressed to the “The People of the United States of America” and published at the end of his second presidential term, just before Washington retired to Mount Vernon.
- In one of the chamber’s longest-lasting traditions, since 1896, the Senate has observed Washington’s birthday (which was yesterday) by selecting one member to read the Farewell Address in its entirety. The party of the reader alternates each year, and since Maine’s Angus King, who caucuses with the Democrats, read last year, it is a Republican’s term. North Dakota Sen. John Hoeven is the selected Republican reader this year.
- Once Hoeven is completed, the Senate will recess until 4:30 PM, when the body will reconvene to consider a bill that would fund the Department of Homeland Security.
- The bill is controversial because in addition to funding the department, it also blocks President Obama’s immigration executive action. Today, the Senate holds a procedural vote on the bill that requires 60 “yeas,” the same vote on the bill that has been held three times – and failed. Each time, the Senate Democrats have filibustered, unified against the bill.
- It is now crunch time for the DHS fight, with funding for the department set to run out at midnight Friday. With a path forward in the fight unclear, after the deadline, the DHS shuts down – many employees will be furloughed, while others (like border security workers, TSA agents, and Coast Guard employees) will continue working without pay.
- Race to 45: Travel Watch Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) will visit Manchester, New Hampshire today on the last stop of his tour selling his new book, “Americans Dreams”.
- The tour included stops in Iowa, Nevada, and South Carolina – just like New Hampshire, early primary states all, key to presidential elections – showing the possibility of Rubio’s running for President.
- Even his staff admit the schedule has implications for the presidential race, with a Rubio spokesman saying, “Senator Rubio has said he is seriously considering running for president, and his schedule this month reflects that. As he meets with people across the country, he is sharing his new ideas to confront 21st-century problems. His goal is to pass new reforms so that more people can achieve the American dream.”
- In his first visit to the state since the midterm elections, Rubio will also visit Hollis, New Hampshire today, to participate in a town hall-style question-and-answer session.