Jon Perr, Crooks and Liars: On Tuesday, the American people will be subjected to the unprecedented spectacle of a foreign leader, at the invitation of one political party, addressing the United States Congress with the express purpose of sabotaging the foreign policy of the President of the United States. Imagine if, as Robert Kagan of all people put it, "a Democratic-controlled Congress in 2003 -- called French President Jacques Chirac to oppose President George W. Bush's impending war in Iraq." In his Monday interview with Reuters, President Obama posed a similar scenario: "I think those who offered the invitation and some of the commentators who have said this is the right thing to do, it's worth asking them whether, when George W. Bush had initiated the war in Iraq and Democrats were controlling Congress, if they had invited let's say the president of France to appear before Congress to criticize or to air those disagreements, I think most people would say, well, that wouldn't be the right thing to do."
Decorated war veteran and former CIA director David Petraeus has entered into an agreement with federal prosecutors in which he would plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge for mishandling classified information. The charge stems, in part, from documents the former director allegedly provided to his mistress. Following the agreement, the Justice Department issued a statement: "Three documents -- a criminal information, a plea agreement and a statement of facts -- were filed today in the United States District Court for the Western District of North Carolina's Charlotte Division in the case of United States v. David Howell Petraeus. The criminal information charges the defendant with one count of unauthorized removal and retention of classified material. ... The plea agreement and corresponding statement of facts, both signed by the defendant, indicate that he will plead guilty to the one-count criminal Information."
Tea Party radio host Andrea Shea King argued recently that Democratic lawmakers -- and specifically members of the Congressional Black Caucus -- should be put to death by hanging if they boycotted Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Tuesday speech to Congress "Obama doesn't have to run for re-election again, a lot of these guys do," King said in a clip of her radio show that was published by Right Wing Watch on Monday. "Listen, I would like to think that these guys could pay with their lives, hanging from a noose in front of the U.S. Capitol Building. ... Because what they are doing is they are putting their own interests above that of America. And to me, that is criminal. Criminal!" King noted that "most of those members who are opting out of attending the speech are members of the Congressional Black Caucus."
Late Friday, Congress passed a one-week temporary funding measure for the Department of Homeland Security. Earlier in the day, a three-week funding bill failed 203 to 224 in the House -- and that was exactly what Speaker John Boehner had promised would not happen with a Congress under GOP control. The failed vote caused Boehner to take hits from his own side as well as the Democrats. "The Republican Congress has shown that it simply cannot govern," said Senate minority leader Harry Reid, saying the country was "staring a Homeland Security shutdown square in the face, even as terrorists around the world threaten to strike America."
Former Arizona county sheriff Richard Mack, a fierce opponent of Obamacare and a leader in the "constitutional sheriff" movement, is struggling to pay his medical bills after he and his wife each faced serious illnesses. The former sheriff and his wife do not have health insurance and started a GoFundMe campaign to solicit donations from family and friends to cover the costs of their medical care. "Because they are self-employed, they have no medical insurance and are in desperate need of our assistance," reads a note on Mack's personal website. Mack, the founder of the Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association, suffered a heart attack in January and is in recovery. His wife fell ill late last year. Mack supported Cliven Bundy in his standoff against the federal government.