Morning Examiner: The Democrat Economy 

Whether she meant to or not, DNC Chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla.,created a political inflection point yesterday when she confidently declared, “We own the economy.” The comment came after Ed Henry’s CNN reminded Wasserman Schultz of her statement that “We’ve turned this economy around” and he asked pointedly, “At what point does your party own this economy?” Apparently the answer is now. Meanwhile, conservative bloggers are highlighting a 2009 President Obama interview with NBC News where he predicted he would be a one-term president if the economy hadn’t improved in three years. Judging by today’s economic news we will probably get to see how prescient the president is.

Around the Bigs:

Politico, Debbie Wasserman Schultz: ‘We own the economy‘: “Democrats are ready to take responsibility for the state of the economy and they deserve credit for putting it on the right track, the party’s chairwoman, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, said on Wednesday. “We own the economy. We own the beginning of the turnaround and we want to make sure that we continue that pace of recovery, not go back to the policies of the past under the Bush administration that put us in the ditch in the first place,” Wasserman Schultz told Mike Allen.”

The Washington Post, Greek default fears hit global markets as Papandreou pushes austerity measures: “Global markets shuddered as embattled Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou launched a risky gambit to push his Parliament to pass another round of austerity measures. Failure to pass the cuts could lead the European Union and International Monetary Fund to withhold bailout money, leaving Greece short of cash to pay its creditors as early as next month — an event that some economists warn could destabilize the global financial system.”

The Wall Street Journal, Greece Drags Down European Stocks: “European stock markets fell Thursday, as anxiety over Greece’s debt situation, together with weak U.S. economic data, intensified contagion fears across Europe and fueled concerns about a slowdown in the U.S. economic recovery. … The Stoxx Europe 600 was recently 0.7% lower at 266. London’s FTSE 100 Index fell 1% to 5683.38, Frankfurt’s DAX slid 0.7% to 7057.32, while Paris’s CAC-40 slipped 1.1% to 3765.34.”

The Wall Street Journal, Shiller Sees ‘Substantial’ Probability of Recession: “Noted economist Robert Shiller said Wednesday there was a “substantial” probability the U.S. could lurch again into recession. Noting weak global data — including a stubbornly depressed U.S. housing market — were flashing warning signs, the Yale University economist said the economy right now faced a ‘tipping point.’ ‘Forecasting models would say no’ on the question of whether the U.S. will face a double-dip, Shiller said. ‘But I’m seeing signs that encourage me to worry about that.’”

The Wall Street Journal, IEA: High Oil Price a Risk to Economy: “The continuing high price of crude oil risks creating a hard landing for the world economy, the International Energy Agency’s Executive Director Nobuo Tanaka said Thursday. … Mr. Tanaka said: “If the current oil price continues it will be to the detriment of the global economic recovery.” The current situation “is starting to resemble 2008, and we know that 2008 was a very hard landing for the world economy.”

Bloomberg, Homebuilder Confidence in U.S. Slides to Nine-Month Low on Sales Outlook: “The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo sentiment index unexpectedly fell to 13 from 16 in May, the biggest drop in a year, data from the Washington-based group showed today.”

Reuters, Consumers battle weaker growth, higher prices: “Underlying U.S. inflation rose to its highest level in nearly three years in May while a regional factory gauge posted a surprise contraction this month.”

CNN, More small businesses plan to reduce jobs: “Small business owners have a grim outlook on the economy, with a gathering number planning to reduce jobs over the next three months, according to survey results from an industry group. The percentage of independent businesses planning to increase employment in the next three months fell to 13% in May, compared to 16% in April and 18% in March, according to the National Federation of Independent Business.”

Gallup, U.S. Satisfaction Dips to 20% in June: “Americans’ satisfaction with the way things are going in the country fell to 20% in early June from 26% at the start of May. Seventy-eight percent of Americans are now dissatisfied with the nation’s direction, according to a June 9-12 Gallup poll. … Economy continues to be named nation’s top problem.”

The Washington Post, Obama administration: Libya action does not require congressional approval: “The Obama administration argued Wednesday that its nearly three-month-old military involvement in Libya does not require congressional approval because of the supporting role most U.S. forces are playing there, a position that puts it at odds with some Republican leaders and the antiwar wing of its own party. … The White House reasoning, included in a 32-page report to Congress, is the administration’s first detailed response to complaints from lawmakers of both parties.”

The Hill, Issa: DoJ should be ‘ashamed’: “Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) on Wednesday escalated his standoff with the Department of Justice over a gun-tracking program that might have contributed to the death of federal agent. … As the family of slain ATF agent Brian Terry pleaded for justice, Issa said officials should be “ashamed” for handing over heavily redacted documents about the program.”

USA Today, U.S. debt limit debate down to wire: “The centrist Democratic think tank Third Way claims the gyrations in labor, financial and stock markets would cost 642,500 jobs, add $19,175 to every mortgage in process and lop $8,816 from the typical 401(k) account. Others say the doomsday scenarios are hogwash.”

The Wall Street Journal, Negotiators Consider Medicaid Cutbacks: “Officials familiar with the talks in both parties say they expect Medicaid to be the biggest source of cuts in federal entitlement programs in whatever compromise emerges.”

Politico, Holder tries a liberal reset at DoJ: “Attorney General Eric Holder is finding his voice again, staking out traditionally liberal positions in public and behind closed doors despite a series of highly publicized setbacks, most notably the White House’s rejection of his plan to try September 11 suspects in civilian courts. … Since the beginning of the year, Holder has convinced President Barack Obama to abandon legal defense of the law barring federal recognition of same-sex marriages, embraced the politically sensitive notion of giving retroactive sentence reductions to some convicted crack cocaine dealers and encouraged the White House to issue its first terror-related veto threat against Republican legislation aimed at forcing terrorism prosecutions out of civilian court and into military commissions. … Holder will showcase many of those left-leaning positions Thursday night as he delivers the keynote address to the nation’s most prominent liberal lawyers’ group, the American Constitution Society, aides say.”

The Hill, Senate to vote again on ending ethanol industry tax breaks on Thursday: “Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said Wednesday evening that the Senate would vote on Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s (D-Calif.) identical version of the amendment tomorrow. Lawmakers will then vote on Sen. John McCain’s (R-Ariz.) amendment that would block use of federal funds for the construction of ethanol blender pumps or storage facilities. Both will need 60 votes to pass.”

The Wall Street Journal, GOP Seeks Bidders on Amtrak Rail Lines: “House Republicans called Wednesday for the breakup of Amtrak’s de facto monopoly on U.S. intercity passenger-rail service, proposing to open up the government-controlled company’s Northeast Corridor and other lines to bidding by private investors.”

Politico, Top Barack Obama donors net government jobs: “More than two years after Obama took office vowing to banish “special interests” from his administration, nearly 200 of his biggest donors have landed plum government jobs and advisory posts, won federal contracts worth millions of dollars for their business interests or attended numerous elite White House meetings and social events, an investigation by iWatch News has found.”

The Los Angeles Times, GOP shifting on anti-tax policy: “In light of the nation’s deficit, some Republicans are calling for an end to individual and corporate tax deductions. … The new debate was showcased in a test vote this week, when two-thirds of Republicans in the Senate agreed to do away with an ethanol tax break. The effort failed to achieve its objective, but confirmed the potential shift underway in GOP attitudes.”

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Unions file suit to halt collective bargaining legislation: “The suit, filed in the Western District of Wisconsin, says the legislation violates the 1st and 14th amendments ‘by stripping away basic rights to bargain, organize and associate for the purpose of engaging in union activity, which have been in place for the last half century.’”

The Washington Post, A year later, Sherrod won’t go away: “In the year since she was fired from her federal job after being falsely accused of reverse racism, Shirley Sherrod has become the ubiquitous face of the Obama administration’s misstep on race. And she won’t go away.”

Campaign 2012:

Bolton: Human Events‘ Jason Mattera reports that former UN Ambassador John Bolton is seriously thinking about getting into the race, “I don’t see any of the Republicans in the race now who have made foreign policy a priority,” he told Mattera. “We’re sleepwalking into a real potential disaster.”

Huntsman: Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman’s chief strategist John Weaver tells Esquire, “There’s a simple reason our party is nowhere near being a national governing party. No one wants to be around a bunch of cranks.” When Huntsman finally ends his campaign in failure he’ll only have his staff, and himself, to blame.

Pawlenty: Politico reports, “Tim Pawlenty’s first campaign mailer is set to land in Iowa mailboxes on Thursday. Introducing himself to voters, Pawlenty gives a short rundown of his biography, from his hardscrabble upbringing to his record as Minnesota governor.”

Romney: Politico reports, “Mitt Romney on Wednesday got a big thumbs up for his stance on global warming from a source that likely won’t help him at all in the GOP primary: Al Gore. The former vice president and Nobel Prize winner praised Romney for not heeding right-wing calls to reject the science behind climate change.”

Ryan: The Weekly Standard‘s Daniel Halper posts “The First Paul Ryan 2012 Ad!” and explains, “The ad is a volunteered, unsolicited effort of an Ohioan, not a product of any organization or campaign.”

Righty playbook:

  • Hot Air‘s Allahpundit flags a video of Obama telling NBC News that he’ll be a one-term president if he doesn’t fix the economy in three years. Allah comments: “If, like me, you hadn’t seen it until today, rest assured that you’ll be seeing it again in about 8,000 different GOP attacks ads next year.”
  • The Volokh Conspiracy‘s Ilya Somin reads the White House’s report to Congress on Libya and deems its legal justifications “extremely weak.” Somin predicts courts will throw out the War Powers Act lawsuit against Obama but adds: “the war is unconstitutional unless … Congress and the President have an independent duty to obey the Constitution even when the courts do not force them to do so.”
  • The Weekly Standard‘s Bill Kristol posts the text of Sen. Marco Rubio’s, R-Fla., maiden senate speech and comments: “Rubio shows how its done.”

Lefty playbook:

  • The Washington Post, reports: “Among the 87 new GOP members of Congress, the documents show, at least 30 had liabilities totaling $50,000 or more in 2010. … Those debts included large mortgages on investment properties, as well as student loans and credit card balances. At least seven freshmen had credit card debt exceeding $15,000.” Congressional Democrats all must be debt free, because no where does the Post identify a single liberal with any financial liabilities.
  • The New Republic‘s Jon Cohn and The Washington Monthly‘s Steve Benen continue the left’s attack on last week’s McKinsey study showing Obamacare would cause firms to dump their employee health insurance plans. So far it doesn’t appear their critiques have made it outside the lefty echo chamber though.
  • The Washington Post’s Ezra Klein posts Pawlenty’s tax cuts vs. Bush’s tax cuts in one graph and Greg Sargent comments: “Tim Pawlenty’s tax cuts make Bush’s tax cuts look like socialism.”

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Conn Carroll

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