POLITICS

HUFFPOST HILL - Help Sen. Larry Peters Overcome His Poor Name ID

No one knows who Gary Peters is, which is the saddest thing to come out of the upper chamber since Herb Kohl's solo lunches in the staffer cafeteria. Donald Trump blames Jeb Bush for John Roberts, though how Trump will find a way to scribble his disapproval on Roberts and send the chief justice to Bush is unclear. And Michael Tomasky thinks Richard Russell’s name should be removed from a Senate office building because of his racist views. The ”Gary Peters Senate Office Building" would definitely kill two birds with one stone. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Tuesday, July 7th, 2015:

GARY PETERS SAID 'BOO-URNS' - Jen Bendery: "Gary Peters. Does the name ring any bells? No? He's a United States senator, a Democrat from Michigan. But he also sits on the lowest rung of the senatorial ladder, ranking 100th out of 100 in terms of seniority. Not only is he a freshman, and not only is he in the minority party, but he's the lone Democrat in his class of 13 newcomers. When The Huffington Post informally polled a handful of Capitol Hill reporters a couple of weeks ago, some of them didn't even know who Peters was. 'Really?' said one reporter, whose name is being withheld for face-saving purposes. 'He's a current senator?'...His Republican classmates tease him about holding meetings. Alone. 'We ask him when he has his freshman caucus meeting if it's hard to get a quorum,' said Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.). 'There was some hope at the beginning that maybe he'd just want to go along to get along and sign some papers and join us,' said Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.). 'But he didn't.' Still, Peters is a good sport. The Senate may be a lonely place at times, but he sees the silver lining of being a one-man caucus. 'Well, on the positive side, I'm immediately launched into leadership as the president of the Democratic freshman class,' he said. 'I can also say that my class speaks with one voice.'" [HuffPost]

The President is huddling with Senate Democrats this evening to try to get on the same page (har! har!) about the Ex-Im Bank and Iran.

ELIOT WRITING BOOK, LEAVING ARTHUR SEVERAL MICROWAVABLE MEALS IN FRIDGE AND LIST OF EMERGENCY PHONE NUMBERS - Fun news: Your HuffPost Hill author (Eliot) is writing a (hopefully) humorous book about politics, tentatively titled THE BELTWAY BIBLE: A Totally Serious A-Z Guide To Our No-Good, Corrupt, Incompetent, Terrible, Depressing and Sometimes Hilarious Government. It will be published by St. Martin's Press in Summer 2016 and will be edited by Michael Flamini. The book will cover civics 101 topics like campaign finance and the legislative process. It will also feature entries on behind-the-scenes color such as the West West Wing (the off-record White House), Jumbo Slice and Madame Tussauds Disorder (an unfortunate condition afflicting politicians, journalists and other media personalities who don't take off their TV makeup after a hit). Arthur will take over HuffPost Hill starting next week -- save a brief hiatus in August -- and Eliot will return around November. Information on where you should send your money will be made available in the coming weeks and months.

Michael Tomasky asks why Richard Russell gets to be an S.O.B.

HILLARY CLINTON DISAPPOINTED IN DONALD TRUMP :( - Clinton is "very disappointed" in Trump's comments that some Mexican immigrants are rapists and criminals, she told CNN. It is unclear if she is also disappointed in the $100,000 Trump gave the Clinton Foundation..

Carly Fiorina and Lindsey Graham both denounced Trump's offensive comments about Mexican immigrants being rapists. What a couple of RINOs.

CONGRESS TRIES TO REVAMP 'NCLB,' WILL PROBABLY END IN FAILURE, LIKE EVERYTHING ELSE - Someone should make a college film thesis-style black and white film about Congress, featuring a crying mime and a voiceover that mostly discusses its bottomless ennui. Jennifer Kerr: "This week, the Senate and House take up rewrites of the 2002 law, with lawmakers seeking to finally resolve a key question they have struggled with for years: how much of a role should the federal government have in ensuring a quality education and boosting achievement for children, poor and affluent alike. Getting enough support to send a bill to President Barack Obama that he'll sign also may be no easy task. Even before the floor debate began in the Senate, the White House weighed in late Monday - saying the Obama administration can't support either the Republican-drafted bill in the House or the bipartisan measure in the Senate. The Senate was scheduled to take up its version Tuesday, the House on Wednesday." [AP]

DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - Connecticut has been so bad at processing food stamp applications that you can sue 'em. "A federal appeals court says people applying for food stamps in Connecticut have the right to sue the state over delays in processing their applications." Connecticut blew it, so now you can sue it. [TimesUnion.com]

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IRAN TALKS COULD SAVE AUGUST RECESS - You can all thanks the Ayatollah for not having to cancel your trip to Dewey Beach. Niels Lesniewski: "News of yet another extension of the deadline for nuclear talks with Iran might prove a boon for lawmakers and staffers with plans to get out of town in August. A longer, 60-day review period would kick in if an agreement is submitted to Congress any time between July 10, which is Friday, and Labor Day. Any agreement submitted in that time would mean the Senate’s upcoming recess could begin as scheduled by Aug. 10, without the risk of needing to quickly return to Capitol Hill for a bid to override a veto of Iran agreement disapproval legislation. Lawmakers are due back by Sept. 8, which would be at the tail end of the review window." [Roll Call]

Bleak foreshadowing from Hoyer's pen-and-pad: "Coming back from its Independence Day vacation, Congress appeared no closer Tuesday to finding a way to avoid yet another government shutdown showdown in the fall...Asked if Congress was indeed headed for another shutdown battle -- and whether that was wise -- the second-ranking Democrat in the House, Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, answered that the unwise choice was for Congress to maintain the so-called sequestration spending levels it passed in 2011 when it was also unable to agree on debt and spending cuts." [HuffPost's Mike McAuliff]

HOLDER: SNOWDEN COULD'VE HANDLED STUFF BETTER - For those of you hoping the erstwhile AG would suddenly throw his lot in with the at-large transparency advocate, get really into Reddit and devote all his spare time to the Tor Project...sorry. Ryan Reilly: "Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden could have spurred a "useful" and necessary debate about government data collection if he had taken his concerns to members of Congress instead of giving documents to journalists, former Attorney General Eric Holder told The Huffington Post on Tuesday. Holder said in an interview with Yahoo's Michael Isikoff earlier this week that Snowden's disclosures had resulted in a 'necessary debate' about the government's bulk data collection. On Tuesday, Holder told The Huffington Post that he believes the same discussion could have taken place if Snowden had taken his concerns to lawmakers. 'Yeah, I do,' Holder said when asked whether this debate could have occurred without Snowden's public disclosures. 'If Snowden, for instance, had gone to certain members of the Senate Intelligence Committee and made disclosure to them, that debate could have occurred in a way that was less harmful to the interests of the United States.'" [HuffPost]

More from Holder's interview with Ryan Reilly: "Holder said that based on what we know about 21-year-old Dylann Roof, who allegedly confessed to shooting and killing the members during a Bible study at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church on June 17, the incident should be considered terrorism." [HuffPost]

DONALD TRUMP HAS THOUGHTS ABOUT STUFF - Samantha-Jo Roth: "Distraught by last week's Supreme Court decision that upheld Affordable Care Act subsidies, Donald Trump said former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) is responsible for influencing his brother's appointment of Chief Justice John Roberts to the Supreme Court. 'If you think about it, Jeb Bush gave us Justice Roberts. He's the one who pushed Justice Roberts,' Trump, a contender for the 2016 Republican nomination, said to an audience of about 200 at a Madison County Republican dinner over the weekend. In an appearance that seemed more like a celebrity book-signing than a political event, Trump held a meet and greet at the official John Wayne museum before his speech, posing for photos with voters in front of a Wayne statue. 'Obamacare was dead, totally dead, then Roberts, in order to be popular in the Beltway, who knows, came in with a shocking decision,' Trump said." [HuffPost]

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Here are some lambs.

GREECE'S PRIME MINISTER BRINGS NO NEW PROPOSAL TO BAILOUT MEETINGS - The author of the GOP's Obamacare alternative was clearly consulted. AP: "Eurozone leaders met the beaming smile of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras with anger and frustration Tuesday when it became clear the Greek leader came to their summit without a fresh written proposal on how to save his country from financial ruin. With Greece's banks just days away from a potential collapse that could drag the country out of the euro, Tsipras had been expected to offer up economic reforms in exchange for loans. Instead he came with only vague proposals and a commitment to back it up with real figures and a written plan on Wednesday...German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned Tsipras he was dancing close to the financial abyss. 'We are no longer talking about weeks but very few days,' she said. In his flurry of contacts, Tsipras spoke by phone with President Barack Obama, and the White House said it was in Europe's interest to reach a resolution that puts Greece on the path toward economic growth and stability." [AP]

COMFORT FOOD

- What most of the world's music has in common.

- Excuse us while we clean our retainers and fuss over the forthcoming "Game of Thrones"-branded game of RISK.

TWITTERAMA

@elisefoley: At what point should we all agree that signing off on emails with our names doesn’t make any sense? - EF

@ibalkhy: Anyone have a squad i could join? Preferably one with 'goals'

@knguyen: Most dangerous dinosaurs, ranked:

4. T-rex
3. Velociraptor
2. Indominus Rex
1. Canker sore

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