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Michelle Obama Works Out (We Think?) on Univision’s ‘Al Punto’

Michelle Obama will appear on Univision’s Sunday morning public affairs show, “Al Punto,” to discuss the fourth anniversary of her Let’s Move! campaign. In the pre-recorded segment, Obama speaks with Univision’s Satcha Pretto, and then get’s busy with some work out moves. At least, that’s what we think they’re doing????

The interview hasn’t aired yet, so we just have the transcript to go by. You tell us what’s happening…

SP:                   So this is very, very easy.
MO:                 Okay, uh-huh, uh-huh.
SP:                  Just look right here, with our legs spread open.  And this way we are kind of                           working our abdomen area.
MO:                 We’re holding our core tight.
SP:                   Yes, we raise our arms.  And we just…
MO:                 With just one arm.  So I see, yeah, the alternate, that works your oblique.
SP:                   And then you can, right there.
MO:                 Yeah, that’s good.  That’s good, side muscles.
SP:                   And we’re moving.
MO:                 Yeah, that’s good stuff.
SP:                   Thank you so much.  We really appreciate it.
MO:                 Oh, thank you.

Can You Guess Ted Cruz’ Favorite TV Journo?

During a Politico Playbook Breakfast this morning, Mike Allen asked Ted Cruz if he has a favorite newscaster. At first Cruz begs off, saying he doesn’t really watch TV. And when Allen presses him, he gives a pretty obvious answer for a Tea Party Republican from Texas: Sean Hannity.

ALLEN: Who is your favorite newscaster? 

CRUZ: (pauses)  … Who is my favorite newscaster… I actually don’t watch TV news a whole lot.  I mean to be honest it’s… 

ALLEN:  You talk to these men and women all the time…

CRUZ:  Oh, listen I’m – you know unsurprisingly if I am watching something it’s probably Fox news.  I like, I am a big Sean Hannity fan.  I wouldn’t call him a newscaster necessarily but I think Sean has a fearlessness that is welcome. I wish you saw – I wish you saw. 

But then he offers up a name that might surprise you. Find out which other TV newser Cruz admires after the jump.

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Sen. Strauss Goes to Hollywood

Actress Alexis Carra and DC Senator (sort of) Paul Strauss.

Actress Alexis Carra and DC Senator (sort of) Paul Strauss.

Typically when someone has a political issue they want addressed, they make a trip to Washington to either make their case or make a scene. But when you’re DC’s shadow Senator and when your issue is DC statehood, sometimes getting out of town is the best way to make yourself heard. That’s the thinking behind Sen. Paul Strauss’ (D-DC) latest trip to West Hollywood anyway.

He hosted a “Voices of Impact” dinner there at Mari Vanna LA along with The Creative Coalition to educate celebrities about the plight of DC residents, who are the only citizens in the nation who are subject to direct Federal control and who must, in fact, suffer taxation without representation. The Creative Coalition is a group whose purpose is to educate actors, celebrities, and other creative types about political issues so that they can advocate about them. The groups president, Emmy-awarding winning actor Tim Daly was at the dinner. As were Kate Walsh, Omar Epps, Evan Handler, Lynn Whitfield, Mario van Peebles and Danielle Panabaker among others.

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Pres. Obama Calls on Texas Latinos to Pressure Republicans on Immigration Reform

Raul BrindisIn an call-in interview yesterday on the “Raul Brindis and Pepito Show” -a Spanish-language radio show broadcast out of Houston -President Obama called on Latinos to pressure their Congressmen and Senators to support immigration reform legislation.

“The main thing people can do right now is put pressure on Republicans who have refused so far to act,” Obama said.  “Obviously in the State of Texas, you got two Senators, Mr. Cruz and Mr. Cornyn.  So far they have not supported it.  But you also have many Congressmen, members of the House of Representatives on the Republican side that have not supported it yet.  And I think sending a strong message to them that this is the right thing to do.”

This comes as immigration activists across the country are beginning to switch tactics, according to a recent report on Politico. Previously, both politicians and activists who support immigration reform had been holding their fire against Republicans in an effort to give the fractious party space to put forward their own reform plan. However, with both John Boehner and Mitch McConnell making statements recently that seem to throw cold water on the idea of passing any legislation this year, a decision has been made to get more vocal.

The rest of the interview was very sympathetic to the President, as he and Brindis discussed why Latinos should sign up for the affordable care act and what Obama’s favorite Mexican food is. Obama said he and his daughter Malia decided that if they had to eat one kind of food every day for the rest of their lives, it would be Mexican.

How Do You SOTU?

SOTUSure, you can watch the big speech on plain old TV tonight if you want to, but that is by no means the only way to get your SOTU fix this year. Here’s how the political media are covering their “Super Bowl” tonight:

The Atlantic and National Journal will be hosting a State of the Union Congressional Debrief on the morning of Wednesday, January 29.  Molly Ball and Steve Clemons of The Atlantic and Ronald Brownstein of Atlantic Media will be joined on stage by members of congress for a discussion and expert analysis of the President’s speech.  Speakers include Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Congressman Joaquin Castro (D-TX), Rep. Diana DeGette (D-CO), Sen. Deb Fischer (R-NE), and Sen. John Hoeven (R-ND), and Rep. Aaron Schock (R-IL).

CNN will start coverage at 7 PM with Wolf Blitzer, Anderson Cooper, and Jake Tapper. Guests include Jon Favreau and Karen Hughes. Throughout the night, Jim Scuitto will be reporting from Iran, Tom Foreman will subject Obama’s claims on economic inequality to a “Reality Check,” and Suzanne Malveaux will moderate a focus group in Des Moines, IA. Jake Tapper will lead the post-speech coverage, followed by John King. And of course, Peter Hamby will be live streaming his Politi-cast during the SOTU and the responses at

TIME will stream its first-ever live webcast on the President’s speech and GOP response starting Tuesday at 8:30PM at The coverage will be anchored by TIME Senior Political Analyst Mark Halperin, and joined with analysis from Michael Scherer, Bobby Ghosh, Rana Foroohar, and Callie Schweitzer.

Al Jazeera American begins coverage at 6 PM  with Tony Harris, Ali Velshi, David Shuster and Richelle Carey. Guests will include Senator John McCain (R-AZ) and former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson. AJA social editors will live blog the speech at SeigenthalerJoie Chen and Ray Suarez take over coverage at 7 PM. Coverage continues at midnight with “America Tonight.”

Roll Call will be hosting a watch party here starting at 8:40 PM. Political Editor Shira T. Center will moderate a Google hangout that features Senior Editor David Hawkings and Editor-in-Chief Christina Bellantoni to preview President Obama’s address. After the speech, Bellantoni will take you live inside Statuary Hall to get instant reactions from members. Center and Hawkings will join the conversation to talk about the implications of the president’s address.

Politico will start coverage at 8:30 PM with Mike Allen, John F. Harris, Anna Palmer, Manu Raju via live stream here. You will also be able to submit questions to POLITICO’s Facebook page after the speech using Facebook’s Q and A feature, for answers from POLITICO Deputy White House Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand. They will also host an event the day after SOTU presented by the Innovation Alliance at 8 AM at the Capitol Hilton. Guests to be announced.

Huffington Post will live stream a speech from Rosanne Barr at 11 PM at HuffPost Live, immediately following the Tea Party response.

Photo of the Day: Oahu Hearts Obama

These are everywhere here. If y’all are real nice to James, I’ll bring some back for ya…*

*Doug Heye, don’t worry, I already got you one of each.

Best Quotes from the Sunday Shows, 1.12.14

ABC’s “This Week” – “And the reality is, things go wrong in an administration.  And frankly, you know, he was in campaign-mode at the time, during campaign-mode you miss a lot of things.  You’re not paying as much attention.  We see that with Benghazi.”  - Rudy Giuliani on how Chris Christie could have not known about the Bridgegate scandal.

CBS’s “Face the Nation” -“I don’t think it’s possible for all of those people to be involved and know and for the governor to absolutely have no communication.  Remember, this was in the midst of his reelection campaign.  Any governor running for reelection is going to want to know about problems that come up.  If for no other reason, to know how to respond when asked a question.” - New Jersey Assemblyman John Wisniewski on why Chris Christie did know about the Bridgegate scandal.

“Fox News Sunday” -”Congressman Southerland, you’re getting the stuffing beat out of you in Florida’s second congressional district over your proposal to require work for people that have food stamps.” – Guest host John Roberts to Rep. Steve Southerland (R -FL).

NBC’s “Meet the Press” – “You said in May of 20– you’re the one who brought up the president and the I.R.S. as a comparison. You said there, “There’s no denying he, the president, he created a culture in his administration that encouraged the targeting of these groups.” There’s not evidence to prove that linkage. That’s your assertion. But if it’s good, if that’s your assertion about tone there, why isn’t it true of Governor Christie setting the tone?” – David Gregory to RNC Chairman Reince Priebus.

CNN’s “State of the Union” – “I think there might actually be some merit to having greater use of waivers, for example, in work force development and combining those programs with metrics and outcomes so you deliver results. But this notion that somehow by capping the dollars that the federal government puts into feeding hungry children, that somehow that will miraculously multiply the bread and fishes is poppycock.” Gov. Martin O’Malley (D-MD) on Sen. Marco Rubio’s (R-FL) plans to reform the “War on Poverty.”

Christie Crap: Politico‘s Poop Cruise?

In a very Zucker-esque move, Politico is going all-in on the Chris Christie “Bridgeghazi”  (h/t The Wire for that little gem) Story today. By our count, there are TWENTY TWO Christie stories on the Politico homepage. Yowza! Not since CPAC have we had this much Christie all up in our grillz.

All aboard! Hitch a ride with FishbowlDC on Politico‘s Gratuitous Chris Christie Crap Cruise:

chris christie on election night

1.) Christie’s damage control
2.) My time with scandal-hit Christie aide
3.) 15 Christie controversies you missed
4.) Giuliani: Bridge scandal a ‘prank’
5.) The aides felled by Bridgegate
6.) Mayor: I take Christie ‘at his word’
7.) Christie: ‘I am embarrassed’
8.) Media’s mixed response to Christie
9.) Crisis gurus praise Christie’s response
10.) The many faces of Chris Christie
11.) Christie presser: 2 hours in 2 minutes
12.) Class-action suit filed over bridge
13.) Christie ally pleads Fifth to panel
14.) Christie scandal tests Wall Street
15.) N.J. pol wants Christie federal probe
16.) Kean: Christie questions remain
17.) Buono: Christie report ‘horrifying’
18.) Boehner stands by Christie
19.) Friedman: Christie story ‘really sick’
20.) Christie’s critics savor his misfortune
21.) Jokes, jeers follow Christie presser
22.) Pelosi: Christie bridge vs. Super Bowl

(h/t tipster Marty Chase)



Mike Allen Scores Robert Gates for Playbook Cocktails

politico logoPolitico‘s Playbook Cocktail event will be a doozy next week. Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates will be sitting down with Mike Allen to dish on Obama, Biden, and all the rest of those crazy cats at 1600 Pennsylvania. We don’t know if you’ve heard, but Mr. Gates has written a new memwa, DOODY, and he has many unkind words for the current administration’s handling of foreign affairs.  You should be there. There is seating and WiFi reserved for press -email here for more info.

WHAT: Politico Playbook Cocktails with Robert Gates
WHO: Mike Allen (and Bank of America, apparently)
WHERE: The Mayflower, 1127 Connecticut Ave. NW
WHEN: Thursday, Jan. 16; Doors open at 6:00 p.m.


3 Press Club Events

The National Press Club has a trio of events coming up that you might find interesting. Check em out:

1) January 11 - James Carville and Mary Matalin – Love & War: 20 Years, Three Presidents, Two Daughters and One Louisiana Home

WHAT: James Carville and Mary Matalin discuss their new book LOVE & WAR. Must purchase tickets online ($5.00 members/ $10.00 general).
WHO: James Carville, Mary Matalin, and the National Press Club
WHERE: The National Press Club, Ballroom, 529 14th St. NW, 13th Floor, Washington, DC
WHEN: Saturday, January 11, 2014; 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM

2) January 13 - Ms. Quote: Why Are Women Missing From the News?

On Monday, Jan. 13, a panel at the National Press Club will explore these issues and strategies for change. Panelists include Matt Winkler, editor-in-chief Bloomberg News, Sally Buzbee, AP Washington bureau chief, Ken Strickland, NBC Washington bureau chief, Ruth Marcus, Washington Post op-ed columnist, Anna Palmer, Politico senior Washington correspondent, and Jill Zuckman, managing director SKDKnickerbocker. Linda Kramer Jenning, Georgetown University journalism instructor and Washington editor of Glamour, will moderate the panel.

WHAT: Expert panel on women in the news. Must purchase tickets online ($10.00).
WHO: Bloomberg News, AP, NBC, Washington Post, Politico, SKDKnickerbocker, Georgetown University, Glamour Magazine
WHERE: The National Press Club, Conference Rooms, 529 14th St. NW, 13th Floor, Washington, DC
WHEN: Monday, January 13, 2014; 6:30 PM – 8:00 PM

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