Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Good morning everyone! Happy Wednesday to you!

Joining today's show are (it's a big one) Mark Halperin, Jim VandeHei, Donald Trump, Mike Barnicle, Robert Costa, Chuck Todd, Sen. Rand Paul, Kelley Paul, Gov. Chris Christie, Sen. Bernie Sanders, Jane Sanders, Sara Eisen and Hoda KotbAnd, in Taiji, Japan, 9 boats are in formation, and they've got another pod. A pod of striped dolphins has just been slaughtered in The Cove in the second drive in two days. Water has turned blood red. 2016-6-01 10:20 am ‪#‎dolphinproject‬ ‪#‎tweet4dolphins‬

Trump jokingly reprimands supporters in New Hampshire. Donald Trump feigned outrage Tuesday after an attendee at one of his rallies shouted that President Barack Obama is "a Muslim." Robert Costa (the guy that I know that went to see the band (Phish) in Hartford two years ago and then I assume he has seen more shows) whom has been on a tear this political season and during this primary race in particular, wrote a few articles that were in the (Washington) Post today. He is also on the show again today. He is on every day now. He was following the trump tour...I mean campaign or so I think he was following it in the summer and in the fall last year (2015). 
"Oh, I'm supposed to reprimand the man. Who was the man that said that? I have to reprimand," Trump said, before adding blandly, "How dare you. Okay, I reprimanded him. I reprimanded him, now the press can't be angry."

Trump also only briefly addressed Obama's gun reform plans, including using executive order to expand background checks.

"It's no good it's no fair and they're not going to screw around with the Second Amendment," Trump said.

A mostly jovial Trump entertained a full house in a New Hampshire high school gym for about an hour, poking fun not only at political correctness, but the press and potential general election rival, Hillary Clinton.

Trump's reaction to the supporter's claim on Tuesday deviated from how the Republican front-runner handled a similar interaction with a supporter at an event in New Hampshire four months earlier.

Trump took heat in September when he stood silent and chuckled as a man at a town hall event told Trump "We have a problem in this country ... called Muslims" and accused Obama of being a Muslim.

The Republican also pretended to rebuke a supporter later during his event on Tuesday when supporters suggested Clinton was "in the bathroom" when not on the campaign trail.

"That's terrible. I'm admonishing you for the press, get him the hell out of there!" Trump said with an exaggerated tone.

Trump weeks earlier himself referred to Clinton's bathroom break during the last Democratic presidential debate, calling her use of the restroom "too disgusting" to discuss.

But Trump refrained from repeating comments he made just prior to the evening rally, insinuating GOP rival Ted Cruz would face years of lawsuits if elected president, due to his Canadian birth.

Trump says Cruz’s Canadian birth could be ‘very precarious’ for GOP.  Donald Trump said in an interview that rival Ted Cruz’s Canadian birthplace was a “very precarious” issue that could make the senator from Texas vulnerable if he became the Republican presidential nominee.

“Republicans are going to have to ask themselves the question: ‘Do we want a candidate who could be tied up in court for two years?’ That’d be a big problem,” Trump said when asked about the topic. “It’d be a very precarious one for Republicans because he’d be running and the courts may take a long time to make a decision. You don’t want to be running and have that kind of thing over your head.”

Trump added: “I’d hate to see something like that get in his way. But a lot of people are talking about it and I know that even some states are looking at it very strongly, the fact that he was born in Canada and he has had a double passport.”

Cruz responded to Trump’s comments on Twitter later Tuesday evening by referring to an iconic episode of the sitcom “Happy Days,” in which the character Fonzie jumps over a shark on water skis. The image has become a symbol of something shopworn and overdone.

Trump’s remarks — part of a backstage interview before a rally here Monday night — come as Cruz is rising as a serious threat in the presidential campaign, especially in Iowa, where some polls have shown Cruz eclipsing the billionaire mogul. The two have had a cordial and at times even friendly relationship over the past year, but they are competing intensely for the support of conservatives as the Feb. 1 Iowa caucuses draw near.

Trump captures the nation’s attention as he campaigns
View Photos The presidential candidate and billionaire businessman leads the field in the Republican race.
There have been recent signs of tension. At a rally last month in Iowa, Trump told voters of Cruz: “Just remember this — you’ve got to remember, in all fairness, to the best of my knowledge, not too many evangelicals come out of Cuba, okay? Just remember that . . . just remember.”

In the interview with The Washington Post, Trump said he was providing a candid assessment of his leading opponent rather than initiating a personal attack and reviving the “birther” debate that he once led against President Obama. He repeatedly said he is hearing chatter on the topic among voices on the right. “People are bringing it up,” he said.

Trump has veered from shrugging off the issue to raising more questions himself. In an interview with ABC News in September, Trump said he did not think Cruz’s birthplace was an issue. “I hear it was checked out by every attorney and every which way and I understand Ted is in fine shape,” he said.

But months earlier in Iowa, Trump told reporters that it could be a “difficult problem.”

“He’s a friend of mine. I have great respect for him. . . . certainly it’s a stumbling block, and he’s going to have to have it solved before he goes too far,” Trump said, according to the Dallas Morning News.

Speaking late Tuesday in Sioux Center, Iowa, Cruz laughed off questions about Trump’s comment, saying he would let his campaign’s “Happy Days” tweet speak for itself.

When pressed, Cruz turned it back to the media, saying the focus should be on substantive issues.

“And one of the things that the media loves to do is gaze at their navels for hours on end by a tweet from Donald Trump or from me or from anybody else. Who cares?” he said. When asked why he would tweet a video clip, he said: “Why do it? Because the best way to respond to this kind of attack is to laugh it off and move on to the issues that matter.”

Despite this, Cruz maintains he still likes Trump and doesn’t intend to throw insults.

The Constitution requires a president to be a “natural-born citizen.” Anyone born to a U.S. citizen is granted citizenship under U.S. law, regardless of where the birth takes place, as long as the citizen parent has resided in the United States or its territories for a certain period of time. At the time of Cruz’s birth, the required period was at least 10 years, including five years after the age of 14.

Cruz’s mother was a U.S. citizen when he was born in Calgary in 1970; his father was born in Cuba. Cruz has long said that because his mother is a citizen by birth, he is one as well and fits under the definition of a natural-born citizen. Since his election to the Senate, Cruz has released his birth certificate and renounced his Canadian citizenship.

Legal scholars agree that Cruz meets the Constitution’s natural-born citizenship requirement, though it is untested in the courts.

Several previous presidential candidates have run for office with similar backgrounds, such as Sen. John McCain (Ariz.), the 2008 Republican nominee, who was born in the Panama Canal Zone to U.S. citizens.

In the interview, Trump alluded to an ongoing lawsuit in Vermont, where a man is trying to keep three Republican presidential candidates, including Cruz, off the ballot. According to the Rutland Herald, the lawsuit names state officials as defendants.

Trump has long flirted with “birtherism,” questioning Obama’s love of country and legal claim to the presidency. He supported efforts to investigate Obama’s birth in Hawaii and often suggested that the president was born outside the country.

Trump’s crusade reached its zenith in 2011, when Obama felt obliged to publicly release his long-form birth certificate. The president then mocked Trump over the issue at the White House Correspondents’ Association dinner that year. Since then, Trump has quieted his speculation about Obama’s birth, while still declining to accept Obama’s legitimacy as president. Katie Zezima in Sioux Center, Iowa, contributed to this report.

Christie hits back: Rubio can’t ‘slime his way to the White House’.
As Chris Christie’s establishment rivals seize on his blue-state governing record, the New Jersey governor punched back here Tuesday with the kind of bluntness that had been his trademark but in this presidential campaign has been the domain of Donald Trump.

Signaling a turn among center-right candidates into a tougher phase, Sen. Marco Rubio charged that Christie has been too closely aligned with President Obama on gun control, health care and Common Core education standards, echoing twin attack ads aired here by his allied super PAC. Meanwhile, allies of Ohio Gov. John Kasich filled mailboxes in New Hampshire with a biting pamphlet that reads, “Chris Christie: Tough talk. Weak record.”

In an interview Tuesday with The Washington Post, Christie responded with a sharp broadside against Rubio and shrugged off Kasich, vowing that voters would coalesce around his candidacy in spite of his ideological impurity because he projects strength.

“I just don’t think Marco Rubio’s going to be able to slime his way to the White House,” Christie said. “He wants to put out a whole bunch of negative ads? Go ahead. I hope that he will acknowledge at some point that I couldn’t care less.”

Christie mocked Rubio as naive in the arts of political street fighting — “He’s never been in a tough race in his life,” he said dismissively — and tore into Rubio’s work in the “Gang of Eight” on a 2013 immigration bill that has since become anathema to conservatives.

“The guy who advocated for amnesty and then ran away when the topic got too hot tells you two things: He’s not a reliable conservative, A, and, B, whenever it gets too hot, Marco turns tail and runs,” he said. “I’m not the least bit concerned that Marco Rubio will hurt me with conservatives. Marco Rubio has work himself to do with conservatives.”

Christie’s blunt attacks on Rubio suggest he sees the senator from Florida as a clear obstacle in his bid to gain the Republican nomination. At the same time, signs of possible momentum for Christie in New Hampshire mean that he has emerged as a possible barrier for Rubio, who has no clear advantage in any of the early states.

Christie is gambling that, in a race dominated by Trump’s pugnacity, his attitude and experience will offset his past statements and blemishes. After he climbed the political ladder in heavily Democratic New Jersey, Christie’s national candidacy is now becoming a test of whether an outsize persona can blanket over a record seen by conservative activists as inconsistent, if not disloyal.

“He’s returning to form,” said Thomas H. Kean Sr., a former New Jersey governor and Christie mentor. “He’s a tough guy and he’s decided we’ve reached a stage in the campaign where people are looking for that, so he’s going to let that side of him show.”

In the recent past, Republican presidential primaries were shaped by whether candidates passed a series of ideological benchmarks. But the 2016 race has been dominated instead by personality. This shift is most evident in the front-running candidacy of Trump, whose past is littered with conservative apostasies.

“Nobody cares,” Republican strategist Alex Castellanos said. “Political records and promised plans have turned to dust in front of us. . . . That’s not what this election seems to be about for Republicans. It’s about rescuing the country before it goes over the cliff.”

The jockeying among four center-right candidates — Christie, Rubio, Kasich and former Florida governor Jeb Bush — is intensifying in the new year, especially here in New Hampshire, where there is a veritable traffic jam as they compete for the affections of mainstream primary voters.

“New Hampshire may be their last hurrah,” said Scott Reed, a veteran GOP consultant based in Washington. “They’re sailing into an election that is anti-incumbent, anti-the-past, and desperately looking for someone future-oriented. They’re adjusting to that mood while trying to beat each other.”

Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” Kasich attacked Christie by comparing their records as governor. “Here in Ohio, we have a balanced budget; they don’t over in New Jersey,” he said. “Our credit has been strengthened; their credit has been downgraded. We’ve got more jobs.”

Conservative Solutions, a pro-Rubio super PAC, is airing two ads in New Hampshire aimed squarely at Christie. The first is targeted at conservative voters and slams the New Jersey governor for having backed Common Core and expanded Medicaid under Obama’s health-care law. After images show Christie huddling with Obama after 2012’s Hurricane Sandy, the narrator intones, “One high-tax, Common Core, liberal-energy-loving, Obamacare-Medicaid-expanding president is enough.”

The second ad, aimed at independent and moderate Republican voters, casts Christie as corrupt by noting the George Washington Bridge scandal that engulfed his administration in 2014.
Jeff Sadosky, a spokesman for the super PAC, said: “If Governor Christie hopes to be successful in New Hampshire, he’s going to do everything he can to paper over his record and the legacy he’s leaving in New Jersey. But it’s incumbent upon us to highlight that record.”

On the campaign trail Tuesday in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Rubio told reporters that he agreed with his super PAC’s ads.

“There’s nothing in them that’s inaccurate,” Rubio said. “I guess the point is something I would say, too, and that is that this country cannot afford a president that’s not going to reverse the direction Barack Obama’s taken our country. We can’t have another president that supports Common Core or gun control or expanding Obamacare.”

Added Rubio spokesman Alex Conant: “If Christie was honestly ‘telling it like it is,’ he would say there is nothing inaccurate about the new ads and stop attacking Marco.”

Christie swatted back at Rubio in the Post interview.

“If Marco thinks that . . . having his big donors from Madison Avenue put a few ads up in New Hampshire is going to shake me, that just again shows his inexperience and shows you what he’ll be like against Hillary Clinton,” he said. “If he’s overreacting to this — now — that just proves my point that he’s not ready to be the nominee.”

And when asked about Kasich, Christie deadpanned: “Kasich. John Kasich? He’s attacking me from the right? Okay. From the right? I mean, come on. Please.”

Conservative commentators have long been loudly skeptical of Christie’s beliefs and resentful that he has not courted them more assiduously. They see in Christie an eagerness to compromise with Democrats, as he has done with New Jersey’s Democratic legislature.

“Of course he’s vulnerable,” said William Kristol, editor of the Weekly Standard, a conservative magazine. “At the same time, he’s a good campaigner who’s got a focused long-shot strategy, who’s not flailing around with a hope and a prayer. 

The Christie campaign believes that much of his past — especially his Hurricane Sandy embrace of Obama and the bridge incident — is “baked in” with voters, to use the political parlance.

“They’re not looking for someone they agree with 100 percent of the time,” Christie senior adviser Maria Comella said. “They’re looking for someone who is a grown-up, a strong, tested leader who can get things done.”

Christie said in the interview that he would survive the negative attention from his opponents. He pointed to his first gubernatorial race in 2009, when incumbent Democrat Jon Corzine spent tens of millions of dollars against him.

“The reason we won is because I had the better message and I was the better messenger,” Christie said. “I think every successful campaign is about tomorrow, not about yesterday. What yesterday does is to provide you some kind of foundation of credibility. But really, voters don’t vote on what you did. They vote on what you say you’re going to do.”

Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski, and the "Morning Joe" panel discuss the prevailing attitude among establishment Republicans that Donald Trump supporters are not serious enough to show up for primary votes or caucuses. Mika to Donald trump: What is Hillary's message? 

The Morning Joe panel discusses Donald Trump's interview with Joe and Mika, and in doing so, wonders what Hillary Clinton's overall campaign message is. If Clintons attack me, I'll attack them. Donald Trump talks with Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski about attacks from the Clintons and what would prompt him to attack Bill Clinton. Trump: Trump takes on Cruz eligibility. As part of a wide-ranging interview with Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski, Donald Trump discusses the issue of Ted Cruz's eligibility to become president. 

Joe Scarborough: James Carville and Mary Matalin were... asked about Trump. [Carville said he was] driving past Mississippi, Biloxi, and there were thousands and thousands and thousands of people lining up on the 2nd of January to go inside, 15,000 at least, to see Donald Trump speak that day. And as Carville said, if they're doing that on the 2nd of January, who in their right mind doesn't think that on their way to work, they're going to drive by their post office or they're going to drive by their local school and spend three minutes to vote, when they spent three hours, yeah, I'll vote for Trump. Who are they kidding? 

I'm so tired of people pretending Donald Trump is going to disappear. The Republican establishment in Washington, D.C. are the worst offenders. It was the mainstream media. Now it is the Republican establishment in Washington, D.C. who are the biggest offenders of this fantasy of thinking.

Trump: The media's 'starting to like me'. Donald Trump defended the media for its coverage of his criticisms of Hillary Clinton, remarking in an interview aired Wednesday that he was sticking up for the press for "maybe the first time in my life" and that members of the Fourth Estate are starting to warm to his campaign.

During an expansive interview with MSNBC's "Morning Joe," co-host Joe Scarborough asked the Republican presidential candidate about the media's reporting in recent weeks on his comments about Clinton.

"I want to clear this up, because the press is having a field day, and they're not getting it right," Scarborough began.
Trump's response: “I haven’t noticed that, to be honest. You're having a field day. I haven't noticed the press."

"In all fairness to the press, maybe the first time in my life I’ll stick up for the press," Trump said.

Scarborough pressed Trump, expressing incredulity at that statement: "Suddenly you like the press? I don't understand this."

“They’re starting to like me," Trump said. "They’re starting to get it. They’re actually starting to get it."

Clinton, he asserted, does not have the "strength or stamina" to be commander in chief and tackle the country's most pressing issues, from trade to the Islamic State.

“Look, as secretary of state, she was a disaster," Trump said. "I agree, she traveled a lot. So what does she do on a plane? She sleep? OK, you know, it’s not that hard to travel if you’re traveling in a beautiful United States plane. But Hillary doesn’t have the strength or the stamina to take on her enemies.”

At other times in the interview, Trump touted what he said was his growing appeal with the public at large, citing his large crowds. “They get it. And I’m very impressed by it," he said.

He similarly praised his opponents — save for Jeb Bush, of course — for not attacking him because "they're intelligent people and they’re looking at my track record."

"My track record’s been extremely good. You know, the people that have attacked me are no longer here or they’re down to practically zero in the polls, like Jeb Bush, who everybody said was the— You know when I ran, he was leading by a lot. He was supposed to get it," Trump recalled.

On his ubiquitous campaign slogan, Scarborough asked when America stopped being great. Trump noted that he was "very unhappy with the Bush years," remarking upon the invasion of Iraq, which he maintained he had opposed from the beginning.

“It wasn’t something I really wanted to do," he said of his campaign. “Frankly, I wish Obama were a great president. I would be happy, I’d be happy doing what I’m doing — Turnberry [his golf resort] in Scotland — I have some of the greatest jobs in the world. I may never see it again. You know, if I win, I may never see these things again. So, I love what I’m doing, I love running."

This is a star studded day at Morning Joe because not only is the Donald (Trump), Bernie Sanders, Rand paul and Chris Christie are also on the show today. The Donald interview was done yesterday but its airing this AM for the first time. Press people got to see it because there were already reviews of it out there online.

BTW, isn't this big news? I guess not when you see that BBC reported that states how 'North Korea nuclear H-bomb claims met by scepticism'.

International scepticism and condemnation have greeted North Korea's claim to have successfully carried out an underground hydrogen bomb test. If confirmed, it would be North Korea's fourth nuclear test since 2006 and mark a major upgrade in its capabilities.

But nuclear experts have questioned whether the size of the blast was large enough to have been from an H-bomb.
South Korea called the test a "grave provocation" but said it was difficult to believe it was from such a device.

Hydrogen bombs are more powerful and technologically advanced than atomic weapons, using fusion - the merging of atoms - to unleash massive amounts of energy.

Atomic bombs, like the kind that devastated two Japanese cities in World War II, use fission, or the splitting of atoms.

Bruce Bennett, an analyst with the Rand Corporation, was among those casting doubts on Pyongyang's test: "The bang they should have gotten would have been 10 times greater than what they're claiming.

"So Kim Jong-un is either lying, saying they did a hydrogen test when they didn't, they just used a little bit more efficient fission weapon - or the hydrogen part of the test really didn't work very well or the fission part didn't work very well."

The data "doesn't support suggestions that the bomb was a hydrogen bomb", Chinese military expert Du Wenlong told state broadcaster CCTV.
A map of previous North Korean nuclear tests
A South Korean politician, Lee Cheol-woo, said he was briefed by the country's intelligence agency that the blast "probably falls short" of a hydrogen detonation.

But former British ambassador in Pyongyang John Everard warned "an explosion of that size is quite enough to wipe out a city and I think that, of course, is deeply worrying".

South Korean President Park Geun-hye, said further analysis was needed to determine the nature of the test, while calling it "a strong challenge to international peace and stability". In other reaction:
  • China, North Korea's main ally, said it "firmly opposes" the test
  • Japan called it a "major threat" to its national security
  • The US said it would "respond appropriately to any and all North Korean provocations"
  • Russia warned the action could amount to "a severe violation of international law", calling for the resumption of talks
  • The EU urged North Korea "cease this illegal and dangerous behaviour''
  • Nato said North Korea should abandon nuclear weapons
  • The International Atomic Energy Agency said that, if confirmed, the test was "in clear violation of UN Security Council resolutions and deeply regrettable"
The UN Security Council plans to hold an emergency meeting on Wednesday.

"Developing a hydrogen bomb is inevitable"
The rhetoric from the North Korean media was spectacular, announcing the country had carried out a "world startling event" - the underground test of a hydrogen bomb.

"People of the DPRK are making a giant stride, performing eye-catching miracles and exploits day by day," state media said.

That North Korea is still living with its predictable 1950s post-Korean War world view, where the US is the prime aggressor, was made clear too.

"The US is a gang of cruel robbers which has worked hard to bring even a nuclear disaster to the DPRK."

But despite the rhetoric, outside experts are sceptical about how much of a giant stride had been made.

What is not in doubt is the determination of Pyongyang to go down the nuclear path despite widespread condemnation the last time it tested a device.

Suspicions first emerged when an earthquake was registered near the Punggye-ri nuclear site in North Korea at 10:00 Pyongyang time (01:30 GMT), with the tremors rattling Chinese border cities.

Hours later, in a surprise announcement, a newsreader on North Korean state TV said: "The republic's first hydrogen bomb test has been successfully performed at 10:00 am on January 6, 2016."

A note signed by North Korea leader Kim Jong-un authorising the test said 2016 should begin with the "stirring explosive sound" of a hydrogen bomb.

It could be days or weeks before independent tests are able to verify or dismiss the recent claim.

Both China and Japan are reported to have been trying to detect radiation.

North Korea carried out the first of its three previous nuclear tests in 2006, making it one of the few nuclear-armed nations on Earth.

Can North Korea now launch a nuclear missile?
Despite North Korea's claims, experts are sceptical that North Korea can make a nuclear weapon small enough to fit on a missile.

What do we know about the latest test?
Observers agree a nuclear explosion of some kind took place and it seems to have been a bit bigger than the last test in 2013, but not nearly big enough to be a full thermonuclear explosion - an "H-bomb" - as Pyongyang claims.

Why can't the world stop North Korea?

North Korea has a determination to defy both world opinion and heavy sanctions to reach its nuclear goal. Crucially, its main ally, China, has proved either unwilling or unable to help.
President Obama sheds tears during gun speech. During his speech detailing gun violence in the nation, President Obama began to cry while talking about Sandy Hook.
Gun Manufacturers Thrilled With Obama's Gun Control Plan

wochit Business
President Obama just took bold action to help remedy the gun violence epidemic in our country.

This morning, the President announced a set of executive actions that will close loopholes and expand background checks on gun purchases -- real steps toward making our communities safer.

This Friday, OFA is bringing supporters together to talk about the work ahead on gun violence prevention, and President Obama is joining us to talk about his executive actions. Will you join?

The President's executive actions are a big step forward and have the potential to save lives, but the comprehensive solution America needs has got to come from Congress. So far, despite bipartisan support and the overwhelming majority of Americans that want reform, they have done nothing to act.

It's up to all of us to keep up the pressure on Congress, and OFA organizers and supporters are going all in to bring about the kind of change our country needs.

President Obama has committed to doing the same, and this is your chance to hear directly from him. Show your support for action on gun violence, and RSVP to hear from the President:
President Obama just took a number of executive actions to prevent gun violence -- including cracking down on people selling large numbers of guns without performing background checks. Thanks to this historic action, an additional tens of thousands of gun sales each year will now be required to undergo criminal background checks. [1]

But the NRA and their allies are already gearing up to block this important progress. Click here to automatically sign the petition thanking President Obama for taking this important step in the fight against gun violence.

Thank President Obama for taking executive action on gun violence
Today was made possible in large part by the strength of this movement. You shut down the White House switchboard with your calls. You delivered hundreds of thousands of petitions. You let the President know that we're not waiting on Congress to act to prevent gun violence -- and neither should he.

The President's actions will enforce our gun laws in a number of ways, including empowering prosecutors to go after people who profit by selling guns to dangerous individuals -- gun sellers like a Florida man who sold $20,000 worth of guns to a convicted felon. [2]

The NRA likes to talk about enforcing existing gun laws rather than passing stronger ones -- while actually working to defund and block law enforcement efforts to fight crime.

We know that we need to do both to keep our communities safe. President Obama is enforcing the laws already on the books -- and we'll keep fighting for stronger gun laws that will keep weapons out of dangerous hands.

Click here to automatically thank President Obama for standing up for common-sense gun laws, and protecting our communities from violence.
In the face of inaction from Congress, today President Obama is announcing two commonsense executive actions that will make our communities safer from gun violence: requiring criminal background checks on more gun sales, and preventing fewer guns from falling into the wrong hands.

This is an extraordinary victory for our movement, and one that will save lives.

Please sign our card thanking President Obama for taking executive action to help close loopholes that let dangerous people get guns without background checks.

When Congress failed to take action to close these loopholes after the tragedy in Newtown, the team at Americans for Responsible Solutions -- backed by almost one million Americans like you -- set to work with President Obama, Vice President Biden, and the rest of the administration to find a way to make our communities safer, even if Congress wouldn't cooperate.

Today we will see the results of our tireless work and your dedicated support. Specifically, President Obama will:
  • Clarify what defines a gun dealer, so criminal background checks will be required on more sales at gun shows, online, and elsewhere, and step up enforcement on those who ignore the law.
  • Strengthen the background check system by increasing staff, introducing new technology, and encouraging states to include needed records.
  • Require federally licensed gun dealers to report lost or stolen guns, which will help reduce the illegal gun trade.
  • Call for a new increase in mental health funding and resources.

Because it will require many more gun sales to be covered by a criminal background check, these executive actions are the biggest victory for our federal gun laws since the Brady Bill.

Nearly 90% of Americans continue to support criminal background checks for all gun sales. But we know that the gun lobby and its allies in Congress won't be happy with President Obama taking action to make communities safer from gun violence -- no matter how few people agree with their views. That's why it's important for us to thank President Obama for closing these loopholes to let him know that we stand with him.

Add your name to our card to President Obama thanking him for helping to save lives from gun violence with today's executive actions.

Our country has a gun violence crisis, but today's victory is an important step to make communities safer from gun violence.

There is nothing we cannot accomplish when we stand together.


Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly

Oh and last, nice boots marco (Rubio):
Regardless of it all today, please stay in touch.