They’re at it again: Politico reports yet another favorite off-Campus meeting place White House officials usher their lobbyist guests. Yesterday’s report suggested that administration officials, who have often been criticized for holding meetings with lobbyists at a local Caribou Coffee to circumvent documenting the meetings, are now holding meetings at local Jackson Place Townhouses, where the White House houses its conference center. Sentiments on the secret meetings vary. Some welcome the outreach, despite the secrecy, and others decry the administration’s hypocrisy.
The Obama Effect: Former White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel coasted easily to victory in the Chicago mayoral race with 55% of the vote, despite earlier controversy over his eligibility. The president’s approval rating is obviously favorable in his hometown.
Budget Stalemate: Speaker Boehner (R-Ohio) has said he will not issue another continuing budget resolution if the chambers fail to reach an agreement on spending for FY2011 before the current resolution expires March 4 unless the resolution includes significant cuts. Some are predicting that with the Senate’s legislative calendar, an agreement within the time constraints is unlikely and a government shut down is all but inevitable. The New York Times reports that aides to Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) accuse Democratic counterparts of “rooting for that outcome.”