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Spin Control

Posts tagged: white house

McMorris Rodgers with Seahawks at White House

Normally, Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers wouldn't be all smiles at a gathering headed by President Obama at the White House — if she'd be there at all.

Not so today, where she stopped by for Obama's salute to the Super Bowl champs and tweeted out a photo, proving perhaps that winners draw a bipartisan crowd.

Drug czar: We’re having ‘conversation’ on state’s pot laws

It's a small step, perhaps, but the nation's drug czar is reiterating President Obama's comments on having conversations between the federal government and states that have legalized marijuana like Washington has.

Gil Kerlikowske, the director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, was responding to petitions to the White House to legalize marijuana. The Obama White House has a place on its web site for people to file petitions, and, if they get at least 25,000 signatures, it promises a response.

There are three petitions regarding some form of legalization of marijuana, including two that would involve ways the federal government would not interfere with states that legalize the drug. (The third just calls for federal legalization). All have more than the 25,000 minimum.

In response, Kerlikowske says the nation in the middle of a serious conversation about marijuana and the Justice Department is “reviewing the legalization initiatives passed in Colorado and Washington.”

He then inserts part of the transcript from an interview Obama gave Barbara Walters that bolsters that point, noting the federal government isn't going after individual users. For the complete response from Kerlikowske, go inside the blog.

White House nominates Verner for board post

Spokane Mayor Mary Verner will be nominated by President Obama to serve on the board of a Washington-based nonprofit group dedicated to helping make the nation's buildings safer and more efficient.

Verner, who would serve on the National Institute of Building Sciences Board of Directors, was among 27 intended appointments announced Thursday by the White House. The appointment requires confirmation by the U.S. Senate.

The institute seeks to improve building sciences and technologies by bringing together public- and private-sector representatives to discuss problems and advances. Six of the board's 21 members are White House appointees.

Obama has Seattle Storm over to White House

President Barack Obama, fulfilling the number one presidential duty of congratulator-in-chief, had the WNBA champion Seattle Storm over to the White House this afternoon  for some high fives and kind words.

He introduced the coach, joked around with the players and talked about how he sweated his stint as a coach for daughter Sasha's team. “Nothing gets me more stressed,” he said.

(Not Afghanistan? Not Libya? Not the economy? Wow, those kids must be playing in a tough league.)

Joining the gathering were some other Washington state folks who hang out in the other Washington, former Governor/current Commerce Secretary/future Ambassador Gary Locke, Deputy HUD Secretary Ron Simms and Sen. Patty Murray. The Storm didn't make the trip just to have their picture taken in the Rose Garden; they held a basketball clinic for some inner city kids in D.C.

The White House was kind enough to send out a full transcript of the event. You can read it inside the blog.

Spokane gets mention on White House blog of Sims

Before he became a honcho in the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Ron Sims was King County executive for three terms and was on the county council before that. So it's sometimes easy for folks to forget that he has Spokane roots.

Sims, however, does not. As the White House blog marks Black History Month with stories of African Americans “contributing to President Obama's goals for winning the future,” his is one of the biographies posted.

And it starts with Sims saying that all people are shaped by where they grew up and “I grew up in Spokane, Washington, which is in the eastern part of the state, and had the opportunity to attend what is now known as Central Washington University.  My parents were engaged in the community, and in the weight of things, I am James and Lydia Sims’ son through and through.”

Gregoire at Hu’s dinner

At the risk of sounding like an old Abbott and Costello routine, Hu's coming to dinner at the White House, and Gov. Chris Gregoire is invited too.

Who's coming to dinner? Hu's the president of China.  I don't know who's the president of China but who's coming to dinner? Yes, Hu's president of China and he's coming to dinner. 

OK, so it's been done before, and better. So without further foolishness, Chinese President Hu Jintao is attending a state dinner at the White House Wednesday night.  Washington's status as a major exporting state, and the fact that China is one of our biggest overseas markets, and the fact that Gregoire was in China a few months ago on a trade mission may all have combined to get the governor an invitation to dinner.

Also on the list: Former Gov. and now Commerce Secretary Gary Locke and his wife Mona; actor Jackie Chan, musician Yo Yo Ma; Barbara Streisand and James Brolin; Microsoft honcho Steve Ballmer; skater Michelle Kwan.

No word yet on who Gregoire gets to sit next to, the governor's office said.

Today’s fun video: Why Harrison will pass on Obama invite

Pittsbugh Steelers linebacker James Harrison RSVPs with a resounding “Nope” to an invitation from President Obama to come to the White House with the other members of the team. His reason…because Obama would have invited the Arizona Cardinals if they had won the Super Bowl.

Duh? No duh?


So what do you think? is Harrison’s logic correct but his decision wrong or vice versa? Click on comment to offer yours

For The Daily Show’s take on Harrison’s logic, go inside the blog.

Today’s video: Tea’d off?

Fox News reports on anger and discontent brewing among the populace. The plan: Tea bag the White House.



Those with a local interest in such protests might check out the Spokane Tea Party’s Facebook page. (They don’t have a separate Web site, apparently.)

Much as Spin Control loves a good populist protest movement, a question did hit us: Did the Sons of Liberty throw tea bags into Boston Harbor? No, we didn’t think so…

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About this blog

Jim Camden is a veteran political reporter for The Spokesman-Review.


Jonathan Brunt is an enterprise reporter for The Spokesman-Review.


Kip Hill is a general assignments reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Nick Deshais covers Spokane City Hall for The Spokesman-Review.

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