One of the good one has had enough. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is resigning and we wish him the best as we know it must have been hard working for President Barack Obama. Hagel who is 68 years old and served his country well has always taken the high road. He did not give a reason and the rumor is the he gave notice sometime in October. He probably knew he was never going to broke through the White House closed door national security team. We watched as his the squawkers pushed the word out about his inability to publicly communicate administration policy and questioned his leadership to oversee new military campaigns against ISIS in Iraq and Syria. The bigger issues at home were the Pentagon and the deep budget cuts ahead. It is not lost on us, that this will be his fourth Pentagon chief Defense Secretary in six years. We know this job has historically high turnover but this must go to a deeper problem. Get ready for a fight as the first name they have floated is Michele Flournoy, a Democrat who served as the Pentagon’s policy chief from 2009-12. We will say that Hagel did not throw the White House under the bus as much as Gates and Panetta. In the end they all did wind up leaving.
This week we picked a six time member of the countdown that makes her an original. Christina María Aguilera was born December 18, 1980, in Staten Island, New York and was probably singing in the womb. In 2013 she was #18, 2012 #11, 2011 #12, 2010 #20, 2009 #23 and 2008 #25. We picked her because she rolled up on the red carpet of the AMA as sexy as ever. She was in all white long blonde hair, working every curve of her body in a tight thigh slit dress that we still cannot get out of our minds. This was a big year for Xtina as she left her show The Voice and let Shakira and Gwen Stefani sits in for her as she stepped away to have a baby and by the looks she bounced back well. There was even a rumble that Gwen wanted the job to be hers permanent, which is kind of silly when you think of whom Christina Aguilera is compared to Gwen. Remember the show is called the Voice after all. We are not shy about our love for Christina and her voice, her body and her persona. We are glad she will be on TV again in 2015 and an eighth studio album is in the works.
This week the woman of the week was Katherine Heigl and we wanted to give you an insight to the super sexy look that we could not pass up when choosing her. She wore this hot little number to the 40th AFI Life Achievement Awards Honoring Shirley MacLaine in LA at Sony Picture Studios. Katherine wore a Monique Lhuillier from the Fall 2010 collection. Monique Lhuillier who was born September 15, 1971 in Cebu City, Philippines is fashion designer most known for bridal wear. She owns a couture fashion house in Los Angeles, California, as well as another store on the Upper East Side in Manhattan. The asymmetrically draped black silk gown with gunmetal embroidery metallic gold straps that traveled in a snake-like wave down one side of her dress gathering the fabric as well as an always and immediately sexy thigh-high split. She pulled off the perfect shoes to match with Camilla Skovgaard gunmetal strappy sandals. Camilla Skovgaard shoes are gaining recognition for their aesthetic fluid-edged style combined with high quality shoe making. Her emphasis is on form, materials and style rather than decoration. The combination of contrasting elements such as fluidity and severity, restraint and sophistication play an integral part in the character of her design. Katherine pulled it all together with a cocktail ring and a black Judith Leiber clutch.
If you were looking for a sign your golden gal, the hero of Benghazi, the wife of a habitual cheater and carpet bagger extraordinaire and former first lady, Hillary Clinton is alive for 2016. She meet dozens of her staunchest allies at a gathering in a New York hotel. Ready for Hillary, a Democratic super PAC unaffiliated with Clinton, convened the meeting of 200 financial backers and Clinton insiders to prepare for a campaign. Harold Ickes who worked in Bill Clinton’s White House, is behind the Ready for Hillary effort along with Adam Parkhomenko, the executive director. We wonder how this is playing with the other hopefuls like Vice President Joe Biden and outgoing Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley as well as the new hot name Virginia Senator Jim Webb. The meeting was a discussion that included lessons learned from the 2014 election, the media landscape and what the 2016 campaign might look like. Ready for Hillary has identified 3 million supporters and raised more than $10 million, so believe us it is a real thing. Clinton will be a formidable opponent as she has an existing network from her run in the White House for two terms and her own political operation.
We do not want to say we told you so, but when the IRS is trying to tell us hard drives were scrapped and emails were lost, we told you that is not how IT works. Turns that up to 30,000 missing emails sent by former Internal Revenue Service official Lois Lerner have been recovered by the IRS inspector general, five months after they were deemed lost forever. You know where they were, exactly where every IT person worth his salt is supposed to have them. The emails were found among hundreds of disaster recovery tapes that were used to back up the IRS email system. If you remember why we needed them the Committees in the House and Senate are seeking the emails, which they believe could show Lerner was working in concert with Obama administration officials to target conservative and Tea Party groups seeking tax-exempt status before the 2012 presidential election. We know you can file under the just does not matter as in too late to mean anything. This will be another case of the GOP being labeled as the party that grasps something and will not let go, like Benghazi and the birth certificate. We know this means more rules in place so when GOP leads both branches they will not be able to pay back democrats with same tactics.
Well the president dropped the hammer on congress on immigration. He painted the GOP at fault over no bill for immigration. He made it seem like his hands were tied and had to act. We can go on and on about how he could have waited and the new congress we are confident would have a bill on his desk in the first quarter of 2015. Let us pick this apart a bit since we have the facts in front of us. He made the cutoff five million which was huge as we thought he could have gone up to eight or ten million. There is some truth in what he said we as Americans do not want hard working, productive, law abiding people sent home. The problem is there are too many that are not hard working, productive, or law abiding. You could argue because they broke our laws and came here illegally they cannot be law abiding at all. We think the worst part is the message, come to America hide in the shadows, if you are good at it, long enough you will get in by default when the next big sweep comes through. We hope the new GOP congress makes some sense of this and rights these wrongs for all sides as well as bring more security to the borders.
Well the train is on the track as President Barack Obama is ready to announce his immigration amnesty plan and executive order to take action alone. The big question is how many of the estimated 11-30 million immigrants living in the United States illegally will be and most of them aren’t going to be covered by the executive action. Where we he come down on parents of US born citizens and permanent residents who have been in the country for more than five years. We know congress is not going to move so the idea the president moves ahead and forced the new congress to make their plan which gets something passed. The GOP has a document with 22 examples of this action stressing the limits of his authority. This is not new as it has been done by past president both Republican and Democrat we have seen this from Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Reagan and Bush relying on executive authority. We will caveat that it was never for 5-11 million people that is massive. We think the other big piece is the chart of deportation a new ranking system of how and who is sent out of the country. Lower the likelihood of deportation for parents of US citizens or legal permanent residents who have been in the US for less than five years, and for other immigrants who have been here illegally for more than 10 years. There is no stopping this only picking up the pieces. We hope there is more security to help the border patrol.
We love when the democrats appear so self-serving they cannot see the forest for the trees. One of the biggest offenders is Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and dare we say she has hit a new low, even for her. House Democrats are seeing it but they have not risen up to show cause. This issue is her refusal to allow Illinois Democrat Representative Tammy Duckworth to vote by proxy in leadership elections. Why Representative Tammy Duckworth should be given this special privilege you might ask. Well is that was the democrats do, look out for everyone and make safety nets, special ways, provide help to the needy and make sure everyone gets a trophy. Representative Tammy Duckworth is a Iraq war veteran so that is a good reason to allow it, she is also pregnant and unable to travel, that is another good reason. Did we mention she is a double amputee from serving our country and we should bend over backwards to make sure she wants for nothing. Let alone a vote for the leadership in the place where she works sent by the tax payers who pay all their salaries. Pelosi is using House Democratic Caucus rules prohibit proxy votes, and that allowing exceptions create a slippery-slope. We wonder if it would be a slippery-slope id she was voting for Pelosi.
This week we highlight on our favorite Katherine Heigl who last year was down seven places on countdown to #28 but it was her sixth year on the chart, 2012 #21, 2011 #14, 2010 #12, 2009 #6 and in 2008 #5 her highest spot. Katherine Marie Heigl she was born on born November 24, 1978 in Washington D.C and grew up in New Canaan, CT. This is back to back weeks for the woman of Connecticut. We picked Katherine because she is back on the small screen for NBC State of Affairs. It is just like NBC to go after an actress who was a star on another channel, and to make a show like this so late to the party. When you think of this space with 24, and Homeland this show might be too late. Katherine has star power and might make it happen, plus she is gorgeous and we will be watching. Besides if we sat through all those romantic comedies this should be way more entertaining. She has an amazing body and a knock you off your feet smile that makes you want to be around her. We wish her the best in the Monday night at 10 time slot her lead in is the Voice so that should help. We will be watching and hoping NBC lets them turn up the sexually charged heat.
Must be a weekend for healthcare as this week ahead we see the push for Obamacare comes to small shops. The call for health care coverage at nail salons, pizzerias, and even bars as we come upon the second enrollment period of Obamcare the President Barack Obama forced health care law. The pro Obamacare folks are using new tactics to reach people who need insurance as the chase numbers where they think they missed last year. This grassroots effort has been brought down to the Laundromat where they push the customers between wash-and-dry cycles to call the hotline for more information. It has been easier this year and no one like that more than new Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell since it almost cost her predecessor her job. The early numbers are 23,000 people submitting applications within the first eight hours and another 1.2 million unique visitors looked at coverage using the window-shopping tool. They put in a new congress and a new player in the White House but this is too big to turn around and we are stuck with it for the rest of our lives. The Obama administration aims to have 9.1 million paying customers enrolled in 2015 which is nice an all but when we were sold this the number for 2015 was supposed to be 13 million.
Here is a shocker, they say how history repeats it usually takes years and a cycle of some sort. Not Obamacare here we go again. The state of Washington health care exchange shut down after the first few hours of open enrollment scrambling state officials and software engineers to resolve a problem with, what else tax credit calculations. Washington Healthplanfinder, which opened at 8am and then shut the whole system down around 10:30 am. The system will remain down until it can give consumers who want to buy health insurance accurate information. Because it is down they could not say how many people had signed up for insurance before the problem was discovered of how many it calculated wrong. They estimate about 2,000 people were using the exchange each hour during the two hours when it was open. Officials were running around saying the site worked so much better than last year, we want to tell them broken is broken. Open enrollment for health care insurance continues through February 15, 2015 the target is 85,000 new sign ups. They also want to retain the 145,000 people who bought insurance during the first open enrollment period last year. There are at least a thousand of those people who bought insurance the first time around are still having problems getting their payments credited and that money transferred to their insurance companies.
We watched the Voice the other night on Veterans Day and a fan tweeted the show that her husband was being deployed to Afghanistan. Then we hear from the Pentagon Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Army General Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff warn Congress a modest numbers of US forces are needed in Iraq to fight alongside Iraqi troops. President Barack Obama is seeking congressional approval for $5.6 billion to expand the US mission in Iraq and send up to 1,500 more American troops. We understand and support the measure but Mitt Romney told this country you cannot just leave a vacuum in Iraq and Afghanistan and there would be problems. President Barack Obama told the American people not to believe Romney and he was bringing the troops home. The crowds cheered and he was reelected. Two years later we are now sending troops back to both Iraq and Afghanistan we also added in Syria so you have to ask yourself how many lives did your vote cost, as we are sure the LSM will blame Bush for starting the war, but make no mistake this botching of the end lies clearly at this president’s decision making.
Sometimes you need to lose to win. The political football that is the Keystone XL pipeline could be reared and have the GOP waiting to pass. Here is the play Louisiana Senator Mary Landrieu is going to push the pipeline up on the agenda. The reason she is an underdog to win a fourth term and more than likely will lose her seat in a runoff election next month. First she always supported the issue this is not a flip the bad news is the Canada-to-Texas pipeline was a issue she was hammered on as she was not unable to win a vote on it. She is running against GOP Representative Bill Cassidy who has a version that recently passed the House and GOP leaders immediately scheduled another vote on it for Thursday. The dilemma is if we let her bring it and pass it will that be enough for her to keep her seat. The GOP can push it through in January and avoid giving the Louisiana Senator Mary Landrieu any good will. The problem is we have wanted this for so long it is time to ram it through and let the chips fall where they may. We need all victories and starting in this lame duck session would be a pretty sweet start.
We did say weeks ago we wanted there to be a GOP mandate to stop the confirmation of another half backed attorney general. We also expected that if there was a mandate President Barack Obama would go an all out push to get as many judges and agency vacancies filled before the congress leaves for winter break. If you did not know there are more than 150 nominees that need confirmation votes by the Senate. They have five weeks we are pretty sure the ones on the fence are toast and only ones with mutual support will fly based on the time limit. You would expect the biggest nomination battle would be the replacement of Attorney General Eric Holder. This might be one of the best choices and we see no need to hold up federal prosecutor Loretta Lynch taking over the spot. We think the other 16 federal district court judgeship’s, 31 ambassadorships, surgeon general, a member of the National Labor Relations Board, the commissioner of the Social Security Administration and high-level jobs at the departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs might be more of a struggle just based on the sheer number. You do the math 30 hours are required for most nominations, which range from two hours for federal district court judges to 30 hours for Cabinet-level appointees. Let us not forget in six year President Barack Obama has appointed 276 federal circuit court of appeals and district court judges compared to President George W. Bush 252 over eight years.
The time has come to wish all our veterans a special day for those who made the ultimate sacrifice. Those who live in freedom will always be grateful to those who helped preserve it. Thank you to all our past and present Military for the unselfish job they do to protect our freedom. May God watch over them and bless the USA. As we reflect this Veteran’s Day, let us honor and remember all those who serve or have served in our military. We owe our gratitude to the men and women in the military who promote peace and justice and protect people across the world. Our thoughts are with the families of those who have lost their lives, and our thoughts and prays for the continued safety of all our military personnel. It is our duty and privilege to remember the sacrifices they have made and continue to make on our behalf. These courageous patriots who have pledged their lives, fortunes and sacred honor, to our country we salute all generations of Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, and Airmen that have responded to duty’s call and risked their lives for our safety. For that reason we ought all to take a few minutes today and remember our men and women in uniform – those who’ve served in the past and those who serve now; those who’ve returned safely from tours of duty and those who’ve come back wounded; and above all those who’ve made the ultimate sacrifice for our liberties and way of life.