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Influence Alley Notebook—High Praise for Obama Influence Alley Notebook—High Praise for Obama

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Influence Alley Notebook—High Praise for Obama


Damage seen on the Capitol dome

A national chamber of commerce has officially endorsed President Obama for reelection. No, not that chamber.

The United States Medical Marijuana Chamber of Commerce is backing Obama, even though the president hasn’t been exactly enthusiastic about legalizing medicinal cannabis.


Thomas Leto III, chamber president, said in a statement that the “economic potential of the cannabis business in the United States is limitless, and President Obama understands this. It is our impression that Mr. Romney just doesn’t get it.”

Boehner’s Bullish

House Speaker John Boehner was bullish on Monday afternoon about the Republican Party’s chances of increasing its House majority.

“We’re in a strong position to keep our majority and frankly try to expand it,” Boehner said at a lunch with reporters in Tampa sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor.


Boehner said that many GOP incumbents are in better shape than he had expected, allowing Republicans to go on the offensive. The comments came a day after Boehner’s office announced that the speaker brought in $4 million as he crisscrossed the country raising money this month.

Capitol Repairs

Congress is broken. Or it’s at least breaking.

Not only does the institution have record-low approval ratings but the actual building is falling apart. Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., wrote to Boehner on Monday urging him to add $61 million to an expected continuing resolution to fix the more than 1,300 cracks in the Capitol dome.

“The Capitol’s dome is a monument to our nation’s representative democracy,” Schumer wrote. “It would be a national embarrassment if partisan gridlock allowed this iconic work of architecture to fall into a state of permanent decay.”


The House did not approve funds for the four-year project in its version of the 2013 legislative-branch appropriation, but the Senate did.

Cantor the Critic

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s campaign team is panning a new TV ad that his Democratic opponent is set to air this week amid Fox News coverage of the Republican National Convention.

“Maybe the reason voters are slamming the door on Wayne Powell is his strong support for Obamacare and his strident calls for higher taxes on job-producing small businesses,” Cantor campaign strategist Ray Allen said in a statement.

The first-ever Powell TV ad declares, “Wayne Powell: a Democrat who just might be your kind of Republican,” referring to the 61-year-old lawyer and retired Army colonel who in his first race for elected office is challenging the No. 2 House Republican.

Influence Alley is National Journal’s home for the coverage of power, people, and influence—from Capitol Hill to K Street.

This article appears in the August 28, 2012 edition of NJ Convention Daily.

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