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Details on a Pie-in-the-Sky Budget—THE EDGE Brought to You by the National Retail Federation Details on a Pie-in-the-Sky Budget—THE EDGE Brought to You by the Na...

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Details on a Pie-in-the-Sky Budget—THE EDGE Brought to You by the National Retail Federation

By Jack Fitzpatrick (@jackfitzdc)

TODAY IN ONE PARAGRAPH: President Obama released a $3.9 trillion fiscal 2015 budget that will serve more as an outline of Democrats' ideals than a blueprint for negotiations in the House. The U.S. pledged $1 billion in loan guarantees to Ukraine to counteract reduced energy subsidies from Russia. Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear will hire outside lawyers to appeal a federal court's ruling that the state must recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states—even though the state's attorney general declined to appeal the ruling. Facebook hopes to buy a drone-making company to use the planes as flying cell towers. And Democrats want credit for keeping Obama's chained CPI proposal out of the White House budget.

 

TOP NEWS

OBAMA PROPOSES IDEALISTIC $3.9 BILLION BUDGET: The budget calls for $3.9 trillion in spending and $3.3 trillion in revenues. Less than a third of that is discretionary spending that the president and Congress actually control, but the proposal still clearly reflects Democratic ideals by calling for increased spending on education, public works, and other domestic initiatives. Republicans in the House will likely block most of the proposals, but the proposal serves to illustrate differences between the parties. (Jackie Calmes, NYT)

… WITH A $79 BILLION QUESTION MARK ON THE PENTAGON: The Defense Department is essentially using a placeholder when it comes to requesting funds for fighting wars. The department has requested $79 billion for that purpose—the same amount it asked for last year—but admits it doesn't know how much it will need. (Sorcher/Carney, NJ)

U.S. PLEDGES $1 BILLION IN AID TO UKRAINE: Secretary of State John Kerry pledged $1 billion in loan guarantees to make up for reduced energy subsidies. And the State Department has begun preparing to implement economic sanctions if Russia continues its aggression. (Elahe Izadi, NJ)

 

WHY EUROPE COULD BALK AT SANCTIONS: Political leaders in Europe, which has close economic ties to Russia, have been more hesitant to talk about sanctions than Kerry has. Russia is the E.U.'s biggest supplier of energy and its third-biggest trading partner after the U.S. and China. Oil and gas prices have risen simply from fears of supply disruption in Ukraine. (Mark Thompson, CNN Money)

KENTUCKY TO APPEAL GAY-MARRIAGE RULING WITHOUT ATTORNEY GENERAL: Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear said he will hire outside lawyers to appeal a federal judge's ruling requiring the state to recognize same-sex marriages from other states, following Attorney General Jack Conway's refusal to appeal. Conway said he agreed with the ruling and felt an appeal would only waste the state's money. (John Cheves, Lexington Herald-Leader)

TOMORROW IN ONE PARAGRAPH: Obama will speak at 2:40 p.m. about raising the minimum wage. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew will testify at 10:30 a.m. at a Senate Finance Committee hearing on Obama's fiscal 2015 budget. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will testify at 9:30 a.m. at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the Defense Department's fiscal 2015 budget request. Office of Management and Budget Director Sylvia Burwell will testify at 10 a.m. at a Senate Budget Committee hearing and at a House Budget Committee hearing at 2 p.m. on the White House budget.

TOP LINES

$1.9 MILLION IN FINES FOR AN 'OLYMPUS HAS FALLEN' TRAILER: Not because of the movie's unbelievable plot or its tepid reviews, but because the trailer featured an emergency alert sound and said "THIS IS NOT A TEST" and "THIS IS NOT A DRILL." The FCC hit Viacom, ESPN, and NBCUniversal with fines for the ad. (Laura Ryan, NJ)

 

FACEBOOK'S PLAN FOR SOLAR-POWERED DRONES: The company wants to purchase Titan Aerospace for $60 million and wants 11,000 lightweight drones that act as a "cell tower in the sky," providing Internet access. (Alex Brown, NJ)

FLOODING COULD COST EUROPE $32 BILLION A YEAR BY 2050: Researchers are worried about a combination of climate change and an increase in property held in flood-prone areas. (Gwynn Guilford, Quartz)

RADIO SHACK IS DOOMED: It had $127,000 in sales per employee last year, compared with 640,000 in sales per employee at Amazon. So why does Radio Shack still have 5,000 stores? (Derek Thompson, The Atlantic)

Don't Miss Today's Top Stories

Excellent!"

Rick, Executive Director for Policy

Concise coverage of everything I wish I had hours to read about."

Chuck, Graduate Student

The day's action in one quick read."

Stacy, Director of Communications

I find them informative and appreciate the daily news updates and enjoy the humor as well."

Richard, VP of Government Affairs

Chock full of usable information on today's issues. "

Michael, Executive Director

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TOP READS

WHO KILLED CHAINED CPI? Democrats, not Republicans, want credit for putting an end to the president's proposal to tie Social Security benefits to the rate of inflation (in a way that ultimately would reduce payment increases), says Democratic Rep. Raul Grijalva. (Alex Seitz-Wald, NJ)

GREEKS STRUGGLE UNDER ECONOMIC REFORMS: Austerity measures have finally turned around Greece's public spending, but it's come at a high price. (Matt Vasilogambros, NJ)

THE UNFORTUNATE FUTURE OF KEURIG COFFEE: The makers of Keurig plan to stop supporting "unlicensed pods," meaning if you want to use their coffeemaker, you have to use their coffee. (Robinson Meyer, The Atlantic)

TOP VIEWS

WHAT DOES OBAMA'S BUDGET LOOK LIKE? A Washington Post infographic shows that the Defense budget, as expected, is huge but shrinking. (WaPo)

LAST NIGHT'S LATE-NIGHT FUNNIES IN UNDER 2 MINUTES: Jon Stewart characterizes Putin's actions in Ukraine as blatant naked aggression, or at least "disturbingly shirtless aggression." (Mauro Whiteman, NJ)

Don't Miss Today's Top Stories

Excellent!"

Rick, Executive Director for Policy

Concise coverage of everything I wish I had hours to read about."

Chuck, Graduate Student

The day's action in one quick read."

Stacy, Director of Communications

I find them informative and appreciate the daily news updates and enjoy the humor as well."

Richard, VP of Government Affairs

Chock full of usable information on today's issues. "

Michael, Executive Director

Sign up form for the newsletter
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