Friday’s Mini-Report, 10.17.14

Today’s edition of quick hits:
 
* Kobani: “Increased airstrikes over the besieged Syrian city of Kobani have allowed the American-led coalition to take out large numbers of Islamic State fighters, the top American commander for the Middle East said on Friday.”
 
* Dallas: “No restaurants, grocery stores, movie theaters or other places where members of the public congregate. No travel by airplane, ship, long-distance bus, train or other modes of commercial transportation. Such are the restrictions that dozens of health care workers who treated the Ebola victim Thomas Eric Duncan are being asked to follow for the 21-day maximum incubation period of the virus.”
 
* Senegal: “The World Health Organization said on Friday that the Ebola outbreak in Senegal is officially over. Senegal’s first and only confirmed Ebola patient traveled to the country by road from Guinea in August, bringing the virus with him.”
 
* Marriage equality is now legal in every Southwestern state except Texas: “Arizona same-sex couples can begin marrying immediately, after Attorney General Tom Horne announced this morning he will not appeal the court ruling striking down Arizona’s marriage restriction.”
 
* And don’t forget Wyoming: “A federal judge has ordered Wyoming to allow same-sex marriage but has stayed his decision so that the state can appeal if it wants. U.S. District Judge Scott Skavdahl ruled Friday that the state must comply with a ruling by the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals that permits same-sex marriage.”
 
* Ukraine: “A high-stakes meeting between the leaders of Ukraine and Russia ended Friday with little progress in resolving the conflict in eastern Ukraine, highlighting the increasingly intractable struggle there between government forces and Russian-backed rebels.”
 
* Should the United States impose a travel ban on West Africa? Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) gave two very different answers to that question over the course of just 24 hours, suggesting he’s making stuff up as he goes along.
 
* Some folks sure are predictable: “Conservative media figures lashed out at President Obama’s appointment of Ron Klain as the Ebola response coordinator or ‘czar,’ criticizing the selection as ‘insane’ and ‘dumb.’ Klain has been praised for his work in government and has been called ‘a great choice’ to deal with the Ebola crisis by other media outlets.”
 
* On a related note, congressional Republicans, who’ve demanded a “czar,” are now outraged that Obama’s appointed a “czar.”
 
* Irin Carmon spent some time in Colorado this week, talking to, among others, the founder of Personhood USA. Fascinating report.
 
* Mariah Blake did a nice job exploring why major players from the world of hedge funds are investing heavily in the 2014 midterm elections.
 
* Peggy Noonan is convinced: if U.S. officials would only agree to combat Ebola by thinking like 11-year-old children, Americans would be safer. It’s a reminder of why I simply cannot read Noonan’s columns anymore.
 
* Charles Gaba did a nice job on collecting failed Republican predictions on the Affordable Care Act: “From ‘It’ll Destroy America!!’ to ‘It Doesn’t Suck But It Will Someday!’ in 10 Easy Steps.”

* And we’re still working on our new Whip Count project. We’re keeping a running tally of members of Congress who want to return to session – cutting their vacation short – in order to vote on authorizing military intervention against ISIS. I hope you’ll take a look and keep us posted.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.
 

Friday's Mini-Report, 10.17.14