Friday’s Mini-Report

Updated
Today’s edition of quick hits:

* If this is accurate, it’s a major development: “The leader of the Pakistan Taliban was killed Friday in a U.S. drone strike in Northwest Pakistan, U.S. and Pakistani officials tell NBC News. A U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed  the death of Hakimullah Mehsud, head of the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), in a CIA drone strike.”

* Bad for the poor, bad for the economy: “America hurtled past the ‘hunger cliff’ deadline Friday and whacked the country’s 47 million food stamp recipients with an across the board cut.”
 
* Snowden: “Edward J. Snowden, the fugitive American security contractor granted asylum by Russia, has appealed to Washington to stop treating him like a traitor for revealing that the United States has been eavesdropping on its allies, a German politician who met with Mr. Snowden said on Friday. In his letter, Mr. Snowden, 30, also appealed for clemency.”
 
* Keep an eye on this one: “Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) might defy Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel’s call for all state National Guards to issue ID cards and full benefits to same-sex couples.”
 
* I’m always genuinely thrilled when someone else notices: “To the undisputed reasons for Obamacare’s rocky rollout – a balky website, muddied White House messaging and sudden sticker shock for individuals forced to buy more expensive health insurance – add a less acknowledged cause: calculated sabotage by Republicans at every step. That may sound like a left-wing conspiracy theory – and the Obama administration itself is so busy defending the indefensible early failings of its signature program that it has barely tried to make this case. But there is a strong factual basis for such a charge.”
 
* Here’s hoping he means it: “Saying that ‘the current system is really broken in every way,’ Congressman Fred Upton said he plans to take an active role in getting immigration reform passed in the House this fall.”
 
* Climate: “President Barack Obama issued a series of steps Friday to help the nation combat global warming, an issue that may reignite partisan battle lines in Washington. Obama signed an executive order directing agencies to help make it easier for states and localities to fight storms, droughts and heatwaves, creating a task force to advise the government and requiring better coordination on the federal level.”
 
* If Republicans are serious about consumers’ access to health care coverage, it’s clearly time for a more in-depth conversation about their sabotage campaign against “Navigators.”
 
* It won’t become law as long Obama as president, but the Retail Investor Protection Act is plainly ridiculous: “The House of Representatives, with bipartisan support, passed legislation on Wednesday that would roll back a major element of the 2010 law intended to strengthen the nation’s financial regulations by allowing big banks like Citigroup and JPMorgan Chase to continue to handle most types of derivatives trades in house.”
 
* And why don’t congressional Republicans put some effort in crafting a health care plan of their own? It probably has something to do with the fact that their own party’s voters don’t much care and don’t actually want the GOP to bother.
 
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.
 

Friday's Mini-Report

Updated