Official White House Photo by Pete Souza
–Dexter Filkins and Mark Landler describe a growing deficit of trust between the White House and Hamid Karzai.
–Obama prods him in an interview with Matt Lauer on “Today.”
–AHIP caved fairly quickly to the administration’s needling over pre-existing conditions for minors. The health insurance lobby says it will go along with the tweaks HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is expected to make in the coming weeks. A very public fight over denying coverage to children is probably the last thing they want after a year of relentless vilification.
–A new USA Today/Gallup poll provides the latest proof that health care polling doesn’t tell us much:
I don’t know whether it’s policy confusion or mixed feelings, but the overlap between “do more” and “do less” doesn’t give any real insight into the new law’s popularity.
–In wake of all those ObamaCare RomneyCare parallel stories, Marc Ambinder gives five reasons why “Romney’s political career isn’t dead.” I agree the assumption that health care will define the 2012 presidential contest is faulty, but so is the notion that policy nuance will somehow shield him from the inevitable primary fire. He needs a simple and consistent message about the scope of bill, not its substance or circumstances.
–It doesn’t sound like he will skip Iowa.
—Yalman Onaran of Bloomberg writes that explicit guidelines on liquidity risk management — a bank’s access to cash assets in the event of a run — are absent from proposed financial regulation bills currently in Congress. One interesting international caveat: The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, which sets capital guidelines worldwide, is proposing new rules on the issue that could go into effect as soon as 2012.
–One thing that’s in both the Dodd bill and the Frank bill is a measure forbidding lenders from repackaging and selling debt without taking some of the risk onto their own balance sheets. The largest industry lobbies such as the American Bankers Association are pushing back. The Wall Street Journal writes it’s “all about trust” — Congress doesn’t want to rely on the lenders (or even their regulators) to recognize the bad stuff.
–Elizabeth Warren charges ABA hypocrisy.
–The LA Times profiles Donald Berwick, Obama’s nominee to run Medicaid and Medicare.
–The NY Times takes a long look at the plight of state governments in debt.
—Heads roll at the Risque National Committee.
–And the AP reviews Obama’s comedic stylings. The verdict: “mordant, self-deprecating, deeply ironic.”
What did I miss?