‘We don’t think the timing of the visit is helpful.’
State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland on a January trip to North Korea by Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt with former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson. The trip, called a private trip by Schmidt, came only a few weeks after a provocative North Korean rocket launch.
‘With Senator Kerry, my guess is it’s going to be like a hot knife going through butter.’
U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, ranking Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, on the expected ease of Sen. John Kerry’s confirmation as secretary of state in the Senate. (For more on Kerry’s nomination, see "Flashing red" in this issue.)
‘If the stereotype helps others feel better about their loss, I guess our identity has helped us do our Christian duty, as we say in the South.’
Mark Wilson, secretary of the Alabama Historic Association, on the pro-Notre Dame “Catholics vs. Cousins” T-shirt that sold out before Alabama defeated the Fighting Irish 42-14 in the Jan. 7 BCS championship football game.
Amount that the inspector general found Department of Veterans Affairs spent on training conferences in July and August of 2011. The amount included $762,000 for a parody video of the movie Patton, trinkets such as pedometers and overpriced food and drink. Alice Muellerweiss, dean of the VA Learning University, resigned after the inspector general’s report.
‘There is plenty of revenue to service the debt and any responsible president would’ve stood at that podium and said “whatever happens with the debt ceiling, we will always pay our debt.” ... The reason the president isn’t doing that is he’s trying to scare people and raise the specter of financial apocalypse.’
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, noting that the government’s revenues regularly exceed its interest payments, and that “the only players who are threatening to default are President Obama and Harry Reid.”