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from Tales from the Trail:

Democrats disagree on NY mosque, White House says no problem

Barack Obama and Harry Reid agree on most things.

They both favored stimulus measures to boost the economy. They both want climate change and comprehensive immigration reform to pass the Senate -- at least someday.

OBAMABut the U.S. president and the top Democrat in the Senate disagree about an issue that could become a flashpoint in the November elections: whether or not a Muslim cultural center in New York should be built near the site of the Sept. 11 attacks.

Obama has come out forcefully in favor of the rights of the builders to put the center, which would include a prayer room and an auditorium, near the site known as "Ground Zero."

Reid, who is facing a tough reelection battle in his home state of Nevada, has said he thinks it should be built elsewhere.

from Tales from the Trail:

Washington Extra – cautionary tale

President Barack Obama signed a $600 million bill to strengthen border security, and just to make sure the message got through, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano took the podium at today's White House media briefing. Immigration has always been a tough political issue, and in an election year no great strides are expected on major reform before the November vote. "It cannot only be done by Democrats. The Republicans need to come to the table," Napolitano said.

WALMART/The American consumer is still a cautionary tale. But consumer sentiment appears to have stabilized in August after dropping sharply in July. "Consumers are still cautious, but it is not double-dip material," said Stuart Hoffman, chief economist at PNC Financial Services Group. In a separate report, U.S. retail sales rose in July but showed hints of lingering economic softness.

from Tales from the Trail:

Will Gulf getaway be much of a vacation for Obama?

A two-day trip to the Gulf Coast for President Barack Obama and his family will feature some beach time but maybe not a great deal of rest and relaxation.

OIL-SPILL/ANALYSTSPreviewing the first family's vacation to Panama City, Florida, this weekend, White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said it would include briefings on the oil spill cleanup, an update on how weather would affect the completion of the relief well and discussions about the spill's impact on businesses.

from Tales from the Trail:

White House spokesman’s “professional left” comment bites back

If the White House was trying to fire up its liberal base ahead of the Nov. 2 elections, this was probably not the way to go about it.

USA/White House spokesman Robert Gibbs criticized the "professional left" for criticizing his boss, President Barack Obama, but the comment came back to bite him.

from Tales from the Trail:

Obama settles for half a sub

Can half a super sub really be considered super? And when is half a loaf better than the whole?

These questions came to mind when President Barack Obama visited a New Jersey sandwich shop and showed restraint by ordering half a super sub -- although he did ask for everything on it saying he had heard that "is the way to go." OBAMA/

from Tales from the Trail:

Obama girls get their own presidential lecture on fiscal responsibility

Just because they live in the White House doesn't mean they can't earn a little pocket money.

President Barack Obama says his daughters get an allowance and are nearing an age when they can earn some working capital by babystitting. OBAMA/

from Tales from the Trail:

Rrrrrrring, it’s the President calling…

They talked. 

President Barack Obama called Shirley Sherrod at about 12:35 p.m. and they spoke for 7 minutes. White House spokesman Robert Gibbs says the White House operator unsuccessfully tried to reach her twice last night but was unable to leave a voicemail.

POTUS offered his regrets, said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack had been sincere in his apology yesterday, and hoped that she would see "this misfortune" as an opportunity to continue her hard work on behalf of those in need. 

from Tales from the Trail:

Barack and David practice beer diplomacy

The White House was once again the setting for beer diplomacy.

This time to demonstrate the chumminess of the new British Prime Minister David Cameron and the not-so-new American President Barack Obama and reaffirm that "special relationship" enjoyed by the two allies. (The two leaders are also both left-handed, so plenty in common). BRITAIN-USA/

They discussed the benefits of cold beer versus warm ale and Cameron showed sporting enthusiasm for the "312" ale that Obama introduced him to.

from Tales from the Trail:

Don’t tell anyone, but Pelosi upset her criticism of Gibbs leaked

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made it clear she's upset -- "ticked off" -- that her private criticism of White House press secretary Robert Gibbs leaked out. OBAMA/

That's the word from one of Pelosi's fellow Democrats who attended another closed-door meeting with her on Thursday, two days after her now well-publicized complaints about President Barack Obama's chief spokesman.

from Tales from the Trail:

Obama seeks help, Clinton (Bill) to the rescue?

In the latest twist in the Obama-Clinton family drama, the current president has enlisted the past president to help shore up sagging confidence in his economic leadership and repair his tattered relationship with business.  OBAMA/

Barack Obama has asked Clinton to come to his meeting with business leaders today to discuss job creation and investment. That is a day after he also enlisted the help of long-time Clintonista Jack Lew to be his budget director after he presided over surpluses during Bill's tenure.

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