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February 4, 2013
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National Pulse 
  • Obama takes to the road, leaves Dems at home
    Read full story  
    President Barack Obama is traveling the country to build public support for his second-term agenda -- an outside-the-Beltway strategy that congressional Democrats say is symptomatic of Obama's stand-offish approach to elected lawmakers. That reluctance to engage with top Democrats will make it harder for Obama to achieve the legislative successes he needs to enact real changes, insiders warn. "It's really important to mix it up individually with members of Congress. Everybody doesn't have horns," notes Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif. Politico (Washington, D.C.) (2/4) , Los Angeles Times (tiered subscription model) (2/4) , RealClearPolitics (2/4)

Reader Polls 
  • This week's poll: Haggling over Hagel
    On paper, President Barack Obama's nomination of former Sen. Chuck Hagel as Defense secretary looked like a safe choice. Hagel, a Republican, was expected to win support from his party, and senators traditionally give their present and former colleagues a speedy review and confirmation. Not so, as last week's heated exchanges before the Senate Armed Services Committee showed. This week's question: Is Chuck Hagel the right choice for secretary of Defense? If you care to share your thoughts on the nomination, you can send them to us using this link. Choose "Content Feedback" as the category.
Neutral/no opinion
None of the above/other

Agenda Items 
  • Bipartisan House group plans immigration push
    Read full story  
    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says he's confident that immigration reforms will pass in the Senate, and the White House is pushing for quick action -- but getting legislation through the House could be tricky. A bipartisan group of representatives is drafting legislation in the lower chamber, but passing a bill will mean convincing House GOP leaders to expend political capital winning over rank-and-file Republicans. "This is going to be a heavy lift, a very heavy lift," says Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Fla. Reuters (2/3) , The Hill (2/4) , The Washington Post/Post Politics blog (2/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

Data Points 
  • How will the changing demographics of the U.S. affect your business?
    Learn more about how demographics will affect your business:  
    Click on image to access interactive map.
    The ever-evolving demographics of the U.S. got a lot of attention during the 2012 election cycle, but more and more businesses are starting to realize demographics play an even larger role in the everyday aspects of numerous industries. This post uses detailed interactive maps to tell the story of U.S. demographics and offers up examples of how those demographics will shape certain sectors of the economy. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Finance (2/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

The Conversation 
Daily Chuckle 
  • Photo finish? Not for "skeetgate"
    The White House released a photo last week of the president shooting clay pigeons -- but that wasn't enough to satisfy the skeet truthers. Doubters are questioning the photo's veracity, arguing that the president's shotgun was being held at the wrong angle; that the smoke from his gun "looks funny"; and that he was wearing the wrong pants. New York magazine (2/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Hot Topics 

Top five news stories selected by SmartBrief on Business & Politics readers in the past week.

  • Results based on number of times each story was clicked by readers.
I am proud to be an American. Because an American can eat anything on the face of this earth as long as he has two pieces of bread."
--Bill Cosby, actor and comedian
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