The First Lady and Dr. Biden Speak to the National Governors Association.


First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden speak to governors about the importance of offering more assistance for military spouses seeking to transfer their professional licenses or certifications when they move from state to state. February 25, 2013.

Working Together to Reignite America’s Economic Engine


In a meeting with governors from across the country today at the White House, President Obama stressed the need for bipartisan cooperation, and pressed the leaders in attendance to work together with their partners in Washington to put the focus back on the next generation, rather than the next election.

Read more about President Obama’s remarks.

President Barack Obama delivers remarks and participates in a Q&A during a meeting with the National Governors Association (NGA) in the State Dining Room of the White House, Feb. 25, 2013 (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama delivers remarks and participates in a Q&A during a meeting with the National Governors Association (NGA) in the State Dining Room of the White House, Feb. 25, 2013 (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

In Case You Missed It

Here are some of the top stories from the White House blog:

First Lady Michelle Obama Challenges Governors of all 50 States to Ease Service Members Transition to Civilian Work Force Mrs. Obama and Dr. Jill Biden call on state leaders to streamline credentialing and licensing for service members, veterans and their spouses.

Weekly Address: Congress Must Act Now to Stop the Sequester President Obama urges Congress to stop the sequester — the harmful automatic cuts that threaten thousands of jobs and affect our national security from taking effect on March 1.

What Is the Sequester? Have questions about what the sequester is, and why American families and our national economy face the threat of harmful budget cuts? Check out this explainer for some background.

Trayvon …


 we’ll mourn the death of Trayvon Martin.Trayvon Martin video stillPlease share this video and honor Trayvon’s memory by building a strong movement for justice.Take Action

One year ago, George Zimmerman shot and killed 17 year-old Trayvon Martin because he thought the young man looked suspicious.1 And one year later, what happened that night in Sanford, Florida still outrages us.

In a culture that inundates us with images of Black men as violent2 — not to be trusted, inherently criminal — we are continually reminded that something as simple as walking home from the corner store can draw unwanted attention that puts our very lives in danger. Black Americans face racial animosity every day, and far too often that animosity turns violent.

Tomorrow as we mourn, we must also acknowledge that if it weren’t for the hundreds of thousands of you who spoke up to demand basic dignity and justice, Trayvon Martin’s case would have been ignored — and George Zimmerman would have gone free. As our membership grows in number, so does our power to fight injustice. Please inspire others to join the fight by sharing this video with your friends and family.

The movement that came together to demand justice for Trayvon demonstrates the power of our collective voice. It’s thanks to the pressure from more than 200,000 ColorOfChange members, the work of our allies and tireless advocacy of Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin that George Zimmerman will answer in a court of law for killing Trayvon Martin.3

ColorOfChange fights racial injustice and the danger it presents to our basic safety. We organize campaigns against racially-motivated police practices like the NYPD‘s Stop and Frisk.4 And we’re working to stop the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), which pushed the “Shoot First” laws Zimmerman is using to claim his actions were justified.5

Our power comes from you, our members — courageous individuals from all walks of life who make bold demands and achieve important social change. Watch our powerful video about the campaign to demand justice for Trayvon Martin. Pledge to grow the movement to change our culture’s treatment of Black youth by sharing this video with your friends and family. Encourage them to join the fight.

Thanks and Peace,

–Rashad, Matt, Arisha, Johnny, Lyla, Kim and the rest of the ColorOfChange.org team    February 26th, 2013

Help support our work. ColorOfChange.org is powered by YOU—your energy and dollars. We take no money from lobbyists or large corporations that don’t share our values, and our tiny staff ensures your contributions go a long way.

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter References

1. “Young, black and ‘suspicious’,” Salon, 03-20-12 http://act.colorofchange.org/go/2282?t=9&akid=2828.1174326.taryav

2. “Opportunity for Black Men and Boys: Public Opinion, Media Depictions, and Media Consumption,” Opportunity Agenda, 11-30-11 http://act.colorofchange.org/go/2280?t=11&akid=2828.1174326.taryav

3. “Trayvon Martin: The Latest, Week 33,” The Root, 10-18-12 http://act.colorofchange.org/go/2284?t=13&akid=2828.1174326.taryav

4. “Hundreds Rally at City Hall to End Stop and Frisk,” ColorOfChange.org blog, 10-01-12 http://act.colorofchange.org/go/2287?t=15&akid=2828.1174326.taryav

5. “Stand Against ‘Shoot First’ Laws,” ColorOfChange.org, 11-15-12 http://act.colorofchange.org/go/2288?t=17&akid=2828.1174326.taryav

U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) … recalls


02/25/2013 10:17 AM EST
Olaax Corp announced today that it is conducting a voluntary nationwide recall of the company’s dietary supplement sold under the brand name MAXILOSS WEIGHT ADVANCED softgels to the user level because they contain undeclared Sibutramine. Olaax Corp. is conducting a voluntary recall after being notified by the US FDA that testing found the MAXILOSS WEIGHT ADVANCED product, to contain Sibutramine
02/23/2013 10:30 PM EST
Affymax, Inc. (Nasdaq: AFFY) and Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited (Takeda) today have decided to voluntarily recall all lots of OMONTYS® (peginesatide) Injection to the user level as a result of new postmarketing reports regarding serious hypersensitivity reactions, including anaphylaxis, which can be life-threatening or fatal. The companies have been working actively with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) which has indicated its agreement with this decision.

King Arthur Flour Voluntarily Recalls Flour

02/22/2013 06:06 PM EST

February 22, 2013 – Norwich, Vt. – King Arthur Flour has initiated a voluntary recall of a limited number of its bags of flour due to the possible presence of small (7-9 mm) blue polyurethane balls that are used in the sifting process. The balls have a smooth surface and no sharp edges and are made from food grade material.

02/23/2013 09:22 AM EST
Hy-Vee, Inc. today issued a voluntary recall of certain bags of Hy-Vee dog food due to elevated levels of a chemical contaminant commonly found in corn. Routine random tests conducted by the Iowa Department of Agriculture indicated higher-than-normal levels of aflatoxin in some samples of Hy-Vee dog food produced at a Kansas City plant operated by Pro-Pet, LLC.
02/23/2013 01:22 PM EST
Bruce Foods Corporation of New Iberia, LA is recalling mislabeled cans of 10 oz Food Club Red Enchilada Sauce with code GES 462449, Best Before Date: 12/3/2016 that could contain Green Enchilada Sauce instead of Red Enchilada Sauce. Only the Food Club Green Enchilada contains wheat and soy.
02/22/2013 10:21 PM EST
Herbalife International of America announced the voluntary recall of certain lots of its niche Instant Healthy Meal Nutritional Shake Mix packets because the label identifies the product as dairy-free, when it may in fact contain trace amounts of milk proteins. Individuals with severe allergies to milk run the risk of serious or life-
02/22/2013 08:30 PM EST
Dakota Specialty Milling has initiated a voluntary recall of a limited number of its specialty flours and grain blends in cooperation with the Food and Drug Administration due to the possible presence of fragments of thin metal wire from a defective screen on one of its manufacturing lines at a milling facility. This recall was initiated as a precaution to ensure consumer product safety.

Grand Theft Election II: Keystone State Stories


By ThinkProgress War Room

GOP Plan to the Steal the White House is Back

Earlier this year, Republicans in several swing states unveiled sore loser plans to allocate their electoral college votes by congressional district or in some other proportional manner rather than the current winner-take-all system in place in 48 states. This would result in votes that would likely go to the Democratic nominee being pushed over into the GOP column. Tellingly, the GOP is not proposing to split the electoral votes of red states.

Had such a plan been in place in every swing state last year, Mitt Romney would most likely be president right now despite having lost the popular vote by nearly 5 MILLION votes.

Fortunately, massive outcry quickly killed this plan in Virginia, Florida, and other states where it reared its head.

Unfortunately, this GOP plan to steal the White House is now back in two key swing states:

  • Pennsylvania: 13 GOP state senators, including the senate majority leader, have formally introduced their electoral college rigging bill. Republicans need a total of 26 votes to pass the bill. They currently control the chamber and hold 27 seats total. As they also control the state house in Pennsylvania, the GOP could theoretically ram the bill through in as little as 4 days as soon as they have the votes to pass it.Pennsylvania has been at the forefront of recent efforts to rig the electoral college, with Republicans from Gov. Tom Corbett on down first considering this scheme way back in 2011.
  • Michigan: On Saturday, Republicans gathered for their state convention voted overwhelmingly (1370-132) to back a scheme to divide their state’s electoral votes by congressional district. For his part, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder (R) has opposed the scheme, saying it’s not the “appropriate time” to consider it. This, however, is cold comfort, as Snyder once said the exact same thing about an anti-union bill that he later signed after it was rammed through the legislature with little debate.

BOTTOM LINE: If the GOP wants to win elections the old fashioned way — by winning more votes — then they should change their unpopular policies instead of trying to change the rules in the middle of the game.

Evening Brief: Important Stories That You Might’ve Missed

The sequester cuts will be painful for the home states of the Congressional GOP leadership.

The virtues of a financial transactions tax.

Shock election result leaves Italy in gridlock.

The GOP’s war on Planned Parenthood marches on.

The sequester will harm border security and our ability to stop a terrorist attack.

The Supreme Court made a good decision on campaign finance.

GOP senator with an “A” rating from the NRA is open to background checks.

POLL: voters prefer military spending cuts to reduce the deficit.

Why Seth MacFarlane and The Onion’s jokes about Quvenzhané Wallis are so gross.