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Politics Northwest

The Seattle Times political team explores national, state and local politics.

February 11, 2013 at 6:00 AM

Monday politics: State of the Union; vote due on Violence Against Women Act; gun control

Good Morning.

The State of the Union address. President Obama will spend part of the week practicing his remarks, which, political junkies surely know, will be delivered Tuesday evening. These speeches often have someone referring to them as the most important of  — what? — the year, a term, a presidency.  Here’s one bit of analysis from The Washington Post that calls Tuesday’s oratory the most important state of the union of Obama’s two terms, because he has an ambitious legislative agenda on everything from gun control legislation to immigration reform.

The Sunday New York Times said the speech will focus on boosting the economic prosperity of the middle class, while mentioning a few initiatives in education, infrastructure, clean energy and manufacturing.

The official Republican response to the president will come from U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, and the less official tea party response will come from U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky.

U.S. Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell are busy on the Violence Against Women Act.  Murray and Cantwell both are involved in the debate over reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act, and both are especially vocal about the law as it relates to Native Americans. The matter comes up for a vote Monday.  Murray spoke last week on the Senate floor. The first few minutes of the video below give a flavor of what Cantwell has to say.

All this talk of gun control. In the ongoing back and forth on gun control, President Obama recently said, tweeted, to be more precise, that as many as 40 percent of guns are sold by private unlicensed sellers — without background checks. Obama has been challenged for saying that, but here is a pretty interesting take on this angle of the discussion.

PolitiFact says the claim is based on old data from the 1990s and rates it half true

Dennis Kucinich Road Tour.Former Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich is heading out on a speaking tour, discussing his views of his time in Congress and other topics. And, guess what, he’s not coming to the Northwest. That is so last year. Kucinich is going to Santa Barbara and Oakland, Calif., and Madison, Wis.

Tuesday is the last day to mail ballots in the Seattle school levy election. There are two levies, one operating, one capital. King County Elections will announce the first batch of results around 8:15 p.m.Tuesday.

Our relatively new Facebook page is up and running, looking for likes and friends.

0 Comments | More in homepage, Politics Northwest, U.S. Senate | Topics: 40 percent without background checks, gun control, Maria Cantwell

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