TPMDC Morning Roundup

Obama Administration To Issue New Policy In Favor Of State Medical Marijuana Laws
The Obama administration is set to release new guidelines today on medical marijuana, which will not pursue marijuana smokers or their suppliers whose activities are consistent with state laws on medicinal marijuana. The government will still pursue those who are exceeding state limits, or are using the practice of medical marijuana as a cover for other illegal activities.

Obama’s Day Ahead
President Obama will meet at 10:30 a.m. ET with the National Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge winners. He will meet with senior advisers at 3:15 p.m. ET, and with Sen. Kent Conrad (D-ND) at 4 p.m. ET.Biden’s Day Ahead
Vice President Biden held a breakfast meeting at 8 a.m. ET with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. At 10 a.m. ET, Biden will hold a Middle Class Task Force event, at which he will release the Recovery through Retrofit Report, focused on green job opportunities. In the afternoon, he will travel to Edison, New Jersey, for a 1 p.m. ET, with Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine. He will then travel to Pittsburg for an event with Sen. Arlen Specter (D-PA), and at 6:30 p.m. ET will deliver the keynote remarks at the Allegheny County Democratic Committee’s annual Kennedy Lawrence Dinner. He will return to Washington in the evening.

White House Claims 250,000 Teaching Jobs Aided By Stimulus
The White House is claiming that the stimulus program has created or saved 250,000 teaching and education jobs this year, by helping states to fill budget gaps that would have otherwise cost teachers their jobs.

Energy Industry Battling Itself Over Climate Bill
The New York Times reports that the debate over the climate change bill has led different parts of the energy sector to now fight each other: “Producers of natural gas are battling their erstwhile allies, the oil companies. Electrical utilities are fighting among themselves over the use of coal versus wind power or other renewable energy. Coal companies are battling natural gas firms over which should be used to produce electricity. And the renewable power industry is elbowing for advantage against all of them.”

Harkin To Use Budget Rules On Student Loan Bill
Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA), as chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, is set to use budget reconciliation rules to fast-track legislation cutting off federal subsidies to private student loan companies. “We’ve already been instructed by the Budget Committee to do this, so we’re going to do it,” said Harkin.

GOP Whip Team Not Paying Party Dues
Roll Call reports that more than half of the 60-member House Republican whip team have not yet contributed to the “Young Guns” fundraising program, established by House GOP Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA) and his deputy Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), to train and reward GOP challengers: “One GOP aide said a lack of financial enthusiasm for the program was because Cantor and McCarthy have not pushed Members to donate money yet. The aide said that when they do, the donations will roll in quickly.”