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Obama agenda: The Iran dilemma

The New York Times: “The escalating American confrontation with Iran poses a major new political threat to President Obama as he heads into his campaign for re-election, presenting him with choices that could harm either the economic recovery or his image as a firm leader. Sanctions against Iran’s oil exports that the president signed into law on New Year’s Eve started a fateful clock ticking. In late June, when the campaign is in full swing, Mr. Obama will have to decide whether to take action against countries, including some staunch allies, if they continue to buy Iranian oil through its central bank.”

Obama will once against deliver his acceptance speech outside, the Charlotte Observer reports: “Convention officials are expected to announce the venue this morning at a news conference at the stadium. … The move to the Carolina Panthers' 74,000-seat stadium would replicate the 2008 convention, where Obama accepted the nomination at a packed Invesco Field in Denver.” The speech would be open “to the public,” and “is designed to help mobilize voters in North Carolina, a key swing state. Two Democratic sources, who declined to be named because of the sensitivity of the information, said the stadium move is just one change that will be announced this morning.”

“It’s Obama-time at the Apollo,” the New York Post writes. “Obama will be serenaded by Al Green and India.Arie, along with Broadway star Lin-Manuel Miranda, during a fund-raising concert Thursday night at the landmark Harlem theater. Tickets run from $100 to $5,000. It’s the second time Obama has held a campaign event at the Apollo. The previous event took place on Nov. 29, 2007, as he battled Hillary Rodham Clinton for the Democratic nomination. Film director Spike Lee will host a separate fund-raiser for Obama’s re-election bid, at his Upper East Side brownstone. Tickets are $38,500 per person. A third fund-raising event, hosted by leaders in the Jewish community, will be held at Daniel restaurant.”