You know things are bad when the State Department is better than the White House. “State Dept. Will Not Defend White House Criticism of Israel.”

The U.S. Capitol building stands in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2012. U.S. President Barack Obama will use his State of the Union address tonight to lay out what he calls a "blueprint" for revitalizing the economy, emphasizing a rebirth for U.S. manufacturing, bolstering domestic energy production and training workers. Photographer: Joshua Roberts/Bloomberg The U.S. Capitol  (Joshua Roberts/Bloomberg)

It’s better to ignore whatever she says (it saves time). “I am a pretty fierce critic of the president myself, but let me be among the first to say that Republicans would be insane to follow Ms. Palin’s counsel. Mr. Obama would never be forced from office, the effort would do tremendous damage to the GOP and conservatism, and it would further rend the nation, all on behalf of a campaign whose end result would produce . . .  President Joe Biden?”

Don’t they have a better excuse? “The congressman representing the largest stretch of border with Mexico is defending President Obama’s decision not to visit the area during a trip to Texas. ‘The President’s presence along the border would create an unneeded distraction by diverting law enforcement and other resources at a critical time,’ Rep. Pete Gallego (D-Texas) said in a statement Wednesday.” Somehow that didn’t work for President George W. Bush.

What better way to gain brownie points with a potential president? “There is a new Clinton paid to deliver speeches — Chelsea, the former first daughter — and she is commanding as much as $75,000 per appearance.”

It’s better when your own party doesn’t have to nag you to do something so elementary. “As President Obama fundraises in Texas today, the message from Democratic members of the delegation is if he’s not going to the border now, he needs to go very, very soon. Rep. Henry Cuellar has been among the most vocal in calling for a presidential tour of the border where thousands of undocumented immigrants — mostly minors — from Central America have crossed over and are being held in detention centers. Cuellar called out the president on MSNBC Wednesday morning, assailing Obama for being a mere 500 miles away from the border and not making a visit. But the number of Democratic lawmakers calling for a visit is growing, although many did not want to criticize the president on the record. Privately, several Democrats told BuzzFeed that Obama not making a trip was ‘confusing,’ ‘baffling,’ and ‘a little offensive.'”

He may be better positioned on this issue than just about any Republican. “When President Obama arrives in Dallas Wednesday evening, his first order of business will be to huddle with local leaders to discuss a border crisis that a White House spokesman this week described as an ’emergent situation.’ But one of the leaders invited to that meeting, Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R), says the administration has no excuse for being surprised. In a letter to Obama more than two years ago, Perry raised a red alarm about an influx of unaccompanied children crossing the southern border, citing federal statistics showing that the number of minors had shot up 90 percent.”

Republicans better take advantage of the opportunity with young voters. “Teens had a harder time getting a summer job in June, with teen hiring down 15% from a year earlier. . . . June’s participation rate of 40.5% is just shy of the record low 40.3% participation rate recorded for the month in 2011 and 2010.”