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Dodd expected to retire

NEW HAVEN, Conn. -- Connecticut Senator Chris Dodd is expected to announce his retirement, the Washington Post reported. Dodd, a Democrat, has come under fire in recent years, most notably for allegations ab...
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Kerry Healey endorses Brown

Former Lt. Governor Kerry Healey, who was thought to be considering a Senate run early on, announced she was endorsing fellow Republican Scott Brown. "Scott Brown knows that you don’t create jobs by making g...
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Lion of the Senate dead at 77

Massachusetts Senator Edward Moore "Ted" Kennedy has lost his battle against brain cancer at his Hyannis Port home at the age of 77, his family announced this morning, just two weeks after the death of his sist...
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2/10: State Secrets

  • The Senate passes the stimulus bill. Now it's on to conference where the two chambers can iron out their differences before voting again next week.
WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama's economic recovery plan has passed the Senate and is on its way to difficult House-Senate negotiations.Just three Republicans helped pass the plan on a 61-37 vote and they're already signaling they'll play hardball to preserve more than $108 billion in spending cuts made last week in Senate dealmaking. Obama wants to restore cuts in funds for school construction jobs and help for cash-starved states. Those cuts are among the major differences between the $819 billion House version of Obama's plan and a Senate bill costing $838 billion. Obama has warned of a deepening economic crisis if Congress fails to act. He wants a bill completed by the weekend.
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SAN FRANCISCO — In a closely watched case involving rendition and torture, a lawyer for the Obama administration seemed to surprise a panel of federal appeals judges on Monday by pressing ahead with an argument for preserving state secrets originally developed by the Bush administration. In the case, Binyam Mohamed, an Ethiopian native, and four other detainees filed suit against a subsidiary of Boeing for arranging flights for the Bush administration’s “extraordinary rendition” program, in which terrorism suspects were secretly taken to other countries, where they say they were tortured. The Bush administration argued that the case should be dismissed because even discussing it in court could threaten national security and relations with other nations.
The NSC will take on all national security matters that are strategic in nature and "of such importance that the president of the United States would care" about them, he said. Action groups from various departments and agencies will be formed around specific issues for as long as it takes to resolve them. "Some of these things will be very short-term. When the problem goes away, the group goes away." Others will be ongoing. "An Afghan strategic review, that's going to take a while," Jones said. "The policy that is generated from that review, and the implementation, is going to take a while."
Many Iranians are tired of isolation but some say Iran needs a hard-liner to win U.S. concessions not a moderate like Khatami, whose reforming efforts were mostly blocked by conservatives. Speaking to reporters after meeting Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani in Madrid on Sunday, Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos said: "They (Iranians) think the American attitude is positive, and they are just waiting for that attitude to manifest itself in some gesture." Some principals will be regulars at the NSC "just by force of issues," he said, and "you can't just designate the whole government as being there." But everyone should be kept aware of "what's going on" and given an opportunity to say, 'Wait a minute, I've got something to say here.' "
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1/27: Muslim world charm offensive

  • As Middle East envoy George Mitchell leaves to try to broker peace between Israel and Hamas, Obama does his first post-inauguration TV interview with Arab channel Al-Arabiya and extends the hand of friendship. The whole video is worth a watch.
Said Feingold: "The controversies surrounding some of the recent gubernatorial appointments to vacant Senate seats make it painfully clear that such appointments are an anachronism that must end. In 1913, the Seventeenth Amendment to the Constitution gave the citizens of this country the power to finally elect their senators. They should have the same power in the case of unexpected mid term vacancies, so that the Senate is as responsive as possible to the will of the people. I plan to introduce a constitutional amendment this week to require special elections when a Senate seat is vacant, as the Constitution mandates for the House, and as my own state of Wisconsin already requires by statute."
The bill is a response to a 2007 Supreme Court ruling that said a person must file a claim of discrimination within 180 days of a company's initial decision to pay a worker less than it pays another worker doing the same job. Under the bill, every new discriminatory paycheck would extend the statute of limitations for another 180 days.
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Obama to leave Senate on Sunday

President-elect Barack Obama will resign his U.S. Senate seat on Sunday to focus on his transition to the White House. "It has been one of the highest honors and privileges of my life to have served the peop...
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Silver lining for Republicans?

Barack Obama's blowout victory over John McCain may come as a disappointment for Republicans, but it certainly comes as no surprise. Joe Trippi, who managed Howard Dean's campaign in 2004 and John Edwards in 2...
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Will McConnell hold on?

The most intrugiuing early results may well be in the Kentucky Senate Race, where Republican Senate Minority leader Mitch McConnell, of Kentucky, may lose a stunner to Bruce Lunsford. McConnell has a "narrow...