Senator Chris Dodd, D-Connecticut
(CNN)–Looking to create a generation of Americans who serve their country, Democratic presidential candidate Christopher Dodd says his administration would make such service a priority.
"Endowed as we are with so many gifts, is it too much to ask that we each give something back to this remarkable place?" Dodd, a U.S. senator from Connecticut, made the comments Saturday at Nashua City Hall, in Nashua, New Hampshire. He said it was the same location President Kennedy stood for the first time as a Democratic candidate for president in 1960.
"As president, I will ask Americans to share in the responsibility of bringing our nation together again, and I will provide the ways for all Americans to participate," he said. "Never again will this country have to wait for a national crisis to bring us together with national purpose," Dodd said in reference to the September 11th attacks and Hurricane Katrina.
The "American Community Initiative" would make a mandatory service requirement for high school students. Such service gives every student the opportunity to acquire new skills while meeting the needs of the community, Dodd said. "If the chat rooms and online communities of today show us anything, it is that young people yearn for shared experiences." Dodd said. He also proposed increasing the size of AmeriCorps, the national service program, to one million participants.
Dodd, who served in the Peace Corps, said he would double the size of the organization by 2011. In addition, he proposed increasing the size of AmeriCorps, the national service program, to one million participants by the end of his presidency.
He also proposed creating a Rapid Response Corps made up of former service volunteers and retired military personnel to respond to natural disasters and other emergencies. The program would also include a Senior Heroes program that would encourage seniors to volunteer in the nation's schools.
Dodd is also expected to address his plan in Des Moines, Iowa on Tuesday.
–CNN Political Desk Editor Jamie Crawford
WASHINGTON (CNN) - A new Norwegian study supports the notion that first-born and only children generally have higher IQ's. So it made us wonder, where do the presidential candidates stand in their respective families' pecking orders?
Sen. Joe Biden, D-Delaware, Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-New York, Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, and Gov. Bill Richardson, D-New Mexico, are the oldest children in their families.
Former Gov. Jim Gilmore, R-Virginia, and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani are both only children.
Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Connecticut, former Sen. Mike Gravel, D-Alaska, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kansas, Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-California, Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, and former Gov. Tommy Thompson, R-Wisconsin, are all middle children.
The remaining candidates are the babies in their families: former Gov. Mike Huckabee, R-Arkansas, former Gov. Mitt Romney, R-Massachusetts, and Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colorado.
President Bush pushed for immigration-reform in his weekly radio address
(CNN) - President Bush pushed again Saturday for immigration-reform legislation and the "enforcement tools" it includes.
The bill in the Senate would provide $4.4 billion in immediate funding for security measures such as more fencing, infrared cameras and other security technology as well as an advanced employee-verification system.
"These enforcement measures are a good start," said the president. "Yet even with all these steps, we cannot fully secure the border unless we take pressure off the border."
In a move he assures is "not amnesty," immigrants currently living here illegally would incur penalties before being allowed to reapply for a green card. In addition,the application process for employment would be stricter for those who engage in activities like gang violence and crossing the border illegally.
Bush acknowledged that the American people may have concerns about immigration, but said if the Senate supports his provisions for immigration reform, the bill would " build an immigration system worthy of our great nation."
(CNN) - Congressman Chet Edwards of Texas lauded the veteran's health care bill Saturday during the weekly Democratic radio address, explaining that a military that offers good health benefits will attract more recruits.
The "unprecedented" $6 billion increase in funding for 5.8 million veterans, passed by the House last week, "means more qualified doctors and nurses to improve medical services" as well as more specialized care for displaced veterans and those whose lives are affected by a delay in earned benefits, Edwards said.
The bill also supports active duty troops, members of the National Guard and Reserves by providing better military housing, support and training facilities.
He said President Bush threatened to veto the bill in the past and has seemed more interested in "tax cuts for the wealthiest" than health care reform.
"It is about our nation's future security," said Edwards. "Because we cannot attract the best and brightest to serve in tomorrow's military if we break faith with those who served yesterday."
Senator Pat Roberts, R-Kansas
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., fractured his wrist Friday in a two-car accident near his home in Alexandria, Va., a spokeswoman for the senator said.
Spokeswoman Sarah Little said that Roberts will be back at work Monday with a small cast on his wrist. The driver of the second car required no medical attention, she said, and there were no citations issued by police.
–CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett