November 30th, 2008
03:03 PM ET
6 months ago

Laura Bush describes post-White House plans

First Lady Laura Bush.
First Lady Laura Bush.

(CNN) - First lady Laura Bush said Sunday she plans to continue working to advance the position of women in Afghanistan after her husband's time in office ends in January.

In an interview with NBC's "Meet the Press," Mrs. Bush also offered her take on the recent U.S. election, her first impressions of President-elect Barack Obama and incoming first lady Michelle Obama, and what she'll miss most.

When President Bush spoke Tuesday at Fort Campbell, he said he will miss most "spending time with men and women who have volunteered to serve the United States of America."

That speech "made me weep," Laura Bush told NBC.

"I'll miss being with the military, too, and that's one of the things about Camp David that we liked so much, and that's going to church at Camp David with the people who are posted there... I'll miss a lot of things. I'll miss all the people that are around us all the time," she said. "From the ushers and the butlers who are there for every president and have been there four or five administrations, to our own staff, of course, that we love to laugh with and talk with and solve problems with. And so I'll miss the people the most."

She said she and her husband plan to spend their weeks in Dallas and weekends at their ranch in Crawford, Texas.

FULL POST

November 30th, 2008
12:02 PM ET
6 months ago

Obama to unveil national security team Monday

,
Sources say President-elect Obama will nominate Sen. Clinton as his secretary of state.
Sources say President-elect Obama will nominate Sen. Clinton as his secretary of state.

(CNN) - President-elect Barack Obama will officially nominate members of his national security team at an event Monday morning, including Sen. Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State, according to two officials.

The Obama transition team announced Sunday that Obama will unveil the full team at a press conference at the Chicago Hilton around 10 a.m. ET.

CNN and CNN.com will carry the event live.

The officials said Obama is also expected to finally confirm that he is keeping Defense Secretary Robert Gates in his current post, and plans to name retired Marine Gen. Jim Jones as his National Security Adviser at the White House.

Watch: Ed Henry discusses the security team rollout

Also, two sources close to the transition said Obama will nominate Susan Rice as United Nations ambassador, Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano as Homeland Security secretary and Eric Holder as Attorney General.

Full Story

November 30th, 2008
10:49 AM ET
6 months ago

Palin back on campaign trail

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin will campaign for Georgia Sen. Saxby Chambliss.
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin will campaign for Georgia Sen. Saxby Chambliss.

(CNN) - Sarah Palin is coming back to the campaign trail.

The Alaska governor and former Republican vice presidential nominee is adding her name to the list of big name surrogates who are making campaign cameos in the last remaining Senate election this year.

Palin teams up with Saxby Chambliss at a fundraiser Sunday night and at four campaign stops across Georgia on Monday, the last full day of campaigning before Tuesday's runoff election.

iReport.com: Share your photos, video from Georgia campaign

Chambliss is the freshman Republican senator from Georgia who is fighting to keep his seat. He's facing Jim Martin - a former state lawmaker in Georgia - in the runoff election.

Chambliss won a plurality of the vote three weeks ago on Election Day, but Georgia state law calls for the winner to grab 50 percent plus one vote. Due to the inclusion of a third party candidate, Chambliss fell just shy of that threshold, forcing a runoff contest.

Palin is the latest high profile surrogate to stump with Chambliss. Sen. John McCain returned to the trail to campaign with Chambliss just nine days after losing the presidential election to Obama.

Two weeks ago, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee - who ran for the Republican presidential nomination before dropping out in March and backing McCain - campaigned with Chambliss. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney also teamed up with Chambliss. Like Huckabee, Romney also ran for the GOP presidential nomination before ending his bid in February and backing McCain.

FULL POST


Filed under: Sarah Palin • Saxby Chambliss
November 30th, 2008
10:48 AM ET
6 months ago

Obama inauguration could take on subdued tone

Inauguration preparations at the Capitol began before the Thanksgiving holiday.
Inauguration preparations at the Capitol began before the Thanksgiving holiday.

(CNN) - Millions of people are expected to go to Washington to celebrate Barack Obama's inauguration on January 20, but with a troubled economy and pocketbook issues on the mind, the president-elect must be careful to set the right tone.

President Bush raised a record $42.8 million dollars for his second inauguration, and according to Public Citizen, more than 90 percent of the donations to that ceremony were from executives or corporations.

But this year, some say throwing a multimillion-dollar party would be unseemly in a time when crash, bailout, and foreclosure fill the economic headlines.

"A lot of it is about tone and making sure that the celebrations that do take place are not over the top, that they don't appear to be insensitive to the pain people have right now," said Ryan Alexander, president of Taxpayers for Common Sense.

The inaugural committee for Obama and Vice President-elect Joe Biden has pledged to make sure the ceremony underscores the incoming administration's "commitment to change business as usual in Washington."

The Presidential Inaugural Committee has limited individual contributions to $50,000. There is no law restricting the size of donations, but in the past, inaugural committees have set contribution limits as high as $250,000.

Full Story

November 29th, 2008
03:11 PM ET
6 months ago

Obama adviser who called Clinton a 'monster' back

 Power resigned from Obama's campaign earlier this year.
Power resigned from Obama's campaign earlier this year.

(CNN) - Samantha Power, the Obama foreign policy adviser who stepped down from her post earlier this year after labeling Sen. Hillary Clinton a "monster," is now working for the president-elect's transition team.

According to the Associated Press, Power is part of a team of foreign policy experts tapped by President-elect Obama to help ease the transition at the State Department - the agency Clinton is expected to head up.

Power is also formally listed as part of the State Department agency review team on the president-elect's official Web site and could directly work with Clinton should she be nominated, as expected, for the Secretary of State job.

Power stepped down from the Obama campaign in March after she called Clinton - then Obama's rival for the Democratic nomination - a "monster" and someone who "is stooping to anything." The comments came in an interview with a Scottish newspaper.

"You just look at her and think, 'Ergh,' " Power also told The Scotsman then. "The amount of deceit she has put forward is really unattractive."

Power quickly issued an apology for the comments, but resigned her post days later.

"I made inexcusable remarks that are at marked variance from my oft-stated admiration for Senator Clinton," Power said in her resignation statement.

The Obama transition team did not comment on Power's new role.

Power is currently a professor at Harvard University and was awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 2003 for her book, A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide. In 2004, Time Magazine labeled her one of America's top 100 scientists and thinkers.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
November 29th, 2008
01:20 PM ET
6 months ago

Bush pledges full U.S. support to India

 Bush returned to the White House Saturday.
Bush returned to the White House Saturday.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Bush pledged Saturday the full support of the United States as India investigates the attacks in Mumbai that killed at east 183 people.

"The killers that struck this week are brutal and violent," he said. "Terror will not have the final word."

Bush, speaking after returning from Camp David, said his administration has been monitoring the situation closely.

"We're working to ensure that American citizens in India are safe," he said.

He said President-elect Barack Obama has been informed of developments for the attacks, which Bush called "an assault on human dignity."

"The people of India are strong. They built a vibrant, multiethnic democracy that can withstand this trial," Bush said.


Filed under: President Bush
November 29th, 2008
09:55 AM ET
6 months ago

Obama calls Indian prime minister

Obama called India Prime Minister Singh Friday night.
Obama called India Prime Minister Singh Friday night.

(CNN) - President-elect Barack Obama spoke with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh late Friday night, the president-elect's transition team said.

Obama called Singh to express condolences for the victims of the recent terrorist attacks there. He also made clear there is only one U.S. president at a time, the transition team said.

Earlier Friday evening, Obama released a statement on the attacks in India.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
November 29th, 2008
09:30 AM ET
6 months ago

Bush to make statement on terror attacks

(CNN) - President Bush will make a brief statement on the attacks in India when he returns to Washington later Saturday, the White House has announced.

White House spokeswoman Dana Perino also said the president held a secure video-teleconference Saturday morning regarding the terror attacks with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and members of his national security team.

U.S. Ambassador to India David Mulford and Consul General Paul Folmsbee also participated in the call.


Filed under: President Bush
November 28th, 2008
06:10 PM ET
6 months ago

Bush reflects on legacy: 'I'm leaving with the same set of values'

ALT TEXT

President Bush says he wants to be remembered as a president who stuck to his values. (GETTY IMAGES)

(CNN) - Reflecting on his eight-year presidency, President Bush said above all he would like to be remembered as a commander-in-chief who remained faithful to his values and "did not sell his soul in order to accommodate the political process."

In an interview with his younger sister, Doro Bush Koch, the president said he was forced to make several difficult choices during his tenure in the White House, but added "I darn sure wasn't going to sacrifice [my] values."

Excerpts of the interview, released by The White House [PDF]

"I came to Washington with a set of values, and I'm leaving with the same set of values," Bush told Koch in an interview taped earlier this month that aired on National Public Radio Thursday.

Bush also indicated he hopes his legacy is evaluated on success in the War in Iraq, America's efforts to combat AIDS, and the passage of Medicare legislation in 2003.

"I'd like to be a President (known) as somebody who liberated 50 million people and helped achieve peace; that focused on individuals rather than process; that rallied people to serve their neighbor; that led an effort to help relieve HIV/AIDS and malaria on places like the continent of Africa; that helped elderly people get prescription drugs and Medicare as a part of the basic package; that came to Washington, D.C., with a set of political statements and worked as hard as I possibly could to do what I told the American people I would do," Bush said.

In the same wide-ranging interview, Bush said it was a "fabulous experience to be president," but said he would not miss being in the daily spotlight.

"This is a job which, you know, obviously had a lot of stress to it; it has a lot of pressure," he said.

The interview was conducted for StoryCorps, a national oral history initiative.


Filed under: President Bush
November 28th, 2008
06:01 PM ET
6 months ago

Obama sends condolences to terror victims

(CNN) - President-elect Barack Obama issued the following statement Friday evening regarding news American citizens are among those who have lost their lives during the attacks in India:

"Michelle and I send our deepest condolences to the loved ones of the American citizens who lost their lives in the outrageous terrorist attacks in Mumbai. Our thoughts and prayers are with them, and with all who have been touched by this terrible tragedy," Obama said in the statement.

"These terrorists who targeted innocent civilians will not defeat India's great democracy, nor shake the will of a global coalition to defeat them. The United States must stand with India and all nations and people who are committed to destroying terrorist networks, and defeating their hate-filled ideology," he also said.

"There is one president at a time. I will continue to closely monitor the situation on the ground in Mumbai, and am grateful for the cooperation of the Bush Administration in keeping me and my staff updated. We fully support the Bush Administration's efforts to protect American citizens and assist the government of India during this tragic time."


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
« older posts