WASHINGTON (CNN) - John Edwards took the stage at Indiana University on Tuesday night for a discussion on the 2008 presidential election, but members of the audience may have had something else on their minds entirely.
After all, this is the former North Carolina senator's first public appearance since his admission of an extramarital affair sent shockwaves through the political world more than three months ago.
The revelation, confirming a months-long investigation by the National Enquirer, was a political bombshell for the former candidate, who espoused moral values during his White House bid and whose wife is fighting a public battle with breast cancer.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - A national poll released Tuesday suggests that for most African-Americans, the election of Barack Obama as president was a dream come true that they didn't think they would see in their lifetimes.
That's how 80 percent of African-Americans questioned in the CNN/Opinion Research Corp. survey responded; 20 percent disagreed. Among white Americans, only 28 percent called Obama's victory in the race for the White House a dream come true, with the vast majority, 70 percent, saying it was not.
The poll also suggests a racial divide among people who thought a black candidate would be elected president in their lifetimes, with 59 percent of white respondents saying yes, but only 29 percent of black respondents agreeing.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - During her White House visit Monday, Michelle Obama learned about a key staffer who will play a critical part in the Obama family’s transition - to dog owners.
Mrs. Obama learned about Dale Haney, now the superintendent of the White House grounds, who has taken care of every presidential pet since 1976, according to Anita McBride, Chief of Staff to First Lady Laura Bush.
In an interview with CNN, McBride said Haney “will be a terrific caretaker of the new puppy,” adding that whatever presidential pooch the Obamas choose “will have the best playground in America, that’s for sure.”
McBride said during Mrs. Obama’s visit, the White House’s Chief Usher, Admiral Stephen Rochon, also raised the possibility of installing a swing-set on the White House grounds for the Obamas’ daughters, 10-year-old Malia and 7-year-old Sasha.
(CNN) - As his presidency nears its end, a reflective President Bush suggested Tuesday he regrets some of his more blunt statements on the war on terror over the last eight years.
"I regret saying some things I shouldn't have said," Bush told CNN's Heidi Collins Twhen asked to reflect on his regrets over his two terms as president. "Like 'Dead or Alive' and 'Bring 'em on.' My wife reminded me that, hey, as president of the United States be careful what you say."
The interview, aboard the U.S.S. Intrepid in New York City, came after the president addressed a Veterans Day Ceremony.
Shortly after the attacks of September 11, the president said of Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden: "I want justice. There's an old poster out West that said, 'Wanted, dead or alive.' " Bush was also criticized in 2003 for his answer addressing insurgents in Iraq.
"There are some who feel like that the conditions are such that they can attack us there. My answer is bring them on," he said then.
The president said he wishes he had not spoken in front of a "Mission Accomplished" banner he declared an end to major combat operations in Iraq on May 1, 2003. The now-infamous moment occurred aboard the aircraft carrier U.S.S. Abraham Lincoln only a month after U.S. troops in Iraq were deployed.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - It was one of John McCain's closing arguments: "We're getting a glimpse of what one-party rule would look like under Obama, Pelosi, and Reid. Apparently it starts with lowering our defenses and raising our taxes," the Republican presidential nominee said repeatedly on the campaign trail in the final weeks leading up to Election Day.
But a new national poll suggests why a majority of voters didn't seem to buy that argument, as Barack Obama beat McCain in the presidential election and the Democrats made major gains in both the House, under Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and the Senate, under Majority Leader Harry Reid.
In the CNN/Opinion Research Corp. survey released Tuesday, 59 percent of those questioned said Democratic control of both the executive and legislative branches will be good for the country, compared with 38 percent saying such one-party control will be bad.
"That much good will from the public opens a window of opportunity for the Democrats," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "But the public expects results, and may not listen to excuses for very long if a Democratic Congress and a Democratic White House can't get their act together in time."
The poll also indicates that the public has a positive view of the Democratic Party, with 62 percent saying they have a favorable opinion and 31 percent an unfavorable opinion of the party. For the Republicans, a majority, 54 percent, said they have an unfavorable view of the GOP while 38 percent hold a positive view.
When’s the last time a losing vice presidential candidate was still in the news a week after the election? Nobody seems interested in interviewing Joe Biden, or for that matter, John McCain. But we just don’t seem to be able to get enough of Sarah Palin.
The news media are scrambling to get her thoughts on everything…the campaign, the charges from within the McCain camp that she is a “whack job” and a “rogue,” the $150,000 wardrobe, the travel expenses for her family that were charged to taxpayers of the state of Alaska. It’s obviously something besides her keen and subtle grasp of the complexities of being president of the United States.
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NEW YORK (CNN) - Both the White House and a senior aide to President-elect Obama on Tuesday emphatically denied there had been any attempt on the part of President Bush - while meeting with Obama on Monday - to link a federal bailout of the struggling auto industry or a second stimulus package to passage of a Colombia free trade deal.
Those two financial packages are favored by many Democrats, including Obama, while the free trade deal remains a top priority for the outgoing administration.
(CNN) - At their private Oval Office meeting on Monday, President-elect Barack Obama urged President Bush to support billions of dollars in aid for the struggling auto industry during the upcoming lame-duck session of Congress, according to three officials briefed on the meeting.
The officials said Bush privately expressed skepticism about taxpayer money for automakers on the heels of a string of government bailouts for other industries, and the president also urged Obama to help push through a free trade pact with Colombia – a key legacy item for the outgoing administration that is facing stiff resistance from Democrats on Capitol Hill.
But a senior Bush administration official seemed to downplay suggestions that Bush was offering a quid pro quo by saying the White House still believes the trade deal “deserves to pass on its own merits” without being linked to anything else.
The officials familiar with the meeting said Obama made the case that dramatic action needs to be taken this year – rather than after he is sworn into office – because the Big Three U.S. automakers are bleeding cash at an alarming rate.
One of the officials noted that about one in ten jobs in America are tied to the auto industry, and if one of the companies goes bankrupt it could have a massive spillover effect into the credit industry and other sectors. “The numbers are so staggering,” said the official. “It’s a huge piece of the financial fabric of the country.”
The senior Bush administration official said the White House is “open to ideas from Congress to accelerate funds they’ve already appropriated” to help the auto industry.
But the administration official said support would come “as long as funding will continue to go to viable firms and with strong taxpayer protections” linked to the auto industry aid.
An official in the auto industry told CNN that bringing the Colombian pact into the negotiations could be a poison pill that prevents passage of an auto industry package. But a senior Democratic aide suggested Congress may be willing to call Bush’s bluff and try to pass an auto industry aid package without the trade deal.
The senior aide said Democrats do not believe “this president wants to add the demise of GM to his legacy list.”
WASHINGTON (CNN) - President-elect Barack Obama could reverse some of President Bush's most controversial executive orders, including restrictions on embryonic stem cell research, shortly after taking office in January.
Two other executive orders from Bush - one dealing with a so-called "gag" order on international aid organizations regarding abortion, the other with oil and gas drilling on federal lands - also are receiving increased scrutiny.
Obama's transition team is reviewing hundreds of Bush's executive orders, according to John Podesta, Obama's transition co-chair.
New presidents often use executive orders to put their stamp on Washington quickly. Unlike laws, which require months to complete and the consent of Congress, presidents can use their executive authority to order federal agencies to implement current policies.
"Much of what a president does, he really has to do with the Congress - for example, budgeting, legislation on policy - but executive actions are ones where the president can act alone," said Martha Kumar of the White House Transition Project, a nonpartisan group established to help new presidential administrations.
(CNN) – Barack Obama won’t publicly weigh in on whether or not Sen. Joe Lieberman should keep his position as chairman of the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, the president-elect's transition office said.
According to Obama spokeswoman Stephanie Cutter, the president-elect doesn't “hold any grudges” against Lieberman and thinks the Connecticut lawmaker should remain a part of the Democratic caucus.
"We aren't going to referee decisions about who should or should not be a committee chair,” Cutter said. “President-elect Obama looks forward to working with anyone to move the country forward. We'd be happy to have Sen. Lieberman caucus with the Democrats. We don't hold any grudges."
Sources told CNN Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told Lieberman last week that he's considering revoking Lieberman's chairmanship on the powerful Homeland Security committee and instead giving him a chairmanship on another, less important, committee. Lieberman reportedly called that proposal "not acceptable."
The full Democratic caucus will likely vote on this issue when it reconvenes next Tuesday, a senior Democratic aide told CNN’s Dana Bash.
Lieberman, an independent, typically votes with the Democrats on a majority of issues, but was a fixture on the campaign trail for John McCain. Lieberman angered Democrats by attacking Obama throughout the campaign, most visibly in a primetime speech during the Republican National Convention when he called Obama inexperienced and said “eloquence is no substitute for a record.”