WASHINGTON (CNN) - What's the significance of Obama sending Rahm Emanuel to meet with Republican leaders of Congress?
It's one more piece of evidence that President-elect Obama intends to pursue a new kind of politics.
President-elect Obama reaches out to his former rival Hillary Clinton to be his secretary of state.
He meets with John McCain to discuss issues they agree on. Obama described that meeting between his former opponent as "a good conversation about how we can do some work together to fix up the country."
(CNN) – Cross one name off the short list of possible contenders to be the next commerce secretary in the incoming administration. Chicago businesswoman Penny Pritzker, who headed the unprecedented fundraising operation of President-elect Barack Obama’s campaign, told CNN Thursday she is not in the running for the key post.
Here’s CNN’s list of possible contenders to head Obama’s Commerce Department:
GOV. KATHLEEN SEBELIUS: The Kansas Democrat was a loyal backer and surrogate for Obama during the general election campaign.
AUSTAN GOOLSBEE: The University of Chicago economics professor was an economic adviser to the Obama’s presidential campaign.
LEON PANETTA: The Democratic power player was Bill Clinton’s chief of staff from 1993 to 1997.
RICHARD PARSONS: The former CEO of Time Warner, CNN’s parent company, is currently Chairman of Time Warner’s Board of Directors.
DR. LAURA TYSON: The Clinton administration veteran is a professor at the University of California at Berkeley’s Hass School of Business. She is also an economic adviser to President-elect Obama.
Click here for additional CNN short lists for Obama’s potential cabinet.
Democratic leaders on Capitol Hill said Thursday the auto industry has to come up with a plan before Congress will authorize a bailout. (AP Photo)
WASHINGTON (CNN) – The auto industry has until December 2 to fashion a plan that will provide a path to "accountability and viability," Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Thursday.
Reid and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a press conference that the Big Three automakers - Ford, General Motors and Chrysler - had failed to convince Congress that they had developed a viable plan for the $25 million they are requesting in bailout funds.
"This is an important industry in our country and we intend to save it," Pelosi said. "Until they show us a plan we cannot show them the money."
Reid said Congress would return the week of December 8 to consider the proposal, but only if lawmakers are convinced that the public would be well-served.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle told CNN Thursday that he is excited about the possibility of heading Health and Human Services in an Obama administration where he would be a point person in helping to reform the nation’s healthcare system.
Daschle, a close advisor to President-elect Barack Obama, is expected to be nominated for this Cabinet-level position if he passes the vetting process. His top priority as HHS secretary would be healthcare, one of Obama’s signature policy issues during the campaign.
"I hope to have the plan enacted by next year, and then it will take several years to implement,” said Daschle, as he waited to board a plane in Washington, DC bound for Obama’s hometown of Chicago.
When asked if the U.S., in this current economic climate, could afford to reform the healthcare system, Daschle said it is imperative.
“We can't afford not to do it,” he said. “If we do nothing, we'll be paying twice as much on healthcare in 10 years as we do today."
Daschle served as Democratic leader in the Senate from 1995 until he lost reelection in 2004. Representing South Dakota, Daschle was first elected as a congressman in 1978 and served in the House until he was elected to the Senate in 1986.
Daschle recently authored a book on healthcare titled “Critical: What We Can Do About the Health-Care Crisis.”
President-elect Barack Obama is inheriting a lot of problems from the Bush Administration including an economic crisis, two wars, and a whole list of international challenges, the most urgent of which is Iran.
According to a new International Atomic Energy Agency report, Iran is continuing to increase its stockpile of uranium and now has enough nuclear fuel to make a single atom bomb.
Iran insists it only wants nuclear energy to fuel power plants, but the United Nations Security Council isn’t so sure.
To read more and contribute to the Cafferty File discussion click here
WASHINGTON (CNN) – The Republican Party has hit a new low.
Just 34 percent of Americans in a Gallup Poll released Thursday say they have a favorable view of the party, down 40 percent from a month ago, before the election.
What’s worse: 61 percent of Americans have an unfavorable view of the Republican Party.
According to Gallup, that unfavorable rating is the highest the polling organization has recorded for the GOP since the measure was established in 1992.
The poll of national adults was conducted on November 13-16 with a three percent margin of error.
The numbers are slightly up from a CNN poll released last week that indicated a 54 percent unfavorable rating for Republicans. Only 38 percent of those polled had a favorable rating for the party.
Meanwhile, Democrats continue to bask in the glow of President-elect Barack Obama’s historic victory on November 4. The Gallup poll suggests that 55 percent of Americans hold a favorable opinion of the Democratic Party, with 39 percent saying they have an unfavorable view. Those numbers are mostly unchanged from a mid-October survey.
(CNN) – Sen. Hillary Clinton continues to top the short list of possible contenders to be the next Secretary of State under President-elect Barack Obama.
In addition to Clinton, there are several prominent Democrats and even one Republican on CNN’s list:
SEN. JOHN KERRY: The 2004 Democratic presidential nominee has served on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for almost 20 years.
DR. SUSAN RICE: A veteran of Bill Clinton’s State Department, Rice was also a senior adviser to Obama’s presidential campaign.
GOV. BILL RICHARDSON: The New Mexico governor was tapped by Bill Clinton to be U.S. Ambassador to the U.N., but Richardson broke with the Clintons when he decided to endorse Obama after ending his own 2008 presidential bid.
SEN. DICK LUGAR: The Republican, who sits on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, worked with Obama last year to expand a program that destroys weapons of mass destruction in the former Soviet Union.
SAM NUNN: The former Democratic senator from Georgia currently co-chairs an effort to reduce threats from nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons. While in the Senate, Nunn worked with Lugar to destroy weapons of mass destruction amassed by the former Soviet Union.
(CNN) - Rep. Rahm Emanuel, President-elect Barack Obama's future chief of staff, met with Republican leaders on the Hill Thursday, saying "We welcome their ideas and their concepts."
"As you know, in these challenging times economically, the middle class are working harder, earning less, and paying more. And that, the problems facing, and the challenges facing the country require that people of both parties work together to solve those problems," Emanuel told reporters Thursday.
CHICAGO, Illinois (CNN) – Chicago businesswoman Penny Pritzker said Thursday that she is not a candidate for Secretary of Commerce in the administration of President-elect Barack Obama.
Pritzker said she "never submitted any information for the vetting process to begin" and that "while there were discussions, I was never formally offered the position.
"I have obligations here in Chicago that make it difficult for me to serve at this time."
Pritzker was Obama's national campaign finance chairwoman and had been mentioned as the leading candidate to become Obama's Secretary of Commerce. She is the chairwoman of TransUnion, a national credit-reporting agency.
In a written statement her office issued Thursday, she said, "I think I can best serve our nation in my current capacity: building businesses, creating jobs and working to strengthen our economy."
Pritzker noted that "it has been my great privilege to serve in the Obama campaign. I look forward to helping our new president in every way possible and am excited about the future under his leadership."
(CNN) - Still no word on whether Defense Secretary Robert Gates is being asked to stay on the job by the president-elect or whether he would stay if asked. But he makes CNN’s Short List of possible contenders for the cabinet position. Following Lincoln’s model, Obama is open to a bipartisan cabinet, and Gates isn’t the only Republican that makes our list:
ROBERT GATES: He had his first substantive meeting with members of President-elect Barack Obama's transition team Thursday to discuss key issues the new administration will face as it comes into office.
SEN. CHUCK HAGEL: The Republican did not seek re-election to the U.S. Senate in the recent election. Over the course of the Iraq war, Hagel has emerged as a critic of the Bush administration.
SEN. JACK REED: The Rhode Island Democrat serves on the Senate Armed Services Committee, and was mentioned as a possible running mate for Obama.