WASHINGTON (CNN) - The Republican National Committee's total fashion bill for Sarah Palin's nine-week stint on the GOP presidential ticket is in: $180,000.
That's $30,000 more than the RNC previously disclosed it had spent outfitting and styling the Alaska governor and her family, according to Politico and the RNC's latest filings with the Federal Elections Commission.
The latest filing, which includes the final 3 weeks of the presidential race, shows the committee directed close to $55,000 to Palin's fashion stylist, New York-based Lisa Kline.
The RNC also spent close to $24,000 in several high end stores, including Ann Taylor, Bloomingdales, Brooks Brothers, Neiman's, Nordstrom, Macy's, Saks, Target, and Victoria's Secret.
The RNC has said all the clothes purchased will be donated to charity.
NEW YORK (CNN) - Caroline Kennedy has called New York Gov. David Paterson to ask about the Senate seat to be vacated by Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton if she is confirmed as secretary of state in the new Barack Obama administration, Democratic sources tell CNN.
One Democratic source close to the Kennedy family confirmed that Kennedy has had conversations with Paterson and "is interested to say the least" about discussing the Senate vacancy. This source says Kennedy has asked a tight circle of other family friends and political advisers for advice.
A second source, who has knowledge of Kennedy's conversation with Paterson, tells CNN that Kennedy reached out to inquire about the responsibilities and impact such a move would have if she were selected by the governor to fill the position.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Barack Obama is still more than six weeks from White House, and the next Iowa caucuses are more than three years away — so naturally, it’s time to start talking 2012, as a new national poll suggests that Sarah Palin and Mike Huckabee top the list of potential 2012 Republican presidential hopefuls.
In a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey out Friday that serves as an early measure of potential support for the next GOP presidential nomination, Huckabee tops the list. Thirty-four percent of Republicans and independent voters who lean towards the GOP say they are very likely to support the former Arkansas governor if he were to become their party’s nominee in 2012. Huckabee surprised many by winning this year's Republican caucuses in Iowa and seven other contests before ending his run in March.
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, John McCain's running mate in this year's election, draws nearly as much support: 32 percent of those polled said they would get behind a Palin nomination. And with the survey's sampling error of plus or minus 4.5 points, Palin and Huckabee are statistically tied.
The survey is an early measure of possible support, not a horse race snapshot.
“It might come as a surprise to some that Palin does better than Huckabee among GOP men but that Huckabee beats Palin among Republican women,” says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. “Palin's strength is also concentrated among older Republicans, but Huckabee may have a slight edge among conservative Republicans."
Among voters who consider themselves born again or evangelical, Huckabee draws more support than Palin, with a 9 point edge. Meanwhile, Palin holds a 7-point advantage among non-born again or evangelical voters.
President-elect Barack Obama’s inauguration is going to be a huge celebration bringing millions of people to Washington D.C. to party.
In order to literally keep the party going all night long, the city council passed emergency legislation this week allowing bars, night clubs and restaurants to stay open around the clock from January 17th until January 21st.
People could disagree about whether this is a real good idea. Yesterday, the leader of the Washington D.C. police union told the Washington Post he’s worried that police resources could be insufficient during Inauguration weekend because of extended hours for clubs, bars and restaurants.
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WASHINGTON (CNN) - It's a position that John Quincy Adams once called downright pathetic: that of a former president.
After all, the process of relinquishing the most powerful job in the world isn't an easy one, especially given the American public's notoriously fleeting attention span and penchant for paying little heed to once-prominent political figures after they exit the public stage.
As the days dwindle until President Bush joins what Herbert Hoover called the "most exclusive trade union in the world," the unpopular commander in chief appears decidedly enthusiastic about embracing a lower profile, recently declaring that he's more than ready to forgo the limelight.
Although ex-presidents in Adams' day quickly descended into obscurity after their years in the Oval Office, today the transition away from serving as the leader of the free world is high-profile, potentially very lucrative and, above all, a difficult job in itself.
(CNN) - President-elect Barack Obama has kept a relatively low profile as automakers plead for billions from Congress, but behind the scenes, the incoming administration is working hard on finding ways to ease the crisis.
Obama and his advisers are studying options for helping the automobile industry beyond what Congress does or doesn't do before he steps into office.
Talks in Congress have included mention of a possible short-term loan for the auto giants to act as a Band-Aid until lawmakers can hammer out a long-term plan when the new Congress begins next year. Other lawmakers have suggested that bankruptcy could be a good thing for the automakers.
CEOs for the Big Three are trying to make their case for a $34 billion loan.
Despite what may happen in the coming weeks, there's no indication that the problem will be solved before Obama steps into office. While the president-elect has largely stayed silent on the issue, he has signaled that one option is off the table.
"We can't allow the auto industry simply to vanish," he said last week.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - A senior Democratic leadership aide tells CNN that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has asked Senate Banking Chairman Chris Dodd and his staff to work this weekend to prepare several options on how to help auto companies, plans Democratic will consider first thing Monday morning.
The aide gave a highly optimistic timetable, given the deep divide among lawmakers about how, and whether, to help Detroit.
“Ideally, we would reach consensus on process and substance with our caucus and Senate Minority Mitch McConnell mid-day Monday,” said the aide, who said their goal would be to schedule any necessary votes no later than mid-week.
Democratic leaders were hoping to confer with Republicans about various ideas most lawmakers are reluctant to discuss publicly.
(CNN) - Could Caroline Kennedy, considered to be among the most private members of the Kennedy clan, be tapped to fill Hillary Clinton's Senate seat?
Kennedy - who endorsed Barack Obama in February before the Super Tuesday round of primaries - is said to be considering the possibility, according to an ABC News report.
New York Gov. David Paterson, the man tasked with picking Hillary Clinton's successor, is remaining mum on the process, but a spokesman for Barack Obama issued a statement in the wake of rumors the president-elect is quietly lobbying Patterson to choose Kennedy.
"President-elect Obama has a very high regard for Caroline Kennedy," said Obama spokesman Stephanie Cutter. "But he has not spoken with Governor Paterson or Caroline Kennedy about the race, and has no involvement in this process."
Earlier, similar rumors circulated that former President Bill Clinton might be interested in the job, but the former president's office quickly released a statement saying he was not interested.
Caroline Kennedy's cousin, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., was also discussed as a potential successor, but formally took his name out of the running earlier this week.
Paterson still has a strong bench to choose from. There are a number of contenders, including several members of New York's delegation in the House of Representatives, New York State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown, Bronx Borough President Adolfo Carrion, and Nassau County Executive Thomas Suozzi.
Whoever is chosen would have to be ready for virtually non-stop campaigning and fundraising over the next four years. Clinton's successor will face a hotly-contested campaign in 2010 to fill out the remainder of her term, then a re-election bid jut two years later.
(CNN) – In the latest installment of CNN=Politics Daily, Barack Obama built his campaign on “change” - change in Washington, change in the way candidates run a presidential campaign, and change in the nation’s history when he is sworn as the first African-American president. But what about change in Chicago? CNN’s Alina Cho has the details.
Also: Controversy surrounds the way the Central Intelligence Agency currently attains information from the most dangerous men in the world. When Obama takes office will he end the use of torture and close Guantanamo, or will he be forced to re-assess for security reasons? CNN’s Kelli Arena asks the president-elect what measures currently employed by the CIA will be tolerated in his upcoming administration.
Plus: He was elected by the people to serve as the 44th president of the United States - but some foes, unswayed by the evidence, continue to insist Barack Obama is ineligible to be sworn in. A lawsuit contesting the president-elect’s status as a natural-born U.S. citizen is being taken all the way to the Supreme Court. CNN’s Kelli Arena reports.
Finally: The Detroit Free Press sends a plea to Congress Thursday: “Invest in America... you don’t want all this blood on your hands.” CNN’s Dana Bash is covering the story.
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(CNN) – Ann Romney, the wife of GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney, released a statement Friday morning saying that she has been diagnosed with ductal carcinoma in sutu, the most common form of noninvasive breast cancer in women.
“Last week, following my annual mammogram at Brigham and Women's Hospital, I was diagnosed with Ductal Carcinoma In Sutu (DCIS),” Romney says in the statement. “While this is commonly referred to as early stage breast cancer, it is technically not cancer but rather pre-cancer, as it has not become invasive.”
“Today, I have had a lumpectomy. This procedure does not require hospitalization. Mitt and I feel fortunate to have caught this so early. And, it reminds us how important it is for women to have regular mammograms.”
The Mayo Clinic says that DCIS is considered to be a “preinvasive” condition, and “the most common type of noninvasive breast cancer.”
The clinic’s Web site adds that the condition isn’t life-threatening, but that without treatment, DCIS could become invasive breast cancer.
Romney was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1998, and has said that she combines traditional treatment with alternative treatments like horse riding to keep the disease at bay.