February 12th, 2009
11:22 AM ET
6 years ago

Poll suggests Corzine could face tough re-election battle

Fifty-one percent of New Jersey voters disapprove of Gov. Corzine's job performance, according to a new poll released Thursday.
Fifty-one percent of New Jersey voters disapprove of Gov. Corzine's job performance, according to a new poll released Thursday.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - A new poll suggests that New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine's bid for re-election this year is getting tougher.

A Monmouth University/Gannett NJ survey released Thursday indicates that 51 percent of New Jersey voters disapprove of Corzine’s performance, while only 34 percent approve of how he is handling his job.

The poll also suggests that only one in five New Jersey voters think their state is headed in the right direction.

Another poll released earlier this month by Quinnipiac University showed Christie leading Corzine in a hypothetical match-up by a 44 to 38 margin. That’s a 12 point turnaround from a previous Quinnipiac poll of the race conducted in November that showed a 42 to 36 lead for the incumbent.

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Filed under: New Jersey • Poll
February 12th, 2009
10:00 AM ET
6 years ago

White House calls on historian for Lincoln speech input

(CNN) – White House officials say President Obama’s speechwriter has had several conversations with historian Doris Kearns Goodwin in crafting today’s speech for the Lincoln Bicentennial Celebration in Springfield, Illinois.

The president's brief, 5-10 minute remarks will touch on the familiar themes of reconciliation, rising to the challenge of the times, and changing history, but will not break any policy ground. The only time he will talk about the economic stimulus package today is at the Caterpillar factory in Peoria, Illinois, before 200 workers.


Filed under: President Obama
February 12th, 2009
10:00 AM ET
6 years ago

New Lincoln pennies revealed

 The penny pictured above features a young Lincoln educating himself while working as a rail splitter in Indiana.
The penny pictured above features a young Lincoln educating himself while working as a rail splitter in Indiana.

(CNN) – To commemorate Abraham Lincoln’s 200th birthday, the first of four new pennies to commemorate the 16th president’s rise from a one-room log cabin to the White House will go into circulation on Thursday.

The pennies, which will be released in three month intervals, will each depict a different stage of Lincoln’s life, showing images of his early childhood in Kentucky, his formative years in Indiana, his professional life in Illinois and his presidency.


Filed under: Uncategorized
February 12th, 2009
10:00 AM ET
6 years ago

Crunch time: Final stimulus details in the works

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Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Wednesday an agreement has been reached between the House and Senate on the stimulus bill, but is there a deal? (GETTY IMAGES)

(CNN) - Congress is set to send a $789 billion economic stimulus package to President Obama's desk by Monday after lawmakers worked around a disagreement over education funding in the package.

The stimulus deal was struck Wednesday after another furious day of negotiations on Capitol Hill involving House and Senate leaders, Obama administration officials and a trio of moderate Republicans.

The agreement represents a deal that everyone can live with, Democratic leadership sources said.

Sen. Max Baucus, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, said it is possible the House of Representatives could take up the bill as early as Thursday and the Senate possibly Friday, meeting Obama's timetable of having the bill on his desk by Presidents Day, which is Monday.

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Filed under: House • Senate
February 12th, 2009
09:10 AM ET
6 years ago

Kindness will help economy, homeless woman's rescuer says

 Henrietta Hughes, left, and Chene Thompson talk on the lawn of the home Thompson is letting Hughes use.
Henrietta Hughes, left, and Chene Thompson talk on the lawn of the home Thompson is letting Hughes use.

(CNN) – Acts of kindness will help pull the nation through its economic crisis, according to the woman who came to the rescue of a homeless Floridian who publicly appealed to President Obama.

Related video: 'Please help,' Hughes asks Obama

Chene Thompson, the wife of state Rep. Nicholas Thompson, R-Fort Myers, is letting Henrietta Hughes and her son stay in a house she owns in nearby La Belle rent free until they get back on their feet.

Watch: Hughes, Thompson on American Morning

"You don't have to be a politician to put forth a stimulus package," Chene Thompson said during a joint interview with Hughes Thursday on CNN's "American Morning." "This is our own little mini-stimulus package for a person who was a stranger and now is a friend.

"Anybody can help anybody at any time. It doesn't need to be something that comes from Washington; it can come from your own home and from your heart, even if it's for a little bit."

Hughes emerged from the crowd at Tuesday's town hall meeting in Fort Myers to tell Obama she and her son were living in a car and needed immediate help. The president asked her name, kissed her on the cheek and promised his staff would work with her.

Thompson, who was in the audience, stepped forward afterward to offer Hughes her vacant house, which the Thompsons had to leave because it is outside her husband's legislative district.

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Filed under: Economy • Florida • President Obama
February 12th, 2009
06:39 AM ET
6 years ago

Bill Ayers has an idea for Palin

Palin highlighted Obama's connection to Bill Ayers during the presidential campaign.
Palin highlighted Obama's connection to Bill Ayers during the presidential campaign.

(CNN) – Sarah Palin once accused Barack Obama of “palling around with terrorists,” a catchphrase intended to highlight Obama’s connection to former Weather Underground member Bill Ayers.

Now that the campaign rhetoric has subsided, Ayers has an idea for a new show starring his Alaskan nemesis.

“I did send her a note after the election,” he says of Palin in the upcoming issue of the New York Times magazine. “I suggested that we have a talk show together called ‘Pallin’ Around With Sarah and Bill.’ I haven’t heard back.”

Ayers assiduously avoided interviews and press attention during the presidential race, but he insists the Obama campaign never told him to keep quiet.

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Filed under: Sarah Palin
February 12th, 2009
06:16 AM ET
6 years ago

POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: Thursday, February 12, 2009

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CNN: Clinton could name N. Korea envoy before Asia trip

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton could appoint a special envoy for North Korea before leaving for Asia next week, senior administration officials told CNN.

CNNMoney: Deal struck on economic stimulus package

Democratic leadership sources say they have worked out a way around the disagreement between the Senate and House over education funding in the economic stimulus bill.

CNN: Louisiana governor to give high-profile GOP response to Obama

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal is set to deliver the Republican response to President Obama's upcoming joint address to Congress, a high-profile slot the party often gives to one of its rising stars.

CNN: Homeless woman's plea to Obama draws flood of support

She's being hailed as the "face of the economic crisis," and now Henrietta Hughes has become something of a media star after reaching out to President Obama in an emotional plea for help.

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Filed under: Political Hot Topics
February 12th, 2009
05:00 AM ET
6 years ago

Kerry to travel to Syria as Obama considers engagement

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Senate Foreign Relations Chairmain John Kerry will travel to Syria next week and meet with President Bashar Assad, his spokesman said Wednesday.

Frederick Jones told CNN that Kerry will be traveling to the Middle East, calling the senator's visit to Damascus "part of a continuing dialogue he's had with the Syrian government."

Kerry has maintined contacts with Syrian officials and recently met with the country's ambassador to the United States.

His trip comes as President Barack Obama considers engagement with Syria as well as Iran, an idea supported by Kerry.

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Filed under: John Kerry
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