February 14th, 2009
06:01 PM ET
1 year ago

Sources: Obama to sign stimulus Tuesday in Denver

President Obama will sign the economic stimulus bill Tuesday in Denver, Colorado, two officials said Saturday.
President Obama will sign the economic stimulus bill Tuesday in Denver, Colorado, two officials said Saturday.

(CNN) - President Obama will sign the economic stimulus bill Tuesday in Denver, Colorado, two senior administration officials confirm to CNN.

Both officials cited a desire to get out of Washington - to go, in the words of one official, “out west in an area hit hard economically, away from the politics of Washington.”

The other official described Denver as “a place that will see the benefits of the bill in hiring workers.”

Obama traveled to areas hit hard by the economic downturn last week, holding town hall meetings in Elkhart, Indiana and Fort Myers, Florida. He met with workers at a Caterpillar plant in Peoria, Illinois on Thursday, after the company announced 22,000 layoffs.


Filed under: Extra • President Obama • Stimulus
February 14th, 2009
04:00 PM ET
5 years ago

Obama says 'lace 'em up' for service

The White House released an excerpt from President Obama's message on community service, which will air during the NBA All-Stars game Sunday.
The White House released an excerpt from President Obama's message on community service, which will air during the NBA All-Stars game Sunday.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Obama - fresh off a political win in Washington after Congress passed his economic stimulus bill - will take his game to another set of constituents: basketball fans.

On Sunday, a pre-taped message from the president in which he promotes community service will air during the NBA All-Stars game in Phoenix, Arizona. Tipoff is at 8 p.m. EST and will air on TNT.

TNT is owned by CNN's parent company Turner Broadcasting System.

Watch an excerpt of Obama's message

"In this time of so much need in our communities and across our country, we are blessed with endless ways to restore hope and opportunity in places that yearn for both," Obama will say according to excerpts released by the White House Saturday.

Obama's plea: "Prepare a care package for a soldier. Read to a child. Or fix up a local basketball court so the next generation can play and grow. ... Log on to USAService.org to find or create a project near you, then gather some friends and lace 'em up."

ALSO: Watch NBA greats weigh in on Obama's game


Filed under: Popular Posts • President Obama
February 14th, 2009
02:58 PM ET
5 years ago

Blago's brother solicited funds, Burris says

Sen. Roland Burris, D-Illinois, says in an affidavit that he refused to contribute money to former Gov. Rod Blagojevich.
Sen. Roland Burris, D-Illinois, says in an affidavit that he refused to contribute money to former Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

CHICAGO, Illinois (CNN) - The brother of former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich solicited Sen. Roland Burris, D-Illinois, for up to $10,000 in campaign cash before Burris was named to his Senate seat, according to Burris staffers and an affidavit obtained Saturday by CNN.

However, in the affidavit, Burris said he refused to contribute to Blagojevich or to assist in fundraising for him.

Burris' appointment by Blagojevich was hotly disputed, as Blagojevich is facing corruption charges. Prosecutors' allegations against him include that he attempted to sell the Senate seat, vacated by President Barack Obama upon his election, to the highest bidder. He was ousted from office last month by Illinois lawmakers.

In his January 8 testimony before an Illinois House impeachment panel, Burris, the former Illinois attorney general, said he had no conversations with Blagojevich about his desire to be appointed to the seat prior to Blagojevich's December 9 arrest. Burris also said that he was not aware of any "quid pro quo"
with the former governor.

"I can for this committee state that there was no legal, personal or political exchange for my seat," Burris said.


Filed under: Popular Posts • Rod Blagojevich • Roland Burris
February 14th, 2009
11:34 AM ET
2 years ago

Obama praises Congress for passing a 'major milestone'

President Obama praised Congress for passing the $787 billion economic stimulus bill.
President Obama praised Congress for passing the $787 billion economic stimulus bill.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - In his weekly address, President Obama praised Congress for passing the $787 billion economic stimulus package Friday, saying its efforts "delivered a real and tangible progress for the American people."

Obama, who lobbied House and Senate members of both parties, said in his address released Saturday that the bill passage marks a "major milestone on our road to recovery."

Watch: Obama's weekly address

"I want to thank the members of Congress who came together in common purpose to make it happen," he said. "Because they did, I will sign this legislation into law shortly, and we'll being making the immediate investments necessary to put people back to work doing the work America needs done."

Obama also promised greater transparency in how the taxpayers' dollars are being spent.

"Once the plan is put into action, a new website -– recovery.gov -– will allow any American to watch where the money goes and weigh in with comments and questions –- and I encourage every American to do so," he said. "Ultimately, this is your money, and you deserve to know where it's going and how it's spent."

But Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski, in the weekly Republican address, said Obama's stimulus plan is not timely, targeted or temporary enough to jumpstart the flailing economy.

Murkowski also took aim at the high price tag - namely the amount of spending found in the bill.

Watch: Murkowski airs her concerns

"All this spending adds up, and has to be paid back — paid back by our children and their children. And, as of now, the American people don’t have the facts about the total cost," she said. “As a mother, I can say from experience that it doesn’t make much sense to plan the family vacation before you figure out whether you can afford it. Yet that’s just what Democrats seem to be doing."


Filed under: Congress • President Obama
February 14th, 2009
11:20 AM ET
5 years ago

Stimulus bill plans limits on executive pay

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Included in the massive $787 billion economic stimulus package passed by Congress Friday and now awaiting President Barack Obama's signature is an amendment that would severely restrict bonuses and other forms of compensation for top executives at companies receiving federal bailout money.

The amendment by Sen. Chris Dodd, chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, would impose wide-ranging restrictions on how - and by how much - top executives at companies receiving federal bailout money can be compensated.

The measure would cap bonuses - often far more lucrative than base salaries for top executives - and could require executives at companies that have already received bailout money to pay back some of their compensation if it exceeded certain limits.

Dodd, a Democrat from Connecticut, said in a statement that his amendment was aimed at imposing "tough new limits on huge bonuses" for executives at firms receiving money from the government's Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP.

FULL POST


Filed under: Stimulus • Wall Street
February 14th, 2009
11:15 AM ET
5 years ago

Schneider: Bipartisanship? What bipartisanship?

President Obama didn't find much bipartisanship over the stimulus bill or his pick for commerce secretary.
President Obama didn't find much bipartisanship over the stimulus bill or his pick for commerce secretary.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - "It is time for Congress to act, and I hope they act in a bipartisan fashion," President Obama said when he went to Peoria, Illnois, on Thursday to argue for his economic stimulus plan.

Congress acted. But bipartisan? Not so much.

The plan passed the House of Representatives without a single Republican vote, and got only a token number - three - of Republican votes in the Senate.

"All the talk about bipartisanship that we have heard over the last several months went down the drain," House Republican leader John Boehner complained on Friday.

Obama also ran into a wall in his effort to build a bipartisan cabinet when his choice for Secretary of Commerce, Republican Sen. Judd Gregg, withdrew his name from nomination.

Full Story


Filed under: Congress • President Obama • Stimulus bill
February 14th, 2009
10:31 AM ET
5 years ago

Obama planning ambitious road ahead

President Obama waves as he boards Air Force One for Chicago, where the Obamas were to spend the weekend.
President Obama waves as he boards Air Force One for Chicago, where the Obamas were to spend the weekend.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Fresh off victory on President Obama's signature $787 billion economic recovery plan, several top White House aides say they're planning an ambitious agenda for the rest of February.

The Senate had waited for the return of Democrat Sherrod Brown, who was returning from his mother's wake in his home state of Ohio, to close the voting late Friday.

For the rest of the month, the White House agenda will focus on addressing the housing crisis, cleaning up the banking mess and laying the groundwork for reform of the health care system and entitlement programs like Medicare.

Obama's economic stimulus plan, which top aides say will be signed into law as early as Monday at the White House, received no Republican votes in the House and just three in the Senate despite his heavy emphasis on drawing bipartisan support. There have also been several Cabinet miscues in the early days, but top White House aides are confident the president has gotten off to a strong start.

Full Story


Filed under: Congress • President Obama
February 14th, 2009
09:25 AM ET
5 years ago

Stimulus package en route to Obama's desk

Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, speaks to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid at right on the Senate floor Friday.
Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, speaks to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid at right on the Senate floor Friday.

(CNN) – The U.S. Senate gave final approval Friday to a $787 billion recovery package that President Obama hopes will help boost an economy in freefall with a combination of government spending and tax cuts and credits.

Approved earlier by the House, the plan - which went through multiple permutations as it bounced back and forth on Capitol Hill over the past week - now goes to Obama's desk, where he plans to sign it into law by Presidents Day.

Winners and Losers in the final stimulus bill

Spending in the package includes about $120 billion for infrastructure - new projects repairing bridges, roads, government buildings and the like - more than $100 billion for education and $30 billion on energy-related projects that Obama says will create "green jobs."

More than $212 billion goes to tax breaks for individuals and businesses, and another $267 billion is in direct spending like food stamps and unemployment benefits.

Full Story


Filed under: Senate • Stimulus bill
February 14th, 2009
09:15 AM ET
5 years ago

Border fence a dividing line in immigration debate

ALT TEXT

Photo credit: CNN.
On CNN's "State of the Union," CNN host and chief national correspondent John King goes outside the Beltway to report on the issues affecting communities across the country. King recently traveled to Arizona, to explore the debate over how to control illegal immigration.

SAN LUIS, Arizona (CNN)
- The Yuma desert is below: San Luis, Arizona, to one side and San Luis, Mexico, to the other. On this clear day, the Colorado River is glistening, birds playfully circling over what any map defines as the U.S.-Mexico border in this area.

But from a helicopter above, the border is a steel barrier that stands out along the riverbank and against the desert sands, and is the dividing line that gets the most attention from those crying to cross illegally and those who believe recent efforts to bolster U.S. border security have been riddled with wrong choices.

Just this past week, eight Democrats in Congress wrote President Obama urging him to halt any further construction of the fence, one of the many border- and immigration-related political debates that have carried over from the Bush administration.

Full Story

Watch "State of the Union" this Sunday beginning at 9 a.m. ET.


Filed under: Immigration • State of the Union