(CNN) - President Obama on Wednesday will visit Phoenix, Arizona, one of the cities hardest hit with foreclosures, where he's expected to outline a $50 billion to $100 billion plan to help homeowners.
Though administration officials are tight-lipped about details, one idea that has been floated is for the federal government to reduce monthly mortgage payments by modifying loans.
Sheila Bair, the U.S. FDIC chairwoman, has advocated reducing payments to between 31 and 38 percent of a family's gross income.
"This crisis in housing has devastating consequences, and our government should have moved more forcefully to help contain the damage," Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said Monday.
"You're going to learn about [the administration's plan] as the rollout continues," said Jared Bernstein, Vice President Joe Biden's economic advisor.
Bernstein said it will be a "very aggressive plan to help responsible homeowners stay in their homes."
White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs briefed reporters on board Air Force One Monday. (GETTY IMAGES)
WASHINGTON (CNN) — President Obama will decide "shortly" whether to increase the number of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said Monday.
“He's been working on this in consultation with military leaders and in conjunction with his foreign policy team," Gibbs told reporters on board Air Force One. "The administration continues its review of our policy relating to Afghanistan." Read full transcript of Gibbs briefing [PDF]
Politico reported Monday Obama did not want to be rushed in making a decision on troops, even as Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said that decision would come "within days." But Gates, one of three Republicans appointed to Obama's Cabinet, also said the administration will wait until a strategic review of military operations is complete to make decisions on "the strategies going forward."
Speaking to reporters Monday, Gibbs refused to put a definitive timeline on the decision. "Without getting into broad time lines, I wouldn't - I don't think this is anything that involves weeks, Gibbs said. “As soon as he's ready to communicate that to commanders and to families that would have to implement anything like that, I think at that point we'll be able to communicate that decision to you all."
Earlier this month, General David McKiernan - the senior U.S. commander in Afghanistan - requested an additional 30,000 U.S. soldiers over the next 18 months to battle the strengthening Taliban-led insurgency. The additional troops would approximately double the current number of American soldiers in the country.
Former President Bill Clinton was in Austin, Texas, over the weekend to host the Clinton Global Initiative University, which encourages college students and administrators to come up with creative ways to address global issues.
Republican Norm Coleman's attorneys Monday sent a letter to the Minnesota Supreme Court asking the judges to reconsider their game-changing ruling from Friday that put significant limits on the types of rejected absentee ballots they want examined. FULL POST
TOKYO, Japan (CNN) - U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made her strongest comments yet about North Korea Tuesday during her tour of Asia.
Speaking at a news conference with Japanese Foreign Minister Hirofumi Nakasone, the U.S. secretary warned that a possible North Korean missile launch "would be very unhelpful in moving our relationship forward." Clinton said the U.S. is "watching very closely" actions by North Korea.
U.S. officials recently said they obtained evidence that North Korea was gearing up for a launch of a long-range missile.
North Korean officials disputed the claim, saying in the country's official news agency that North Korea was preparing to launch a satellite.