WASHINGTON (CNN) - White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel said Sunday that Rush Limbaugh is the face of the GOP.
"He is the voice and the intellectual force and energy behind the Republican party, and he has been up front about what he views, and hasn't stepped back from that, which is he hopes for failure," Emanuel said on CBS's Face the Nation.
"He said it, and I compliment him on his honesty," Emanuel said. "But that's their philosophy that's enunciated by Rush Limbaugh and I think that's the wrong philosophy for America."
Watch: Rush Limbaugh's CPAC speech
"What is so strange about being honest and saying I want Barack Obama to fail if his mission is to restructure and reform this country so that capitalism and individual liberty are not its foundation?," he asked the raucous CPAC crowd during his 90 minute address on Saturday.
Speaking on ABC's This Week, House Republican Whip Eric Cantor said he disagreed with Limbaugh's comments.
"And I don't - I don't think anyone wants anything to fail right now. We have such challenges. What we need to do is we need to put forth solutions to the problems that real families are facing today."
(CNN) - Rep. Neil Abercrombie, D-Hawaii, criticized President Barack Obama's Iraq plan Sunday, telling CNN he thinks a troop drawdown can occur sooner than in the 19 months the president has proposed.
"I think it can be done faster," said Abercrombie, a member of the House Armed Services Committee. "It depends on what our - what our strategic idea is, there. If the idea is to continue to occupy Iraq in order to form some kind of stable democracy, a Muslim version of it, or a Mesopotamian version of it, that's one thing. I don't think we can sustain that."
Earlier: Obama lays out Iraq plan
Appearing on State of the Union with John King, Abercrombie also said he disapproves of the president’s plan to leave up to 50,000 residual troops in the country beyond 2010.
"I'm not comfortable with that number," he said. "And I don't think it can be done. I think it's a reluctance on the part of some of the senior military to admit that there is no military solution or resolution in Iraq."
"Any residual troops are by definition combat troops, because the combat isn't ending," he added.
Top Democrats have expressed concern over President Obama's plan to draw down nearly two-thirds of U.S. forces in Iraq by August 2010, while some key Republicans have offered praise.
(CNN) – Republican Rep. Tom Price slammed President Barack Obama's budget proposal Sunday, saying it carries too much debt and vastly increases the size of government.
"The era of big government is clearly back," said Price, a Republican from Georgia. "I believe deficits are not acceptable in the level to which this president has put them on the table."
Earlier this week the president unveiled a $3 trillion-plus budget that he says will halve the federal deficit by the end of his first term. Congress received a 140-page summary of the budget for fiscal year 2010 Thursday morning. The full details are expected in April.
Earlier: Obama unveils budget blueprint
But Price, the chair of the Republican Study Committee, a group that looks to advance the conservative agenda for a limited government, said the new budget carries too much debt.
"The budget that he put out there is going to have the largest debt in the history of the nation over the ten-year period of time," Price said. "More debt in this budget than there has been in this nation from 1889 until today. That's not the kind of change that the American people are interested in."
Based on the proposed budget, the administration projects the deficit for fiscal year 2009 will reach $1.75 trillion, or 12.3 percent of U.S. gross domestic product. That's a record in dollar terms and is the highest as a share of GDP since World War II.
But Democratic Rep. Peter DeFazio, also appearing on State of The Union with John King, said the new budget puts the country on the road to fiscal responsibility after excess spending from the Bush Administration.
"President Obama is putting us on a path to restore fiscal responsibility, but he is starting in a big hole," DeFazio said. "So I'm going to work with the president to tighten this budget wherever we can."
PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania (CNN) – At the Bright Hope Baptist Church, dinner is served on tables with neat, white tablecloths. A vase with a plastic flower is the centerpiece.
The welcoming mood masks the grim reality.
The salad, garlic bread and spaghetti dinner is a lifeline to the 100 to 125 people who visit the inner-city Philadelphia church's soup kitchen. The growing demand outpaces supplies from area food banks, and the church more and more relies on donated canned goods from its congregants to help those struggling just to eat.
These are trying times in a city and state once defined by the steel factories that supplied the spine of America's industrial revolution and a proud blue-collar spirit.
(CNN) - President Obama is more analytical than his predecessor, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Sunday.
Gates, the only Cabinet holdover from the Bush administration, initially paused when asked what the difference is between working with President Obama and President Bush.
"President Obama is somewhat more analytical, and he makes sure he hears from everybody in the room on an issue. And if they don't speak up, he calls on them," Gates said on NBC's Meet the Press.
"President Bush was interested in hearing different points of view but didn't go out of his way to make sure everybody spoke if they hadn't spoken up before," he added.
Gates also said with a chuckle that the difference between working for the two presidents sounded like the subject of a good book.
(CNN) - Iran likely has enough material to make a nuclear weapon, Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen told CNN's John King Sunday.
“We think they do, quite frankly," Mullen said on State of The Union with John King. "Iran having a nuclear weapon, I believe, for a long time, is a very, very bad outcome for the region and for the world."
Tehran has denied pursuing nuclear weapons, and insists the country's nuclear program is for peaceful purposes.
Mullen also said he is watching North Korea closely, although he also said he and Defense Secretary Robert Gates have yet to make a recommendation on how to approach that country.
Earlier: N. Korea: Ready to launch satellite
"There has been no recommendations one way or another," he said. "There's a lot of focus on this and then recommendations and certainly policy discussions will come based on the timing and what North Korea does."
(CNN) - Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen suggested Sunday he disagreed with Afghan President Hamid Karzai's recent decree to move up that country's presidential and provincial elections by four months and questioned whether Karzai had the authority to do so.
"The elections were scheduled for August and that was a date that was set by the international elections commission and they are, as I understand it anyway, they are the final authority in this," Mullen told CNN's John King of State of The Union."
The comments come a day after Karzai decreed the elections be moved from the August date determined by the Independent Election Commission to April. Karzai, whose term ends in late May, said the constitution requires an election at least 30 days before the end of the term, but opposition groups are crying foul.
Karzai has said he intends to run for a second term.
But speaking to CNN Sunday, Mullen said the earlier date hampers his efforts to ensure the elections are secure.
(CNN) - Conservative political commentator Ann Coulter’s 15-minute address at CPAC played more like a stand-up comedy act than a political speech.
Coulter delivered line after line of jabs at President Obama, the Democratic Party and the media – each met with roaring laughter from the crowd.
The commentator – who is no stranger to controversy – first went after MSNBC, calling the hosts the “alternative prom crowd.”
Pointing to recent comparisons of Obama to Jesus and Abraham Lincoln, Coulter said the media has turned from being the people’s watchdog to the “government guard dog.”
“Maybe it’s just me, but I can’t see Lincoln text messaging with Scarlet Johansson … and I forget, how many times did Lincoln vote present?” she said, to much applause.