April 2nd, 2009
10:10 AM ET
6 years ago

Fuzzy math in Organizing for America's pledge drive

Organizing for America dispatched a corps of volunteers to Capitol Hill on Wednesday.
Organizing for America dispatched a corps of volunteers to Capitol Hill on Wednesday.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Organizing for America, President Obama's political organization, dispatched a corps of volunteers to Capitol Hill on Wednesday to hand-deliver to members of Congress hundreds of thousands of citizen pledges signed in of support for the president's budget initiatives.

The organization boasted in a series of press releases that 642,000 "pledges" had been collected during a highly publicized national canvassing effort. The pledges were then printed out at Democratic National Committee headquarters and taken over to congressional offices.

But do 642,000 pieces of paper mean that 642,000 actual people signed up to back the president's budget? Not quite.

According to OFA spokesperson Natalie Wyeth, "some people signed more than one for their members of Congress."

Though she maintained there were 642,000 pledges distributed on the Hill, she pegged the number of people who actually signed the pledges as significantly fewer.

"It's at least 214,000," Wyeth said in an e-mail. An initial 100,000 signatures were gathered during OFA's nationwide canvass on March 21, she said, and "tens of thousands more" were collected online and in a series of smaller canvasses over a two-week period.


Filed under: OFA
April 2nd, 2009
09:38 AM ET
6 years ago

Obama gives Queen an iPod

(CNN) - What's the proper gift to present Queen Elizabeth II with at Buckingham Palace?

A video iPod, apparently.

According to a White House aide, President Obama Tuesday night presented the Queen with the popular Apple device - reportedly complete with songs and video footage of the her 2007 trip to the United States.

UPDATE: The White House revealed the songs on the iPod were all from the two-disc CD, 'Ultimate Broadway.' (Full song list after the jump)

The gift will be at least the Queen's second iPod: in 2006 she purchased an iPod mini.

Obama also gave the Queen a rare musical songbook by Richard Rodgers.

As for the Queen, she reportedly gave the Obamas a signed photograph of her and her husband, Prince Phillip, in a sliver frame, her standard gift to foreign dignitaries.

Full iPod song list after the jump

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Filed under: President Obama
April 2nd, 2009
05:16 AM ET
6 years ago

POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: Thursday, April 2, 2009

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WASHINGTON/POLITICAL
For the latest political news: www.CNNPolitics.com.

CNN: Rift threatens to torpedo G-20 summit

The G-20 summit began Thursday, with leaders looking to repair a rift after France and Germany threatened to withdraw their support unless tough new rules were agreed to regulate the world's financial markets.

CNN: Romney strikes bipartisan tone at GOP fundraiser

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney praised President Obama at a GOP fundraising dinner Wednesday in front of a crowd that might have been expecting a heavy dose of rally-the-troops conservatism.

CNN: Pakistan's commitment questioned in Senate hearing

Days after President Obama announced his strategy for security in Afghanistan, senior Defense Department leaders told a congressional panel more effort is needed to fight the growing insurgency in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

CNN: Lawyer says prosecutors' request has 'cleared' Stevens

Former Republican Sen. Ted Stevens of Alaska has been "cleared" by the Justice Department's request to dismiss his federal corruption convictions and drop all charges against him, his lawyer said Wednesday.

CNN: Senate rejects controversial fast-track budget procedure

The Senate overwhelmingly voted Wednesday not to use a fast-track budget procedure to pass President Obama’s “cap and trade” plan to combat global warming.

WSJ: Report Outlines Weaknesses at Intelligence Agencies

The U.S. intelligence chief has sent conflicting messages to the agencies he supervises, and bureaucratic turf battles continue to rage among the 16 spy agencies, while his staff continues to grow without clear direction, according to an internal report released Wednesday.

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Filed under: Political Hot Topics
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