WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Barack Obama has tapped Dr. Regina Benjamin to serve as surgeon general, according to a White House official. The president is expected to announce his decision Monday morning.
The rural family physician has long provided medical care on the Gulf Coast. In 1990, she founded Bayou La Batre Rural Health Clinic in the fishing village of Bayou La Batre, Alabama.
The clinic was heavily damaged by Hurricanes Georges, in 1998, and Katrina, in 2005, but Benjamin rebuilt it each time and continued to offer medical care to the village's 2,500 residents.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Judge Sonia Sotomayor's Supreme Court confirmation hearing was briefly disrupted Monday by an anti-abortion protester.
"What about the unborn, senator? Abortion is murder! Stop the genocide of unborn Latinos," the unidentified man yelled during the opening statement of Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-California.
The protester by ordered immediately removed from the hearing room by Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy.
"This is a hearing of the United States Senate," said Leahy, D-Vermont. "There will be order and there will be decorum."
Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, the ranking Republican on the committee, immediately voiced his support for Leahy's response.
(CNN) - Watch continuous live coverage of the Senate hearings for Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor.
Watch the event on CNN.com/live
(CNN) - As the Senate Judiciary Committee begins hearings on Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor, a Latino group is launching a radio ad in Florida highlighting Republican opposition to the first Hispanic nominee to the high court.
The ad, sponsored by Presente.org and Progressive Change Campaign Committee, features past remarks from conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh declaring Sotomayor a 'racist," and attacks Republican Rep. John Mica of the Florida's 7th Congressional District for not denouncing the remarks.
The group says the ads will target other key congressional districts in the future.
Full English translation of the ad:
Sonia Sotomayor is set to be the first Latina and Puerto Rican to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court.
It is a proud moment for our community, yet Republican leaders insist on attacking her.
That's Republican leader Rush Limbaugh calling Judge Sotomayor a racist and a bigot.
It's insulting to all Latinos and Americans.
We asked Republican John Mica if he would denounce Limbaugh's words.
His response? Silence.
Let's put a stop to the hate. Call Congressman Mica (R-Florida) today.
Sotomayor's hearing is set to begin Monday.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - After weeks of meeting senators and preparing for tough questions, Sonia Sotomayor on Monday begins the formal hearings on her nomination to become the nation's first Hispanic Supreme Court justice.
The Senate Judiciary Committee will start considering whether Sotomayor should be the 111th person to sit on the nation's highest court.
The confirmation hearings start at 10 a.m. Monday ET. If confirmed, she would be the third woman justice. Watch Sotomayor hearings on CNN.com/live
Sotomayor, 55, received a good-luck telephone call Sunday from President Obama, according to a White House statement.
“This is very suspect timing,” Republican strategist and former Cheney adviser Mary Matalin said Sunday on CNN’s State of the Union. “The president’s agenda is almost in shambles. His [poll] numbers are dropping. Isn’t it coincidental; they gin up a Cheney story.”
Matalin also said that the Executive branch has some authority under the nation’s intelligence laws to not disclose information to Congress under certain circumstances. “The more people that know, the more it leaks . . . and then the enemy knows what it is,” Matalin said of details about other intelligence programs that were leaked to the media.
“Every time they get in trouble . . . they dredge up a Darth Vader story,” Matalin also said, making a reference to past comparisons between Cheney and the villain in the “Stars Wars’ movies.
The CNN Washington Bureau’s morning speed read of the top stories making news from around the country and the world.
For the latest political news: www.CNNPolitics.com.
CNN: King: Confirmation drama and a test for nervous Democrats
The Sonia Sotomayor confirmation hearings for a seat on the Supreme Court will dominate the Washington stage this week, but just as important to this president's agenda will be the "Off Broadway" maneuverings in an increasingly murky health care reform debate.
CNN: Sotomayor's confirmation hearing starts Monday
After weeks of meeting senators and preparing for tough questions, Sonia Sotomayor on Monday begins the formal hearings on her nomination to become the nation's first Hispanic Supreme Court justice.
CNN: Senator: Cheney and alleged secret CIA program 'a problem'
CIA Director Leon Panetta testified to a congressional committee that he was told former Vice President Dick Cheney ordered the intelligence agency to withhold information about a secret counterterrorism program from Congress, the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee said Sunday.
CNN: Bush-era wiretap program had limited results, report finds
Federal agents found much of the information produced by the Bush administration's top-secret warrantless surveillance program vague and difficult to use, a sweeping review of the program found.
CNN: Obama orders review of alleged slayings of Taliban in Bush era
President Obama has ordered national security officials to look into allegations that the Bush administration resisted efforts to investigate a CIA-backed Afghan warlord over the killings of hundreds of Taliban prisoners in 2001.
CNN: Raising taxes at center of health care reform debate
Republicans and Democrats continued to spar Sunday over how to pay for health care reform.
CNN: Source: Holder considers prosecutor to probe interrogations
Attorney General Eric Holder is leaning toward appointing a prosecutor to investigate the Bush administration's interrogation practices, a source familiar with the process confirmed to CNN.
CNN: Dem: Withholding info from Congress 'a serious breach'
A day after reports that former Vice President Cheney instructed the Central Intelligence Agency not to share with Congress information about a specific intelligence program, Republicans are attempting to downplay a possible violation of the laws governing intelligence gathering while Democrats are attempting to sound an alarm about the possibility of Congress being denied critical information affecting national security.