November 30th, 2009
04:57 AM ET
4 years ago

POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: November 30, 2009

The CNN Washington Bureau’s morning speed read of the top stories making news from around the country and the world.

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

CNN: Senate health care debate to focus on Democratic divide
With Republican opposition unanimous so far, the Senate debate starting Monday on a comprehensive health care bill will focus on bridging differences among the majority Democrats.

Washington Post: U.S. offers new role for Pakistan
President Obama has offered Pakistan an expanded strategic partnership, including additional military and economic cooperation, while warning with unusual bluntness that its use of insurgent groups to pursue policy goals "cannot continue."

CNN: Report: 'Bin Laden was within our grasp'
President Obama got some political cover Sunday for his upcoming announcement on sending more troops to Afghanistan. A report released by the Democratic staff of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee blamed the Bush administration for failing to capture or kill Osama bin Laden when the al Qaeda leader was cornered in Afghanistan's Tora Bora mountain region in December 2001.

Wall Street Journal: White House, Business Leaders Split on How to Create Jobs
The Obama administration and U.S. business leaders will meet at the White House this week to ponder ways to boost employment. Their ideas, though, don't overlap much. Businesses of all sizes are brimming with proposals they say would spur economic growth. The most commonly voiced are tax cuts and boosting access to credit.

NPR: Climate Change Bill Faces Delays In Senate
In early December, world leaders will gather in Copenhagen to begin talks on a new treaty to curb greenhouse gases and global warming. President Obama will attend the summit….White House officials say the U.S. will propose targets for reducing greenhouse gases in line with what Congress is considering. But while the House narrowly passed a climate change bill last summer, no action by the Senate is expected until next spring.

The Hill: Michigan lawmakers decry South Korea deal auto provisions
President Barack Obama’s call to complete a trade deal with South Korea in 2010 is stirring a hornet’s nest among Michigan lawmakers on Capitol Hill. They worry it will harm the U.S. auto sector and warn it will have to be significantly changed to win support.

Hartford Courant: Rowland-Case Lawyer Hired For South Carolina's Guv
Ross Garber, the gubernatorial legal counsel who in 2004 represented then-Gov. John G. Rowland in legislative pre-impeachment hearings, now is representing South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford in a lurid impeachment case that exploded in the national news when Sanford disappeared for five days last June to secretly meet his lover in Argentina. …South Carolina taxpayers will be paying thousands to Garber during the hearings, which resume this week.

Fort Worth Star-Telegram: Filing starts Thursday for hundreds of elections
Never mind that announced candidates have been slugging it out for months. The 2010 election season officially gets under way Thursday, when filing begins for hundreds of state and county races that will determine whether Republicans maintain and strengthen their political dominance in Texas or lose ground to Democrats seeking to build on gains from the last two elections.

NATIONAL
For the latest national news: www.CNN.com

Man sought in deadly ambush had prison sentence commuted
The man wanted for questioning in the fatal shooting of four police officers at a coffee shop had his 95-year prison sentence commuted by then-Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, authorities said late Sunday.

Seattle Times: Police surround Seattle home where person of interest in police shooting may be hiding
A SWAT team and police negotiators have surrounded a home in Seattle's Leschi neighborhood where the man sought for questioning in the Lakewood police shooting may be hiding.

USA Today: 'Honor killings' in USA raise concerns
Muslim immigrant men have been accused of six "honor killings" in the United States in the past two years, prompting concerns that the Muslim community and police need to do more to stop such crimes.

USA Today: Unemployed U.S.-born workers seek day-labor jobs
Growing ranks of U.S. citizens are heading to street corners and home improvement store parking lots to find day-labor work usually done by illegal immigrants. The trend is most pronounced in regions where hot construction markets have collapsed, says Abel Valenzuela Jr., a professor of urban planning at the University of California-Los Angeles.

INTERNATIONAL
For the latest international news: http://edition.cnn.com

CNN: Iran authorizes 10 new uranium plants
Iran's Cabinet has authorized the construction of another 10 uranium enrichment plants, its state news agency announced Sunday, further defying international calls to halt its production of nuclear fuel.

BBC News: Honduras elects conservative president Porfirio Lobo
Provisional results in the Honduran presidential election show that National Party candidate Porfirio Lobo has won. The scheduled poll was held five months after President Manuel Zelaya was forced from the country at gunpoint, with an interim government taking over.

Los Angeles Times: Hundreds in L.A. protest - and participate in - Honduras' presidential election
While Honduras' de facto government observed elections more than 2,000 miles away on Sunday, Honduran citizens in Los Angeles headed to a local school to make their voices heard - one way or another.

CNN: Exit polls: Ex-guerrilla wins Uruguay presidency
Jose "Pepe" Mujica, a former Marxist Tupamaro guerrilla fighter, won Uruguay's presidential runoff election Sunday, exit polls showed. Exit polls had Mujica defeating former president Luis Alberto Lacalle by a margin of 4 to 8 percentage points.

Der Spiegel: EU to Allow US Access to Bank Transaction Data
As part of the war on terror, American intelligence services have been monitoring European bank transactions since 2001. When the EU found out about it in 2006, they were outraged. But now it looks like the bloc will agree to a controversial deal that will allow the covert data transfer to continue.

The Guardian: Gordon Brown to announce 500 more British troops for Afghanistan
Gordon Brown will announce tomorrow that he is sending more British troops to Afghanistan, pre-empting a long-awaited statement from Barack Obama expected on Tuesday.

CNN: Swiss vote to ban minaret construction
Swiss voters on Sunday adopted a referendum banning the construction of minarets, seen by some on the far right as a sign of encroaching Islamism.

Times of London: Women lead Swiss in vote to ban minarets
A right-wing campaign to outlaw minarets on mosques in a referendum being held in Switzerland today has received an unlikely boost from radical feminists arguing that the tower-like structures are “male power symbols” and reminders of Islam’s oppression of women.

BUSINESS
For the latest business news: www.CNNMoney.com

New York Times: Arab Emirates Aim to Limit Dubai Crisis in Pledge to Banks
Trying to prevent a run on its banks, and financial turmoil that some fear could spread globally, the United Arab Emirates helped calm financial markets Monday with its pledge to lend money to banks operating in Dubai, an action that came amid concerns about excessive borrowing around the world.

Bloomberg: Thanksgiving Sales Attract More Shoppers, Less Average Spending
More consumers went shopping over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, yet spent less than last year as they hunted for bargains on toys and electronics, according to the National Retail Federation.

CNNMoney: Obama to push banks on mortgages
As foreclosure casualties mount, the Obama administration is expected to announce additional steps on Monday to get long-term help for troubled borrowers. Under the new initiative, the government will provide more resources for borrowers and will partner with organizations to offer homeowners assistance, a Treasury Department spokeswoman said.

Wall Street Journal: Companies More Prone to Go 'Vertical'
Larry Ellison is known for forward thinking. With his new business model, though, the billionaire chief executive of software maker Oracle Corp. is taking a page from the past. Mr. Ellison plans to buy Sun Microsystems Inc. and transform Oracle into a maker of software, computers, and computer components - a company more like the U.S. conglomerates of the 1960s than the fragmented technology industry of recent years.

CNNMoney: Bernanke: Don't tamper with the Fed
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, just days ahead of his confirmation hearing, is warning Congress that actions limiting the central bank's independence could prove detrimental to the causes of financial reform and economic recovery.

In Case You Missed It

Building bases in Afghanistan
http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/world/2009/11/29/pleitgen.afghan.building.base.cnn

Political week ahead
http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/politics/2009/11/29/steinhauser.week.ahead.cnn

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