(CNN) - President Obama touted financial regulation reform in the weekly White House address released Saturday.
"The consequences of this failure of responsibility – from Wall Street to Washington – are all around us: 8 million jobs lost, trillions in savings erased, countless dreams diminished or denied," Obama said. "I believe we have to do everything we can to ensure that no crisis like this ever happens again. That's why I'm fighting so hard to pass a set of Wall Street reforms and consumer protections."
But in an address largely devoted to laying out the components of financial reform legislation, Obama also accused Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of deliberately misleading the public.
"[T]he Senate Republican Leader came out against the common-sense reforms we've proposed. In doing so, he made the cynical and deceptive assertion that reform would somehow enable future bailouts – when he knows that it would do just the opposite," Obama said.
Read the full remarks after the jump:
(CNN) - Luci Baines Johnson, the younger of the late President Lyndon Baines Johnson's daughters, has been hospitalized at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, according to a former member of Johnson's staff.
Luci Johnson, 62, was first taken to the Seton Medical Center in Austin, Texas, on Wednesday after complaining of extreme weakness in all her
extremities, said Tom Johnson, who worked for the Johnson administration and later served as president of CNN in the 1990s.
Doctors there recommended that she be treated at the Mayo Clinic for what physicians believe is Guillain-Barre syndrome, Johnson said. It's an autoimmune disorder affecting the nervous system.
Washington (CNN) – President Barack Obama has canceled his trip to Poland to attend the funeral of Polish President Lech Kaczynski, the White House said Saturday.
A cloud of ash hovering over Europe from a volcanic eruption in Iceland has snarled global air traffic.
Tehran, Iran (CNN) - Mahmoud Ahmadinejad wasn't invited to the nuclear summit hosted in Washington last week, but the Iranian president had a few choice words for the United States on Saturday at another nuclear conference in Tehran.
The hardline leader slammed Western powers for what he called hypocritical and dangerous policies that can only lead to nuclear proliferation, according to remarks broadcast on state-run Press TV.
He said the United Nations and the International Atomic Energy Agency were ineffective because they were dominated by a few nations.
"The Security Council has openly turned into a tool for the implementation of the policies of a few bullying nations," Ahmadinejad said in
This group should act in a way where all independent countries and governments could have a say and a role in running the affairs of that group," he said.
Washington (CNN) - The Pennsylvania Democrat running for the House seat formerly held by the late John Murtha released an ad Saturday that refutes Republican charges that he supported health care reform.
The National Republican Congressional Committee went on TV earlier this week with an ad painting Mark Critz as too liberal for Pennsylvania because of his support for federal health care legislation.
"Mark Critz, he'll put the liberal agenda before Pennsylvania," the ad said.
But in his own thirty-second spot released Saturday, Critz denies he was ever a supporter of health care reform.
"That ad is not true. I opposed the health care bill, and I'm pro-life and pro-gun. That's not liberal," Critz says in the ad.
Washington (CNN) - One day after the official deadline to return the Census form, nearly 3 in 10 Americans have failed to do so, according to data made public by the Census Bureau.
As of Saturday, the official national participation rate stands at 69 percent. That rate reflects the percentage of forms mailed back by households that received them, but does not include forms returned by the U.S. Postal Service marked "undeliverable." The measure has never before been used by the Census Bureau, and was developed due to economic conditions and higher rates of vacant housing.
According to the Census Bureau, the national mail response rate was 67 percent in 2000 and the comparable national mail participation rate was 72 percent.
Americans who have failed to return the form by mail can still expect a home visit from a Census worker, with visits set to being in early May.
Warsaw, Poland (CNN) – World leaders' plans to reach Poland this weekend for the funeral of President Lech Kaczynski were in limbo as volcanic ash from Iceland continued to ground flights to and from Europe.
While French President Nicolas Sarkozy was already in Poland on Saturday and prepared to attend services the next day, other key leaders who planned to attend, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel and U.S. President Barack Obama, still faced possible cancellations due to the ash. The White House said Obama was scheduled to depart from Andrews Air Force Base late Saturday, but officials were still monitoring the situation.
Polish President Lech Kaczynski, his wife, dignitaries and top military leaders were killed when their plane crashed in bad weather. They were on their way to a service commemorating Polish prisoners of war massacred in Russia during World War II.
(CNN) – At the end of a week in which many Americans finalized their tax returns, House Minority Whip Eric Cantor used the weekly GOP address to warn that if Democrats remain in power, they will make "the 'tax days' of the future much much worse."
The Virginia Republican said the country is at a turning point and that Democrats don't have the right answer.
"The Democrats control every lever of power in Washington and they've never met a tax they didn't like or found a dollar they couldn't spend. Their economic plan? You pay, they spend, your children owe. You deserve better," Cantor said, adding that Republicans offer an alternative.
"But take hope. Down the other path is responsible, adult leadership, focused firmly on job creation and economic opportunity. We believe in a Congress that will once again listen to the people and return America to the country they know and love."
Washington (CNN) - In a move aimed at jump-starting bipartisan negotiations on Wall Street reform, Obama administration officials have signaled that they want Democratic Sen. Chris Dodd to remove a $50 billion bank liquidation fund from his financial regulation bill.
Republicans have pounced on the $50 billion provision, saying the legislation will lead to more government bailouts of large banks, effectively
stalling progress on the reform bill.
"The ex-ante fund was not in our original proposal we announced almost a year ago and we don't feel it is an essential part of final legislation," said one administration official late Friday. "The president will only sign a bill if it passes the test of putting an end to bailouts."
White House aides have vehemently denied for days the provision will spark more bailouts. Republican aides asserted the shift is a sign the White House fears the criticism is having an impact.