(CNN) – Despite many people telling her it wasn’t the best idea to sit down with Oprah Winfrey for an interview, Rielle Hunter – politician John Edwards' mistress – decided to do it anyway.
"I feel in my heart it’s the right thing to do," Hunter said Thursday, especially now that "Johnny," as she calls him, has admitted paternity of their daughter, Frances Quinn.
Hunter said she wanted to set the facts straight about who she is, and that while she understands the judgment that has been heaped upon her, she doesn’t see herself as a home wrecker or gold digger, she told Winfrey.
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Washington (CNN) – Senate Judiciary Committee staffers met Wednesday with two Facebook executives to discuss the social networking site's controversial decision to allow third-party sharing of users' information.
"While he appreciates the tremendous value Facebook and other social networking sites provide to their users, the senator feels strongly that these sites should establish an opt-in policy for sharing users private data with third party companies and the default setting should always be more restrictive, not less," Brian Fallon, a Schumer spokesman, said in a statement to CNN. The Judiciary staffers work for Schumer, a member of the committee.
Andrew Noyes, a Facebook spokesperson who participated in the meeting via telephone, sought to emphasize the common ground between the senators and Facebook.
"We share the goal of user trust, the importance of innovation on the Internet, and how innovation can create better experiences for users," he said. "We talked about the success of the personalization announcements we made last week and the measurable benefits users and our Web partners have experienced. At the same time, we recognize that some users have concerns and we discussed ways to address them."
Washington (CNN) - Nearly one year after Sen. John Cornyn called Florida Gov. Charlie Crist "the best candidate" in that state's Senate race, the Texas Republican and head of the party's campaign committee said Thursday the organization wants its money back should Crist announce he is running as a third-party candidate.
Cornyn, the head of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, told reporters Thursday he will ask for the $10,000 back the committee gave Crist if, as expected, the Florida governor announces Thursday he is abandoning his GOP Senate bid in favor of an independent run. Brian Walsh, the NRSC's communications director, confirmed Cornyn's statement to CNN.
Listen: CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser and CNN's Dick Uliano take a look at the intra-party conflict among Republicans in races taking place in Florida, Texas and other places.
Cornyn also said that Crist's "future electoral prospects are irreparably damaged by his deciding now to run as an independent," according to the Washington Post.
Crist, who at one point held a wide lead over his Republican competitor, Marco Rubio, now trails the former Florida House Speaker by 23 points, according to a recent statewide poll.
(CNN) - Mitt Romney is once again lending a helping hand to fellow Republicans in 2010, possibly with an eye on 2012.
The former Massachusetts governor's political action committee Thursday will endorse seven Republican candidates running for office this year in Illinois. According to a press release, Romney's Free and Strong America PAC is backing Rep. Mark Kirk, who is the GOP Senate nominee in the race for President Obama's old seat.
The PAC is also endorsing Rep. Peter Roskam, Rep. Aaron Schock, three Republican House challengers, and the GOP nominee for state treasurer. The PAC is also contributing campaign cash to all seven candidates.
(CNN) – The famed "Ted Sox" - the longtime Senate softball team comprising staffers of the late Sen. Edward Kennedy - is reuniting this weekend to participate in the Race for Hope-DC, the National Brain Tumor Society's 5k walk/run.
According to team captain Co-Captains Kelsey Phipps and Tamar Sekayan, at least 24 former staff, supporters, and friends will reunite for the walk. The team has raised more than $5,000 for the cause in only one week.
The group says this year will be the first since 1967 that the "Ted Sox" will not be part of the Senate Softball league, and members of the team will wear their uniforms for the final time during the National Brain Tumor Society event.
Kennedy, the Massachusetts Democrat who served 47 years in the Senate, died last August at age 77 after more than a year-long battle with brain cancer.
"People want to get together to help and remember the senator," said Sekayan.
Tampa, Florida (CNN) – Florida Gov. Charlie Crist's decision to abandon the Republican Party and run for Senate as an independent, expected to be made official at a St. Petersburg campaign event Thursday, marks a stunning turnaround for a politician who just over a year ago was heralded as one of the GOP's brightest young talents.
But Thursday's rally also represents a general election kick-off for what is now one of the most entertaining and unpredictable races of the midterm election year, a battle between three viable statewide candidates.
"This is unprecedented in Florida, and I would say unprecedented in the country," said Justin Sayfie, the editor of the SayfieReview.com, an online clearinghouse for Florida political news.
Crist will be hunting for votes in the nation's fourth largest state along with Democrat Kendrick Meek and Republican Marco Rubio, whose small government message has rallied conservatives to his side over the last year and turned him into a celebrity of sorts among Republicans.
Washington (CNN) – Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele acknowledged Wednesday that an independent run for Senate by Republican Gov. Charlie Crist could jeopardize the GOP's ability to hold onto the Florida Senate seat.
Crist, the one-time frontrunner to win the seat in November, is now trailing Republican primary opponent Marco Rubio by more than 20 points. Multiple sources tell CNN that Crist will announce Thursday afternoon that he will leave the GOP primary and run as a nonaligned candidate.
Related: Crist to run for Senate as nonaligned candidate, source says
Steele said in an interview on "The Situation Room" that he doesn't want the governor to leave the Republican Party, but noted the RNC is committed to doing what needs to be done to keep the seat in GOP hands.
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
CNNMoney: Wall Street reform: Let the debate begin
The Senate officially kicked off debate of Wall Street reform on Wednesday evening. Republicans waived their right to block the bill, as it became clear Democrats had clinched the 60 votes needed to end the filibuster. There had been three days of standoff, and three failed votes to move forward. But on Wednesday evening the chamber agreed by unanimous consent to debate the bill.
CNN: Dems hope to be seen as ‘party of results’
When voters head to the polls in November, the Democratic National Committee would like them to remember Democrats with one word: results. On Wednesday at the Democratic National Committee headquarters in Washington, chairman Tim Kaine revealed his party’s new message and strategy months ahead of the midterm elections. The DNC chairman said that while the economy still needs improvements, it’s moved from recession to recovery.
Washington Post: Republicans hope to win three symbolic Senate seats
Every now and then, there comes a congressional race so fraught with history and symbolism that it becomes as much about sending a message as winning a seat. This year, Republicans are looking to hit the trifecta in the Senate. As things stand now, they are well within striking distance of winning President Obama's old seat in Illinois and Vice President Biden's former perch in Delaware, and of toppling Majority Leader Harry M. Reid in Nevada.
CNN: Crist to run for Senate as nonaligned candidate, source says
Florida Gov. Charlie Crist has decided to run as a nonaligned candidate rather than compete for the Republican Party nomination in his bid for the Senate, a GOP fundraiser tells CNN. The fundraiser, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said that Crist has begun contacting financial supporters to tell them that he is running as a non-party affiliated candidate and to ask for their continued support.
CNN: Steele: Crist win 'a real possibility' in three-way race
Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele acknowledged Wednesday that an independent run for Senate by Republican Gov. Charlie Crist could jeopardize the GOP's ability to hold onto the Florida Senate seat. Crist, the one-time frontrunner to win the seat in November, is now trailing Republican primary opponent Marco Rubio by more than 20 points. Multiple sources tell CNN that Crist will announce Thursday afternoon that he will leave the GOP primary and run as a nonaligned candidate.
CNN: Kaine: GOP 'civil war' pushing moderate Republicans 'overboard'
The chairman of the Democratic National Committee suggested Wednesday that Florida Republican Gov. Charlie Crist could become a political victim of a “corrosive civil war” among Republicans. And Tim Kaine said that as moderate Republicans are pushed “overboard,” some of them will become Democrats. Kaine suggested that if Crist announces Thursday that he will run as an independent, as expected, it will be the result of an internal war within the GOP.
Miami Herald: 4 Haitians jockeying to make history
Four Haitian Americans, all big names with deep roots in the community, are candidates in a crowded field vying for the congressional seat being vacated by U.S. Rep. Kendrick Meek, who is making a bid for the U.S. Senate. But behind the pride of this historic race that could result in the first member of Congress born in Haiti, leaders are working to manage egos and good intentions to winnow the number of candidates down and avoid splintering the vote. So far, no one is budging. All four have paid the $10,440 qualifying fee, each convinced he or she is the best person to represent the community and district, each with a bankable political base.