(CNN) – Bristol Palin’s former fiance publicly apologized to her family Tuesday in a statement to PEOPLE magazine, saying that some of his comments about the Palin family made in the wake of the 2008 presidential campaign are not totally true.
Levi Johnston, the father of Bristol’s son, Tripp, was thrust into the spotlight when former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin was chosen to be the 2008 Republican vice presidential candidate.
But his relationship with the Palin family became strained after his engagement to Bristol ended, and he embarked on a series of high-profile media interviews in which he criticized the Palin family.
Now, Johnston appears to be trying to mend the relationship.
"Last year, after Bristol and I broke up, I was unhappy and a little angry. Unfortunately, against my better judgment, I publicly said things about the Palins that were not completely true," Johnston told CNN’s sister publication PEOPLE Magazine. "I have already privately apologized to Todd and Sarah. Since my statements were public, I owe it to the Palins to publicly apologize."
Washington (CNN) – President Barack Obama assured visiting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday that an international conference on creating a nuclear-free Middle East, planned for 2012, would not single out Israel, which is believed to have a nuclear arsenal.
A White House statement issued after Obama and Netanyahu met at the White House said the president, as an organizer of the conference, emphasized it would only take place "if all countries feel confident that they can attend, and that any efforts to single out Israel will make the prospects of convening such a conference unlikely."
In addition, Obama told Netanyahu that the United States will continue working closely with Israel to ensure that arms control initiatives and policies don't hinder Israel's security, the White House statement said.
Washington (CNN) - California Republican Senate candidate Carly Fiorina is resting comfortably after undergoing surgery for breast reconstruction on Tuesday.
Fiorina was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2009. Following her diagnosis, Fiorina received treatment that included chemotherapy, a double mastectomy and radiation, according to a statement from Fiorina campaign Chief of Staff Deborah Bowker.
"Since that time, Carly has been actively campaigning while also taking the steps toward reconstruction," Bowker said.
Washington (CNN) – Republican leaders reacted swiftly Tuesday to a Justice Department decision to file a lawsuit challenging a tough new Arizona immigration law.
Justice Department lawyers argued that the state statute that requires immigrants to carry their alien registration documents at all times, and allows police to question the residency status of people in the course of enforcing another law, should be declared invalid because it has improperly preempted federal law.
But Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky ripped the Obama administration, saying in a statement that the federal government has "utterly failed" and that today's lawsuit "will not help secure our borders."
"Suing the people of Arizona for attempting to do a job the federal government has utterly failed to execute will not help secure our borders. If the President wants to make real progress on this issue, he can do so by taking amnesty off the table and focus his efforts on border and interior security," McConnell said.
Washington (CNN) – What do Republican Rep. Roy Blunt of Missouri and Democratic Rep. Brad Ellsworth of Indiana have in common?
These two Senate candidates released their first campaign television commercials Tuesday, yet neither mentioned that they are currently members of Congress.
In his commercial, Blunt talks about his family history, saying "my mom and dad were dairy farmers. My grandmothers were one room school teachers. I was the first person in my family to graduate from college. I became a high school teacher and later a university president."
(CNN) – Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty's heading back to Iowa later this month to campaign for fellow Republicans. For the possible 2012 White House hopeful, it's the third trip in the past year to the state whose caucuses kick off the presidential primary season.
Palwenty spokesman Alex Conant confirms to CNN that beginning on July 31, Pawlenty is lined up for three days of campaign events in eastern Iowa, lending a helping hand to several legislative candidates in hopes of regaining GOP control of the state legislature.
"Governor Pawlenty is working hard to help conservatives around the country win this fall. We have great opportunities in Iowa, and Governor Pawlenty is trying to build on that excitement through his new Iowa PAC and this upcoming trip to eastern Iowa," says Conant.
Close friends and family gathered Tuesday to say farewell to Sen. Robert Byrd, the longest-serving member of Congress, who died last week at age 92. (PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images)
Washington (CNN) - Close friends and family gathered Tuesday to say farewell to Sen. Robert Byrd, the longest-serving member of Congress, who died last week at age 92.
A funeral service was held at Memorial Baptist Church in Arlington, Virginia, followed by a private graveside service at Columbia Gardens Cemetery, also in Arlington. Byrd was buried alongside his wife Erma, who died in March 2006.
The couple will be reburied later in West Virginia once family members determine a location.
Washington (CNN) - Republican Senate candidate Rand Paul's reversal on a key campaign pledge, that some people now call a flip-flop, may not hurt him politically with some supporters even while it angers others.
Paul won Kentucky's Republican primary largely with the help of Tea Party activists and a staunch message of limited government which included strong opposition to 2008's bailout of Wall Street financial institutions. Before the May primary, Paul vowed not to accept campaign cash from any federal lawmaker who voted for the Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP.
But on June 24, just over a month after his primary win, Paul attended a Washington fundraiser and dinner sponsored by some lawmakers who voted for the Wall Street bailout. Kentucky's senior Sen. Mitch McConnell hosted the fundraising reception and dinner along with other Republican senators and House members.
Washington (CNN) - Recent national polls suggest that a majority of Americans support Arizona's controversial immigration law.
The Justice Department Tuesday filed a lawsuit challenging the new measure, which is scheduled to take effect later this month. The law requires immigrants to carry their alien registration documents at all times and allows police to question the residency status of people in the course of enforcing another law. It also targets businesses that hire illegal immigrant laborers or knowingly transports them.
According to a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey conducted in May, 57 percent of the public favored the measure, with 37 percent opposed. Since then, national polls by Quinnipiac University (51-31 percent in favor), ABC News/Washington Post (58-41 percent in favor) and Fox News/Opinion Dynamics (52-27 percent in favor) also indicate that a majority back the new law.
Washington (CNN) – If Boston Red Sox slugger Kevin Youkilis ends up making the 2010 American League All Star team, he might have Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry to thank.
That's because Kerry sent a mass e-mail Tuesday to some three million supporters asking them to cast their votes for the first baseman.
"Kevin Youkilis of the Red Sox is an All Star in anyone's book. He plays the game the way it's supposed to be played, he hustles, he has a great bat and a glove to match, and he brings with it the kind of intensity we respected for years in guys like Trot Nixon," Kerry writes. "Youk deserves to be in the All-Star game - while the team has grinded it out in spite of injury after injury, he's been a rock. But now he needs to win a fan vote to make it to Anaheim next week."