Las Vegas (CNN) - Elizabeth Warren is a hero at Netroots Nation, a gathering of progressive bloggers and activists meeting this week in Las Vegas.
Warren is a leading candidate for director of the newly created Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). And many of the Netroots advocates here vow to use their fundraising and online muscle to press President Obama and Democrats in Congress to make that happen.
Warren, a Harvard professor and chair of the Congressional Oversight Panel of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), is an outspoken consumer advocate who originally proposed the idea for such a bureau. The financial reform legislation signed by President Obama this week made the CFPB a reality. And in an interview with ABC News on Thursday, the President indicated that Warren is among those he's considering as the Bureau's director.
But Warren has critics in the business community, and both Obama and a key Democratic leader in Congress have made it clear she is no shoo-in for the post.
Washington (CNN) - Democrats admit that when it comes to passing comprehensive energy and climate change legislation, they simply do not have the votes.
So in an effort to get something through, the Senate's top Democrat announced that he will introduce a smaller bill in the coming days focusing on specific energy needs.
"Many of us want to do a thorough, comprehensive bill that creates jobs, breaks our addiction to foreign oil and curbs pollution," Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told reporters Thursday. "Unfortunately, this time we don't have a single Republican to work with in achieving this goal."
Reid had promised to bring a bill to the Senate floor by the August recess.
The Nevada Democrat said he will put four requirements in the new bill:
Washington (CNN) - Former Minnesota Sen. Norm Coleman said Friday that his focus is on the November elections and not next year's race for the chairmanship of the Republican National Committee, despite reports that he is eyeing the job.
But his non-denial denial aside, Coleman couldn't resist a pointed swipe at Michael Steele's handling of the RNC post.
"Between now and November I am going to work with Chairman Steele to make sure that we move this country forward to the path of fiscal responsibility," Coleman told CNN's Wolf Blitzer.
"Listen, the reality is that there have been concerns about the RNC, that's a reality," he continued. "Fundraising hasn't been what a lot of folks would like, et cetera. But that's not the focus right now."
(CNN) - Texas Gov. Rick Perry's suggestion in April 2009 that his state might consider secession drew a round of mockery nationwide, but his blustery populist rhetoric earned him serious traction among GOP primary voters in his re-election fight against Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison.
Perry, riding a tide of anti-Washington sentiment, went on to trounce Hutchison and another candidate in the Republican primary earlier this year.
Now another gubernatorial hopeful is test-driving a similar message.
Rep. Zach Wamp, one of three candidates seeking the GOP gubernatorial nomination in Tennessee, told Hotline OnCall that Perry had the right idea. Wamp argued that mandates forced on the states by the Obama administration's health care bill have put secession on the table.
"I hope that the American people will go to the ballot box in 2010 and 2012 so that states are not forced to consider separation from this government," Wamp told Hotline OnCall Friday.
Unemployment will likely stay at or above 9% through 2012, White House officials said Friday . (PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images)
New York (CNNMoney.com) - The White House said Friday it expects that unemployment will stay at or above 9% until 2012, but at the same time forecast that the economy will grow by at least 4% in 2011 and 2012.
It also revised its long-term deficit estimate under President Obama's proposed 2011 budget: The administration now believes the 10-year deficit will be $58 billion less than projected in February when the budget blueprint was first released.
Under the revised estimates, Uncle Sam will ring up $8.474 trillion in deficits between 2011 and 2020, down from the $8.532 trillion estimated in February.
In the near-term, the administration expects the 2010 deficit to come in at $1.47 trillion - slightly lower than originally forecast - while the 2011 and 2012 deficits will come in somewhat higher.
(CNN) - South Carolina gubernatorial candidate Vincent Sheheen is bringing on a veteran political hand to help steer his campaign against Republican Nikki Haley, multiple Democrats in the state told CNN Friday.
Sheheen has hired Tim Shock, who managed the successful 1998 campaign of Jim Hodges, the last Democrat to hold the South Carolina governor's mansion. Hodges was unseated in 2002 by Mark Sanford.
State and national Democrats are increasingly confident about Sheheen's chances. The state Senator has courted the business community while also working to exploit a rift between Haley and establishment Republicans anxious about her fiscally conservative agenda.
Washington (CNN) - In his first interview since the Justice Department said it decided not to charge Alberto Gonzales in the controversial firings of nine U. S. attorneys, the former U.S. Attorney General said he is angry about the investigation process.
"Well I feel good, John. I feel angry," Gonzales told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King. "I feel angry that I had to go through this; that my family had to suffer through this and what for? It was for nothing. I'm glad the investigation is over, and I'm glad the American people were reassured that nothing wrong happened during my tenure as the attorney general in connection with the removals of these U.S. attorneys."
Attorney General Eric Holder has accepted the "recommendation that criminal prosecution is not warranted," according to a letter sent to the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee.
The question as to whether the dismissals were made for political reasons led to a huge controversy in Washington. Gonzales ultimately resigned.
Asked on CNN's John King, USA about the political climate that existed in Washington at the time, and criticism of the Department of Justice under his management, Gonzales said he doesn't expect any apologies.
Washington (CNN) - House Majority Whip James Clyburn had some fun at Joe Biden's expense Friday, needling the Vice President over one of his infamous campaign gaffes.
Clyburn was introducing Biden at the dedication of the Ernest "Fritz" Hollings Special Collections Library at the University of South Carolina, named for the former senator who is a close friend of Biden's.
"Ladies and gentleman, it's a pleasure for me to present to you a mainstream American who is an articulate and bright and clean and a nice looking guy," Clyburn said, barely concealing laughter.
Biden grinned widely and embraced Clyburn as he took the stage.
Washington (CNN) - A new national poll suggests that major legislative victories for the Democrats this week have not helped the party in its goal to keep control of Congress in the midterm elections.
In May, the Democrats had a one-point edge in the so-called "generic ballot" question. But a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Friday indicates the Republicans have a 49 to 44 percent advantage when voters are asked which party's candidate they will vote for in their congressional district.
"Some of the biggest losses for the Democrats have come among senior citizens," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Among seniors, Democrats had a two-point edge in May but the GOP is currently winning 56 percent of that group."