(CNN) - Ben Quayle, the son of former Vice President Dan Quayle who is seeking a House seat in Arizona, is making a splash with a new campaign ad in which he looks straight into the camera and declares, "Barack Obama is the worst president in history."
"My generation will inherit a weakened country," Quayle also says solemnly in the new 30-second spot. "Drug cartels in Mexico, tax cartels in DC. What's happened to America? I love Arizona. I was raised right. Someone needs to go to Washington and knock the hell out of the place."
Quayle, the 33-year-old son of the former vice president, is one of 10 Republicans seeking the GOP nomination for the third district House seat of retiring Rep. John Shadegg. The Republican-leaning district primarily encompasses Phoenix and its surrounding suburbs.
(CNN) – Former House Ways and Means Chairman Dan Rostenkowski has died at the age of 82, CNN confirmed.
"Rosty" was a fixture in Chicago politics and a dominant force on Capitol Hill for decades, representing Chicago's Northwest Side from 1959 to 1995 in a storied career that saw incredible highs and lows.
As chairman of the powerful tax-writing committee, the New Deal Democrat worked hand-in-hand with a Republican President, Ronald Reagan, to cut an historic tax reform deal in 1986 that lowered taxes and simplified the tax code.
(CNN) – Former President George W. Bush called Catherine Stevens, widow of former Sen. Ted Stevens on Wednesday, to express his condolences about the plane crash that took the former Alaska lawmaker's life on Monday night.
Bush spoke to Stevens around 12:30 p.m. CT, according to Bush spokesman David Sherzer.
The former president put out a statement on Tuesday saying he and former First Lady Laura Bush were "deeply saddened" by the death of Stevens and the four other people who died in the crash.
"Ted served our country with great distinction," Bush said in the statement. "We send our heartfelt condolences to the families of those who were lost, and we are praying for the health and well-being of the survivors."
Washington (CNN) – The Senate will reconvene on Thursday to give unanimous consent for $600 million in emergency funding to help secure the U.S.-Mexico border.
A notice from Majority Leader Harry Reid's office said the session would pass a resolution on the death of former Sen. Ted Stevens and pass the border spending bill, which then would go to President Barack Obama to be signed into law. The House passed the measure Tuesday.
"This will be an extremely short session, as we will just be doing these two items," Reid's notice said. "Once the session concludes tomorrow, we are out until September 13."
Senators passed a similar plan last week, but must vote again on the House measure that includes the language on border funding. Reid's announcement signaled that Senate Republicans have agreed to approve the bill by unanimous consent, a voice vote that doesn't require the return of the entire chamber.
(CNN) – Americans are split right down the middle when it comes to the question of changing the Constitution to prevent children of immigrants from automatically becoming U.S. citizens.
According to a new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation Poll out Wednesday, 49 percent of Americans are in favor of changing that portion of 14th Amendment while 51 percent oppose doing so.
"That's not a recent development," CNN Polling Director Keating Holland said. "A 1993 poll found the same even split on this issue."
The poll also shows a clear partisan divide on the issue, with 58 percent of Republicans supporting a change while only 39 percent of Democrats do so. Independents are split exactly 50-50.
(CNN) - A proposed mosque to be built two blocks from the World Trade Center has little support nationwide, a new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation Poll suggests.
According to the new survey out Wednesday, nearly 70 percent of all Americans oppose the controversial plan to build the mosque just blocks away from the solemn site in lower Manhattan while just 29 percent favor the construction.
Broken down by party affiliation, 54 percent of Democrats oppose the plans while 82 percent of Republicans disapprove. Meanwhile, 70 percent of independents said they are against the proposal.
The poll also showed opposition did not vary widely by age.
(CNN) - Nearly half of all Americans think the Constitution provides same-sex couples the right to marry, according to a new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation Poll.
Forty-nine percent of respondents think gay and lesbian couples have the constitutional right to get married and have their marriage recognized by law, while 51 percent say those rights do not exist.
The gap widens dramatically when age is taken into account. Nearly six in ten Americans under the age of 50 say gay rights are protected under the Constitution. Only 38 percent of Americans over the age of 50 say the same thing.
"This is one of the few instances when independents side with one party rather than falling in between the Dems and the GOP," CNN Polling Director Keating Holland said. "56 percent of Democrats and 57 percent of Independents think the Constitution conveys the right to marry to same-sex couples. Only a quarter of all Republicans agree."
(CNN) – Six in ten Americans favor the $26 billion bill providing aid to state governments for teachers' salaries and Medicaid benefits that President Obama signed into law on Tuesday, according to a new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll.
The Senate passed their version of the bill last week after Democrats received some unexpected Republican support from Maine Sens. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced last week that she would call members back from their six-week summer recess to pass the bill on Tuesday.
"Not surprisingly, a majority of Republicans oppose the bill, but 57 percent of independents favor it," CNN Polling Director Keating Holland said.
Washington (CNN) – Georgia Republicans have a nominee for governor after former Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel conceded the GOP primary Wednesday to ex-Rep. Nathan Deal.
While less than 2,500 votes separated the two candidates in this primary runoff election, Handel told Deal late Wednesday morning that she would not request a recount as allowed under state law if the margin remained under one percent. As of Wednesday, the difference between Deal and Handel was 0.4 percent.
The telephone call, brokered by a mutual friend, lasted for about 10-15 minutes and Handel "said she would encourage her supporters to show the same excitement and enthusiasm for Nathan's candidacy as they did for hers," Deal spokesman Brian Robinson told CNN.