The CNN Washington Bureau’s morning speed read of the top stories making news from around the country and the world. Click on the headlines for more.
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CNN: Sources: Compromise could temporarily extend all bush tax cuts
An emerging tax cut compromise could be to temporarily extend Bush-era tax cuts for all income levels, congressional sources in both parties told CNN Thursday. Republican and Democratic sources say in this scenario – a short term extension across the board – both sides would be giving ground. Democrats would compromise on their pledge to let tax cuts for the wealthy expire, and Republicans would give on their promise to make all tax cuts, including those for the wealthiest Americans, permanent.
Washington Post: Liberals plan to push Obama not to compromise with GOP
On the heels of the Democratic Party's huge losses in last week's midterm elections, liberal activists have begun planning to push President Obama on a series of issues, demanding that he not cede any ground to Republicans. Liberal groups have blasted Obama at times over the past two years as not being sufficiently dedicated to their positions – history that factored into their criticism of the White House on Thursday for signaling that it will compromise with the GOP on the issue of extending tax cuts that are scheduled to expire this year.
Arizona Republic: Dream Act may get one final push in lame-duck session
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who was re-elected last week with strong support from Latino voters, will make one last push in the final days of the 111th Congress to pass legislation allowing illegal immigrants brought to the United States as children to earn legal status if they attend college or serve in the U.S. military. Advocates of the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act – better known as the Dream Act – say Reid has a better chance of passing the bill in the lame-duck session than he will when the new, divided Congress is sworn in this January.
CNN: Retreat for new lawmakers to emphasize Tea Party goals
A leading conservative grassroots organization that spent millions of dollars helping elect Tea Party backed candidates in the midterm elections is holding a two day retreat in Baltimore, Maryland Thursday and Friday for many of those soon to be congressional lawmakers. FreedomWorks says the meetings, at a hotel in downtown Baltimore, will focus on what they call a "Tea Party legislators policy agenda for the 112th Congress."
Roll Call: Losing Dems Spent Big Bucks But Lost
Sometimes you just spend a lot to lose. A detailed analysis of the most recent campaign finance filings through Oct. 13 showed that Democrats who lost their re-election bids largely spent big bucks to do so. In several cases, Republican candidates who managed to win thanks to a GOP tidal wave sweeping across the nation spent dramatically less.
Politico: Map narrows for Obama reelection
Two years after his dramatic expansion of the electoral map paved the way to a landslide win, President Barack Obama’s reelection campaign appears likely to resemble the political trench warfare that marked the 2000 and 2004 presidential races. Last week’s midterm elections saw the trio of conservative-leaning states Obama captured in 2008 — Virginia, North Carolina and Indiana — return to their Republican tendencies while more traditional swing states also broke sharply toward the GOP. Perhaps most worrisome for Democrats, Rust Belt and Midwest states that had been trending toward the party even before Obama’s election saw Republicans pile up victories.
CNN: Palin to hit the road
Sarah Palin is gearing up to promote her new book, “America by Heart: Reflections on Family, Faith and Flag.” The former Alaska governor will travel to 13 states in 11 days, including Iowa and South Carolina, sites of early presidential battles, according to a schedule provided to CNN by the book’s publisher, Harper Collins. Palin is often mentioned as a potential GOP presidential candidate and leaves the door open to a run.
Los Angeles Times: Reagan library to host first GOP debate for 2012 primary
The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library announced Thursday that it plans to invite "all of the leading contenders" to a spring 2011 debate in Simi Valley, the first Republican presidential primary debate of the 2012 cycle. NBC News and Politico have signed on as media partners. "Ronnie would be thrilled that the road to the White House will begin at his Presidential Library," former first lady Nancy Reagan said in a press release. "I look forward to welcoming and watching the top candidates debate the issues next spring."
New York Times: Obama’s Trade Strategy Runs Into Stiff Resistance
President Obama’s hopes of emerging from his Asia trip with the twin victories of a free trade agreement with South Korea and a unified approach to spurring economic growth around the world ran into resistance on all fronts on Thursday, putting Mr. Obama at odds with his key allies and largest trading partners. The most concrete trophy expected to emerge from the trip eluded his grasp: a long-delayed free trade agreement with South Korea, first negotiated by the Bush administration and then reopened by Mr. Obama, to have greater protections for American workers.
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Reuters: Health overhaul should press ahead: industry
Company executives at the Reuters Health Summit this week said the law is far from perfect and said they will push for more steps to tackle stagnant health information technology and skyrocketing costs. But after two years of debate over the issue, they need to move forward with clear steps on how to realign their businesses. The new healthcare law created "a stable, predictable environment, however painful it has been in the short term," GlaxoSmithKline Plc's Chief Strategy Officer David Redfern said at the summit in New York. "When you are running a business, the hardest thing is changing policy and a changing environment because it is very difficult to plan, predict and ultimately invest in that sort of scenario," he said, echoing other speakers.
New Hampshire Union Leader: Federal heating aid sliced in half
Three weeks and counting - that's how long before the winter heating season officially begins here and, unless something changes, the annual federal funding stream that warms New Hampshire's neediest households will only be half of what it was last year. According to Joanne Morin, director of the state Office of Energy Planning, the proposed federal budget that funds New Hampshire's share of the Low Income Housing Energy Assistance Block Grant was slashed this year by nearly $2 billion, down from $5.1 billion for the previous winter.
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CNN: Ban Ki-moon: 'G-20 nations must keep their promise'
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is in his hometown of Seoul for the G-20 summit and is calling on nations to not forget about the real reasons why they have gathered in the Korean capital. With trade and currency imbalances expected to top the, the former South Korean foreign minister insists that rich, developed nations must "keep their promise" to the developing world. "While I'm concerned that opinion is divided among some G-20 leaders, this is the moment for unity and co-ordination to come together and help the developing nations and poor people," he told CNN.
CNN: Iraq leaders' deal on power sharing appears to fall apart
After eight months of bickering and political paralysis, Iraqi leaders were thought to have finally reached a power-sharing agreement Thursday for a new government, but that deal appeared to fall apart late in the day as members of the Sunni-backed Iraqiya List walked out of the parliamentary session. Jalal Talabani, sworn in late Thursday for a second term as president, delegated Shiite Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki to form a government within 30 days, as mandated by the constitution.
CNN: U.N. report alleges North Korea exported nuclear technology
A U.N. expert panel alleges that North Korea exported banned nuclear and ballistic missile technology to several rogue nations. The 75-page report, complied by a seven-member panel reporting to the United Nations Security Council, states that North Korea is involved in "nuclear and ballistic missile-related activities in certain countries, including Iran, Syria and Myanmar" and that special attention should be given by all member countries to inhibit such activities.
CNN: Russian newspaper names colonel as source of info on spy ring in U.S.
A colonel in Russia's Foreign Intelligence Service, identified as "Colonel Shcherbakov," gave the United States information on a Russian spy ring in the United States that was broken up this past June, according to a report in the respected Russian newspaper Kommersant. Neither the U.S. State Department nor the Central Intelligence Agency would comment on the report. The article says the man, described as "the betrayer," fled Russia three days before Russian president Dmitri Medvedev arrived in the U.S. for meetings with President Barack Obama, just days before the ring was broken up.
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Bloomberg: Why Oil Could Top $100 a Barrel
Oil prices have hovered around $78 a barrel most of the year, providing little excitement as other commodities, including copper, gold, and cotton, have enjoyed record runups. Global economic growth has not been brisk enough to drive up oil demand substantially, U.S. inventories have been ample, and the Saudis have been pumping enough to guarantee a plentiful supply. A change in the oil markets may now be upon us. Crude may climb past $100 next year as central banks pump cash into their economies to revive growth, predict JPMorgan Chase (JPM) and Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BC). The Federal Reserve's decision to buy $600 billion of Treasuries from commercial banks should lower U.S. interest rates and weaken the dollar further. Investors may turn increasingly to oil and other commodities to get a decent return.
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