POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: Monday, May 9, 2011
May 9th, 2011
04:31 AM ET
7 years ago

POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: Monday, May 9, 2011

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.

For the latest political news: http://www.CNNPolitics.com

CNN: Obama: Bin Laden raid was 'a 55/45 situation'
Sending U.S. troops on a dangerous mission to get Osama bin Laden was worth the risks, even though it was not certain the al Qaeda leader was in the Pakistani compound, U.S. President Barack Obama said in a "60 Minutes" interview Sunday on CBS. "This was still a 55/45 situation," Obama told CBS. "I mean, we could not say definitively that bin Laden was there. Had he not been there, then there would have been some significant consequences."

CNN: Should 9/11 victims' families, others get bin Laden bounty?
Reps. Anthony Weiner and Jerrold Nadler said any of the $25 million not paid to informants could help fund organizations that provide health care, psychological care and other resources to those most directly impacted September 11, 2001. "These programs are ones that desperately need funding that are still everyday dealing with the ramifications of September 11," Weiner said at a news conference from ground zero.

Wall Street Journal: Pakistan-U.S. Rift Widens
Pakistani media aired the name of a man they said is the Central Intelligence Agency's station chief, prompting questions about whether the Pakistani government tried to out a CIA operative in the wake of the killing of Osama bin Laden.The U.S. is looking into the matter. There are no plans at this time to withdraw the station chief. …The Islamabad station chief is one of the CIA's most critical and sensitive assignments. The position oversees the agency's covert programs, including the drone campaign that targets al Qaeda and Taliban leaders, as well as fighters who cross the border into Afghanistan.

Politico: John Boehner goes to New York to talk debt
In a speech to the Economic Club of New York in Midtown Manhattan, the Ohio Republican is set to reiterate to leading financial executives that he believes that reforming Medicare should be part of negotiations in raising the debt ceiling, saying that there needs to be “an honest conversation,” because the program is on an “unsustainable path if changes are not made,” according to sources familiar with the speech.

Roll Call: In Senate, Nominees Flounder
Fights over nominations have begun to dominate the Senate’s agenda as both parties look for places to one-up each other in a chamber with little else to do. Republicans last week threatened to block President Barack Obama’s nominees as a way to gain leverage on other issues. Meanwhile, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid shifted chamber action to several of the White House’s more controversial nominees after spending five fruitless weeks of floor time on a small-business bill.

For the latest national news: http://www.CNN.com

CNN: Despite sunny skies, Memphis braces for worst from surging Mississippi
Bright skies over Memphis, Tennessee, belied a potential disaster Sunday as a surge of fast-moving water threatened the city and many other communities along the Mississippi River. …"This water that we're seeing coming by is moving 2 million cubic feet per second," said Army Corps of Engineers Col. Vernie Reichling of the situation on Sunday outside Memphis. "To use an analogy, in one second that water would fill up a football field 44 feet deep."

Washington Post: Ariz. seeks online donations to build border fence
Arizona lawmakers want more fence along the border with Mexico — whether the federal government thinks it’s necessary or not. They’ve got a plan that could get a project started using online donations and prison labor. If they get enough money, all they would have to do is get cooperation from landowners and construction could begin as soon as this year. Gov. Jan Brewer recently signed a bill that sets the state on a course that begins with launching a website to raise money for the work, said state Sen. Steve Smith, the bill’s sponsor.

New York Times: Smugglers Guide Illegal Immigrants With Cues via Cellphone
A group of migrants was hustling north through the southern Arizona desert the other night when one of their cellphones vibrated with a text message. “Watch out,” it warned. “Things are hot up ahead. Take cover in the bushes.” The message, signaling the presence of the Border Patrol, was sent by a smuggler watching the group’s progress through binoculars from a hillside on the Mexican side of the border, members of the group said later. It was part of what border officials and immigrant activists say is an emerging trend in illegal border crossing — the use of what is being called the cybercoyote.

CNN: South Korean study may lead to higher autism estimates
Researchers believe the number of children who have an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is much higher than previously believed, according to a new study published Monday in the American Journal of Psychiatry. By looking at a total population sample in South Korea, the study authors estimate that 1 in 38 children in the country - or 2.64% - has some form of autism. The approach is a new one. Previously, researchers have examined only children known to have the neurological disorder or at high risk of developing it.

For the latest international news: http://edition.cnn.com

CNN: Clashes erupt in restive Syrian city; casualties reported
A 12-year-old boy was killed on Sunday when Syrian soldiers fired at a crowd in the city of Homs, according to Rami Abdul-Rahman, director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Abdul-Rahman, who is not in Syria but is in contact with activists and protesters there, said several people were killed and wounded. The Syrian government, meanwhile, reported the deaths of three soldiers and three security officers during clashes with "armed terrorist groups" in the Daraa, Homs and Banias regions.

The Guardian: Nato units left 61 African migrants to die of hunger and thirst
Dozens of African migrants were left to die in the Mediterranean after a number of European and Nato military units apparently ignored their cries for help, the Guardian has learned. A boat carrying 72 passengers, including several women, young children and political refugees, ran into trouble in late March after leaving Tripoli for the Italian island of Lampedusa. Despite alarms being raised with the Italian coastguard and the boat making contact with a military helicopter and a Nato warship, no rescue effort was attempted.

CNN: Exclusive: Alleged rape victim flees Libya
Eman al-Obeidy, who garnered worldwide attention for her vocal rape allegations against the regime of Moammar Gadhafi, says she has fled Libya, fearing for her safety. Al-Obeidy told CNN that she crossed into Tunisia on Thursday with the help of a defecting military officer and his family. She said she had left Tripoli in a military car, wearing a head cover that hid everything except one eye.

Al Jazeera: Egypt vows to tackle religious violence
Egypt's government has announced a series of security measures to curb religious violence after 12 people died in clashes in the Cairo suburb of Imbaba, sparked by rumours that Christians had abducted a woman who converted to Islam. The country's army also pledged on Sunday that 190 people would be tried in military courts over Saturday's violence. The fighting was Egypt's worst interfaith strife since 13 people died on March 9 after a church was burned, and poses a new challenge for generals ruling the country since the ousting of former president Hosni Mubarak in February.

CNN: Officials: Iraqi prisoner grabs gun; firefight leaves 17 dead
An Iraqi prisoner grabbed a police officer's gun while being moved from a detention cell Sunday and opened fire, triggering a gunbattle between prisoners and police officers that lasted for hours and left 17 people dead, a military spokesman said. …Iraqi officials describe [the shooter] as the leader of the Islamic State of Iraq and the "mastermind, direct supervisor and planner" of the October 2010 siege at Our Lady of Salvation Church that left more than 70 people dead and 75 more wounded.

For the latest business news: http://www.CNNMoney.com

Bloomberg: U.S. Will Urge China to Boost Interest Rates as Talks Start
Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner will urge China to allow higher interest rates when he meets with Chinese leaders this week, as the U.S. extends its push for a stronger yuan. Geithner will say China should relax controls on the financial system and give foreign banks and insurers more access, said David Loevinger, the Treasury Department’s senior coordinator for China. Officials from both nations are meeting in Washington today and tomorrow as part of the annual Strategic and Economic Dialogue.

CNNMoney: The coming millionaire boom
Despite the Great Recession, which wiped out $15.5 trillion in household wealth in the United States alone, the number of millionaires in this country and abroad will grow rapidly over the next decade. In the U.S., the total number of families with a net worth of over $1 million, including real estate, will double by 2020, according to a report by the Deloitte Center for Financial Services.

Financial Times: Apple is world's most valuable brand
Apple has overtaken Google to become the world's most valuable brand with an estimated brand value of more than $153bn, according to new rankings published on Monday. …Thanks to the success of the iPad tablet and iPhone mobile - among both consumers and corporations - Apple's brand value has surged in the last year to overtake that of the search engine company.

Wall Street Journal: CEO Pay in 2010 Jumped 11%
Chief executives at the biggest U.S. companies saw their pay jump sharply in 2010, as boards rewarded them for strong profit and share-price growth with bigger bonuses and stock grants. …Viacom Inc. CEO Philippe P. Dauman topped the list. He received compensation valued at $84.3 million, more than double his 2009 pay, thanks largely to equity awards in a renewed contract.

In Case You Missed It…
CNN's Nick Paton Walsh reports on the children who played outside the compound in Abbottabad, where Osama bin Laden hid.

Filed under: Political Hot Topics
soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. T'sah from Virginia

    [Obama: Bin Laden raid was 'a 55/45 situation']
    And ending it with those odds speaks highly of our nation!

    [Should 9/11 victims' families, others get bin Laden bounty?]
    After giving it to those who deserve it – the pot should be empty!!

    [Wall Street Journal: Pakistan-U.S. Rift Widens]
    Pakistan EXPOSED now there is NO MORE hiding!

    [Politico: John Boehner goes to New York to talk debt]
    Does this show a sign that someone is "inept?'

    [Roll Call: In Senate, Nominees Flounder]
    So what – nothing new – Not even a DOWNER!!!

    Love to hang around – But I cannot stay
    Off to Work Now so HAVE A NICE DAY!!!

    May 9, 2011 06:52 am at 6:52 am |
  2. German,Irish,American

    First it was 80-20, then 60-40, then 50-50, and now 55-45. Does this administration ever give a straight answer? Evidently the chest thumping by Obama didn't seem big enough without changing the odds after the killing.

    May 9, 2011 07:07 am at 7:07 am |
  3. diridi

    I personally like to say, "Thank you Mr. Pres. Obama, for killing Bin Laden" I think gas is going to come down....thank you for caring Middle class of America. We love you, my vote goes for you....I think, you do not need to stress yourself for campaigning and any one who has brain, will vote for you...Again, thank you for doing for America....Also, nab, who hire illegals, non-citizens without proper documentation, who are in here illegally....thanks...God bless my pres. Obama and the USA!!!!Amen....

    May 9, 2011 07:35 am at 7:35 am |
  4. Rudy NYC

    The President has worked hard to elevate the reputation of the United States, which, as Trump so eloquently noted, has become less than first class stellar. He has shown this effort throughout the past week by speaking in eloquently measured tones, including the "60 Minutes" interview where he avoided the use of the obvious phrase, "need to know", which would have led to uncomfortable questions and answers.

    May 9, 2011 08:28 am at 8:28 am |
  5. Rudy NYC

    Pakistan-US Rift Widens
    It should be noted that the Pakistani military did not get much in the way of fighter planes in the air until the US helicopters were well on their way back to base. It is almost as if they looked the other way while the US removed a nuisance.

    It should also be noted that more Pakistanis have dies through Al Qaeda violence than in any other country. It would almost make one wonder why Bin Laden was where he was for so long. It is almost as if Bin Laden was reminding them once per month that I am here, and I can do much worse.

    May 9, 2011 09:50 am at 9:50 am |