POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: Wednesday, July 6, 2011
July 6th, 2011
04:34 AM ET
3 years ago

POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: Wednesday, July 6, 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.

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

CNN: Obama invites congressional leaders for deficit talks this week
President Barack Obama said Tuesday that he invited Democratic and Republican leaders from both chambers of Congress to the White House for a meeting Thursday to discuss deficit reduction and the need to raise the federal debt ceiling.

CNN: Obama's Twitter town hall to focus on economy, jobs
President Barack Obama will answer questions about the economy and jobs Wednesday during his first Twitter town hall meeting. But the president, known for his oft- lengthy responses to the shortest of questions, will not be confined to Twitter's 140-character limit. He is verbally answering questions from Twitter users, who were urged to use the hash tag #AskObama.

CNN: Official: White House to lift ban on military suicide condolences
The Obama administration has reversed a White House policy of not sending condolence letters to the next-of-kin of service members who commit suicide, a senior administration official confirmed in a statement to CNN.

CNN: Poll: Romney still ahead in New Hampshire
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney tops a new WMUR Granite State Poll, with more likely Republican primary voters saying they'd support him in the first-in-the-nation primary state. His first-place showing in the poll hasn't wavered since February 2009. Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann took over second place in the survey but still trails Romney by double digits.

Huffington Post: Former Tim Pawlenty Colleagues, Mentors Don't Recognize The Man Running For President
Those who have known Tim Pawlenty for a long time are stumped by a simple question: What happened to him? It's not just his presidential campaign, which is at a low point. His poll numbers have spiraled downward and his $4.2 million second quarter fundraising haul was disappointing. It's also Pawlenty himself. Numerous longtime friends and associates of the former Minnesota governor told The Huffington Post the problem is deeper: They don't recognize the man running for president.

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

CNN: No resolution of Minnesota government shutdown in sight
Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton said he thinks he and legislators are out of "good" options in the battle to bring Minnesota's government out of a shutdown that's been in place since Friday morning, though he remains "committed."

CNN: Georgia begins appeal after judge blocks parts of immigration law
Attorneys representing Georgia said the state is asking an appeals court to overturn a judge's decision blocking several parts of the state's new immigration law. State officials had previously pledged to appeal the ruling, but Tuesday's notice of appeal filed in U.S. District Court was the first formal step in the process.

Los Angeles Times: California pays more than 1,400 workers in excess of $200,000
More than 1,400 state employees were paid in excess of $200,000 last year, according to compensation data made public for the first time Tuesday on Controller John Chiang's website. Of those, 790 were prison doctors, dentists or nurses. More than 300 others were psychiatrists and other medical professionals working for the Department of Mental Health.

CNN: Dozens of Atlanta educators falsified tests, state report confirms
Dozens of Atlanta public school educators falsified standardized tests or failed to address such misconduct in their schools, Gov. Nathan Deal said Tuesday in unveiling the results of a state investigation that confirmed widespread cheating in the city schools dating as far back as 2001. Some of the cheating could result in criminal charges, Deal said.

Houston Chronicle: Stay rejected for girl's Mexican killer
Texas thumbed its nose at the White House and the United Nations on Tuesday as it cleared the way for Thursday's execution of Humberto Leal Garcia Jr., a Mexican national who was denied access to his nation's consulate after being arrested for a San Antonio rape-murder. … His fate now rests with the U.S. Supreme Court, which is considering a stay of execution request from the Obama administration.

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

CNN: Somali terror suspect brought to US after being detained overseas
An indictment unsealed in New York Tuesday provides further evidence of links between al Qaeda affiliates in Somalia and Yemen, a growing concern to counter-terrorism officials. …The indictment charges Ahmed Abdulkadir Warsame with providing material support to the extremist group Al-Shabaab in Somalia, and to al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) in Yemen.

CNN: Syrian activist offers account of abduction, beatings
He says it is not safe to communicate through Twitter. Facebook? Only if he uses a fake account. Google chat is our best option, he tells me. Just type in Arabic. Keep it short. And please type President Bashar al-Assad's name sparingly. Halfway around the world, a 20-year-old Syrian answers my questions. Every stroke is thoughtful, every word heavy with fear.

New York Times: Better Lives for Mexicans Cut Allure of Going North
The extraordinary Mexican migration that delivered millions of illegal immigrants to the United States over the past 30 years has sputtered to a trickle, and research points to a surprising cause: unheralded changes in Mexico that have made staying home more attractive.

CNN: Sudan sees big changes with creation of South Sudan
Sudan will drop in size by one quarter and lose 8 million people from its population when the state of South Sudan comes into being in a few days, a Sudanese official said Tuesday. …South Sudan is to become the world's newest country on Saturday after Southern Sudanese voted overwhelmingly last January for independence in a referendum. Sudan was officially the largest country in Africa and the Arab World.

CNN: Journalists hacked missing teen girl's phone, lawyer charges
Journalists hacked into the phone messages of a missing girl, deleting some to make space for more and thus giving her parents hope she was still alive when she was dead, the parents' lawyer told CNN on Tuesday.

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

CNNMoney: Verizon ends unlimited data plan
Verizon Wireless has joined competitors AT&T and T-Mobile in eliminating the option for customers to consume unlimited data on their mobile phones without paying additional fees. …Beginning Juy 7, Verizon smartphone customers will be able to choose from $30 for 2 gigabytes, $50 for 5 gigabytes or $80 for 10 gigabytes with a $10-per-gigabyte overage charge.

USA Today: Foreign buyers lifting U.S. home sales
Foreign buyers are helping to stoke home sales in U.S. vacation hot spots decimated by the real estate crash, especially in southern Florida. For the 12 months ending in March, 31% of Florida's home sales were to foreign buyers, up from 10% in 2007, according to a survey by the National Association of Realtors.

CNN: Facebook to make 'awesome' announcement
Facebook has scheduled a Wednesday news conference to announce the launch of what it termed "something awesome." The leading theory is that the company will unveil a video-chat feature powered by Skype.

In Case You Missed It…
CNN's Nic Robertson reports from Aden on the human cost of al Qaeda's advances in Yemen.
http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/world/2011/07/05/robertson.yemen.al.qaeda.cnn


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