POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: Wednesday, August 17, 2011
August 17th, 2011
04:27 AM ET
3 years ago

POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: Wednesday, August 17, 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 blasts GOP 'rigidity' in CNN interview
President Barack Obama placed the blame for Washington's current political paralysis squarely at the feet of his Republican opponents Tuesday, telling CNN that the GOP's "ideological rigidity" is standing in the way of compromises necessary for stronger economic growth.

CNN: Obama pushes economic compromise as his bus tour nears end
President Barack Obama concludes his three-day, three-state bus tour Wednesday with a pair of town hall meetings in his home state of Illinois. Obama's first meeting will be at Wyffels Hybrids Production Facility in Atkinson. In the afternoon, he will travel to Alpha for a meeting at Country Corner Farm Market.

CNNMoney: Starbucks CEO to DC: You've been cut off
Spurred by what he describes as a failure of leadership on the part of lawmakers, [Starbucks CEO Howard] Schultz is mounting a one-man bull rush against a political culture that has "chosen to put partisan and ideological purity over the well being of the people." What does that mean? No more political donations - not for anybody. And he's recruiting other CEOs to join him.

Foreign Policy: Clinton: Debt debate is hurting America’s ability to lead
The recent debt ceiling debacle and Congress's threat to force a default has hurt America's standing and credibility as a world leader, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said [Tuesday]. …She then went on to defend national security spending, particularly as it relates to diplomacy and development, linking it to the U.S. rivalry with China.

Roll Call: Perry’s No Tea Party Darling in Texas
Although [Texas Gov. Rick] Perry has railed against the federal stimulus, made billions in state budget cuts and threatened secession at an anti-tax rally he hosted, his tea party critics are disappointed with his performance as governor over the past 11 years.

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

CNN: 2 Democrats keep their seats in Wisconsin recall election
Two Democratic state senators in Wisconsin defeated Republican challengers to hold on to their seats in a recall election Tuesday, news media in the state reported. Tuesday's win by the Democrats was the last round in a series of recall elections this summer.

Los Angeles Times: Firearms from ATF sting linked to 11 more violent crimes
Firearms from the ATF's Operation Fast and Furious weapons trafficking investigation turned up at the scenes of at least 11 violent crimes in the U.S., as well as at a Border Patrol agent's slaying in southern Arizona last year, the Justice Department has acknowledged to Congress.

CNN: Report: Immigration program distracts police, destroys trust
Local leaders across the country were presented Tuesday with the results of a report that calls for the end of a controversial Department of Homeland Security program involving local officials in immigration enforcement.

Wall Street Journal: Cigarette Makers File Labeling Suit
Four U.S. tobacco companies on Tuesday filed a joint lawsuit against a new federal rule that will require graphic warnings on cigarette packs, calling the proposal an infringement on free speech.

CNN: Classes set to start in tornado-ravaged Joplin
Wednesday is the start of the school year for students in Joplin, Missouri, a bittersweet time for a town still rebuilding from a tornado in May that killed more than 130 people. For Joplin's 2,200 high school students, it means a split. Ninth and 10th graders will go to an existing middle school, while upperclassmen will attend classes at a mall.

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

CNN: A child's killing freeze-frames Syria's tragedy
One video showed the tiny face of the slain girl wrapped in a shroud. Someone pulled back a bandage to show her bloodied right eye. Her mouth was frozen, slightly ajar. Her vacant face and lifeless head conjured the image of an alabaster bust. The images surfaced Sunday and Monday in Syria, where more than 2,000 people have died in five months of bloody conflict between security forces and anti-government demonstrators.

CNN: Saleh pledges to return to Yemen; at least 26 killed in clashes
On a day in which at least 26 people were killed in fighting between local tribes and government forces, President Ali Abdullah Saleh pledged to return to Yemen, and denounced the violence there as inspired by reactionary elements "who want to take the country back" to the days before its independence.

CNN: NATO cites 'significant advances' in Libya
Over the past few days, anti-Gadhafi forces have made "significant advances" - in the northwest and in the regions of Misrata and al-Brega - a spokesman for NATO's military operation told reporters Tuesday.

CNN: Document casts doubt on James Murdoch's testimony
Parliament released new documents Tuesday that cast doubt on the veracity of testimony given to lawmakers last month by James Murdoch, the son and heir apparent to Rupert Murdoch's media empire, about News International's role in the phone hacking scandal.

CNN: Indian activist's detention sparks protests nationwide
Thousands of Indians took to the streets Wednesday in a show of solidarity with a 72-year-old activist arrested a day earlier as he prepared to go on a public hunger strike to push for stronger anti-corruption measures.

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

CNNMoney: Stocks retreat after Merkel, Sarkozy disappoint
U.S. stocks fell Tuesday after German and French leaders spoke about Europe's debt problems, but offered little in the way of action. The pullback - which briefly sent the Dow down nearly 190 points on Tuesday afternoon - came after three straight sessions of healthy gains.

Wall Street Journal: Verizon Steps Up Labor Fight
In the latest escalation of an increasingly bitter labor battle, Verizon Communications Inc. has been telling union members it will suspend basic health-insurance and medical benefits on Aug. 31 for all workers still on strike at that time.

Washington Post: Four titans of tech are racing to be king of digital age
Eric Schmidt, the executive chairman of Google, has called them the “gang of four.” They are the four titans of tech: Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon. And they are impossible to escape, tapping nearly every consumer’s wallet and holding vast power over huge swaths of the economy.

In Case You Missed It…
CNN's John King and panel members talk about the latest flash mob in Germantown, Maryland.
http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/us/2011/08/16/jk.flashmobs.maryland.cnn


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