(CNN) - First lady Michelle Obama got into the Christmas spirit Saturday by helping field phone calls from excited children eagerly tracking Santa and his sleigh full of toys across the world.
"I've spotted a little dot, flashing dot that is over - right now, Santa's sleigh is over the country of Latvia. And he's delivering toys there," Obama told three siblings. "It looks like he's got all nine reindeer with him. And it looks like that sleigh is pretty full - yep, that's what the experts here are saying."FULL STORY
(CNN) - Newt Gingrich’s plan to wage a write-in campaign for Virginia’s GOP presidential primary may be dead on arrival. Virginia state law specifically prohibits voters from writing in candidates not on the ballot in primary elections.
On Saturday, Gingrich’s campaign said it would attempt to persuade voters to write in the former House speaker’s name after the Republican Party of Virginia rejected the candidate’s petitions to appear on the primary ballot.
(CNN) - For many, it's an annual December conundrum - greet people with the traditional "Merry Christmas" or the secular "Happy Holidays"?
It's a small decision with seemingly oversized cultural significance, coming amid pressure to "keep Christ in Christmas" while also remaining inclusive of people who don't celebrate the Christian holiday.
New York (CNNMoney) - Congress couldn't agree how to pay for a year-long extension of the payroll tax cut, federal unemployment benefits and an adjustment in Medicare physician pay.
In fact, it could barely agree on whether to extend them for two months.FULL STORY
Washington (CNN) - Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich failed to collect enough signatures to appear on the Virginia primary ballot, the Republican Party of Virginia announced Saturday morning, leaving the longtime Virginia resident without a place on the state's ballot and raising questions about his campaign's organization.
Gingrich, as well as Texas Gov. Rick Perry, did not meet the state's requirement of 10,000 signatures and, therefore, did not qualify for the ballot, the Virginia GOP said via Twitter.FULL STORY
(CNN) - After weeks of squabbling over extending the payroll tax cut, Republicans and President Barack Obama turned their focus on the holidays in their weekly addresses Saturday.
The addresses, which typically ding the opposite side on policy matters, struck a nonpartisan note by thanking troops for serving over Christmas.
Washington (CNN) - The Department of Justice on Friday deemed South Carolina's new law requiring voters to present a state or federal photo ID "legally unenforceable," arguing that it could be discriminatory against minorities in violation of the Voting Rights Act.
The proposed law, signed by Gov. Nikki Haley in May, would require voters wishing to vote in person to present one of five forms of photo identification. The current law, in effect since 1988, does not require a photo ID. The stated intention in changing the law was to reduce voter fraud caused by someone impersonating another voter.FULL STORY