(CNN) – Ron Barber, an aide to former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, will run for the Arizona Congressional seat left empty when Giffords resigned from Congress last month.
Barber, a Democrat, was wounded in the January 2011 shooting that left Giffords with a severe head wound. She has been undergoing intensive rehabilitation since, and announced in January she would resign from Congress to focus on her recovery.
Washington (CNN) - Republicans looking to take back the White House in November face a challenging political environment, a trio of conservative political observers said Thursday at an annual gathering of conservative activists.
The recent controversy over health insurance coverage for contraception may help to turn out Catholic swing voters in key states, but the observers also said the Republican Party would do well to have its own positive agenda and clear messaging if it wants to unseat President Barack Obama.
(CNN) - Rick Santorum said Thursday that arguments against a recent federal law requiring health insurance coverage for contraception were not ignoring the rights of women.
"It's the churches' money, and forcing them to do something that they think is a grievous moral wrong, how can that be the right of a woman?" Santorum asked in an interview on CNN's "John King USA."
Washington (CNN) - Did House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi inadvertently cross a legal line by asking for political contributions while on federal property?
At a Capitol Hill press conference Thursday, Pelosi was making the case for campaign finance reform and said Democrats will disclose donors to their political groups, even when the law doesn't require it.
Washington (CNN) – Mitt Romney met quietly with a small group of conservative leaders in Washington on Thursday in an effort to reassure Republicans who remain skeptical about his candidacy, CNN has learned.
The Romney campaign arranged a "mix and mingle" session for the candidate to meet with conservatives Thursday afternoon at the Marriott Wardman Park, where the annual Conservative Political Action Conference is being held.
Washington (CNN) – Casino mogul and major Republican donor Sheldon Adelson met Mitt Romney last week while he was in Nevada campaigning for the state's caucuses, a source familiar with the meeting confirmed to CNN.
Adelson is a major backer of the super PAC supporting Romney's rival Newt Gingrich, "Winning Our Future." Adelson and his extended family have donated $11 million to that PAC.
Adelson has "assured Romney that he will be behind him 100 percent should he become the nominee," the source told CNN.
(CNN) - Ron Paul said Thursday the recent spike in support for rival Rick Santorum was a result of dissatisfied Republicans, though he said the former Pennsylvania senator hardly qualified as a conservative alternative.
"I think there's a few Republicans that might not even vote Republican, and we have a lot of those that come to our rallies from the Democratic Party," Paul said on CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer."
Washington (CNN) - Rick Santorum all but referred to Mitt Romney as Mr. Burns, the villainous nuclear power plant owner in the Simpsons who once famously said, "release the hounds."
Asked by a reporter about Romney's assaults on his record of supporting earmarks in Congress, Santorum did everything but show the bite marks at a news conference in Oklahoma.
Oklahoma City (CNN) - Following an energetic rally here on Thursday, Rick Santorum pushed back against a recent spate of criticisms from GOP rival Mitt Romney.
"Governor Romney's campaign has been about serially tearing down but not offering any kind of vision about what he wants to do for this country," Santorum told reporters.
(CNN) - Congressional Democrats and Republicans escalated their rhetorical war Thursday over a pending federal rule requiring religiously affiliated employers to provide full contraception coverage to women - one day after hints emerged of a possible compromise between the White House and conservative religious critics.
Numerous rank-and-file Democrats urged the White House not to back away from its support for the rule, while Republicans demanded a full retreat.