Washington (CNN) - Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will return to work next week after a nasty bout with stomach flu and a concussion sidelined her for three weeks.
"The Secretary continues to recuperate at home. She had long planned to take this holiday week off, so she had no work schedule," her spokesman, Deputy Assistant Secretary Philippe Reines said in a statement. "She looks forward to getting back to the office next week and resuming her schedule."
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Washington (CNN) - During the holidays, it's better to be Santa than Scrooge.
That's what Sen. John Kerry's staff realized, even as they scrambled to prepare their boss for his confirmation hearing to become the next secretary of state.
(CNN) - President Barack Obama will meet with congressional leaders on Friday afternoon to discuss the fiscal cliff, White House communications director Dan Pfeiffer said Thursday.
The 3 p.m. ET meeting will include Senate Majority Leader Reid, Senate Minority Leader McConnell, House Speaker John Boehner and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, the White House announced. Vice President Joe Biden will also attend.
Washington (CNN) - Less than two weeks after one of the nation's deadliest school shootings, the No.2 Democrat in the U.S. House, Steny Hoyer, compared Republican tactics for dealing with the nation's debt limit to someone threatening to shoot a child hostage.
"It's somewhat like taking your child hostage and saying to somebody else, 'I'm going to shoot my child if you don't do what I want done.' You don't want to shoot your child. There's no Republican leader that wants to default on our debt, that I've talked to," Hoyer said at a Capitol Hill press conference.
(CNN) - The U.S. House will return to Washington on Sunday, December 30 - one day before the first impact of the fiscal cliff would arrive - according to an aide to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor.
The House may be in session through Wednesday, January 2, the aide said.
The new 113th Congress will convene at noon on Thursday, January 3.
(CNN) - Rep. Ed Markey of Massachusetts said Thursday he will seek the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Sen. John Kerry, who was nominated to become the next secretary of state last week.
Markey's announcement makes him the first to publicly announce will seek the seat.
Washington (CNN) - Hawaii's newest senator was nominated, appointed, and sworn into his seat so quickly he had to scramble to get himself ready for the red-eye flight to Washington.
"I bought this coat yesterday," Brian Schatz told reporters after landing on the mainland dressed in an overcoat - hardly necessary in Hawaii, where temperatures were in the low 70s on Thursday.
(CNN) - Two sources on Capitol Hill say President Barack Obama told Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell he would send Congress a scaled back fiscal cliff measure on Thursday.
Two senior White House officials, however, later said the president will not send Congress a proposal.
(CNN) – NBC evidently got conflicting guidance from federal and local law enforcement officials about the legality of displaying an empty gun magazine on "Meet the Press," according to statements by the agencies involved.
An official with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives told CNN that he relayed information to NBC from the Washington Metropolitan Police Department that displaying an empty gun magazine was legal. Meanwhile, an MPD spokeswoman said her department told NBC such a display would be illegal.
Houston (CNN) - The family of George H.W. Bush expressed confidence Thursday that the former president will be released shortly from an intensive care unit at a Houston hospital, where he is being treated for an elevated fever.
Bush family spokesman Jim McGrath said Bush was moved into the ICU so hospital personnel could more easily keep tabs on his condition, and that his family members were fully confident in the medical staff treating him. But while Bush's family hopes he is able to leave the hospital soon, they and Bush's doctors are in no hurry to rush him out, according to McGrath.