(CNN) – Three weeks before voters choose a new U.S. senator in Massachusetts, the rival candidates made their first high profile attempt to discredit each other in a televised debate Wednesday.
At stake is the U.S. Senate seat vacated earlier this year when Sen. John Kerry stepped down to become secretary of state. Voters will choose between longtime Democratic U.S. Rep. Ed Markey and Republican businessman Gabriel Gomez in the June 25th special election.
(CNN) – It was hardly intentional, but Vice President Joe Biden had some observers remembering old rental car ads featuring O.J. Simpson during his speech at Sen. Frank Lautenberg’s funeral on Wednesday.
Describing a time when he was a senator from Delaware, Biden recalled a day he was hustling to catch an Amtrak train, only to be told it was being held for the late New Jersey Democrat.
(CNN) - The Internal Revenue Service has placed two employees on administrative leave in connection with a 2010 conference in Anaheim, California, which cost millions of taxpayer dollars.
The employees were not identified in a Wednesday statement from IRS Acting Commissioner Danny Werfel, nor were the exact circumstances of their alleged wrongdoing detailed.
CNN's GUT CHECK | for June 5, 2013 | 5 p.m.
– n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle
RICE GETS PROMOTION: SUSAN RICE TO REPLACE TOM DONILON AS NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER… President Barack Obama on Wednesday announced he was bringing longtime confidante Susan Rice, the U.N. ambassador to the White House to succeed Tom Donilon as national security adviser. The president also said he would nominate Samantha Power of the National Security Council to succeed Rice at the United Nations. – Jessica Yellin and Tom Cohen
BORDER SECURITY A MUST: RUBIO RAMPS UP PRESSURE ON IMMIGRATION BILL… Republican Sen. Marco Rubio, one of the lead backers of the Senate immigration reform effort, says he will not support his own bill if amendments to boost border security don't pass. – Jim Acosta and Deirdre Walsh
MARKET WATCH: Dow and NASDAQ suffer worst drop in nearly two months. Dow falls 217 points to end below 15,000.
(CNN) – Vice President Joe Biden and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton were among those who spoke candidly and cracked a few jokes at the funeral of their former friend and colleague Sen. Frank Lautenberg, who passed away this week at the age of 89.
Speaking at the service in Manhattan, Biden reflected on his time serving with the New Jersey Democrat in the Senate and recounted their shared fondness for Amtrak. One time when the then-senator was hustling to catch Amtrak back to Delaware, he ran to the train only to hear a conductor tell him there was no need to rush.
New York (CNNMoney) - Donald Trump didn't make it to the White House, but his next hotel may not be far away.
The General Services Administration announced an agreement with the Trump Organization Wednesday to redevelop Washington's historic Old Post Office building, just a few blocks from the White House on Pennsylvania Avenue. The deal is still subject to review by Congress.
Washington (CNN) - While President Barack Obama's overall approval rating appears to be holding steady, numbers from two new national polls on the trio of current controversies may give the White House cause for concern.
The surveys suggest increasing doubts about the administration's honesty and integrity as it deals with controversies over the Internal Revenue Service's targeting of tea party and other conservative groups who applied for tax exempt status, the administration's handling and reaction to last September's attack in Benghazi that left the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other Americans dead, and the Justice Department's secret collection of journalists' phone records as part of a government investigation into classified leaks.
(CNN) – Speaking after a meeting with a group of House conservatives Wednesday, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida continued to voice support for immigration reform legislation, but distanced himself from the Senate proposal he helped craft with the bipartisan "gang of eight".
Rubio was asked about his comments on a conservative radio show earlier in the day that he may vote against the Senate bill if the changes he wants don't pass. He didn't tell reporters on Capitol Hill he would vote against it, but did say, "If the changes don't happen, the bill can't pass. We'll keep working. We won't abandon the effort, we'll keep working to ensure that we have a bill that can pass."
(CNN) – Online ads, backed by a six-figure buy from a conservative group, are hitting the web urging lawmakers to oppose a tax on carbon emissions.
The campaign from Americans for Prosperity goes after senators and representatives from 15 states, and begins with a budget of $175,000, according to a release from the organization.
Washington (CNN) – President Barack Obama is returning to the scene of one of the most famous rallies from his 2008 campaign for the White House.
The White House announced Wednesday that the president will speak June 19 at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Germany, at the invitation of German Chancellor Angela Merkel.