(CNN) - When French President Francois Hollande flew to Washington this week for a state visit, he brought along a lot of baggage - and it's not his country's famous Louis Vuitton.
Hollande left France amid sinking popularity ratings and swirling reports that he cheated on his partner of seven years with a younger movie actress - making this week's trip something of an escape for the embattled president.FULL STORY
(CNN) - Two lawmakers have joined the debate over the name of the Washington Redskins football team, writing a letter to the National Football League calling for a name change and threatening to hold hearings on the subject.
The name Redskins is "an insult to Native Americans," according to the two lawmakers, Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Washington state and chairwoman of the Indian Affairs Committee, and Rep. Tom Cole, R-Oklahoma, who is a member of the Chickasaw Nation.FULL STORY
CNN's GUT CHECK | for February 10, 2014 | 5 p.m.
– n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle
DEVELOPING …. A NINETIES FLASHBACK
DOCUMENTS REVEAL HILLARY CLINTON’S PRIVATE REACTION TO HER HUSBAND'S CHEATING SCANDAL WITH MONICA LEWINSKY ... A new report claims that Hillary Clinton told a close friend that Monica Lewinsky was a "narcissistic loony toon," and also discussed in detail why she decided to forgive her husband for having an affair with the White House intern … Clinton ally Dianne Blair writes in papers the report is based off of, “HRC insists, no matter what people say, it was gross inappropriate behavior but it was consensual (was not a power relationship) and was not sex within any real meaning… of the term.” – Dan Merica
Gut Check Full Service: SEN. RAND PAUL, R-KENTUCKY, TO CNN’S PETER HAMBY FRIDAY: Sen. Rand Paul predicted that Hillary Clinton will have to answer questions about her husband’s affair if she decides to run for president in 2016. “It isn’t her fault the way her husband’s behaved …But at the same time, I think that they are a fundraising team. He does a lot of fundraising for candidates. I think if they want to beat up on Republicans and say Republicans don’t like women, I think that one of the big things that we advanced in the last several decades is that women are protected in the workplace … I’m sure Don (referring to Texas GOP Senate candidate and ally Don Hoffines) would tell you he would fire anybody that took advantage of a 20 years old girl … If one of his managers had the same kind of problems that Bill Clinton had with a 20-year old girl, he wouldn’t work for him anymore. It’s not acceptable behavior, and yet they are out there saying they are the great crusaders for women’s rights. I think that’s some hypocrisy that they will have to explain.”
Washington (CNN) – Representatives from eight cities met with GOP officials Monday in the nation’s capital to talk specifics about what it would take to host the Republican National Convention in 2016.
While the meeting was not a required step in the RNC’s selection process, it provides a look at which cities are seriously considering bidding on the convention where Republicans will choose the party’s next presidential nominee.
Updated 8:05 p.m. ET, 2/10/2014
Trenton, New Jersey (CNN) - A joint state legislative committee investigating the traffic scandal in New Jersey that has roiled Gov. Chris Christie's administration plans to issue more than a dozen new subpoenas.
Sources familiar with the matter told CNN that 18 subpoenas will be issued on Tuesday. Four will go to individuals or offices that have been served once already.
Washington (CNN) - The White House social secretary and executive chef are working late into the night and all day Tuesday to put the finishing touches on the first State Dinner at the executive mansion in over two years.
Tuesday night, the President and Mrs. Obama will host French President Francois Hollande, and an official familiar with the process of preparing the feast says the first family will include treats "from farmers and growers across the country." White House chefs say they hope to, "honor our guests by showcasing the best of American Bounty."
Update 5:55 p.m. ET
Washington (CNN) - U.S. Capitol Police gave the all-clear after investigating a "suspicious substance" at Sen. Ron Wyden's office on Capitol Hill Monday.
A hazardous materials team was on the scene at the office in the Dirksen Senate Office Building.
Wyden is a Democrat from Oregon.
New York (CNNMoney) - The Obama administration is giving employers more time to comply with rules requiring them to provide affordable health insurance for their workers.
Companies with 50 to 99 employees will now have until 2016 to provide affordable coverage under Obamacare, a year later than expected.FULL STORY
Washington (CNN) - The second ranking House Democrat predicted his party was in good position to retake control of the House of Representatives in the 2014 midterm election.
House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer pointed to a fundraising advantage for Democrats, lower poll numbers for congressional Republicans, divisions inside the GOP ranks, and a good recruiting class of Democratic challengers, and said "all of those combined in my view give me great optimism that we're going to win back the House."
(CNN) - In a major milestone for gay rights, the U.S. government on Monday expanded recognition of same-sex marriages in federal legal matters, including bankruptcies, prison visits and survivor benefits.
"It is the (Justice Department's) policy to recognize lawful same-sex marriages as broadly as possible, to ensure equal treatment for all members of society regardless of sexual orientation," Attorney General Eric Holder said in a memo to all employees.FULL STORY