April 29th, 2010
12:25 PM ET
4 years ago

Facebook execs meet senator's aides

Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-New York, sent a letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg asking him to change the social networking website’s privacy settings.
Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-New York, sent a letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg asking him to change the social networking website’s privacy settings.

Washington (CNN) – Senate Judiciary Committee staffers met Wednesday with two Facebook executives to discuss the social networking site's controversial decision to allow third-party sharing of users' information.

Sens. Chuck Schumer of New York, Michael Bennet of Colorado, Mark Begich of Alaska and Al Franken of Minnesota, urged Facebook earlier this week to change its privacy policy.

"While he appreciates the tremendous value Facebook and other social networking sites provide to their users, the senator feels strongly that these sites should establish an opt-in policy for sharing users private data with third party companies and the default setting should always be more restrictive, not less," Brian Fallon, a Schumer spokesman, said in a statement to CNN. The Judiciary staffers work for Schumer, a member of the committee.

Andrew Noyes, a Facebook spokesperson who participated in the meeting via telephone, sought to emphasize the common ground between the senators and Facebook.

"We share the goal of user trust, the importance of innovation on the Internet, and how innovation can create better experiences for users," he said. "We talked about the success of the personalization announcements we made last week and the measurable benefits users and our Web partners have experienced. At the same time, we recognize that some users have concerns and we discussed ways to address them."

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Filed under: Al Franken • Charles Schumer • Mark Begich • Michael Bennet
March 16th, 2010
11:13 AM ET
4 years ago

First test for Sen. Bennet

Sen. Michael Bennet at a fundraising event with President Obama in February.
Sen. Michael Bennet at a fundraising event with President Obama in February.

(CNN) – Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado faces his first test Tuesday in his bid for a full term in office, when state Democrats and Republicans hold precinct caucuses.

Party members are expected to gather to pick their favorite candidates in this year's top races, including senator and governor. While the caucuses are open to all registered party members, they usually attract political insiders and junkies. And while nominations will be decided by the state's August primaries, a strong showing in the caucuses could give some candidates a boost.

Bennet was plucked out of political obscurity last year, when Gov. Bill Ritter named him to replace Sen. Ken Salazar, who stepped down to serve as Interior Secretary in the Obama Administration. To reach November's general election, Bennet first needs to successfully fend off a Democratic primary challenge from former Colorado House Speaker Andrew Romanoff.

Bennet leads Romanoff in the battle for campaign cash, thanks in part to a fundraiser appearance in Colorado last month by President Obama. Romanoff has criticized Bennet for raising out-of-state money.

Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @psteinhausercnn


Filed under: Michael Bennet
February 18th, 2010
12:55 PM ET
5 years ago

Obama comes under attack on western swing

President Obama travels to Denver, Colorado on Thursday.
President Obama travels to Denver, Colorado on Thursday.

Washington (CNN) - As President Obama heads west Thursday to help out two Democratic senators facing tough elections this year, a Republican senate candidate in Colorado scolds the president in a new campaign television commercial.

Obama travels to Denver, Colorado Thursday afternoon, where he'll be the headliner at two different fundraisers for Sen. Michael Bennet, who's running this November for a full term in office. But before he gets to the general election, Bennet first needs to successfully fend off a Democratic primary challenge from former Colorado House Speaker Andrew Romanoff.

Bennet was plucked out of political obscurity last year, when Gov. Bill Ritter named him to replace Sen. Ken Salazar, who stepped down to serve as Interior Secretary in the Obama Administration. Bennet leads Romanoff in the battle for campaign cash and Thursday's visit by Obama may help Bennet widen his fundraising margin.

As the president arrives in Colorado, former Lt. Governor Jane Norton, who appears to be the front-runner in the battle for the GOP senate nomination, launched an TV ad that accuses the president of "massive spending and debt" and urges Obama to "pledge to balance the budget or decline to seek re-election."

Colorado was a success story for the Democrats over the past decade, as they made major gains in federal and state elections, which culminated with Denver hosting the 2008 Democratic National Convention and Obama winning the state in the presidential election.

But politically it appears the times have changed.

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Filed under: Michael Bennet • President Obama
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