CHICAGO, Illinois (CNN) - President-elect Barack Obama has chosen Shaun Donovan, New York City's former housing commissioner, to be his secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
Obama used his weekly radio address to announce the selection.
"As commissioner of housing preservation and development in New York City, Shaun has led the effort to create the largest housing plan in the nation, helping hundreds of thousands of our citizens buy or rent their homes," Obama said.
He said HUD is essential in the effort to address the mortgage crisis, which he said "not only shakes the foundation of our economy, but the foundation of the American Dream."
"To stem the rising tide of foreclosures and strengthen our economy, I've asked my economic team to develop a bold plan that will dramatically increase the number of families who can stay in their homes," Obama said. "But this plan will only work with a comprehensive, coordinated federal effort to make it a reality."
Donovan has experience working in business, academia and at HUD during the Clinton administration.
(CNN) - Is President-elect Obama a hawk or dove? In the latest installment of CNN=Politics Daily, Republicans are gushing over Obama’s national security team, and his anti-war supporters are less-than-pleased over some of his cabinet picks. CNN’s Jim Acosta reports.
Plus: Roughly a month after the GOP presidential ticket failed to capture the White House, former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin is still grabbing the spotlight. The Alaska governor has been offered numerous book deals, and is currently one of the most searched women on the internet. CNN’s Deborah Feyerick has the latest on Palin’s superstar status.
An urgent warning delivered by a bipartisan commission says the United States is likely to face a biological or nuclear attack by the year 2013. CNN’s Jeanne Meserve has the details in her “Memo to the President.”
Finally: Governors are hitting up Barack Obama to help their states stay afloat during this difficult economic period. CNN’s Suzanne Malveaux reports on what the governors want out of the economic stimulus package, and how they will apply the funds to help create jobs.
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(CNN) – Saying that moving quickly is imperative, President-elect Barack Obama on Saturday offered an outline of his economic recovery plan to create 2.5 million jobs by 2011, saying American workers will rebuild the nation's roads and bridges, modernize its schools and create more sources of alternative energy.
"These aren't just steps to pull ourselves out of this immediate crisis," Obama said in the weekly Democratic address, posted on his Web site. "These are the long-term investments in our economic future that have been ignored for far too long."
Details of the plan are still being worked out by his economic team, Obama said, but he hopes to sign the two-year, nationwide plan shortly after taking office January 20.
He referred to figures out this week showing that new home purchases in October were the lowest in 50 years, and that 540,000 new unemployment claims had been filed - the highest in 18 years.
"We must do more to put people back to work and get our economy moving again," he said. More than a million jobs have been lost this year, he said, and "if we don't act swiftly and boldly, most experts now believe that we could lose millions of jobs next year."
The plan will be aimed at jump-starting job creation, Obama said, and laying the foundation for a stronger economy.
"We'll put people back to work rebuilding our crumbling roads and bridges, modernizing schools that are failing our children and building wind farms and solar panels, fuel-efficient cars and the alternative energy technology that can free us from our dependence on foreign oil and keep our
economy competitive in the years head," he said.
He noted he will need support from both Democrats and Republicans to pass such a plan, and said he welcomes suggestions from both sides of the aisle.
(CNN) –Sources tell CNN’s Ed Henry and John King Barack Obama has chosen Eric Holder as his nominee for Attorney General.
Holder has accepted the position but must still undergo a vetting process by the Obama transition team.
If confirmed, Holder will become the first African-American to hold the position.
He served as deputy attorney general under Bill Clinton
Newsweek first reported the story.
(CNN) - President-elect Barack Obama reiterated a call for fast action on the economy during the weekly Democratic radio address Saturday.
A day after stressing the economy in his first news conference since winning the presidency, Obama picked up the theme in the radio address.
Noting that nearly 1.2 million Americans have lost their jobs this year - including 240,000 in October - the president-elect said that "their stories are an urgent reminder that we are facing the greatest economic challenge of our lifetime, and we must act swiftly to resolve them."
(CNN) - As each day passes, the buzz is building that Robert Gates might be asked - and agree - to stay on as defense secretary, at least for a while.
Gates himself left the door open this year, when I first asked him whether would consider serving in the next administration.
"The circumstances under which I would do that are inconceivable to me," Gates craftily replied in an April Pentagon news briefing.
When I asked him again later in the summer while touring Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado, he gave the same answer but added an all-important qualifier: "I've learned never to say never."
Well, those circumstances that seemed "inconceivable" back then appear all too conceivable now. In fact, it's the talk of the Pentagon.
What we know from some of the few people who have actually discussed this with Gates is that he IS willing to stay, although not too long.
But the former spymaster is playing his cards very close to the vest. Almost no one at the Pentagon knows what's really going on over the back channels.
CHICAGO, Illinois (CNN) - In his first public remarks since he delivered his victory speech Tuesday night, President-elect Barack Obama vowed Friday that restoring the nation's economic equilibrium will be a major priority of his administration.
"I do not underestimate the enormity of the task that lies ahead," he told reporters at the Hilton Hotel. "We have taken some major action to date and we will take further action."
Obama said that, if the lame-duck Congress fails to reach an agreement on a stimulus package before he takes office January 20, passing such a package will be his first move.
(CNN) – Barack Obama launched the official government Web site for the presidential transition on Thursday, giving it a look and feel that suggests the new president will utilize the Internet to a much greater degree than his predecessor.
The site is a slightly more formal-looking incarnation of Obama’s campaign web site that features a blue-shaded presidential seal and a countdown clock to the Inauguration on January 20. There are biographies not only of Obama and Joe Biden, but also the directors of his transition team: John Podesta, Valerie Jarrett and Pete Rouse. The web site outlines Obama’s policy agenda, on issues from Iraq to social security to urban policy.
While the site lacks the innovative community organizing tools that helped propel the Illinois senator to the presidency, one section of the site does ask for user-generated content, asking Americans to submit stories about “what this campaign and this election means to you” and “where President-Elect Obama should lead this country.”
There is a transition blog, which at the moment only features a video of Obama’s Tuesday victory speech in Chicago’s Grant Park.
One link on the site is sure to get a flood of clicks: the “Jobs” section.
“All staff appointments chosen for this administration will be committed to fulfilling Obama’s campaign promises, to rebuilding our government, and to serving the American people again,” the site says.
CNN=Politics Daily is The Best Political Podcast from The Best Political Team. Watch Thursday's episode.
(CNN) – Two days after winning the White House, President-elect Barack Obama is readying to assume the presidency as the nation fights two wars and tries to battle back from a struggling economy
In the latest episode of CNN=Politics Daily, White House Correspondent Suzanne Malveaux reports on Obama’s choice for Chief of Staff, and who’s on the short list to be the next Secretary of the Treasury.
State Department Correspondent Zain Verjee reports that people around the world are eagerly awaiting Obama’s inauguration with hopes that the new president will be able to play an important role in fixing a host of global problems.
In the wake of Obama’s win and a string of Democratic congressional victories that added to their majority, Republicans are tending to their political wounds and beginning to think about what they need to do to rebuild their party’s damaged brand. Brian Todd takes a closer look.
Finally, Special Correspondent Frank Sesno speaks with American Morning’s Kiran Chetry about the challenges President-elect Obama will likely face once he gets to D.C. - and faces the task of dealing with the ailing economy.
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CHICAGO, Illinois (CNN) – Will Senior Obama Campaign Strategist Robert Gibbs become Barack Obama's Press Secretary?
A high level source involved in the Obama transition team tells CNN Senior Political Correspondent Candy Crowley that as of this morning the offer to Gibbs of the Press Secretary's position has been discussed but that the job has not been formally offered yet.
CNN's Jessica Yellin is also hearing a similar message from another Obama transition source.
A very close friend of Gibb's on Capitol Hill tells CNN Chief National Correspondent John King that he's been told the job is a done deal and will be announced later today.
Gibbs steered the Obama Campaign's communications. He served as Communications Director in Obama's Senate office prior to joining the presidential campaign early last year, and he was a major player in the freshman senator's rise in the public eye.