Holder meeting: More substance than charm?
May 30th, 2013
05:58 PM ET
1 year ago

Holder meeting: More substance than charm?

Washington (CNN) - Embattled Attorney General Eric Holder's long-time friend Reid Weingarten, the high-powered Washington attorney, came to his defense Thursday telling CNN that off-the-record sessions with media executives were not meant as a mea culpa.

"This is not about Eric Holder giving his defense. This is a policy discussion Eric has been instructed to do by the president. He wants people to sit down and roll up their sleeves," Weingarten says. "This is not a charm offensive. This is substantive."
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Filed under: Eric Holder • Justice Department
White House reaching out to Democratic strategists
May 15th, 2013
04:34 PM ET
1 year ago

White House reaching out to Democratic strategists

(CNN) – Top Democratic strategists have been invited to the White House for a meeting Thursday morning with Chief of Staff Denis McDonough, according to a source familiar with the meeting.

The source presumes that the meeting is an effort to discuss ideas for damage control, as the White House faces an onslaught of questions regarding its handling of the Benghazi attack, the Internal Revenue Service scandal and the Justice Department's seizure of Associated Press phone records.

 


Filed under: White House
Borger: Did political spin hide the truth of Benghazi?
May 13th, 2013
04:26 PM ET
1 year ago

Borger: Did political spin hide the truth of Benghazi?

Washington (CNN) - Ever since Watergate became the shorthand for a government run amok, the political cliché of our time has been about the political lesson of that era: That the coverup can be worse than the crime.

Apply that cliché to Benghazi - and questions about the motive for removing the terror link from talking points about the Libyan attack in the heat of an election. Maybe there's a corollary question that we ought to be asking: In politics, when did spin trump everything, even the truth?

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Filed under: Libya • President Obama
Borger: Crunch time for Obama and Washington
April 8th, 2013
03:54 PM ET
2 years ago

Borger: Crunch time for Obama and Washington

Washington (CNN) - It's not often that a presidential to-do list (and legacy-making agenda) comes down to a couple of key weeks, but here we are: gun control, immigration reform and the budget - all front and center, right now.

It's an odd time in Washington. The president has been dating Republicans, dining with senators with whom he has hardly spoken in the past. Republicans seem to believe they can actually work with the president - on immigration, at least.

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Filed under: President Obama
Analysis: What's behind Obama's charm offensive?
March 8th, 2013
06:18 PM ET
2 years ago

Analysis: What's behind Obama's charm offensive?

Washington (CNN) - In case you missed it, Barack Obama–the man who once seemed perfectly content to live under the political equivalent of house arrest–has suddenly decided to become a party animal. He's having phone chats with Republicans, taking them out to dinner at a swanky Washington hotel and has plans to rush up to Capitol Hill next week for four meetings -with the Democrats, and his new acquaintances, the Republicans.

Since we know this is not about empty nest syndrome (he still likes to have dinner with his daughters at home), there must be something else up.
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Filed under: President Obama • Republicans
Borger: For Obama and GOP, much to chew over
March 6th, 2013
02:22 PM ET
2 years ago

Borger: For Obama and GOP, much to chew over

(CNN) - So it's good to see that the president has finally started calling some Republicans. He's even invited some to share a meal. And not just moderates, but also those who have been his most vocal opponents - like John McCain and his buddy Lindsey Graham.

This, of course, is something completely different. After his re-election, the president was asked about his unusually standoffish behavior with Congress. He took offense.

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Filed under: President Obama • Republicans
Borger: Obama can't kick his legacy down the road
February 19th, 2013
03:03 PM ET
2 years ago

Borger: Obama can't kick his legacy down the road

Editor's note: Gloria Borger is CNN's chief political analyst, appearing regularly on shows such as "AC360˚," "The Situation Room" and "State of the Union."

(CNN) - So let's try and recount why we are where we are: In August, 2011, Washington was trying to figure out how to raise the debt ceiling-so the US might continue to pay its bills-when a stunt was hatched: Kick the can down the road.

And not only kick it down the road, but do it in a way that would eventually force Washington to do its work: Invent a punishment.

FULL STORY

Filed under: President Obama
Democrats Talk Tax Hikes, Part II
February 7th, 2013
06:51 PM ET
2 years ago

Democrats Talk Tax Hikes, Part II

(CNN) - Senate Democrats are working on a temporary measure, which includes new tax measures, to avoid steep automatic spending cuts looming on March 1, CNN has learned.

While a source familiar with the plan did not specify any cuts that would be part of the package, he did outline three areas for possible revenue increases to be proposed "in the next couple of weeks."
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Filed under: Democrats • Senate • Taxes
February 6th, 2013
11:51 AM ET
2 years ago

Borger: The new Republican reality show

Editor's note: Gloria Borger is CNN's chief political analyst, appearing regularly on shows such as "AC360˚," "The Situation Room" and "State of the Union."

(CNN) -
No matter how hard politicians try, party reinventions are never pretty - and hardly ever subtle. The trick is twofold: First, tell voters you weren't really wrong - your message just wasn't getting through. Next, shift positions, without admitting you had to change positions to survive.

Bill Clinton, both as a candidate and as president, was the master of reinvention. As a Southern governor, he saw a party that was too liberal, so he pushed it to the center. And when he took a shellacking in the 1994 midterm elections, with Democrats losing control of the House, he took advantage of it, forcing newly empowered Republicans to lead alongside him. Imagine that.

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Filed under: Eric Cantor • Republicans
Interior's Ken Salazar stepping down
January 16th, 2013
06:55 AM ET
2 years ago

Interior's Ken Salazar stepping down

Washington (CNN) - Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, who led the response to the 2010 BP oil spill and administered a moratorium on offshore drilling, announced Wednesday that he is stepping down.

The former Colorado lawmaker plans to return home in March after eight turbulent and busy years in Washington, four years in the U.S. Senate and four years as head of the Interior Department.

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Filed under: Ken Salazar
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