March 4th, 2009
04:28 AM ET
11 years ago

POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: Wednesday, March 4, 2009


For the latest political news:

CNN: Guidelines will spell out homeowner bailout
The Obama administration will release guidelines on Wednesday to help lending institutions figure out which homeowners are most in need of help to stave off foreclosure, according to two administration officials familiar with the plan.

CNN: Democrats' "apology" Web page mocks Limbaugh
Democrats will continue Wednesday to portray Rush Limbaugh as the spokesman for the Republican Party by launching a Web page that mocks GOP leaders for apologizing to the radio host for criticizing or publicly disagreeing with him.

CNN: Obama downplays letter to Russia regarding nuclear Iran
President Obama said Tuesday that reports of a U.S. offer to kill a proposed missile defense system in exchange for Russian assistance in preventing Iran's acquisition of nuclear weapons were inaccurate.

NYT: Justice Dept. May Release More Terrorism Memos
One day after releasing a set of Bush administration memorandums claiming sweeping presidential powers to bypass legal constraints when fighting terrorism, Justice Department officials said on Tuesday that they may soon disclose further secret opinions about interrogation, surveillance, and other national security policies.

Plouffe: Minority Leader Limbaugh
The 2008 election sent many messages. At the top: Americans wanted to turn the page on the politics of division and partisan pettiness, and they wanted a government - and country - that would put the middle class first.

Washington Post: New Post Proposed at Pentagon
A bill to end cost overruns in major weapons systems would create a powerful new Pentagon position - director of independent cost assessments - to review cost analyses and estimates, separately from the military branch requesting the program.

WSJ Op-Ed: Sen. Bayh: Deficits and Fiscal Credibility
This week, the United States Senate will vote on a spending package to fund the federal government for the remainder of this fiscal year. The Omnibus Appropriations Act of 2009 is a sprawling, $410 billion compilation of nine spending measures that lacks the slightest hint of austerity from the federal government or the recipients of its largess.

Washington Times: Evangelicals ponder 'who's the next Dobson?'
The long-expected resignation of Focus on the Family's James Dobson highlights an open secret among America's roughly 70 million evangelicals: There are no obvious successors to the group of evangelical leaders who created massive organizations or built up media empires in the 1980s and '90s.

CNN: Obama overturns Bush endangered species rule
President Obama on Tuesday overturned a last-minute Bush administration regulation that many environmentalists claim weakened the Endangered Species Act.

The Week: Obama's morning in America
If President Obama has his way on the budget, or most of it, history will write of three political revolutions in this country in a little less than a century—Roosevelt’s, Reagan’s and Obama’s.

For the latest national and international news:

CNN: Clinton: 2 U.S. officials to visit Syria
The U.S. government will dispatch two officials to the Syrian capital to explore Washington's relationship with Damascus, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced Tuesday.

CNN: Obama, Brown discuss new economic partnership
President Obama and British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said Tuesday that the global economy would recover from the recent sharp downturn but that it would require a common effort to combat protectionist impulses, coordinate economic stimulus efforts and update antiquated regulatory structures.

NYT: Amid a Lackluster Review of His First Year, Cuba’s Leader Jolts the Government
After initially portraying himself as a reform-minded leader who intended to shake up Cuba’s staid bureaucracy, Raúl Castro ended his first year as president last week without having achieved much in the way of major changes.

WSJ: Crisis Reaching Poorest Nations, IMF Says
Twenty-two of the world's poorest nations may need a total of $25 billion in additional funding this year, the International Monetary Fund said, as the global financial crisis sweeps into corners of the world, especially sub-Saharan Africa, that seemed largely insulated from international banking problems.

LA Times: Drug war creates new class of refugees
The Juarez police lieutenant was recovering from three gunshot wounds, the result of an assault by hit men for a drug cartel. His name was on a death list brazenly posted at a monument for fallen peace officers. Lt. Salvador Hernandez Arvizu didn't like his odds of surviving in Mexico. So he fled his hospital bed, hoping to take refuge in the U.S.

NYT: Prosecutors Plan Crackdown on Doctors Who Accept Kickbacks
Federal health officials and prosecutors, frustrated that they have been unable to stop illegal kickbacks to doctors from drug and device companies, are investigating doctors who take money for using these products.

Bloomberg: Honda, Mazda May Apply for Financing From Japanese Government
Honda Motor Co., suffering from a 38 percent plunge in U.S. auto sales in February, may ask to borrow money from Japan’s government to lend to U.S. car buyers.

For the latest business news:

CNN: ASIA MARKETS: Japan Auto Stocks Mixed After U.S. Sales Tumble
Shares of Japanese car companies were mixed Wednesday as investors considered their U.S. sales in February, which despite a drop of more than 35% from a year ago, were better than the slump experienced by the Big Three automakers.

CNN: Obama budget hopes meet bailout rage
President Obama's economic A-team went to Capitol Hill on Tuesday to address questions about the administration's ambitious budget request.

WSJ: Merrill's $10 Million Men
As bad as 2008 was for Merrill Lynch & Co., it was very good for Andrea Orcel, the firm's top investment banker. Although Merrill's net loss ballooned to $27.6 billion last year, Mr. Orcel, 45 years old, was paid $33.8 million in cash and stock, just shy of his pay in 2007.

Business Week: Why Skilled Immigrants Are Leaving the U.S.
As the debate over H-1B workers and skilled immigrants intensifies, we are losing sight of one important fact: The U.S. is no longer the only land of opportunity. If we don't want the immigrants who have fueled our innovation and economic growth, they now have options elsewhere. Immigrants are returning home in greater numbers. And new research shows they are returning to enjoy a better quality of life, better career prospects, and the comfort of being close to family and friends.

Business Week: Hey eBay, Say Hello to Bonanzle
The first Saturday morning of each month, licensed auctioneer Walt Kolenda holds live auctions on the Web. Buyers usually show up early to inspect the goods and ask "Auction Wally" questions through a live chat window. From the comfort of his home in Barre, Mass., Kolenda calls the action over a real-time podcast, taking bidders, offering bundle deals, and calling attention to the rarity of a set of antique postcards or the craftsmanship of a piece of ornate glassware.

In Case You Missed It
To watch the latest interviews and reporting:

CNN: Sleep barking dog

A dream dog runs and barks in its sleep. CNN's Jeanne Moos reports on a doozy of a dozing dog.

CNN: Marine One diagrams breached
Diagrams for the presidential helicopter landed in the hands of an unauthorized user in Iran. CNN's Brian Todd reports.

CNN: Diplomacy one note at a time
A performing arts organization is aiming to acheive harmony with their counterparts in the Middle East. CNN's Samantha Hayes reports.

CNN: Twitter 101
Computer expert Ken Colburn looks at what you need to know about Twitter, and has some tips on how to use it.

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