WASHINGTON (CNN) - A House Judiciary Committee spokesman confirms that former Bush advisor Karl Rove was deposed by committee lawyers today. The spokesman declined to provide further detail.
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/07/07/art.sashamalia20707.jpg caption="Sasha Obama wandered into President Obama's bed early Tuesday morning to have a chat with her parents."]MOSCOW, Russia (CNN) - An unexpected visitor wandered into the bedroom of President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama in the wee hours of Tuesday morning - but the Secret Service wasn't worried about a security breach.
The visitor was 8-year-old Sasha Obama, who's touring Russia along with her older sister Malia. The younger girl could not contain her excitement about Dad's fifth foreign trip in office, so she decided to wake her parents to tell them about it, the president cheerfully recounted in a CNN interview.
"Sasha this morning around 4 am just wandered into our bed and plopped down and started chatting," Obama said in the interview a few hours later. "That was sort of a highlight, although I'm a little groggy now as a consequence."
WASHINGTON (CNN) - A Senate subcommittee Tuesday tackled one of the most contentious issues in U.S. sports - the fairness of the Bowl Championship Series that decides the top college football team each season.
Convened by Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah, the hearing by the Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights subcommittee provided a sounding board for his state's disappointment over the inability of the undefeated University of Utah to qualify for the BCS national championship game last January.
The BCS operates under an agreement among the major college football conferences that decides which teams qualify for the biggest bowl games each season, including the national championship game.
It also distributes the revenue generated by the bowl games, with the participating members taking part in more of the post-season matches and taking home more money.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - National Democrats wasted no time in accusing Sarah Palin of abandoning her state after the Alaska governor revealed Friday that she was resigning from office.
Five days later and 4,600 miles away, the New Hampshire Democratic Party chairman is leveling the same charge against New Hampshire Attorney General Kelly Ayotte, who announced Tuesday she would soon leave office to explore a Senate bid in 2010.
New Hampshire Democratic Party Chair Ray Buckley's sharp criticism of Ayotte is not surprising – he is trying to discredit, perhaps, the strongest candidate the Republican Party could field in this open seat race next year. But what is interesting is that Buckley compared Ayotte to Palin.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/07/07/palin.future/art.palin.gi.jpg caption="Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's decision to step down in late July has rankled both Republicans and Democrats."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin caught the political world by surprise when she announced that she will resign at the end of July.
Her decision has not only rankled political pundits and observers in Alaska and across the country, it has, oddly enough, united Democrats and Republicans in confusion.
But the 45-year-old governor's future could be aimed at being the ultimate GOP superstar, whether it's giving million-dollar speeches, traveling the lower 48 states on a book tour or even getting her own TV show.
John Ridley of National Public Radio says she has the potential to be a Republican "kingmaker."
"She was never going to be president of the United States. But who's got all the sway in the Republican Party right now? It's the political pundits; it's the talk show hosts; it's the people who are not responsible to an electorate," Ridley told CNN's Campbell Brown. "I would not be surprised if around 2011 people are circling around Sarah Palin, saying, 'please, anoint us for the road to the White House.' She's never going to be president but possibly a kingmaker."
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/07/07/obama.israel.iran/art.obama.putin.afp.gi.jpg caption=" President Obama meets Tuesday with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin near Moscow."]MOSCOW, Russia (CNN) - The United States is "absolutely not" giving Israel a green light to attack Iran, U.S. President Barack Obama told CNN Tuesday.
"We have said directly to the Israelis that it is important to try and resolve this in an international setting in a way that does not create major conflict in the Middle East," Obama said, referring to Iran's nuclear ambitions.
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden on Sunday appeared to leave the door open for Israel to attack Iran if it saw fit.
"Israel can determine for itself - it's a sovereign nation - what's in their interest and what they decide to do relative to Iran and anyone else," Biden said on ABC's "This Week."
Obama said Tuesday that Biden had simply been stating a fact, not sending a signal.
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/SHOWBIZ/Music/07/03/us.jackson.poll/art.jackson1.gi.jpg caption="President Obama on Tuesday called Michael Jackson a 'core part of our culture.'"]MOSCOW, Russia (CNN) - As millions around the globe prepared to watch the public funeral of Michael Jackson, President Obama told CNN on Tuesday the entertainer's legacy will be a man who had extraordinary talent "matched with a big dose of tragedy."
In a CNN interview focused on his diplomatic efforts at a two-day summit in Russia, Obama took a question about Jackson's cultural impact and called him "one of the greatest entertainers of our generation."
"I think like Elvis, like Sinatra, like the Beatles he became a core part of our culture," Obama told CNN. "His extraordinary talent and his music was matched with a big dose of tragedy and difficulty [in] his private life and I don't think we can ignore that."
But Obama added it's important to "affirm what was the best of him and that was captured by his music."
"Music that Michelle and I listened to from the time we were little kids," said Obama. "I remember listening to 'A, B, C' when I was 8 or 9 or 10, and he kept on producing extraordinary music for years after that."
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Satirist-turned-politician Al Franken was sworn in as the newest member of the U.S. Senate Tuesday, officially closing the books on one of the longest post-election recount struggles in recent American political history.
He was sworn in on the Senate floor by Vice President Joe Biden.
Franken, a Minnesota Democrat, became the 60th member of his party's Senate caucus. The Democrats now have a potential filibuster-proof majority in the chamber.
Franken will take a seat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, giving him an opportunity to take part in next week's confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor.
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/05/19/art.stenyhoyer2.gi.jpg caption="Steny Hoyer said Tuesday that he would be open to a second stimulus bill but thinks the first bill needs to be given more time to be judged."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said Tuesday he would consider supporting a second economic stimulus bill, but said people need to give the package that passed in February more time to work.
The second-ranking Democrat in the House of Representatives said Republican complaints that the nearly $800 billion measure has failed to boost the U.S. economy are premature.
"Certainly, I don't think we can make a determination as to whether or not that's been successful - certainly as successful as we want it to be, certainly not as quickly as we want it to be," Hoyer, of Maryland, told reporters. But he added, "I think we need to be open to whether or not we need additional action."
Hoyer said it was too soon to say the February stimulus bill - which passed without a single GOP vote in the House and only three in the Senate - is not working. He said job losses have "substantially decreased" in recent months, and that the recovery package has prevented many people from being laid off from their jobs.
"In fact, we believe it is working," he said.
(CNN) - The first woman to serve as New Hampshire attorney general announced Tuesday that she's stepping down in order to explore a run for the U.S. Senate.
"Recently, many New Hampshire citizens have urged me to run for United States Senate," Republican Kelly Ayotte said in a statement. "I appreciate their confidence in me. After discussing this matter with my husband, Joe, and our family, I have decided to resign as Attorney General in order to explore a campaign for the United States Senate."
Ayotte has served as New Hampshire's attorney general for five years. She was first appointed to the post by Republican Gov. Craig Benson, and later re-appointed by Democrat and current Gov. John Lynch.
The seat she may run for is currently held by Republican Sen. Judd Gregg, who is not running for re-election next year. Last week, former Republican Sen. John Sununu announced he would not run for Gregg's seat.
Ayotte says her resignation takes effect on Friday July 17, and that she'll discuss her future political plans after she leaves the Attorney General's office.