September 7th, 2009
05:04 AM ET
11 years ago

POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: September 07, 2009


The CNN Washington Bureau’s morning speed read of the top stories making news from around the country and the world.

For the latest political news:

CNN: Obama did not order Van Jones' resignation, adviser says
The resignation of Obama administration figure Van Jones, following controversies over a petition he had signed and his comments about Republicans, did not come at the request of the president, the White House senior adviser said Sunday.

CNN: Senator signals possible health care compromise
A moderate Senate Democrat said Sunday he could support a health-care bill that includes a provision for possibly bringing in a government-funded public health insurance option in the future.

CNN: Pawlenty: With trigger, Dems 'will shoot themselves in the foot'
Even as members of President Obama’s fractured party appeared to warm to the notion of putting a so-called “trigger” on any public health insurance option in health care reform legislation, Minnesota’s Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty said the approach was a bad idea. He said it would not help create the bipartisanship the White House and some Congressional Democrats – particularly those in the Senate – are looking for in order to pass a health care reform bill by the end of the year.

CNN: Klobuchar on a health care bill: 'I would like to see us at 60′
Two Democratic senators said Sunday that they would prefer not to see their party use “reconciliation,” a procedural maneuver in the Senate designed for budgetary legislation which only requires 50 votes for a bill to pass, in order to get a health care reform bill passed without the 60 votes necessary to break a filibuster.

CNN: Duncan: 'Silly' to keep kids home to avoid Obama speech
Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said Sunday that parents threatening to keep their children home Tuesday to avoid President Barack Obama's planned nationwide speech to school students were being "silly."

CNN: Gibbs: In speech, Obama will spell out ideas for health-care bill
President Barack Obama will spell out his ideas for health insurance in a speech to Congress this week, his spokesman said Sunday without revealing any details.

CNN: I don't view Palin as a competitor for anything, says Pawlenty
Minnesota’s Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who is widely considered to be a likely contender for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, said Sunday that he does not view himself as being in competition with his party’s most recent vice presidential nominee, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

CNN: Obama to announce new adviser on Labor Day
Ron Bloom, a senior adviser on the President’s Task Force on the Automotive Industry, will add another administration title Monday when President Obama names him senior counselor for Manufacturing Policy.

CNN: Trippi: GOP trying to turn Obama into another Jimmy Carter
A prominent Democratic strategist said Sunday that Republicans are trying to turn President Barack Obama’s administration into another “failed presidency” like that of former Democratic president Jimmy Carter.

CNN: 'Why should the liberals always cave?' Dem asks
A liberal Minnesota Democrat who has been an outspoken proponent of the public health insurance option fired a shot over the White House's bow Sunday in the Democratic Party's escalating internal feud over health-care reform.

Washington Post: No Getting Around This Guy
On the high school football fields of southwestern Pennsylvania - the "cradle of quarterbacks" - Richard Trumka was the monster man.

Washington Post: Health Care in Japan: Low-Cost, for Now
Half a world away from the U.S. health-care debate, Japan has a system that costs half as much and often achieves better medical outcomes than its American counterpart. It does so by banning insurance company profits, limiting doctor fees and accepting shortcomings in care that many well-insured Americans would find intolerable.

Washington Post: In Adviser's Resignation, Vetting Bites Obama Again
The resignation of White House environmental adviser Van Jones has revealed a lapse in the administration's vetting procedures that, nearly eight months into his tenure, delivered President Obama with an unwelcome distraction as he begins an important week on behalf of his health-care reform initiative.

New York Times: Obama Faces a Critical Moment for His Presidency
President Obama returned to the White House from his summer break on Sunday determined to jump-start his struggling presidency by reasserting command of the health care debate and recalibrating expectations that some advisers believe got away from him.

New York Times: Natural Gas Hits a Roadblock in New Energy Bill
The natural gas industry has enjoyed something of a winning streak in recent years. It found gigantic new reserves, low prices are encouraging utilities to substitute gas for coal, and cities are switching to buses fueled by natural gas.

For the latest national news:

CNN: NFL's Merriman arrested, accused of choking Tila Tequila
San Diego Chargers linebacker Shawne Merriman was arrested early Sunday on suspicion of choking and restraining MTV reality show star Tila Tequila, police said.

CNN: Officials: Crack may keep Bay Bridge closed past Tuesday
Crews are scrambling to repair a crack found on the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge during a planned closure, but officials said Sunday they don't know if the bridge will reopen Tuesday as scheduled.

CNN: Arrest made in slayings of U.S. citizens in Mexico
The Mexican military has detained a suspected leader of a notorious drug-trafficking family in connection with the July slayings of two U.S. citizens.

CNN: Police: Man shoots 4 family members, then himself
A man shot his estranged wife to death, along with their son and grandson, before turning the gun on himself as police closed in, authorities in Livingston Parish, Louisiana, said Sunday.

CNN: Two great white sharks tagged off Massachusetts coast
The Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries has tagged two great white sharks off Cape Cod in an area where shark sightings have been reported, state officials said Sunday.

Washington Post: Mortgage Market Bound by Major U.S. Role
In the go-go years of the U.S. housing boom, virtually anybody could get a few hundred thousand dollars to buy a home, and private lenders flooded the market, aggressively pursuing borrowers no matter their means or financial history.

Washington Post: Password Hackers Are Slippery To Collar
When Elaine Cioni found out that her married boyfriend had other girlfriends, she became obsessed, federal prosecutors say. So she turned to

Washington Post: U.S. Forced to Pay Recyclers To Take Old Merchant Ships
Built in 1942 as a Navy rescue ship, the USS Escape aided American vessels in distress in the Atlantic during World War II. The ship was called back into service during the Korean War, and in the 1960s it supported the Mercury manned spaceflight program.

New York Times: Out of Work, Too Down to Search On, and Uncounted
They were left out of the latest unemployment rate, as they are every month: millions of hidden casualties of the Great Recession who are not counted in the rate because they have stopped looking for work.

New York Times: Gadget Makers Can Find Thief, but Don’t Ask
For decades, when an item was lost or stolen, a consumer went through three stages of grief: anger, mourning and acceptance. You would be miffed, then sad and then you would move on, in large part because moving on was the only option.

New York Times: Volunteers Find Muck and Meaning in Service
On a late summer morning so muggy that merely standing constitutes a workout, nine young adults in drenched T-shirts clear a trail in Elk Neck State Park. Three of them buzz expertly with chain saws through drooping oaks and pines, while six others haul the downed limbs deep into the woods.

USA TODAY: What will rise at Ground Zero?
The five skyscrapers were all supposed to rise by early next decade to replace the ravaged World Trade Center, with the city's tallest towers set in a spiral evoking the Statue of Liberty's torch.

Los Angeles Times: Luck runs out on Vegas boom
The Currans of Granada Hills have been taking family vacations on the Las Vegas Strip for years. They weren't about to pass it up just because Jeff Curran's business selling upscale cookware is down sharply.

For the latest international news:

CNN: Mexican legislative candidate, family killed
A legislative candidate was killed, along with his wife and two children, bringing campaigns for statewide offices in the southeastern state of Tabasco to a halt, the state-run news agency Notimex reported.

CNN: Votes tossed from 447 polls in Afghanistan
Afghanistan's Independent Election Commission said Sunday it was tossing ballots from 447 polling stations in figuring results of the August presidential election.

CNN: Venezuelan minister: More radio closures coming
The Venezuelan government initiated a new charge against a private television broadcaster and said that 29 additional radio stations would soon be closed, the latest move in what critics call a crackdown on freedom of expression.

CNN: U.S. general sure Afghan civilians wounded in airstrike
The top U.S. commander in Afghanistan said Saturday he was convinced that civilians, in addition to militants, were among those wounded in a NATO airstrike that killed at least 90 people in northern Afghanistan.

CNN: Chavez pledges closer ties with Iran
Iran and Venezuela plan to stand up against "imperialist" foes by strengthening bilateral cooperation on a range of issues, including nuclear power, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Saturday.

CNN: Nearly 1,000 rescued in Philippines ferry accident
Nine people were killed and 957 rescued when a ferry capsized Sunday in the Philippines, leaving crews scouring the waters for survivors, officials said.

Washington Post: All Eyes on Regional Official After Latest Unrest in W. China
When the Zhang family's more than 150 wedding guests gathered at the Phoenix Hall restaurant in Urumqi on Saturday night, there was one main topic of conversation: Will he stay or will he go?

New York Times: Fake Afghan Poll Sites Favored Karzai, Officials Assert
Afghans loyal to President Hamid Karzai set up hundreds of fictitious polling sites where no one voted but where hundreds of thousands of ballots were still recorded toward the president’s re-election, according to senior Western and Afghan officials here.

New York Times: Despite Slump, U.S. Role as Top Arms Supplier Grows
Despite a recession that knocked down global arms sales last year, the United States expanded its role as the world’s leading weapons supplier, increasing its share to more than two-thirds of all foreign armaments deals, according to a new Congressional study.

New York Times: South Africa’s Poor Renew a Tradition of Protest
This country’s rituals of protest most often call for the burning of tires, the barricading of streets and the throwing of rocks. So when the municipal mayor here went to address the crowd after three days of such agitation, the police thought it best to take him into the stadium in a blast-resistant armored vehicle.

Wall Street Journal: U.K. Official, BP Fuel Furor Over Lockerbie
New statements by both a top U.K. official and one of the country's largest oil companies fed speculation by opposition politicians and victims' families that the recent release of the convicted Lockerbie bomber is entangled with the country's pursuit of oil interests in Libya.

BBC: Germany seeks Afghan raid answers
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has called for an urgent investigation into an airstrike in northern Afghanistan, amid tension about who was to blame.

For the latest business news:

CNNMoney: It's September. The real test for stocks begins
Sunburned and barbecued out, Wall Streeters returning to work next week face the first big challenge to the six-month-old rally.

CNNMoney: Obama to workers: We'll help you save
President Obama on Saturday announced changes that the IRS plans to make to encourage workers to save more of their paychecks.

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

CNN: Former Manson follower speaks
Larry King talks with former Manson disciple Linda Kasabian and Vincent Bugliosi, former LA Deputy DA who prosecuted Manson.

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