September 15th, 2009
12:00 PM ET
11 years ago

Obama defends auto bailout at Ohio GM plant

LORDSTOWN, Ohio (CNN) - President Barack Obama took his economic recovery message on the road Tuesday, defending the administration's controversial auto bailout plan during an appearance at a General Motors plant in the heart of the nation's struggling Rust Belt.

"In the midst of a deep recession and financial crisis, the collapse of the auto industry would have caused enormous damage to our economy," Obama told an enthusiastic crowd of auto workers.

"So we intervened for one simple and compelling reason: your survival and the success of our economy depended on it."

The president added that his "belief was that if GM retooled and reinvented itself for the 21st century, it would be good for American workers, good for American manufacturing, and good for America's economy. I'm pleased to report that's exactly what's begun to happen at this plant and at others. And I'll tell you what: I will double down on the American people and all of you any day of the week."

Filed under: Auto Bailout • Ohio • President Obama
September 15th, 2009
10:03 AM ET
11 years ago

Norton, Romanoff to join crowded Colorado Senate field

(CNN) - The crowded field of candidates who are challenging Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado gets some new players this week.

Today, Republican former Lt. Gov. Jane Norton is expected to announce her bid with a three-city campaign swing through Denver, Colorado Springs and Grand Junction. Norton served as lieutenant governor under Republican Gov. Bill Owens from 2003 to 2007. She did not seek the top spot in the 2006 election, when Owens was term-limited, and is currently executive director of the Denver Police Foundation.

Norton joins at least five other Republican candidates who are considering a run for Colorado's GOP Senate nomination.

Tomorrow, Bennet gets another challenger - this time from his own party. Former Colorado House Speaker Andrew Romanoff is expected to officially announce his bid for the Democratic Senate nomination, with events planned in Pueblo, Colorado Springs and Denver.

Bennet was considered a surprise choice by Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter to replace Sen. Ken Salazar, who stepped down from his seat in January to serve as President Barack Obama's Interior Secretary. Bennet, who was superintendent of the Denver public school system, will have to defend the seat next year.

Filed under: Colorado
September 15th, 2009
08:42 AM ET
11 years ago

Biden makes surprise visit to Iraq

(CNN) - U.S. Vice President Joe Biden arrived in Baghdad, Iraq, on Tuesday, according to reporters traveling with him.

Biden is in Iraq to meet with the country's leaders and visit U.S. troops, his office said.

Filed under: Joe Biden
September 15th, 2009
08:40 AM ET
11 years ago

Poll: Support for Afghan war at all-time low

 U.S. troops participate in a ceremony commemorating the eighth anniversary of 9/11 in Bagram, Afghanistan.

U.S. troops participate in a ceremony commemorating the eighth anniversary of 9/11 in Bagram, Afghanistan.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Support for the war in Afghanistan is at an all-time low, according to a new national poll.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corp. survey released Tuesday morning indicates that 39 percent of Americans favor the war in Afghanistan, with 58 percent opposed to the mission.

Support is down from 53 percent in April, marking the lowest level since the start of the U.S. military mission in Afghanistan soon after the September 11, 2001, attacks.

The poll suggests that 23 percent of Democrats support the war. That number rises to 39 percent for independents and 62 percent for Republicans.

Full story

Filed under: Afghanistan
September 15th, 2009
06:05 AM ET
11 years ago

Former NFL player to run for Congress

Former professional football player Jay Riemersma announced Monday that he is running for Congress in Michigan in 2010.

Former professional football player Jay Riemersma announced Monday that he is running for Congress in Michigan in 2010.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former professional football player Jay Riemersma announced Monday that he is running for Congress in Michigan in 2010.

The GOP candidate is running for the seat being vacated by Rep. Peter Hoekstra, a Republican vying to become the next governor of Michigan. Riemersma set up an exploratory committee in June, but made it official on Monday with a speech in Holland, Michigan.

Riemersma played for the Buffalo Bills from 1996–2002 and the Pittsburgh Steelers from 2003–2004.

Comparing Congress to the National Football League, the former Buffalo Bills tight end promised to "never vote to raise your taxes."

"I'm announcing my candidacy today because we need a Republican renaissance – a return to our conservative principles of governance – and I'm ready to help lead this movement," Riemersma said, in remarks released by his campaign.

Since retiring from professional sports, Riemersma has been working for the conservative Family Research Council and coaching high school football. In November 2008, he penned a letter to the editor in the Holland Sentinal entitled "How could Christians vote for Obama?"


Filed under: Peter Hoekstra
September 15th, 2009
05:30 AM ET
11 years ago

Wilson supporters to House Democrats: Bring it on

Wilson used a Web video last week to raise money after being criticized by Democrats.

Wilson used a Web video last week to raise money after being criticized by Democrats.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - As House Democrats march forward with plans to formally reprimand Republican Joe Wilson for calling President Obama a liar during last week's joint address to Congress, Wilson's supporters back home in South Carolina have a straightforward response: Bring it on.

"I hope they do it," said Rich Bolen, who chairs the Republican Party in Lexington County, where Wilson lives. "The longer this story stays alive, the better it is for the conservative point of view. It means the Democrats aren't talking about health care and moving the ball forward. They're giving Wilson a ton of traction."

After Wilson rejected calls from Democrats to apologize on the floor of the House for his outburst, House leadership moved ahead with plans to vote Tuesday on a "resolution of disapproval" against the congressman.

But Wilson's supporters in South Carolina are hardly running from the resolution - they're embracing it.

GOP campaign operatives in the state argue that the vote will give Wilson yet another chance to raise money and rally party activists ahead of next year's election in the conservative-leaning 2nd Congressional District, which hasn't voted for a Democrat in 46 years.


Filed under: Joe Wilson • Rob Miller • South Carolina
September 15th, 2009
04:48 AM ET
11 years ago

POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: September 15, 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: Health care negotiators finding common ground, Democrat says
Increased awareness of the details of a possible compromise health care bill is boosting the comfort level of both Democrats and Republicans, a key Democratic senator said Monday.

CNN: House to consider resolution criticizing Wilson on Tuesday
The House will vote Tuesday on a resolution of disapproval of Rep. Joe Wilson, the South Carolina Republican who yelled “you lie” during President Barack Obama’s health-care speech to a joint session of Congress last week.

CNN: Boehner: I'll vote against any resolution criticizing Wilson
House Republican Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, said Monday he would vote against any resolution admonishing Rep. Joe Wilson for his outburst during the president's address to Congress on health care last Wednesday.

CNN Poll: Americans divided on President's health care plans
In the wake of President Barack Obama's nationally televised speech to Congress last week, a new national poll indicates that the president's approval rating is on the rise. But the CNN/Opinion Corporation survey (pdf) released Monday also suggests that the president's personal popularity has not translated into widespread support for his health care reform proposals.

CNN: Senate Caucus Room renamed to honor Kennedy brothers
The historic Senate Caucus Room was renamed the Kennedy Caucus Room on Monday in honor of the three Kennedy brothers who served in the chamber, according to a statement by Sens. Chris Dodd and John Kerry.

CNN: Ted's sons: Yes, the Kennedy men do cry
When the late Sen. Edward Kennedy was growing up, there was a family edict: Kennedy men don't cry.

CNN: Obama: 'Learn lessons of Lehman'
The bailouts have largely stabilized the financial system, but regulatory reform is needed to prevent a similar crisis from happening again, said President Obama in a speech delivered Monday on Wall Street.

CNN: Media shut out from Palin's Hong Kong speech
Sarah Palin's speech to investors in China later this month will be closed to the media, organizers of the event confirmed to CNN Monday.


Filed under: Political Hot Topics
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