(CNN) - The RNC is reacting to the DNC's reaction to the RNC's reaction earlier Friday to President Obama's Nobel Peace Prize:
"Like most Americans, the DNC can't think of one achievement that the president has accomplished, so they resort to their predictable response and standard playbook of demonizing those who disagree with them. First they call Americans concerned over health care 'rabid extremists' and 'angry mobs.' Now, when challenged to answer the question of what the president has accomplished, Democrats are lashing out calling Republicans terrorists. That type of political rhetoric is shameful."
WASHINGTON (CNN) - A majority of Americans continue to back civil unions for gay and lesbian couples, but oppose legalizing same-sex marriages, according to a new national poll.
The Pew Research Center survey's Friday release comes on the eve of President Barack Obama's speech in front of gay rights advocates at the Human Rights Campaign banquet in the nation's capital. The following day, same-sex activists plan to march on the Mall in Washington.
According to the poll, 57 percent of people questioned support civil unions, a slight uptick, with 37 percent opposed. The survey suggests that 53 percent oppose legalizing same sex marriage, with 39 percent in favor, basically unchanged from a year ago.
The poll indicates that more than six in 10 say say gays and lesbians face a lot of discrimination, more than any other group asked about in the survey.
(CNN) - A Democratic National Committee spokesman said Friday the GOP has "thrown in its lot with the terrorists" in criticizing the president's Nobel Peace Prize award.
“The Republican Party has thrown in its lot with the terrorists – the Taliban and Hamas this morning – in criticizing the President for receiving the Nobel Peace prize," DNC Communications Director Brad Woodhouse said in a statement.
"Republicans cheered when America failed to land the Olympics and now they are criticizing the President of the United States for receiving the Nobel Peace prize – an award he did not seek but that is nonetheless an honor in which every American can take great pride – unless of course you are the Republican Party," the statement also said. "The 2009 version of the Republican Party has no boundaries, has no shame and has proved that they will put politics above patriotism at every turn. It's no wonder only 20 percent of Americans admit to being Republicans anymore – it's an embarrassing label to claim.”
JERUSALEM (CNN) - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's meeting on Friday with the top U.S. envoy to the Middle East was "useful and constructive," the Israeli leader's office said.
Talks between George Mitchell and Netanyahu focused on efforts to restart the stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace process, and the two men agreed to continue their discussions in the coming days, the minister's office said.
Mitchell will meet Saturday with two of Netanyahu's advisers, Yizhak Molcho and Mike Hertzog, it said.
He also plans to talk with Palestinian leaders in the West Bank, including Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Friday and Prime Minister Salam Fayyad on Saturday, the State Department said.
Mitchell returned to the region this week to advocate peace negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians, but significant obstacles remain.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Barack Obama said Friday that he was humbled and honored by the decision of the Norwegian Nobel Committee to award him the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize.
"I am both surprised and deeply humbled," Obama said at the White House.
"I do not view it as a recognition of my own accomplishments. But rather as an affirmation of American leadership. ... I will accept this award as a call to action."
Obama said he did not feel he deserves "to be in the company" of past winners.
The committee said it decided to honor Obama for his "extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples."
(CNN) - Arizona Sen. John McCain said Friday the Nobel Committee's decision to award President Obama the Peace Prize was likely based on expectations, not accomplishments.
"I can't divine all their intentions, but I think part of their decision-making was expectations," McCain told CNN's John King. "And I'm sure the president understands that he now has even more to live up to."
But Obama's former rival for the White House said he was happy with the decision.
"I think all of us were surprised at the decision," he said. "But I think Americans are always pleased when their president is recognized by something on this order."
John King's full interview with McCain will air Sunday on State of Union at 9 a.m. ET.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - With less than four weeks until election day, a new poll indicates that the Republicans are widening their lead over the Democrats in the Virginia gubernatorial race.
Republican candidate and former state attorney general Bob McDonnell leads Democrat Creigh Deeds 53 percent to 44 percent, according to a Washington Post survey released Thursday afternoon. McDonnell's nine point margin among likely voters is up five points from his lead in a Washington Post poll from mid September.
The survey suggests that the gains Deeds had made following his attacks on McDonnell's conservative views on social issues, have faded. The past five weeks the Deeds campaign has aggressively highlighted McDonnell's 20 year old graduate thesis, a document that called working women detrimental to families and criticized "cohabitators, homosexuals or fornicators."
(CNN) - Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele is slamming the Nobel Committee's decision to award Presdient Obama the Nobel Peace Prize:
“The real question Americans are asking is, ‘What has President Obama actually accomplished?’ It is unfortunate that the president’s star power has outshined tireless advocates who have made real achievements working towards peace and human rights. One thing is certain – President Obama won’t be receiving any awards from Americans for job creation, fiscal responsibility, or backing up rhetoric with concrete action.”