Thursday, January 08, 2009

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com
Midday Update for THURSDAY, JAN. 8, 2009 – 2:15 P.M.

In This Issue

  • Questions, Committee Action May Slow Stimulus Package
  • House Likely To Vote Next Week on Second Half of Bailout Funding
  • Murtha Wants To Curb Military Lobbying for Controversial Programs
  • Daschle Promises Bipartisan Approach to Health Care Overhaul
  • Obama Officially Declared Winner of 2008 Election
  • Political Trivia for Jan. 8
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Today in Washington

The House  meets in a joint session with the Senate to count Electoral College ballots. No votes are expected.

The Senate  meets in a joint session with the House to count Electoral College ballots.

President Bush makes remarks on the 2002 education law known as No Child Left Behind at General Philip Kearny School in Philadelphia.

President-Elect Barack Obama Delivers a speech on the economy at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va.

In Washington, World Wildlife Fund holds a discussion on “The Dominant Animal and the Future of Biodiversity.” 4:30 p.m., Russell Train Conference Center, 1250 24th St., N.W.

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Top Stories

Questions, Committee Action May Slow Stimulus Package

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday that Congress will not recess for the mid-February Presidents’ Day break if an economic stimulus package hasn’t cleared by then.  [Read More]

House Likely To Vote Next Week on Second Half of Bailout Funding

Efforts to clear the way for release of the second half of the $700 billion bailout fund appear to be kicking into high gear.  [Read More]

Murtha Wants To Curb Military Lobbying for Controversial Programs

The House’s top defense appropriator has pledged to help strengthen the role of the Pentagon’s comptroller in an effort to curb lobbying by the military services for their controversial programs.  [Read More]

Daschle Promises Bipartisan Approach to Health Care Overhaul

Tom Daschle, President-elect Barack Obama’s nominee to run the Department of Health and Human Services, promised Republicans Thursday that the new administration will not try to ram a health care overhaul through Congress under expedited budget procedures.  [Read More]

Obama Officially Declared Winner of 2008 Election

It’s official: Democrat Barack Obama has been elected the 44th president of the United States, defeating Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona in a formal count of electoral votes.  [Read More]

Political Trivia for Jan. 8

Who was the last retiring president to deliver a State of the Union address (in person or in writing)?  [Read More]

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Political Clippings

The Rocky Mountain News reports that Democratic Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter “will be hitting the road Friday with Michael Bennet to introduce him to places where the senator-designate is not well-known. The governor and his choice to fill Ken Salazar’s seat in the U.S. Senate will embark upon a series of community meetings that will take them to nine stops in seven cities over five days.” Experts say that Bennet must build statewide visibility before his 2010 election, the newspaper reports.

The St. Petersburg Times reports that “in the same way Jeb Bush froze the field of Republican contenders awaiting his decision on a Senate run, Florida’s chief financial officer [Alex Sink] is casting her own shadow over the potentially crowded Democratic race.” Sink said, “I’m very seriously considering the race. It’s an enormous opportunity to serve the people of Florida. … I have a few more people I’d like to have the opportunity to speak to about it.” The national Democratic Party has aggressively courted Sink to run for the seat to be vacated by GOP Sen. Mel Martinez in 2010.

The Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports that the Senate decision not to recognize Illinois appointee Roland Burris without a state election certificate undercut chances of seating Democrat Al Franken anytime soon. “The Illinois controversy, which has overshadowed the start of the 111th Congress, has a direct bearing on the recount between Democrat Al Franken and Republican Norm Coleman, because Minnesota law bars state officials from issuing an election certificate until all legal challenges are settled,” the newspaper reports. “Coleman, who received 225 fewer votes than Franken in the two-month-old recount, has filed a suit that legal experts say could take a minimum of several months to resolve.”

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Today on Governing.com

State and local government news from CQ’s sister publication
MASSACHUSETTS: Plan Would Mandate Restaurant Calorie Posting
THE SOUTHWEST: Law Enforcement ‘Surge’ Planned for Mexico Border
WASHINGTON STATE: Floods Bring Evacuations, I-5 Shutdown
THE WASHINGTON, D.C., Region: Airport Rail Project Gets Federal Green Light
THE DETROIT REGION: GM Foundation Slashes Cultural Groups’ Funding
BALTIMORE: Councilwoman, Developer Indicted
SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY, Calif.: Assessor Admits Drug Abuse

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