January 5th, 2009
05:35 PM ET

Beat 360° 1/5/09

Ready for today's Beat 360°?

Everyday we post a picture – and you provide the caption and our staff will join in too.

Tune in tonight at 10pm to see if you are our favorite!

Here is the 'Beat 360°' pic:

President-elect Barack Obama and Michelle Obama with their daughters, Sasha, 7, and Malia, 10, getting ready for their first day of school Monday morning.

Have fun with it. We're looking forward to your captions!

Make sure to include your name, city, state (or country) so we can post your comment.


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Filed under: Beat 360° • T1
January 5th, 2009
03:44 PM ET

From the frontlines: Cooper and Amanpour on Gaza

Program Note: Watch Anderson report LIVE from Israel tonight on AC360° at 10 pm ET.

CNN's Anderson Cooper and Christiane Amanpour report on the situation in Gaza.

January 5th, 2009
03:34 PM ET

Predictions for 2009

Editor’s Note: You can read more Jami Floyd blogs on “In Session

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/US/12/19/close.gitmo/art.detainee.gi.jpg caption="A detainee is seen through a fence in July at the U.S. prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba."]

Jami Floyd
AC360° Contributor
In Session Anchor

So it’s 2009 and here are my predictions: This will be the year that law and politics intersect. I predict that in his first one hundred days President Barack Obama will shut down the detention camp at Guantanamo Bay, but not before he grapples with the same tough questions of what to do with the detainees still being held there.

Also, early on, one of the justices will step down, giving Obama an appointment to the U.S. Supreme Court almost immediately (and I’m thinking a possible three open seats during Obama’s first term). And speaking of the Supreme Court, the decision last year that words from the grave violate a defendant’s right to confront the witnesses against him will mean a new trial for Mark Jensen in Wisconsin. And this time around, his wife’s letters won’t come into evidence, but all the other stuff will and he’ll be convicted again.

Keep Reading...

Filed under: Barack Obama • Jami Floyd
January 5th, 2009
02:40 PM ET

I helped smear Helen Suzman

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/05/art.helen.suzman.jpg]
Editor’s Note: The death of South African anti-apartheid activist Helen Suzman reminds NAM contributor Brian Shott of how his encounter with Suzman in his college days taught him a few lessons about humility and self-righteous zeal. Shott is a freelance writer and editor now living in Oakland.

Brian Shott
New America Media

Anti-apartheid activist Helen Suzman died on Thursday at the age of 91. As accolades from around the world pour in, news reports also mention the controversy she sparked on college campuses in the late 1980s.

I'll say. At my alma mater in Connecticut in 1989, we almost rioted when we heard Suzman had been invited to speak - a fact that, today, fills me with contrition.

Suzman, who helped found South Africa's liberal Progressive Party, was for 13 years the lone voice against apartheid in the South African parliament. She spoke out fiercely against racist legislation, and frequently visited anti-apartheid activists, including Nelson Mandela, in the nation's notorious prisons.

So what was our beef with Suzman at Wesleyan University, a small liberal arts school in Middletown, Conn.?


January 5th, 2009
01:47 PM ET

Aboard Obama's new plane: emotions give way to reality

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/05/art.obama.lands.dc.jpg caption="President Elect Barack Obama walks down the steps of an Air Force 757 on Sunday at Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland, upon arrival from Chicago."]

Ed Henry | BIO
CNN Senior White House Correspondent

He arrived here for his new job feeling a bit melancholy about the move from Chicago, but President-elect Barack Obama has little time to mull over his emotions - he's been immediately hit with the sobering realities of the task ahead.

There's the still-unfolding war in Gaza, a fresh reminder of the monumental national security crises ahead. And then the political challenges here at home, starting with two so-called "pay-to-play" scandals - Bill Richardson out as the Secretary of Commerce nominee, and Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich still causing heartburn with his selection of Roland Burris to replace the President-elect in the Senate.


Filed under: Barack Obama • Ed Henry
January 5th, 2009
01:46 PM ET

Black Sidwellian student: advice to Obama girls

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/05/art.obamasschool.gi.jpg caption="The Obama transition team has released photos of the Obama girls preparing for school Monday."]

Baratunde Thurston
Comedian and Contributing Writer, The Daily Beast

Dear President-elect and Mrs. Obama,

You’ve been there. Princeton. Columbia. Harvard Law. The white-shoe law firm of Sidley Austin. The US Senate. You know what it’s like to be that raisin in the milk, the rare black face at an elite institution.

As your daughters come of age at the top prep school in our nation’s capital, they will likely face the same raisin-in-the-milk trials and awkwardness with which you are likely familiar and I most certainly am; I attended the same school, Sidwell Friends, for six years, graduating in 1995.

There are some important differences between my Sidwell experience and what your daughters will face, of course.


Filed under: Barack Obama • Michelle Obama
January 5th, 2009
01:30 PM ET

No, I thought YOU were going to ask him if he was under investigation

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/01/04/richardson.withdrawal/art.richardson.gi.jpg caption="Gov. Bill Richardson said a probe focused on him would delay work toward bettering the economy."]

Jack Gray
AC360 Associate Producer

So much for that extensive vetting process. Bill “I’ll take any cabinet post you’ve got, just get me the hell out of New Mexico” Richardson has pulled his nomination for Secretary of Commerce. Apparently Governor Richardson decided it would be wise to stay close to the border until he knows how this whole federal investigation is going to play out.

Actually, it wasn’t Richardson’s idea. The Obama camp, drama-weary from the Blagojevich mess, pushed him to withdraw, according to Democratic strategists. Because one “pay-to-play” scandal is fine but two would just be showing off.

Meanwhile, President-elect Obama is on Capitol Hill today to meet with congressional leaders about his economic stimulus plan. He arrived last night at Andrews Air Force base aboard a military jet that usually carries Vice President Dick Cheney. Which explains all the Sex and the City DVDs.


Filed under: 360° Radar • Barack Obama • Jack Gray • Raw Politics
January 5th, 2009
01:17 PM ET

What do Gaza, Burris, Richardson and Franken have in common?

Program Note: Join us tonight as Anderson reports LIVE from Israel. AC360° tonight at 10pm ET.

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/04/art.bodepart0104.gi.jpg]

Barclay Palmer
AC360° Senior Producer

For the candidate of change, they're all bringing some quick changes. They're all quickly changing Obama's new world order.

Is Israel getting what it wants from its attacks in Gaza...is Hamas getting what it wants? Is the best we can hope for another TEMPORARY end of violence? Egypt keeping its borders closed, preventing humanitarian aide from getting to suffering and dying "fellow Arabs?"

Obama plans a $300 billion tax cut...some say it's to appease critics on the right. Maybe...But Obama has shown a Bill Clinton-like move to the middle in many more ways than this one.


Filed under: Barack Obama • Barclay Palmer • Bill Richardson • Israel • Palestine
January 5th, 2009
12:35 PM ET

Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni: "We are determined"

CNN's Christiane Amanpour has an exclusive interview with Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni on the Gaza situation.

In an interview about the Gaza situation, Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni tells CNN's Christiane Amanpour that Israel will "take the necessary steps."

Filed under: Christiane Amanpour • Crisis in Gaza
January 5th, 2009
12:02 PM ET

Financial Dispatch: Obama readies tax cuts

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/TECH/01/05/apple.macworld/art.jobs.afp.gi.jpg caption="Apple CEO and co-founder Steve Jobs speaks at last year's Macworld Expo in San Francisco, California."]

Andrew Torgan
CNN Financial News Producer

President-elect Barack Obama today begins his push for a massive package of tax cuts and spending proposals aimed at reviving the economy. He’ll meet this afternoon with top legislators from both parties, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, as well as Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, and House Minority Leader John Boehner. His plan will include about $300 billion in tax cuts for individuals and businesses, an aide to the transition told CNN. Obama has not put a price tag on his overall stimulus plan, though his advisers have said they expect it to fall between $675 billion and $775 billion, 40% of which would be in tax cuts.

The good news for the auto industry arrived in last month when General Motors and Chrysler got their government bailout. The bad news arrives today, when Detroit’s Big Three are expected to report another month of staggering sales declines. Many analysts are predicting the industry to report that U.S. sales dropped about 40 percent last month, bringing an official close to what has been one of the industry's most trying years.


Filed under: Andrew Torgan • Economy • Finance • Gas Prices • Oil
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