January 26th, 2009
11:15 PM ET

GOP won't rubber stamp contraceptive funding

Ed Henry
CNN Senior White House Correspondent

House Democratic leaders are planning to remove from the economic stimulus plan a much-lampooned $200 million provision that would have provided contraceptives to low-income families, according to a senior administration official and a Democratic official on Capitol Hill.

The officials said the move is aimed at trying to win bipartisan support for the bill amid Republican charges that is full of wasteful provisions that will not stimulate the economy.

The provision also would have allowed states to no longer seek permission from the federal government to provide family planning services for Medicaid recipients.

The contraceptive provision was initially included because studies have suggested that subsidizing contraceptives would directly reduce the poverty rate by reducing the number of children born out of wedlock.

Filed under: Ed Henry • Raw Politics • Women's Issues • Women's Rights
January 26th, 2009
10:59 PM ET

On the Radar: Will earmarks ban keep stimulus bill pork-free?

Cate Vojdik
AC360° Writer

Tomorrow we'll be taking a new look at a long-running battle.

If you're a regular viewer, you know how we feel about pork in Washington.

We've aired multiple reports about the billions of dollars of earmarks that end up in legislation – from bridges to nowhere to skating rinks to museums for hobbits (okay, that last one didn't happen, as far as we know).

CNN's Drew Griffin has pressed lawmakers to come out of the shadows and own up to the pet projects they slip into federal bills. When the new Congress promised to crack down on earmarks, we were right there, Keeping Them Honest. But earmarks, like too many bad 80's bands, have never really disappeared - and now they have a new target: the $825 billion economic stimulus package that will soon come up for a vote.

President Obama has banned earmarks from the massive bill - a laudable move - but not everyone thinks it will keep pork out of the fine print. Some think lobbyists and lawmakers will find ways to funnel money to pet projects, ban or no ban.

Tomorrow, Joe Johns will be Keeping Them Honest, showing us some of the tricks that might be used to finagle money out of the stimulus package.

See you at 10 pm ET...

In the meantime, what are your thoughts about the stimulus package? Is it big enough? Too big? Are you hopeful that it will bring you relief? Send us a post, we'd love to hear from you

Filed under: 360° Radar • Cate Vojdik
January 26th, 2009
09:45 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 1/26/09

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Want to share your thoughts on the stories we're covering tonight? You're in the right location. Just scroll down and post your comments. This is where you can "chat" with Anderson and Erica during the program.

Want to know what we're covering tonight? Read EVENING BUZZ

Keep in mind, you have a better chance of having your comment get past our moderators if you follow our rules.

Here are some of them:

1) Keep it short (we don't have time to read a "book")
2) Don't write in ALL CAPS (there's no need to yell)
3) Use your real name (first name only is fine)
4) No links
5) Watch your language (keep it G-rated; PG at worst - and that includes $#&*)

We're so tech savy here at AC360°. At least, we like to think we are these days. So, we've got more goodies for you.

Don't miss Erica Hill's webcast during the commercials. Watch our WEBCAST

And take a look at our live web camera from the 360° studio. Watch the WEBCAM

Filed under: Live Blog
January 26th, 2009
09:38 PM ET

Evening Buzz: Pink Slip Monday

Maureen Miller
AC360° Writer

More than 70,000 pink slips went out today, courtesy of at least seven companies.

Let me let that sink in. We're talking about 70,000+ jobs being cut in one day. Vanished. Gone.
70,000+ people with bills to pay, families to feed and no job. It's been a bloodbath for American workers.

Will it get worse before it gets better? Tonight, we'll talk over the numbers with CNN Chief Business Correspondent Ali Velshi.

This is the burden put on new Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner. He was sworn in just a couple of hours ago in Washington after the Senate approved his nomination by a vote of 60 to 34.

Do you think Mr. Geithner has the plan and the vision to fix our economy?
We'll be deeper deeper on that and we'd love to hear your thoughts.

Also tonight, the latest details on a Kentucky high school football coach charged with a player's death. Jason Stinson pleaded not guilty to reckless homicide in the heat-exhaustion death of a 15-year-old player who collapsed while running sprints during an August practice. The player's temperature reached 107 degrees and witnesses told WLKY-TV that Stinson wouldn't let him get water.

We'll have all these stories and more tonight on AC360° .
Join us at 10pm ET.

Filed under: Maureen Miller • The Buzz
January 26th, 2009
07:13 PM ET

Beat 360° 1/26/09

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:

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs delivers the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington on January 26, 2009.

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.

UPDATE: Check out our Beat 360° Winners!


Beat 360° Challenge

But wait!… There’s more!

When you win ‘Beat 360°’ not only do you get on-air prime-time name recognition (complete with bragging rights over all your friends, family, and jealous competitors), but you get a “I Won the Beat 360° Challenge” T-shirt!

Filed under: Beat 360° • T1
January 26th, 2009
06:54 PM ET

Obama-Biden heading to swear-in now

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Ed Henry
CNN White House Correspondent

President Obama is heading over to the Treasury Department with Vice President Biden to immediately swear-in Timothy Geithner as Treasury Secretary after tonight’s confirmation, according to two senior administration officials.

The VP is expected to do the actual swearing-in, while the President will likely make brief remarks, according to the official.

The quick move is a sign that the President, who originally hoped Geithner would be sworn in on Inauguration Day, wants to get his entire team in place to help sell the $825 billion economic stimulus plan.

Amid mounting Republican opposition to the plan, Obama is planning to ramp up his sale pitch Tuesday with a trip to Capitol Hill to meet with House and Senate Republicans in separate meetings.

Filed under: Ed Henry
January 26th, 2009
05:24 PM ET

Can I get classified military information in my MP3 player too?

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Mike Mount
CNN Senior Pentagon Producer

Did you hear the one about the guy from New Zealand who bought a used MP-3 player with a bunch of U.S. military files left on it?

According to a television station in that country, a man bought the used digital music player from a thrift store while visiting Oklahoma, only to find dozens of files with personal information on US troops including social security numbers and cell phone numbers.

Some of the files reportedly also included a mission plan and military equipment deployed on certain U.S. bases in Afghanistan.


Filed under: Pentagon • Technology
January 26th, 2009
05:21 PM ET

How many Americans does it take to change a lightbulb?

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Michael Schulder
CNN Senior Executive Producer

One of the most memorable quotes from Barack Obama came from a casual behind-the-scenes moment during the campaign. Candidate Obama, in an unguarded moment, recounted a question from a debate moderator who asked him what he’d personally done to go green. Mr. Obama’s frustration with the premise of this question was captured by Newsweek: “The truth is … we can’t solve global warming because I *#!@* changed light bulbs in my house,” said the candidate. “It’s because of something collective.”

For me, a guy who’s probably spent too much time calculating the costs and benefits of going compact fluorescent, I felt a little stupid hearing that. After all, everywhere you turn there’s another “Ten Tips to Green Your Life” list, which I often try to follow. Yet, there was candidate Obama, claiming that all the individual efforts that have captured the public’s imagination won’t make the necessary difference unless we act collectively.


January 26th, 2009
05:15 PM ET

Our common humanity

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

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Jami Floyd
AC360° Contributor
In Session Anchor

The inauguration was almost a week ago; by now you have heard all about the pomp and the circumstance, the parade and the parties. Since I was there, I’m tempted to give you my take on all of that too, but I won't. Because, now that I’m back from what I’m calling my “Inauguration Vacation” – that is, my week in Washington DC - I want to share with you something less tangible and much more meaningful: The spirit of the whole thing. Never before have I seen so many Americans, from all class backgrounds and ethnic groups, from cities and suburbs and rural areas, from places near and far, in one place and so full of the spirit of democracy.


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