February 2nd, 2009
09:23 PM ET

Evening Buzz: Tricky Cabinet Construction

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/02/02/judd.gregg.commerce/art.judd.gregg.jpg caption="Sources tell CNN Sen. Judd Gregg will be President Barack Obama's choice for commerce secretary."]

Maureen Miller
AC360° Writer

This just in... Republican Sen. Judd Gregg of New Hampshire has accepted President Barack Obama's offer to be commerce secretary. We're told the official announcement should come tomorrow morning.

Gregg wasn't Pres. Obama's first pick. You may recall, New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson was nominated to head the Commerce Department, but he withdrew his name from consideration because of a federal investigation involving state government contracts.

Gregg would be the third Republican in the Obama cabinet. Two others are Defense Secretary Robert Gates, a holdover from the Bush administration and Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, a former Illinois congressman.

This is an interesting pick. If Gregg is approved for the job, New Hampshire's Democratic governor would appoint a replacement.

That could give Democrats the 60-seat majority needed to overcome Republican attempts to use filibusters to block legislation.

Do you think the Dems will hit that "magic number"? Or did Gregg tell Pres. Obama he'd only take the new post if a Republican got his seat in the Senate? We'll talk it over in a Strategy Session with our political panel.

And,Bank of America is under fire for funding a massive Super Bowl event - the "NFL Experience." Yep, that's right, Bank of America, the same bank that bought Merrill Lynch and got a $45 billion dollar federal taxpayer bailout to stay in business itself, sponsored the five-day interactive sports game extravaganza.

Bank of America insists it was worth it to sponsor the event. Tom Foreman is Keeping them Honest and we'll have their side of the story. We'd love to know what you think of the deal. Share your thoughts below.

And, we have a 360° follow on the California octuplets. Today they turned one week old. We'll talk about the medical progress with CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta. But what a lot of people are talking about is the Mom's dream career. She wants to be a childcare expert on TV.

The L.A. Times reports she was once a psychiatric technician, then stopped working after she was injured on the job. She then became a student, the paper says, and started having babies. Lots of them! She already has six children at home. She'll have her hands full with 14 kids.

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

Filed under: Maureen Miller • The Buzz
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Congress needs to tighten up on medical ethics-–she will make a fortune with these deliveries-–a book--a movie--and just think of all the sponsors that are going to be flocking--there is reward in having children-–and for some--a greater reward than others.

    February 3, 2009 at 9:45 am |
  2. Susan

    With regard to the California octuplets – Where are the California social service workers? Shouldn't they be involved in this case? In light of the fact that she is a single mom and obviously will be unable to support these eight children (along with the six others she has at home) on her own income, it seems to me that it would be in the best interests of the children that they be taken from her and placed in foster care. Also, a psychiatric evaluation of the mother would be beneficial.

    February 3, 2009 at 8:43 am |
  3. lavillas

    Two weeks in office and already Obama has broken promises made to the American public. He has asked a lifetime lobbyist to head the defense department which is like asking the fox to protect the hen house He has chosen two others who are tax dodgers and are either dishonest or don't know how to balance a checkbook and now he is asking the American public to trust these guys to run the country. They failed to pay taxes, failed to report ill gotten earnings and are cozy buddies with the military industrial complex who overcharge us by selling us five hundred toilet seats. Where is the change Obama promised the American people? It seems like business as usual and if he did want genuine change just by endorsing these people no matter what gives the appearance of not being totally honest and trustworthy as he constantly kept saying throughout his campaign for president. Change begins when you can say I was wrong in my choice and I will begin a new search for a person that is honest,trustworthy and has integrity. To choose anyone that doesn't posses these traits is doing a disservice the American people to run their goverment.

    February 3, 2009 at 12:35 am |
  4. J.V.Hodgson

    There will be no magic number as Gregg will not accept if a democrat takes his senate seat. First point. Second, some Dems have a habit of voting against Democratic policy. Also you assume Franken wins Minnesota which is not yet decided.
    For me 60 is a nice thought but that's just wishful thinking in a meaningful sense. Frankly, Its only really something to keep the Talking heads busy!

    February 3, 2009 at 12:01 am |
  5. Tammy B.

    let me get this straight....a woman exercises her ability to birth eight babies to add to her brood just because she CAN, yet doesn't have the financial funds to support her decision?? and the taxpayers pick up the tab of her decision?? But two consenting adults who want to legalize their union are denied because they are the same gender?? outrageous

    February 2, 2009 at 11:43 pm |
  6. Bruce

    I think we need less opinion and commentary and more restraint as Monday morning quarterbacks with what President Obama is doing. Some what ironic in some ways as people rail on Michael Phelps. He wasn't chugging beer or slugging down shots with a cigarette burning between his fingers. Yes, not the best image for our youth, but our youth should also know our previous 3 presidents used drugs at one point in their youth. I might add that only one appeared to abuse drugs, at least alcohol, and he drove our country off a cliff. Hang on, when we hit bottom, look up. If you're under water you might see Michael back at his training.

    February 2, 2009 at 11:25 pm |
  7. Janet Ramage

    Can you tell us who paid for all these procedures and hospitalization and after care when the first six were born. And, who paid for this new procedure and resulting hospitalization? I believe she will be on welfare after declaring bankruptcy and has no husband. This is what we all want to know

    February 2, 2009 at 10:35 pm |
  8. Dan in NY

    I'm a Democrat, and I think this appointment will only strengthen the President's credibility. It puts another Republican in his cabinet (and a fiscal conservative), in a post that will be more imoprtant now than ever. And the fact that he is going through with this appointment, despite the fact that he knows this wont tip the balance of power in the Senate shows good faith. It seems like a subtle gesture to the Republicans that he's not looking just to steamroll over them, despite the fundamental differences in philosophy. Congratulations to Senator Gregg, President Obama, and all of us. It's another small step toward the bipartisanship we are all hoping for!

    February 2, 2009 at 10:30 pm |
  9. Linda Strasberg

    Say What???? The $45 billion dollar taxpayer bailout is being spent on what? A five day sports extravaganza called The NFL Experience sponsored by BofA . This could be viewed as excessive to say the least...how much is this NFL extravaganza costing BofA? Are they ever planning on applying any of the bailout money to help homeowners or to loosen lending practices to get our economy going again????

    February 2, 2009 at 10:26 pm |
  10. tommy

    I think the Vermont Governor should appoint a Democrat so the Dems can have 60 seats in the Senate.

    This may not happen but I feel Obama's trying to be bipartisan here with Gregg as Commerce Secretary.

    We'll have to wait and see what happens.

    February 2, 2009 at 10:23 pm |
  11. Larry

    Bank of America is one of Barney Frank's piggybanks along with Fannie & Freddie.

    If the seat gets filled with a democrat then Obama can just look for an excuse to dump Gregg and replace him with another 'yes' man/woman.

    Been wondering who decided that contributions received for a campaign are tax free?

    February 2, 2009 at 10:06 pm |
  12. Sarah in FL

    I think the woman with 14 kids is an embarassment. Some families cannot have any children, and she has 14?

    February 2, 2009 at 9:49 pm |
  13. Annie Kate

    It will be interesting to see how the Senate seat gets filled – I know the Dems want 60 votes so they can stop filibusters but I'm not sure that having that is inherently a good thing. Seems to me it just helps the Dems throw their weight around and have an excuse not to work with the GOP. I'd rather see another Republican get the seat and some working together done.

    Bank of America sponsoring the whole event was somewhat inappropriate with tax money – having an ad or two would be fine as advertising is a normal expense and need. But not at the scale they did it. I hope someone is drawing up a list of rules before any more money is given out and finding a referee to enforce those rules.

    February 2, 2009 at 9:31 pm |