Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office fired back against critics of its decision to authorize the construction of new settlements in a contested area of Eastern Jerusalem, arguing in a statement that "Jerusalem is not a settlement: Jerusalem is the capital of the State of Israel."
"Israel sees no connection at all between the peace process and building plans in Jerusalem," the statement read, according to the New York Times.
The statement comes in response to remarks made earlier today by President Obama, who, during a press conference in Indonesia, criticized Friday's announcement that Israel would be building more than 1,000 new housing units in the region.
"This kind of activity is never helpful when it comes to peace negotiations," Mr. Obama said while standing alongside Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. "I'm concerned that we're not seeing each side make the extra effort involved to get a breakthrough that could finally create a framework for a secure Israel living side by side in peace with a sovereign Palestine."Continue »
In the poll, which surveyed 3,583 random adults from Nov. 5-7, 47 percent of respondents gave Mr. Obama a positive approval rating - up four points from a Gallup poll taken before the post-midterm period.
In a Nov. 3 Gallup survey taken "in the three days prior to and including Tuesday's midterm elections," Mr. Obama polled at 43 percent favorability; he was at 44 percent favorability in a Gallup poll released Nov. 1.
A CBS News/New York Times poll from October 27 put Mr. Obama's approval rating at 45 percent.
Gallup notes a number of possible reasons for the recent uptick, including Mr. Obama's post-election speech in which he "struck a mostly conciliatory tone"; a highly-publicized trip to India; a better-than-anticipated jobs report; and a market surge late last week.Continue »
"I want seven hearings a week, times 40 weeks," Issa said.
Issa's election to chair the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform would herald a significant increase in the committee's activity, and not just from the past two years. California Rep. Henry Waxman, the committee's Democratic chair during the final two years of the Bush administration, held 203 hearings over the course of two years. With a goal of about 280 hearings each year, Issa hopes to more than double that.
Politico reports that Issa is looking to create new subcommittees, and has plans to investigate controversial Obama-era initiatives like the federal stimulus package and possibly health care reform, as well as the $700 billion bank bailout passed under President Bush.
"Do Wall Street Journal Reporters Read the Wall Street Journal?" Palin wondered, in the headline of her Facebook post.
"Ever since 2008, people seem inordinately interested in my reading habits. Among various newspapers, magazines, and local Alaskan papers, I read the Wall Street Journal," Palin writes. "So, imagine my dismay when I read an article by Sudeep Reddy in today's Wall Street Journal criticizing the fact that I mentioned inflation in my comments about QE2 in a speech this morning before a trade-association."
The article questions the veracity of Palin's remarks that "everyone who ever goes out shopping for groceries knows that prices have risen significantly over the past year or so," and argues that, while recent moves by the Fed have drawn a fair amount of political criticism, the former Alaska governor "tries to draw the concerns about quantitative easing to inflation today and falls short."Continue »
Despite top Democrats' professed desire to repeal the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy during the lame-duck Congressional session, insiders are skeptical about the chances of repeal before the end of the year. The reason, they say, is both a lack of time and a lack of Republican cooperation.
President Obama, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen are urging repeal of the policy, which bans gays from serving openly in the military. Yet Senate staffers say Democrats may not have enough support to get a Defense Authorization bill that includes repeal through Congress - particularly in light of the heavy losses Democrats sustained in the midterm elections.
"It's anybody's guess at this point," one source told CBS News Capitol Hill producer John Nolen.
Some believe the only way to get the Department of Defense Authorization bill through Congress by the end of the year is to take out 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' - along with anything else that might get held up due to partisan bickering.
Updated: Nov. 9, at 8:19AM ET
Republicans are doing everything they can to convince Joe Manchin, the Democratic senator-elect from West Virginia, to join the GOP, Fox News reports.
Manchin, the popular West Virginia Governor, faced a tough fight against Republican John Raese in his bid to become the state's junior senator this November. In that race, Manchin he went to great lengths to distance himself from the Washington Democratic establishment. (In one memorable campaign ad, he literally shot through a copy of the cap-and-trade bill with a gun.)
According to Fox, Republicans are now trying to woo the conservative Democrat to the other side of the aisle by promising him choice committee assignments and potentially even support for a power plant that would convert coal to diesel fuel.
"Republicans believe in an 'all of the above' approach to energy. And coal-to-diesel could certainly be part of that," according to an unnamed "top Senate aide" quoted by Fox. Manchin has so far seen little action by Democrats in response to his plight for funds to sponsor the coal conversion project.Continue »
"I'm deeply concerned about the Federal Reserve's plans to buy up anywhere from $600 billion to as much as $1 trillion of government securities," Palin's prepared remarks read. "What's the end game here?... All this pump priming will come at a serious price."
The speech is planned just days before President Obama will appear at the G20 summit in South Korea, which will likely address criticism from representatives of Germany, Brazil, China and South Africa regarding the Federal Reserve's recent decision to pump $600 billion into the U.S. economy.
But in India today, President Obama defended his backing of the decision, and said that the Fed's intent was to foster economic growth on a global scale.Continue »
In an interview that aired on NBC's "Today Show" Monday, Former President George W. Bush said his decision not to pardon former Vice Presidential aide Scooter Libby in 2008 did not sit well with former Vice President Dick Cheney.
"Scooter is a loyal American who worked for Vice President Cheney who got caught up in this Valerie Plame case and was indicted and convicted," Mr. Bush told NBC's Matt Lauer. Mr. Bush noted that while he chose to commute Libby's sentence, Cheney "wanted more."
"He wanted me to pardon him," Mr. Bush said. "It was the last decision of the presidency, really. I chose to let the jury verdict stand after some serious deliberation, and the Vice President was angry." (Watch the clip at left.)Continue »
MSNBC's Keith Olbermann will return to the air on Tuesday after being suspended without pay last Friday for making three unapproved political contributions.
"After several days of deliberation and discussion, I have determined that suspending Keith through and including Monday night's program is an appropriate punishment for his violation of our policy," said MSNBC president Phil Griffin in a statement on Sunday night. "We look forward to having him back on the air Tuesday night."
Politico reported last week that Olbermann, the host of MSNBC's "Countdown with Keith Olbermann," had made contributions to Democratic candidates Jack Conway, Rep. Raul Grijalva and Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in the weeks leading up to November's midterm elections.Continue »
Amid news that Democrat Dan Malloy appears to have the votes to win Connecticut's embattled gubernatorial race, Republican Tom Foley now says he may challenge the vote totals, according to the Associated Press.
In a press conference this morning, Foley left the door open to a possible legal challenge and urged Connecticut Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz to postpone the official announcement of a victor, due to myriad delays, errors, and confusion that have plagued the state's electoral process.
"We are being laughed at around this country," Foley said, according to the New Haven Independent. "I don't want to create a situation where a result is declared here and then it's changed ... Let's just take our time."
Foley's statement came after the revelation this morning of Bridgeport's final vote count, which appeared to put Malloy over the top. According to the Hartford Courant, Malloy received 17,973 votes in the heavily Democratic city, as compared to Foley's 4,099.Continue »
After a protracted vote count that lasted into Thursday, Washington Senate candidate Dino Rossi conceded to incumbent Democrat Patty Murray on Thursday night, congratulating the three-term Senator in a speech and regretting that voters were "not quite receptive enough" to his message.
"I ran for the Senate because I believe we need a basic course correction from where Washington, D.C. has been taking us and to make sure this country is as free, as strong and as prosperous in the future as it has been in the past to preserve the best of America for future generations," said Rossi, in his remarks.
Mr. Rossi's concession came after votes from King County, home to Democratic stronghold Seattle, showed Murray pulling ahead.Continue »
Pelosi is said to be gauging support among fellow House Democrats, and Politico reports that she is - both personally and through surrogates - putting in calls to most if not all of the Democratic caucus to see where she stands.
"I've gotten a positive response," said Pelosi, in a Thursday interview with the Huffington Post.Continue »
The Senate leader denied, however, that his agenda was about making President Obama look bad. "I don't want the president to fail," he said. "I want him to change."
"This isn't a reason for Republicans to gloat," McConnell said, of Tuesday's election results. "It's a time for both parties to realize who's really in charge - the people - and to be grateful for the opportunity we now have to turn this ship around," he added.Continue »
Updated: 4:01PM ET
After a protracted vote-counting process in the Oregon governor race, Chris Dudley - the former pro basketball player who was ahead in the tally for most of the count - has conceded to former two-term governor Democrat John Kitzhaber.
In a victory speech today, Kitzhaber said he hoped that Oregonians would move past an attitude of "bitter partisanship" and that they could all "stop letting ourselves be defined by maps on television that show states painted red and blue."
"The challenges aren't blue; the challenges aren't red - hell, they're green!" he cried, invoking President Obama's famous 2004 speech. "We have an opportunity to fix them together."
Oregon newspaper The Oregonian called the race for Kitzhaber last night as the results came in for Multnomah County, a Democratic stronghold that contains the liberal city Portland and its surrounding areas, which are some of the densest in the state. Both Portland and Eugene, another liberal bastion, were reporting ballot counts well after the rest of the state, according to the Oregonian.
According to current figures from the Associated Press, Kitzhaber now leads Dudley by more than 12,500 votes.Continue »
Updated: 4:28PM ET
Connecticut's gubernatorial results remain up in the air on Thursday, but that hasn't stopped both the Democratic and Republican candidates involved from moving forward with their transitional plans on the way to the governor's job.
On Wednesday, Connecticut's top election official, Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz, declared Democrat Dan Malloy as the winner of what has been an incredibly tight gubernatorial contest. But the vote count so far from the Associated Press shows shows Republican Tom Foley ahead by more than 8,000 votes. And Foley has refrained from conceding the contest.
Both Malloy and Foley have proffered tallies that differ from both sets of figures.
According to Bysiewicz's count, Malloy won by an unofficial margin of 3,100 votes out of 1.1 million cast. State law necessitates a recount if the margin of victory is less than 2,000 votes.Continue »