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Saturday, December 20, 2008

Democratic Chatter 12-20-2008

George Wenschhof Bio

President-elect Barack Obama and family head to Hawaii for the holidays - In his weekly radio address today, Obama announced co-chairs of a new White House committee, the President's Council of Advisers on Science and Technology (PCAST). They were Dr. John Holdren, Dr. Harold Varmus, and Dr. Eric Lander. You can watch the video of his address and read more about the committee and co-chairs here.


Blago says he will fight, he will fight, he will fight..... - as promised, embattled Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich held a brief press conference yesterday. He declared his innocence and said he will fight until his last breath defending the charges against him in a court or law and not the media. has more on this story and you can watch the video of the press conference here.


Caroline Kennedy receives even more scrutiny after announcing her intention to seek the soon to be vacant Senate seat in NY - seems she has not always voted in major elections and last night her cousin Kerry Kennedy may have opened another issue for discussion. Last night on MSNBC "Hardball", Host Chris Matthews asked Kerry what was Caroline's position on a woman's right to choose. Kerry's answer was she did not know. This spurred Joan Walsh at, who also appeared on the show last night to write a quick and not so favorable piece on Caroline Kennedy. You can read it here.


Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson set to ask Congress for the remaining 350 Billion - this after he blew through 350 Billion in less than three months. has more here.

Many questions remain as to the effectiveness of the first 350 Billion spent through the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP). Voters also wonder who have been the recipients and how much did they receive? In the rush to avert a financial meltdown, accountability appears to have been totally absent. I would certainly hope that prior to approval of any of the additional 350 Billion, a analytical and comprehensive report is provided to Congress detailing how the first 350 Billion has been spent. In addition, detail of how the additional 350 Billion will be spent should be provided to Congress.


Al Franken takes lead in Minnesota Senate race - the latest report has him about 250 votes ahead as the state canvassing board continues to rule on contested ballots by both campaigns. The Minneapolis Star-Tribune has more here. Also, remaining to be counted is about 1500 absentee ballots. The state Supreme Court recently ruled they should be counted and required both campaigns and the canvassing board to agreed on the criteria by the end of the month. Stay Tuned.


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