Politics

4:28pm

Fri December 20, 2013
The Two-Way

Gov. Christie Signs New Jersey 'DREAM Act' Into Law

Originally published on Fri December 20, 2013 7:52 pm

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie at a news conference Thursday.
Mel Evans AP

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie signed a bill on Friday that will give some students who are in the U.S. illegally a break on their tuition.

Christie inked New Jersey's version of the DREAM Act, which the Republican governor supported in his last re-election bid.

The state's Legislature passed the bill after a compromise that dropped a provision that would also have allowed students in the country illegally to be eligible for state financial aid if they qualified under income guidelines, according to The Associated Press.

The AP reports:

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3:38pm

Fri December 20, 2013
It's All Politics

Black GOP Hopefuls See Promise In Retirement Flurry

Originally published on Fri December 20, 2013 7:49 pm

Saratoga Springs Mayor Mia Love addresses the Utah Republican Party's annual organizing convention in May.
Rick Bowmer AP

It's not every day that three long-serving House members announce their retirements within hours of each other. It's rarer still that two of those seats have a distinct possibility of being filled by a black Republican after next year's election.

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2:35pm

Fri December 20, 2013
Architecture

Makeover USA: Short, 'Dowdy' D.C. Considers High Heels

Originally published on Fri December 20, 2013 4:06 pm

The skyline of Washington, D.C., including the Capitol building, Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial and National Mall. The tall buildings in the distance are in Virginia.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

The powers that be in Washington are typically, though certainly not always, wrestling with weighty issues.

Recently, they've also been debating height, and whether they prefer a stout, familiar dowager, or a taller, sleeker model.

Building heights, people: We're talking building heights in your nation's capital, where for more than a century the 1910 Building Height Act has kept the city's profile low.

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2:09pm

Fri December 20, 2013
The Two-Way

President Orders Review Of Sexual Assault In Military

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey brief reporters at the Pentagon in Washington, on Thursday.
Charles Dharapak AP

President Obama has ordered a one-year review of the military's response to sexual assault within the ranks, saying his administration has "an urgent obligation" to respond to the problem.

"If I do not see the kind of progress I expect, then we will consider additional reforms that may be required to eliminate this crime from our military ranks," the president said in a statement on Friday.

As Reuters says:

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1:42pm

Fri December 20, 2013
The Two-Way

Obama On Health Care Rollout: 'We Screwed It Up'

Originally published on Fri December 20, 2013 5:46 pm

Carolyn Kaster AP

President Obama, in his final news conference of the year, sought to put the best face on a difficult first year of his second term.

Speaking a few hours before he heads to Hawaii for a two-week vacation, Obama is meeting with reporters at the White House.

He touted the improving economy, saying 2 million jobs had been added in 2013, with the unemployment rate now at its lowest level in five years.

"2014 can be a breakthrough year," he said.

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12:07pm

Fri December 20, 2013
Politics

'A Lot Of Sour Grapes' Left In Budget Deal

Congress is hopes for a happy holiday after approving a budget deal. But the President is still feeling the heat over Obamacare and the National Security Agency's data mining. Host Michel Martin talks politics with Republican strategist Ron Christie and Fernando Espuelas of Univision.

11:33am

Fri December 20, 2013
It's All Politics

Protesters Greet Scott Brown At New Hampshire GOP Event

Originally published on Fri December 20, 2013 2:43 pm

Republican Scott Brown (center) waves to the crowd at the conclusion of his Massachusetts Senate race concession speech Nov. 6 as his daughter Ayla Brown (left) and wife Gail Huff applaud.
Steven Senne AP

Scott Brown still knows how to make an entrance.

The former Massachusetts senator — and a soon-to-be official resident of Rye, N.H. — arrived at the New Hampshire GOP's holiday party in his trademark pickup truck Thursday evening, and was greeted by more than 100 chanting protesters.

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10:38am

Fri December 20, 2013
The Two-Way

Sen. Baucus Tapped To Be Ambassador To China

Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Confirming one of the week's less-secret secrets, the White House announced Friday morning that President Obama intends to nominate Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., to be the next ambassador to the People's Republic of China.

The 72-year-old Baucus has been in the Senate since 1978. He is chairman of the Senate Finance Committee.

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7:10am

Fri December 20, 2013
The Two-Way

'Huge Win For Victims Of Sexual Assault' In Defense Budget

Originally published on Fri December 20, 2013 8:11 am

Tim Shaffer Reuters/Landov

"The women of the Senate who led the fight to change how the military deals with sexual assault in its ranks are hailing passage of a comprehensive defense bill that now heads to President Barack Obama for his signature," The Associated Press writes this morning.

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6:33am

Fri December 20, 2013
The Two-Way

When Obama Takes Questions Today, What Should He Be Asked?

Originally published on Fri December 20, 2013 10:05 am

President Obama's most recent news conference at the White House was on Nov. 14.
Fang Zhe Xinhua/Landov

Update at 10:02 a.m. ET. News Conference Set For 2 P.M. ET:

The White House just announced that the president will hold a news conference at 2 p.m. ET.

So, we've changed our original headline from "If Obama Takes Questions ..." to "When."

Note: The president's sessions with reporters often get started a little late.

Our original post picks up the story:

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