Norway says Beluga whale with apparent Russian-made harness swims south to Sweden
Norwegian authorities say that a beluga whale first spotted in Arctic Norway in 2019 with an apparent Russian-made harness and alleged to have come from a Russian military facility has been spotted off Sweden's west coast.
Vice presidents' policy projects come with political risks
That's likely to be the case for Vice President Kamala Harris, who this week was named the new point person on immigration. This is definitely not a ceremonial task,” said Nina Rees, a former deputy assistant for domestic policy to Vice President Dick Cheney. Harris' team has clarified that the vice president does not own all of immigration policy. Kamarck's argument bucks the traditional wisdom, which says if a vice president does well on thorny issues, more credit goes to the president and, if not, it gives the president some political cover. The matter of who gets praise, or blame, is even trickier when it's clear the vice president has White House aspirations.
Biden readies for 1st news conference, White House tradition
AdThe last four presidents, back to Bill Clinton, each held one solo White House news conference in their first 60 days, picking up the pace to varying degrees later. The pandemic has kept foreign leaders away from the White House this year. Eisenhower's news conference Jan. 19, 1955, was one benchmark among several in the history of presidential news conferences tracked by Kumar, an authority on White House practices. But for all of JFK's charms and smarts, he encountered a more aggressive White House press corps, Kumar says. Richard Nixon, like Trump after him, called the press an “enemy.” Yet Nixon was the first to hold White House news conferences in prime time.
Biden pays a visit to ailing former GOP Sen. Bob Dole
President Joe Biden's motorcade departs the Watergate complex after Biden made a stop to visit with former Sen. Bob Dole, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden paid a visit Saturday to former Sen. Bob Dole, days after the World War II veteran and 1996 Republican presidential nominee announced he'd been diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. Biden, who served in the Senate with Dole for more than two decades, arrived Saturday afternoon at the Watergate complex where Dole, 97, and his wife, Elizabeth, have maintained a longtime residence. “He’s doing well,” Biden said of Dole, after departing Holy Trinity Catholic Church later Saturday evening. Dole had unsuccessfully sought the GOP nomination in 1980 and 1988, and he was President Gerald Ford’s vice presidential running mate in 1976, when Ford lost to Democrat Jimmy Carter.
Bob Dole says he's been diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer
FILE - In this July 18, 2016 file photo, political icon and 1996 Republican presidential nominee Sen. Bob Dole is seen at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. Dole says he has been diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistribuTOPEKA, Kan. – Bob Dole, a former longtime senator and the 1996 Republican presidential nominee, announced Thursday that he has been diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer. Kansas Sen. Jerry Moran, a Republican who holds the seat Dole once did, expressed sadness at the cancer diagnosis and offered his prayers. He remained the Republicans' longest-serving Senate leader, at nearly 11 1/2 years, until current Minority Leader Mitch McConnell broke the record in 2018.
Biden thinks impeachment video may have swayed `some minds'
President Joe Biden speaks during a meeting with lawmakers on investments in infrastructure, in the Oval Office of the White House, Thursday, Feb. 11, 2021, in Washington. White House press secretary Jen Psaki said later that “the footage was just a reminder of how shocked and saddened” Biden was on the day rioters stormed the Capitol. It also reflects a belief among White House aides that the chattering classes in Washington and on Twitter are often far removed from the realities of everyday Americans. With the Senate occupied by impeachment, White House legislative affairs staffers were working with House committee members on the COVID-19 legislation. Engel suggested that Biden continue to focus his message on Americans, rather than wade into fights on Capitol Hill.
Did someone say impeachment? Biden avoids wading into debate
White House press secretary Jen Psaki has dodged question after question about the trial, declining to offer Biden’s opinion on the proceedings. Containing COVID is President Biden’s No. It also reflects a belief among White House aides that the chattering classes in Washington and on Twitter are often far removed from the realities of everyday Americans. With the Senate occupied by impeachment, White House legislative affairs staffers were working with House committee members on crafting the massive COVID-19 legislation. AdEngel suggested that Biden continue to focus his message on Americans, rather than wade into fights on Capitol Hill.
Blair House guest quarters a temporary home for VP Harris
In this Jan. 25, 2021 photo, Secret Service vehicles parked outside of Blair House in Washington. Blair House, the official government guest house, is serving as a temporary home for Vice President Kamala Harris. AdSo Harris moved into Blair House, where President Harry Truman lived from 1948-1952 during major renovations to the White House. The original Blair House was built in 1824 by Joseph Lovell, the Army surgeon general, and later sold to journalist Francis Preston Blair. The Blair family sold the house to the U.S. government in the early 1940s, and it was turned into the president's official guest house.
At 78 and the oldest president, Biden sees a world changed
WASHINGTON – When Joe Biden took the oath of office as the 46th president, he became not only the oldest newly inaugurated U.S. chief executive in history but also the oldest sitting president ever. That’s 78 days older than President Ronald Reagan was when he left office in 1989. A look at how the country Biden now leads has changed over his lifetime and how his presidency might reflect that. The world population in Biden’s lifetime has grown from about 2.3 billion to 7.8 billion. The month Biden was born, a dozen eggs averaged about 60 cents in U.S. cities -- two hours of minimum wage work.
Trump shuns 'ex-presidents club' — and the feeling is mutual
Now that he's left office, it's hard to see him embracing the stately, exclusive club of living former presidents. “He kind of laughed at the very notion that he would be accepted in the presidents club,” said Kate Andersen Brower, who interviewed Trump in 2019 for her book “Team of Five: The Presidents’ Club in the Age of Trump." Obama, Bush and Clinton recorded their video after accompanying Biden to lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Solider following the inauguration. When Hurricane Katrina blasted the Gulf Coast, Bush, father of the then-current president George W. Bush, called on Clinton to boost Katrina fundraising relief efforts. Obama tapped Clinton and the younger President Bush to boost fundraising efforts for Haiti after its devastating 2010 earthquake.
Impeachment could become defining moment for Liz Cheney
3 House Republican had already broken with the president on everything from mask-wearing during the coronavirus pandemic to pulling back American troops in Afghanistan. Now she's emerging as the most prominent Republican to back Trump's impeachment — the only member of her party's leadership doing so. The 10 Republicans who voted in favor of impeachment was small but significant — when Trump was impeached last year, no House Republicans supported it. As the only woman in House GOP leadership, Cheney has been seen as a possible candidate for House speaker should the GOP regain the majority in 2022 or beyond. This is a very, very difficult decision,” Utah Republican Rep. John Curtis said of Cheney.
Biden faces challenge in guiding America past Trump era
When Biden takes office later this month, his biggest challenge may be navigating a deeply divided country past the turmoil of the Trump era. Biden essentially framed his presidential campaign as a response to Trump, pledging to “restore the soul” of America. He has said he decided to seek the White House after watching Trump say there were “very fine people on both sides” of a deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. “Biden has to be very conscious of dealing with President Trump," Updegrove continued. But the senator said the inauguration itself may offer the most important opportunity for Biden to set a forward-looking tone.
Trump joins a select few in skipping Biden's inauguration
John Adams and John Quincy Adams also opted not to participate in a tradition that began with George Washington. The White House Historical Association points out that John Adams was never formally invited by his successor, Thomas Jefferson, to the event and perhaps didn’t want to impose. He did not call on Adams, nor did Adams invite Jackson to the White House. Some four decades later, President-elect Ulysses S. Grant refused to ride with President Andrew Johnson from the White House to the Capitol for the ceremony. Rather, Ford was administered the oath of office in the White House East Room shortly after Nixon had tendered his resignation to avoid impeachment.
Trump’s loyal fans pose challenges for Republicans, Biden
(AP Photo/Julio Cortez, File)WASHINGTON – Their candidate may have lost the election, but President Donald Trump’s supporters have no intention of fading away. Trump will leave the White House on Jan. 20 with an iron grip on a Republican Party that has been transformed on his watch. But among "those that are circling the 2024 race, beyond President Trump, it seems that many of them are headed in the same, more populist-oriented direction,” he said. Trump will “loom very large over the Republican Party," predicted Alyssa Farah, until recently White House communications director. No matter what happens in 2020, 2024 is there for his taking," White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said in a recent appearance on Fox News Channel.
Final goodbye: Recalling influential people who died in 2020
The world also said goodbye to U.S. Rep. John Lewis, a lion of the civil rights movement who died in July. Other former political figures who died this year include Egyptian leader Hosni Mubarak, New York Mayor David Dinkins, Arizona Gov. Here is a roll call of some influential figures who died in 2020 (cause of death cited for younger people, if available):___JANUARY___David Stern, 77. The guitarist who supplied the scratching, seething sound that fueled the highly influential British punk band Gang of Four. He fused African rhythms with funk to become one of the most influential musicians in world dance music.
Trump expected to flex pardon powers on way out door
WASHINGTON – Advocates and lawyers anticipate a flurry of clemency action from President Donald Trump in the coming weeks that could test the limits of presidential pardon power. No, Mr. President, that would be a gross abuse of the presidential pardon authority,” Schumer said. Trump then featured Johnson's story in a Super Bowl ad and pardoned her during this year's Republican National Convention. He has participated in several meetings at the White House during Trump's term as officials brainstormed potential changes to the formal clemency process. “For those people that should be free," he said, Trump's friends-and-family approach to pardons is "a deep and real tragedy."
Criminal probe, legal fights await Trump after White House
FILE - In this Nov. 5, 2020 file photo, President Donald Trump speaks at the White House in Washington. The president's legal entanglements are likely to intensify when leaves the White House in January 2021 and loses immunity from prosecution. The probe led by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. is one of several legal entanglements likely to intensify when Trump loses power — and immunity from prosecution — upon leaving the White House. Trump faces two New York state inquiries into whether he misled tax authorities, banks or business partners. Carroll says Trump raped her in the mid-1990s in a New York department store.
Candidate concessions have been colorful, funny — or absent
FILE - In this Nov. 4, 1992, file photo, President George H.W. Bill Clinton won the 1992 president election. Most concessions are gracious — less about the loser and more about closure for the country. “Just moments ago I spoke with George W. Bush and congratulated him on becoming the 43rd president of the United States. President John Adams was glum, too.
Transition of power, throughout the years: Most cases peaceful, some awkward
When President Donald Trump lost November 2020′s election, it marked just the 11th time in U.S. history an incumbent president was beaten in a re-election bid. On the surface, it seems like it might be an awkward transition -- in which the current president vacates his office and is forced to witness the inauguration of his successor. In the middle of the night before the inauguration was scheduled to start, Adams departed Washington, D.C. and started his post-presidential life. 1828There was some bad blood between incumbent president John Quincy Adams and challenger Andrew Jackson, which stemmed from a controversial ending to the 1824 election that involved both men. 1932This was not a peaceful transition of power between outgoing president Herbert Hoover and the man who defeated him in the election, Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
Trump fires Esper as Pentagon chief after election defeat
President Donald Trump has fired Esper. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump fired Defense Secretary Mark Esper on Monday, an unprecedented move by a president struggling to accept election defeat and angry at a Pentagon leader he believes wasn't loyal enough. I would like to thank him for his service.”In a letter to Trump, Esper referred to his efforts to keep the Pentagon apolitical -- a resistance that often angered Trump. Esper didn't thank Trump, but he also didn't openly criticize the president or his policies. “President Trump’s decision to fire Secretary Esper out of spite is not just childish, it’s also reckless.”Former military leaders weighed in.
Biden shores up fragile 'blue wall' in industrial north
“It’s a mistake to ever have thought Wisconsin was a safely blue state,” said state Democratic Chairman Ben Wikler. To reverse Clinton's losses in the “blue wall” states, Biden benefited from both strong suburban turnout and in the urban centers of Philadelphia, Detroit and Milwaukee. Even in losing Republican-heavy Waukesha County, Wisconsin, Biden's suburban gains were part of his winning Wisconsin formula. Trump also lost Saginaw County, Michigan, a struggling former General Motors supply manufacturing county Obama carried before the president flipped. But we're still a manufacturing economy and nearly stagnant in our growth,” Erie County Democratic Party Chairman Jim Wertz said.
After waiting game, media moves swiftly to call Biden winner
Because votes are counted state by state, verdicts by the media outlets' decision desks serve as the unofficial finish line for the presidential race. The closeness of the race in Pennsylvania, Georgia, Arizona, Nevada and North Carolina proved another challenge. “We just have to be certain before we call a winner in the presidential election,” said Sally Buzbee, executive editor and senior vice president of the AP. Heading into Saturday, CNN, CBS, NBC and ABC — which coordinate their vote counts and exit polls — had Biden at 253 electoral votes. All know that calling a presidential election wrong is a career-wrecker.
Growing area with rural roots a window into swing state Ohio
Devore lives in Wood County, an election bellwether that only once since 1964 has not picked the presidential winner. Ohio is again up for grabs in the presidential election. Four years after Trump won Ohio relatively easily, most polls show the state is again a toss-up. “That’s why Wood County always swings,” Miller said. Republicans hold nearly every elected office in Wood County and have long dominated local politics.
Reagan's age, Mitt's binders: Presidential debate highlights
FILE - In this Oct. 21, 1960 file photo taken a television in New York displays a debate between Republican presidential candidate Vice President Richard M. Nixon, left, and Democratic presidential candidate Sen. John F. Kennedy, D-Mass. The 1960 presidential election offered the country's first televised debates. Here are some of the most memorable moments in presidential debate history:THE FIRST TELEVISED DEBATEThe 1960 presidential election offered the country's first televised debate. THE KIDS ARE OFF-LIMITSDemocrat John Kerry's response to a question about homosexuality during a 2004 presidential debate against Republican incumbent George W. Bush caused a fight between him and Vice President Dick Cheney. The women detailed their allegations against the former president as Trump watched, his hands folded in front of him.
America has a huge stash of emergency oil
(CNN) - Three days before Christmas in 1975, President Gerald Ford signed a law creating the United States' first emergency stash of crude oil. At the time, OPEC, the cartel of oil-producing nations, had a stranglehold on the world's supply of crude. Today the United States is one of the world's largest producers and a major seller, not just a buyer, of oil. The Strategic Petroleum Reserve contains 645 million barrels the world's largest backup oil supply. They damaged the core of Saudi oil production and have temporarily knocked out 5.7 million barrels a day.