President Obama will be at Fort Hood today, speaking at a memorial service for the men and women who died in last week’s shooting. Around “3,000 spectators, as well as the families of the 12 soldiers and one civilian killed, are expected to attend.” Vice President Biden will be at Fort Lewis, WA to “speak at the memorial ceremony for seven Stryker brigade soldiers” who were killed in Afghanistan two weeks ago.
Ft. Hood shooter Maj. Nidal M. Hasan gave a presentation on Islam in 2007 to mental health staff members, in which he said “it’s getting harder and harder for Muslims in the service to morally justify being in a military that seems constantly engaged against fellow Muslims.” Hasan also reportedly corresponded with a radical cleric in Yemen.
President Obama said yesterday that “Congress needs to change abortion-related language in the health care bill passed by the House.” “I laid out a very simple principle, which is this is a health care bill, not an abortion bill,” Obama told ABC News. “And we’re not looking to change what is the principle that has been in place for a very long time, which is federal dollars are not used to subsidize abortions.”
In a recent interview, RNC Chairman Michael Steele said that white Republicans are afraid of him. “I mean I’ve been in the room and they’ve been scared of me,” he said, “I’m like, ‘I’m on your side.’” Steele has previously claimed he would reach out to black voters by offering them fried chicken and potato salad.
In a 13-page strategy memo circulated to his colleagues, House Republican Conference Chairman Mike Pence (R-IN) says Republicans need to hammer “Pelosi Health Care” over the upcoming recess. Pence instructs his members how to talk about “Speaker Pelosi’s 1,990 page bill.”
Sen. Chris Dodd (D-CT) will unveil his Senate Banking Committee’s draft legislation on financial regulation reform today. Dodd is expected to call for centralizing bank supervision into one agency, a proposal that is at odds with the administration.
The Wall Street Journal reports that U.S. border arrests declined dramatically this year. Border apprehensions dropped to 555,041 in fiscal year 2009, down from 723,825 in fiscal year 2008.
President Obama will send Special Envoy Stephen W. Bosworth to North Korea for “the first direct talks with the government there in more than a year.” Bosworth will “focus solely on resuming the six-nation talks to end North Korea’s nuclear program.”
Former President Bill Clinton will attend the Senate Democrats’ weekly luncheon today to address the caucus about health care reform. In a notice that went out to the caucus, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) “requested that all Democratic Senators attend” Clinton’s “presentation on Health Care.”
And finally: Not even his son’s wedding could keep Rep. Steve King (R-IA) from Saturday’s vote on health care legislation. King said that his family fully supported his decision. “As I said, the best thing that I could give them would be to preserve the freedom that I was born into and be able to pass that along to any children that they will be blessed with,” explained King.
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