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December 15th, 2008
01:32 PM ET

Global warming: What priority for Pres.-elect Obama?

Apparently, the world is rapidly running out of time to curb global warming. There is a sense among many in the scientific community that global warming is accelerating and becoming a crisis much earlier than expected.

After a meeting with former Vice President and Nobel Peace Prize winner Al Gore last week, President-elect Barack Obama said, "the time for delay is over, the time for denial is over." He went on to say that global warming is a matter of urgency and national security.

Arctic ice is melting so fast that some scientists predict the Arctic waters won't have any ice left during the summer of 2013. Some species are becoming extinct, carbon dioxide levels are already exceeding safe limits, according to some scientists, and the list goes on. What was predicted to be years and years away is now apparently just around the corner.

But in the midst of an economic crisis there may be limitations to Obama's urgent actions. And he has to get Congress to sign on too.

Here’s my question to you: Where does global warming stand on President-elect Obama’s priority list?

December 15th, 2008
01:30 PM ET

Sen. John McCain unwilling to support Sarah Palin?

Sen. John McCain refuses to say he would support his former running mate, Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, if she runs for president in 2012.

McCain was asked directly during an interview on ABC's "This Week" if Palin can count on McCain's support. He ducked. When pressed on the question he ducked again, saying, "My corpse is still warm."

Palin was McCain's running mate, and he won't say he'll support her? This is the person he picked to be the second in command, to lead the nation should something happen to him, had he been elected President. And now he not only pauses, but won't answer whether or not he'll support her?

This was McCain's first Sunday political TV interview since he lost the election. He insists Palin helped his campaign and continues to publicly state his appreciation to the entire Palin family.

Maybe McCain is finally coming to terms with the true impact she had on his campaign. Toward the end his name didn't even appear at some of her rallies.

Barack Obama hasn't even been sworn in yet and polls have shown Republicans want Palin in 2012.

Here’s my question to you: What’s with Sen. John McCain unwilling to say he’ll support his former running mate?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

FULL POST


Filed under: John McCain • Sarah Palin
December 12th, 2008
01:54 PM ET

Should the United Auto Workers Union have accepted wage cuts to save the bailout?

From CNN's Jack Cafferty:

The fate of the U.S. auto industry is still unknown. The $14-billion bailout bill died in the Senate after a dispute over union wage cuts.

Senate Republicans said the bill wouldn't do enough to put automakers back on their feet. They wanted the Auto Workers Union to accept a lower pay and benefits package similar to what employees make at U.S. factories where Japanese cars are produced. The union balked.

In an unusual move, Labor and Industry representatives met with lawmakers at the Capitol last night to try to make it work. But eventually the union walked away unwilling to comply with the demands.

The industry still needs cash to avoid collapse.

General Motors said today they will cut 250,000 cars from their first quarter production schedule by closing 20 factories.

President-elect Obama asked the White House to intervene and the White House Press Secretary said all options are under consideration, including the possibility of dipping into the $700-billion Troubled Assets Recovery Program.

So our question is: Should the United Auto Workers Union have accepted wage cuts to save the bailout?

Tune in to the Situation Room at 4pm to see if Jack reads your answer on the air.

And we love to know where you’re writing from, so please include your city and state with your comment


Filed under: Auto Industry
December 12th, 2008
01:47 PM ET

How much damage will the Illinois scandal do to President-elect Barack Obama?

From CNN's Jack Cafferty:

President-elect Barack Obama's chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, has been avoiding reporters since news broke Tuesday that Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich allegedly tried to sell Obama's seat in the Senate.

More specifically, he refuses to answer questions about whether he was the emissary who talked to Blagojevich about the Senate vacancy.

The criminal complaint says Blagojevich was willing to appoint Valerie Jarrett, a friend and advisor to Obama, to fill the seat, in exchange for a reward such as a high level appointment.

Obama maintains that he nor anyone on his staff had anything to do with the Governor's pay for play politics scheme caught on tape by FBI wire taps.

Rahm Emanuel was noticeably absent from a press conference Obama had yesterday.

A reporter for the Chicago Sun-Times reports seeing him at Chicago's City Hall yesterday afternoon to watch his kids perform in a school concert.

When the reporter asked him directly if he was the advisor named in the criminal complaint, he said, "You're wasting your time, I'm not going to say a word to you. I'm going to do this with my children ..."

Our question is: How much damage will the Illinois scandal do to President-elect Barack Obama?

Tune in to the Situation Room at 5pm to see if Jack reads your answer on the air.

And we love to know where you’re writing from, so please include your city and state with your comment


Filed under: Barack Obama
December 12th, 2008
01:02 PM ET

Should Republicans stop listening to Rush Limbaugh?

Here’s my question to you: Should Republicans stop listening to Rush Limbaugh?

Tune in to the Situation Room at 6pm to see if Jack reads your answer on the air.

And we love to know where you’re writing from, so please include your city and state with your comment


Filed under: Rush Limbaugh
December 11th, 2008
01:49 PM ET

Additional U.S. Troops to Afghanistan?

ALT TEXT

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Defense Secretary Robert Gates plans to move three more combat brigades–thousands of additional soldiers– to Afghanistan by next summer.

Gates is in Kandahar, Afghanistan today meeting with military leaders there.

The U.S. currently has about 31,000 troops in Afghanistan, about one-quarter of the troop level in Iraq. But violence has skyrocketed in Afghanistan over the past two years. This year has been the deadliest year for U.S. troops there since the war began in 2001.

Gates told reporters the ideal size of U.S. military presence in Iraq is still being debated even though a status of forces agreement has been reached with the Iraqi government calling for U.S. troops to be in Iraq through the end of 2011.

Gates is going through a awkward transition right now. Last week, President-elect Obama announced he would keep Gates on as the Secretary of Defense. But for the next six weeks, Gates is answering to the Bush administration.

In a sign he is looking forward, Gates told reporters building up the Afghan army and improving cooperation with Kabul on security operations is key for the Obama administration…an administration he'll officially be part of come January 20.

Here’s my question to you: Should the U.S. send additional troops to Afghanistan?

Tune in to the Situation Room at 4pm to see if Jack reads your answer on air.

And, we love to know where you’re writing from, so please include your city and state with your comment.


Filed under: Afghanistan
December 11th, 2008
01:11 PM ET

When Will the U.S. Economy Turn Around?

FROM CNN’s Jack Cafferty:

News on the economy just keeps getting worse. We're officially in a recession, unemployment filings are at a 26-year high and more layoffs are reported every day. No one really knows if the end is near.

Two-thirds of Americans don't see the economy turning around anytime soon, according to a Gallup poll. Most of those surveyed think a turnaround is at least two years away.

Here's how it breaks down: 29 percent say it will be two years until the economy starts to recover, 20% say three to four years, and 17 percent say five or more years. Just 15% think it will be within a year.

This is mostly unchanged from how Americans felt three weeks ago despite the fact that the news has continued to get worse during that time.

It becomes a vicious cycle: public fears of a lengthy recession lead consumers to stop spending which makes the recession worse.

It's been a year since the recession started. As the folks at the Gallup Poll point out, if it takes two more years for recovery to start, this could be one of the worst economic downturns in the nation's history.

Here’s my question to you: What will it take for the economy to begin improving?

Tune in to the Situation Room at 5pm to see if Jack reads your answer on air.

And, we love to know where you’re writing from, so please include your city and state with your comment.


Filed under: US Economy
December 11th, 2008
01:09 PM ET

More or Less Likely to Buy American Cars?

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/12/11/art.auto.a.gi.jpg caption=" Will you buy American?"]

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

It looks like U.S. automakers are going to avoid bankruptcy, at least for now. A bailout for the auto industry cleared the House but faces hurdles in the Senate.

Republican Senators are skeptical that the suits in Detroit will make the necessary changes to turn things around. Simply put, they doubt $14 billion will save the industry. After all, the amount is substantially less than the $34 billion the Big Three U.S. automakers asked for last week. Critics are afraid the $14 billion could be the start of something: that the automakers will be back asking for more in short order.

Grappling continues over amendments that could be the key to getting the bill passed and a test vote in the Senate could come Friday.

If it passes, a "car czar" appointed by the president will oversee the loans and dictate the terms and industry restructuring.

This is all aimed at preventing the automakers from filing bankruptcy. It's supposed to be the better alternative leaving consumers confident enough to still buy cars, at a time when auto sales are down 35%.

Here’s my question to you: Will a government bailout of the auto industry make you more or less likely to buy an American car?

Tune in to the Situation Room at 6pm to see if Jack reads your answer on air.

And, we love to know where you’re writing from, so please include your city and state with your comment.


Filed under: Auto-Bailout
December 10th, 2008
01:06 PM ET

What is it about Illinois and political corruption?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin, the Democrat from Illinois, called yesterday "a sad day for my state."

A sad day, sure, his state's governor was handcuffed and hauled off to appear before a federal judge. But in Illinois it's not like this has never happened before.

There's a pattern of corruption among governors in the "Prairie State." Counting Governor Blagojevich, four of the last seven governors elected in the state of Illinois have been arrested. Democrat Otto Kerner, who was Illinois's governor from 1961 to 1968, was convicted of taking bribes from the manager of two horse-racing tracks and spent some time in prison. Dan Walker, also a Democrat, who held the job from 1973 to 1977, served time after he left office for receiving improper loans. And Republican George Ryan, who served as governor from 1999 to 2003, was charged with accepting gifts in return for political favors and was sentenced to six years in prison in 2006.

Blagojevich, of course, was charged yesterday with among other things trying to sell President-elect Obama's senate seat.

A proud tradition, isn't it? And don't even start on the history of corruption in the city of Chicago. This is only a three-hour program.

Here's my question to you: When it comes to political corruption, what is it about Illinois?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

FULL POST


Filed under: Chicago Senate Seat
December 10th, 2008
01:01 PM ET

'Car Czar' the answer to Detroit's problems?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

There's a deal, at least, in principle, for a $14 billion auto industry bailout with strings attached.

The Big 3 have three months to restructure under the watchful eyes, presumably, of a government "car czar." So that's it… a few billion dollars and government interference and Detroit will be just fine, right?

This car czar, to be appointed by the President, will write the guidelines for the $14 billion loans. The appointee will also set the terms for the loans and oversee the restructuring of the auto makers who take the money. There will supposedly be a report to Congress every 15 days.

In short, this person will have extraordinary power.

The deal is a short-term solution that is supposed to give GM and Chrysler enough cash to avoid filing for bankruptcy, at least until President-elect Barack Obama takes over and can negotiate a long-term solution. Ford apparently has enough cash on hand and won't need a loan, at least not yet.

If the government does as good a job with this as it's done with overseeing the $700 billion bailout, well… you get the idea.

Some are calling the arrangement "Bankruptcy Light"... saying it avoids the dangers of bankruptcy that scare consumers away from buying products, in this case cars.

Here’s my question to you: Is a government "Car Czar" the answer to Detroit's problems?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

FULL POST


Filed under: Auto Industry
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