January 8th, 2009
01:47 PM ET

Does Harry Reid Work for Pres.-elect Obama?

"I don't work for Barack Obama. I work with him," Reid said.

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told The Hill newspaper that the Democrats on Capitol Hill will not be a rubber stamp for President-elect Obama's policies, the way the Republicans have been for President Bush. Reid said, "I don't work for Barack Obama. I work with him."

Reid's been on a bit of a roll this week. He started Sunday with his ongoing mantra about President Bush's failures and called him the worst President ever.

On Tuesday, he turned away Roland Burris at the Senate door, which was not a surprise since he vowed to refuse to accept anyone appointed by scandal ridden Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich. But he may not have a choice. Reid met with Burris yesterday and seems to have warmed up to the possibility of seating him if the lawyers can work things out. If that happens, Harry Reid will look sillier than he already does.

Reid was also shooting from the lip on the still disputed Minnesota Senate race. He said, quote, "Norm Coleman will never ever serve again in the Senate" Really? What if a court decides otherwise?

Yesterday he told his fellow Senators to cancel their travel plans for this weekend and vowed a weekend vote on only the second day of the legislative session. What a busy fellow.

Here’s my question to you: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says he doesn't work for Barack Obama. Is he right?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: Barack Obama • Harry Reid • Senate and Congress
January 6th, 2009
12:49 PM ET

Roland Burris: What Should U.S. Senate Do?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Barack Obama really didn't need this. Roland Burris declared he's the Senator from Illinois despite the controversy surrounding his appointment. He was picked by Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, who is accused of trying to sell the seat vacated by President-elect Barack Obama.

But when Burris made his way to Capitol Hill this morning, the Senate refused to seat him. Senate Majority leader Harry Reid said it's because of incomplete paper work. His certificate of appointment is signed by the Illinois Governor but not by the secretary of state. But it's really much more than that.

Burris said his lawyers will handle it and he has a private meeting scheduled with Senate leaders tomorrow.

He said he didn't want to make a scene on Capitol Hill-but he did. It was a circus.

People are speaking out on Burris' behalf, saying his appointment is legal and he should be seated.

But this whole thing smells. There are criminal charges pending against the Illinois governor who appointed Burris. Those charges include trying to profit from naming Obama's replacement in the U.S. Senate. It's sort of like letting Bernie Madoff run a hedge fund while he's awaiting trial on charges of stealing $50 billion from investors.

Our Question is: When it comes to Roland Burris, the controversial Senate appointee from Illinois, what should the U.S. Senate do?

Here’s my question to you: When it comes to Roland Burris, the controversial Senate appointee from Illinois, what should the U.S. Senate do?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: 2008 Election • Senate and Congress
December 18th, 2008
12:39 PM ET

Dem. Backlash if Caroline Kennedy Appointed to Senate?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Caroline Kennedy is positioning herself to be appointed to fill the Senate seat that will be vacated if and when Hillary Clinton is confirmed as the Secretary of State.

The daughter of the late President John F. Kennedy called New York Governor David Paterson, who will be appointing someone to the seat, to express her interest. Yesterday she traveled around upstate New York for closed door meetings with Mayors, Union leaders and other officials. Along the way she touted her devotion to public service, her books on the Constitution and raising her family. And today she had lunch in Harlem with the Rev. Al Sharpton.

Although it seems like a campaign, it's not. There's no election, at least not until 2010 when whoever is appointed can run for the seat.

According to the New York Times, Kennedy is winning hearts but some Democrats worry about her sense of entitlement and the message that politics is reserved for the upper class. That's leading to some grumbling among some Democrats.

According to a poll by Siena College, Kennedy is not a clear favorite - 26% favor New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo compared to 23% favoring Kennedy. However, 31% believe Governor Paterson will give the seat to Kennedy.

Here’s my question to you: Could appointing Caroline Kennedy to fill Hillary Clinton's Senate seat cause a backlash within the Democratic Party?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: Democrats • Senate and Congress
August 11th, 2008
04:44 PM ET

Re-electing your own member of Congress?


FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

If Americans have finally had enough, and they should have, the current members of Congress are in a lot of trouble. Or are they?

The public already thinks Congress, which is now on vacation, is doing a pretty lousy job. And there's a new Gallup poll shows that only 36% of registered voters say most members deserve to be re-elected. That's among the lowest ratings ever in this poll. Gallup found similar ratings in only three other election years: 1992, 1994 and 2006. All three of these elections brought about big changes in the make-up of Congress, twice switching control from one party to another.

But here's the problem: although most people are disgusted with Congress, they often don't think their senator or congressman is part of the problem – which is why we end up with the same weasels down there for years and years. This Gallup survey shows that 57% of those polled say their own congressman deserves to be re-elected. How is that possible?

Nevertheless, 2008 could bring significant turnover in Congress, especially in an election where "change" has become an important theme. Even though Democrats control both houses of Congress now, there are signs that this will be a better year for Democrats than Republicans.

Want to know why we have the dysfunctional, corrupt government we have? 35% of those polled don't even know if their representative is a Democrat or a Republican.

Here’s my question to you: Will you vote to re-elect your own senator or congressman?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: 2008 Election • Senate and Congress
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