Wake Up To Politics - December 10, 2014
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Wednesday, December 10, 2014
699 (!) Days Until Election Day 2016It's Wednesday, December 10, 2014, I'm Gabe Fleisher for Wake Up To Politics, and reporting from WUTP world HQ in my bedroom - Good morning: THIS IS YOUR WAKE UP CALL!!!
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Capitol Hill News
- CIA Report Released Senate Intelligence Committee chair Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) released a report Tuesday, after years of delay, on the CIA’s pot-9/11 tactics for interrogation of detainees.
- The report, which remains classified but an executive summary of was released Tuesday, found that the CIA misled both the public and government officials on its use of waterboarding and other torture tactics, with then-Vice President Dick Cheney, then-Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfield and then-Secretary of State Colin Powell not being informed of the program until 2003. Then-President George W. Bush was kept in the dark until 2006, four years after the “Enhanced Interrogation Techniques” program was created by the CIA.
- Protesting the release of what they said was a politically-charged report, Republicans on the Intelligence Committee released their own report Tuesday, far less critical of the Bush Administration and CIA. Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC), a senior member of the panel and incoming chairman, attacked the Democratic report, saying, “The only motive here could be to embarrass George W. Bush,” of Feinstein’s review.
- While this was the stance of most Republicans, some, including former prisoner of war Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), supported the release of the report.
- $1.1 Trillion Spending Bill Filed in House After weeks of back-and-forth, negotiators finally agreed to a $1.013 trillion spending bill, which was filed in the House Tuesday night, ready for passage by both houses of Congress ahead of the end-of-Thursday deadline.
- The package funds the government through September, with the exception of the Homeland Security Department, funded only through February to try and stop President Obama’s immigration executive order from being implemented. This combination of temporary funding (called a “CR”) and long-term funding (called an “omnibus”) has been nicknamed the “CRomnibus” by the press in recent days.
- At 3 PM Wednesday, just hours after it was filed, the House Rules Committee will meet to consider the “cromnibus,” and both houses of Congress could vote on the bill Thursday, giving lawmakers very little time to read the bill’s 289,861 words and 1,603 pages.
- In the agreement, most big increases of money is allotted to problems oversees, to combat the Ebola outbreak in West Africa and the Islamic State (ISIS) in Iraq and Syria.
- LINKS: For more on the spending bill, you can read all 12 sections in their entirety, courtesy of the House Rules Committee, here. Or you can read the Washington Post’s review of the policy instructions, or riders, in the package – topic by topic.
- Hearing Update: House The U.S. House Select Committee on Benghazi, a panel created in May 2014 to investigate the September 2012 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, will hold its second public hearing today.
- Witnesses at the hearing, titled “Reviewing Efforts to Secure U.S. Diplomatic Facilities and Personnel,” will include Assistant Secretary of State for Diplomatic Security Greg Starr and Steve Linick, the Inspector General at the State Department.White House Watch
- The President’s Schedule At 11:50 AM, President Obama will speak at the White House Summit on Early Education, a meeting of business leaders, philanthropists, activists, and elected officials who are “committed to the expansion of high quality early childhood education opportunities for children across the country from birth through school entry,” according to the White House.
- In his speech, Obama will highlight the actions by the private and public sectors to “invest in and expand access to high quality early learning opportunities in communities across the country,” while also announcing “new efforts to enhance and expand the reach of high quality public preschool programs in high-need communities.”
- At 12:30 PM, the President will sit down with Vice President Joe Biden for lunch.
- At 1:45 PM, President and First Lady Obama will visit Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling, to deliver toys and gifts to the Marine Corps' Toys for Tots Campaign, donated by White House staffers.
- Peace Prize Ceremony Nobel Prizes have been presented at December 10 ceremonies since 1901, to mark the anniversary of Alfred Nobel’s death on that day. While the other awards are presented to laureates in Stockholm, Sweden, the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony is held in Oslo, Norway.
- Today, education activists Malala Yousafzai and Kailash Satyarthi will receive the Peace Prize for their work. Yousafzai is a teenaged Pakistani girl and the 2013 Wake Up To Politics Person of the Year; Satyarthi is an Indian man.