President Obama is hitting the airways tonight to sell his health care reform plan. The Takaway's man in Washington, Todd Zwillich, gives us the behind the scenes report. We then turn to Paul Starr, professor of sociology and public policy at Princeton, to explain the history of presidential attempts to change the American health care system. Mr. Starr was a senior health policy adviser in the Clinton White House and is author of the Pulitzer-Prize winning book The Social Transformation of American Medicine: The rise of a sovereign profession and the making of a vast industry.
The next two weeks may determine whether President Obama's health care reform plans go through. As the health care battle has gone to the states, many of the nation's governors (who are attending the National Governors Association this weekend) say they worry that Congress will force states to pick up extra health care expenses. Joining The Takeaway this morning with the current status of the bill is Todd Zwillich. And also joining the discussion is the new Chairman of the National Governors Associations, Jim Douglas, the Republican Governor of Vermont.
President Obama wants Congress to agree to at least the outlines of a health care plan before the August recess. But Republicans hope to delay action until the Fall, figuring public opposition to Obama's plan will increase. We get an update on the health care debate with Takeaway Correspondent Todd Zwillich. Also joining the discussion is Representative Bart Stupak from Michigan’s First District.
"Today is the day they're going to twist arms to get people like me and the blue dogs to just go along with the program. And quite frankly, I just don't think it's going to happen." —Rep. Bart Stupak of Michigan on the health care reform bill
A group of reformist clerics, including former President of Iran Mohammad Khatami, have called for a national referendum on the election process. The group said millions of Iranians had lost confidence in the election process after last month's disputed vote, which saw Mahmoud Ahmadinejad re-elected.
The BBC’s Iran correspondent, Jon Leyne, is currently in London and joins The Takeaway to talk about it.
The world's oldest mother died last week. She was a Spanish woman who gave birth to twins when she was 67. But cancer took her life just three years after giving birth. This week's family segment will explore the issue of starting a family later in life. Joining The Takeaway is Lisa Belkin, who wrote about the issue in The New York Times blog Motherlode: Adventures in Parenting.
Also joining us is journalist Karen Day, a 56-year-old mother of a three-year-old, who also has three other children.
President Obama’s stimulus plan's main goal was to help needy communities build roads and create jobs, to help kick-start the economy. To keep track of how the stimulus money is being spent, ProPublica has asked for volunteers from communities across the country for help. The Adopt-a-Stimulus Program is being launched today. Joining The Takeaway to talk about the program is Amanda Michel, Editor of Distributed Reporting at ProPublica; also joining the show is Geoff Badenoch, a volunteer tracker from Missoula, Montana.
President Obama hoped to have his health care reform plan passed before Congress goes on recess in August, but now that seems unlikely. Over the weekend, the Congressional Budget Office reported that they saw no way that health care spending would decrease, forcing the president to spend the rest of the weekend defending the plan. Joining The Takeway is Trudy Lieberman, Director of the Health and Medicine Reporting Program at CUNY’s Graduate School of Journalism.
Walter Cronkite, an icon in television news, had retired in 1982. In his post-anchorman career he had become critical of the state of journalism today, even having a few regrets from his own career. Joining The Takeaway to talk about Cronkite's criticism of journalism is The New York Times Media Reporter, Brian Stelter.
Irish Author Frank McCourt died yesterday of cancer in New York City. He was 78. McCourt was best known for his book "Angela's Ashes," a memoir about his impoverished Irish childhood, which sold 4-million hardcover copies. The memoir was published in 1996 and won a Pulitzer Prize. Joining us to talk more about McCourt's influence is New York Times reporter Motoko Rich, who covers the publishing world.
For those out of work and looking for a job, staying motivated can be tough. But with a "job search buddy," job-seekers can lean on someone for encouragement. The Takeaway talks to Deborga DiRago, an out-of-work New Yorker, and Marci Alboher, a career expert who writes the blog Working the New Economy.
Michael Vick, the NFL star convicted of running a dog fighting ring, is released today from two months of house arrest, after an 18-month stint behind federal prison bars. Is he heading back to the NFL or will he be shut out? To talk about what is in store for Vick is The Takeaway Sports Contributor Ibrahim Abdul-Matin.
For this Monday's agenda segment, we talk about the Senate Finance Committee's bipartisan plan and President Obama's health care reform. The Takeaway also talks about Hillary Clinton's trip to India, the Taliban video of the captured U.S. soldier and how some banks are making big money again. The Takeway is joined by Marcus Mabry, International Business Editor for The New York Times and Jill McGivering, Asia Editor for the BBC.
Walter Cronkite died at the age of 92 on Friday night after a long bout with cerebrovascular disease. Cronkite revolutionized television news and the role of the news anchor, and was once called the most trusted public figure in the U.S. To help The Takeaway remember this television news legend is his former Executive Producer for the CBS Evening News, Sanford Socolow.
"His ratings on the day he stepped down in 1981 were bigger than all three network news shows put together today." —Sanford Socolow, former CBS Evening News executive producer, on Walter Cronkite
In the video below, Walter Cronkite looks back on his own life.
On the 40th anniversary of the first moon landing, The Takeaway talks to two members of the next generation of astronauts: Kate Rubins, who has been accepted to NASA’s 2009 Astronaut Candidate Class; and Tina Druskins, a high school sophomore who just got back from Space Camp.
"We're getting into a really exciting time with the kinds of technologies that are being developed. I'm thrilled to be getting in at the ground floor of Constellation and to be part of the exploration that's coming up." —future astronaut Kate Rubins
A chilling video was released last weekend of the first U.S. soldier, Army Private Bowe R. Bergdahl, to be captured by the Taliban since the war started in Afghanistan. The 23-year-old was serving with an infantry regiment in Eastern Afghanistan when he was captured. Nicholas Schmidle, a fellow at the New America Foundation and author of "To Live or To Perish Forever: Two Tumultuous Years Inside Pakistan" joins The Takeaway to talk about what this video means. And from Kabul, Afghanistan, Wall Street Journal reporter Anand Gopal also joins the discussion.
Judge Sonia Sotomayor's testimony in front of the Senate's judicial committee wrapped up yesterday. Democrats plan a final Senate vote to confirm Sotomayor in early August. The Takeaway's Todd Zwillich, our Washington correspondent, has been covering (and tweeting) every moment of the confirmation hearings for the nation's first Hispanic Justice for the U.S. Supreme Court; he joins us with the week's highlights.
Watch Frank Ricci's questions to Sotomayor in the video below.
As Judge Sonia Sotomayor prepares for another long day in front of the U.S. Senate Judicial Committee, we turn to The Takeaway's Washington Correspondent Todd Zwillich. He was there for all of yesterday's highlights and he joins us with his take on the ongoing confirmation hearings for the Supreme Court nominee. (Todd is Twittering the hearings' highlights; follow him on thetakeaway.org.)
"The way to keep one's sanity in watching these hearings is principally to look at them as markers on our path of constitutional development." —Columbia University law professor Nate Persily on Sonia Sotomayor's hearings
Here, Sen. Al Franken questions Sotomayor on abortion and the Constitution:
It's the third day of Senate confirmation hearings for Sonia Sotomayor, President Barack Obama's choice for the U.S. Supreme Court. The Takeaway's Washington Correspondent Todd Zwillich joins us with the latest. We are also joined by David Kopel, who will be testifying against the Supreme Court nominee. David Kopel works for the Independence Institute as a researcher and is a policy analyst with the conservative Cato Institute.
Here's Sen. Sessions quizzing Sonia Sotomayor yesterday:
Yesterday U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Sonia Sotomayor faced a full day of questioning from senators. The Hispanic nominee was grilled on her past decisions, her judicial philosophy, and her now infamous "wise Latina" statement. The Takeaway's Washington Correspondent Todd Zwillich was there for it all. He joins us with all the highlights of Day Two and a look ahead at Day Three of the Senate confirmation hearings.
"Even Lindsey Graham who came at her has, of course, famously now said, 'Unless you have a meltdown, you're going to be confirmed.' And it did appear to a lot of people in the room that he was turning up the heat to see if he could cause the meltdown after he said that." —Todd Zwillich on Sonia Sotomayor's confirmation hearings
Yesterday was the first day of Sonia Sotomayor's confirmation hearings. Today the senators will get their chance to challenge the nominee on her rulings, speeches, and judicial philosophy. The Takeaway's Washington Correspondent Todd Zwillich joins us with a look at the highlights.
If you missed Sonia Sotomayor's opening statement, here it is:
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