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Affirmative action in college admissions?
April 22nd, 2014
04:29 PM ET

Affirmative action in college admissions?

Washington (CNN) - The Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld a Michigan law banning the use of racial criteria in college admissions, a key decision in an unfolding legal and political battle nationally over affirmative action.

The justices found 6-2 that a lower court did not have the authority to set aside the measure approved in a 2006 referendum supported by 58% of voters.

It bars publicly funded colleges from granting "preferential treatment to any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity or national origin."

Justice Sonia Sotomayor, the court's first Latina, reacted sharply to the decision.

"For members of historically marginalized groups, which rely on the federal courts to protect their constitutional rights, the decision can hardly bolster hope for a vision of democracy that preserves for all the right to participate meaningfully and equally in self-government," Sotomayor wrote.

But three justices in the majority, Chief Justice John Roberts, Anthony Kennedy and Samuel Alito. concluded that the lower court did not have the authority to set aside the law.

"This case is not about how the debate about racial preferences should be resolved. It is about who may resolve it," Kennedy wrote.

FULL STORY

We want you to weigh in: The Supreme Court upheld Michigan’s ban on affirmative action for college admissions; do you agree or disagree?

Vote by tweeting Agree or Disagree using #Crossfire or by commenting on our Facebook post. View results below or through our Poptip results page.

Should Obama endorse Biden?
April 17th, 2014
05:50 PM ET

Should Obama endorse Biden?

The selfie. The “guys’ trip.” An endorsement?

Not quite.

President Barack Obama, who has never been less than glowing in public praise of his vice president, said in an interview aired Thursday that Joe Biden “will go down as one of the finest vice presidents in history” and has been “a great partner in everything that I do.”

But Obama stopped short – as he’ll likely do until a Democratic nominee emerges in 2016 – from saying he’d support Biden if he makes a third run for the White House.

“I suspect that there may be other potential candidates for 2016 who have been great friends and allies,” he told CBS News. “I know that we've got an extraordinary secretary of state who did great service for us and worked with me and Joe to help make the country safer.”

That “extraordinary” diplomat would be Hillary Clinton, the understood Democratic frontrunner whose every utterance is parsed for signs she’s closer to jumping back into the political fray.

As it happens, the last time Obama sat down with CBS for a joint interview was with Clinton as she prepared to step down as secretary of state shortly after the start of his second term. And just as he did Thursday, Obama heaped praise on the former rival.

“I think Hillary will go down as one of the finest secretary of states we've had,” he said – but again stopped short of offering his 2016 endorsement. FULL STORY

We want you to weigh in: If Joe Biden decides to run for President in 2016, should Obama endorse him?

Vote by tweeting Yes or No using #Crossfire or by commenting on our Facebook post. View results below or through our Poptip results page.

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Filed under: 2016 • Debates • Fireback • Joe Biden • Obama • Politics
Can Michael Bloomberg defeat the NRA?
April 16th, 2014
04:29 PM ET

Can Michael Bloomberg defeat the NRA?

(CNN) - Michael Bloomberg is investing a chunk of his personal fortune to minimize the influence of the National Rifle Association.

The former New York City mayor pledged $50 million to his new group Everytown for Gun Safety, an umbrella organization for his two other gun control groups: Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. It aims to make the political climate more supportive of gun control.

The new organization plans to compete against the NRA by adopting its playbook. The NRA has built an impressive and effective organization that touts millions of members, a robust lobbying organization and a massive campaign arm.

"You've got to work at it piece by piece," Bloomberg told the The New York Times.

In its grass-roots operation, Everytown plans to increase its membership from 1.5 million to 2.5 million this year to implement its education and mobilization efforts. The group will focus on 15 states that have liberal gun laws, including Texas, Montana and Indiana. States that have advanced gun control initiatives will also receive attention, including Colorado and Washington.

"The NRA should be afraid," said Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action. Women, and more particularly mothers, will be the key demographic in the outreach to curb gun violence.

"Moms are afraid that our children will be taken away. In the end, that's the emotion that's going to win." FULL STORY

We want you to weigh in: Can Michael Bloomberg and his millions defeat the NRA?

Vote by tweeting Yes or No using #Crossfire or by commenting on our Facebook post. View results below or through our Poptip results page.

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Filed under: Debates • Fireback • Guns • Michael Bloomberg • NRA
Does Chelsea Clinton have a future in elected office?
April 15th, 2014
04:04 PM ET

Does Chelsea Clinton have a future in elected office?

(CNN) – Chelsea Clinton is once again keeping the door open to a possible run for office in the future.

"I live in a city and a state and a country where I support my elected representatives. If at some point that weren't the case, and I didn't support my mayor or my city councilwoman or my congresswoman or either of my senators – and I'm lucky to live in a state where I have lots of women representing me, you know – maybe then I'd have to ask and answer the question for myself, and come to a different answer," Clinton said in an interview with Fast Company magazine.

Fast Company is a business magazine that touts itself as "uncovering innovative thinkers on the verge of breakthrough successes"

For years, when asked if she wanted to go into politics, the answer from Bill and Hillary Clinton's daughter was a resounding no. But Chelsea, now 34, doesn't say no anymore, and in interviews over the past year or two has cracked open the door just a bit. FULL STORY

We want you to weigh in: Do you think Chelsea Clinton has a future in elected office?

Vote by tweeting Yes or No using #Crossfire or by commenting on our Facebook post. View results below or through our Poptip results page.

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Filed under: Bill Clinton • Chelsea Clinton • Fireback • Politics
Was Sebelius resigning a good move?
April 11th, 2014
04:33 PM ET

Was Sebelius resigning a good move?

Washington (CNN) – Shortly after Kathleen Sebelius was tapped to carry out President Barack Obama's signature health care reform effort, the head of Health and Human Services found herself in the crosshairs of Republicans determined to repeal the law.

The two-term Kansas governor-turned-Obamacare-chief-defender is resigning as health secretary. She's leaving after a problem-plagued rollout of HealthCare.gov, the federal website portal critical to the law's implementation, but with the administration taking a victory lap after unexpectedly reaching and then exceeding its sign-up target of 7 million. FULL STORY

We want you to weigh in: What do you think of Kathleen Sebelius resigning as Health Secretary?

Vote by tweeting Approve or Disappove using #Crossfire or by commenting on our Facebook post. View results below or through our Poptip results page.

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Filed under: 2014 Elections • Fireback • Health care • Kathleen Sebelius • Obama • Obamacare • Politics
Should Lois Lerner be held in contempt?
April 10th, 2014
03:53 PM ET

Should Lois Lerner be held in contempt?

Washington (CNN) – The Republican-led House Oversight Committee voted 21-12 Thursday to charge former IRS official Lois Lerner with contempt of Congress for refusing to answer questions about the agency's targeting of conservative and other groups. The vote sets up a full debate on the House floor, followed by possible court battle over the Fifth Amendment and a potential standoff with the Justice Department.

"This is not something that I take lightly,” said Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa of California. “We cannot tell the American people we have done all we can do to get to the truth in this investigation if we give a pass to a critical witness like Ms. Lerner.” FULL STORY

We want you to weigh in: Do you think Lois Lerner should be held in contempt over the IRS scandal?

Vote by tweeting Yes or No using #Crossfire or by commenting on our Facebook post. View results below or through our Poptip results page.

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Filed under: Fireback • IRS • Lois Lerner • Political scandal • Political Ticker • Politics
April 9th, 2014
04:10 PM ET

Will you read Hillary Clinton’s memoir?

Bringing you a Crossfire Classic today. Remember when former Crossfire host Tucker Carlson lost a bet to Hillary Clinton in which he said she would not sell 1 million copies of her book?

Well, spoiler alert, she did and his punishment was to eat a shoe cake.

Today, her new memoir, which focuses on her time spent as Secretary of State, releases this June.

This book is an important one for Clinton, as it serves an opportunity for her to frame her years as America's top diplomat as a success, especially with critics charging that she had no crowning achievement during that time.

We want you to weigh in: Hillary Clinton’s new memoir will be published June 10. Will you read it? 

Vote by tweeting Yes or No using #Crossfire or by commenting on our Facebook post. View results below or through our Poptip results page.

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Filed under: 2016 • Crossfire Classic • Debates • Fireback • Hillary Clinton
Would you vote for politicians who cheat?
April 8th, 2014
03:07 PM ET

Would you vote for politicians who cheat?

On Monday, The Ouachita Citizen in West Monroe, Louisiana, published a surveillance video it says shows Rep. Vance McAllister and his scheduler, Melissa Hixon Peacock, passionately kissing in his office last December.

“It was just a kiss, that was all it was, but it embarrassed me and my family,” Heath Peacock, Melissa's husband said. “This guy has turned my life upside down.”

Melissa Peacock no longer works for McAllister, Heath Peacock said.

McAllister, who is married with five children, issued a statement on Monday saying, “There's no doubt I've fallen short and I'm asking for forgiveness. I'm asking for forgiveness from God, my wife, my kids, my staff, and my constituents who elected me to serve.”

We want you to weigh in: If a politician is caught on tape having an affair, does it affect your vote?

Vote by tweeting Yes or No using #Crossfire or by commenting on our Facebook post. View results below or through our Poptip results page.

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Filed under: 2014 Elections • 2016 • Fireback • Political scandal • Politics • Vance McAllister
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