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September 25th, 2011
04:48 AM ET

State of the Union Early Bird for September 25, 2011

(CNN)-It's early, and State of the Union is bringing you the best of the morning headlines to go with your cup of coffee.

On our radar this morning:  Cain's big win in Florida, President Obama's new re-election strategy, and the Congressional call for bipartisanship.

Check out what we're reading, and make sure to watch our interview with Senior White House Adviser David Plouffe today at 9am/12pm ET.


Obama 2012 campaign’s Operation Vote focuses on ethnic minorities, core liberals

Operation Vote will function as a large, centralized department in the Chicago campaign office for reaching ethnic, religious and other voter groups. It will coordinate recruitment of an ethnic volunteer base and push out targeted messages online and through the media to groups such as blacks, Hispanics, Jews, women, seniors, young people, gays and Asian Americans.

The campaign this month hired a longtime Jewish political activist as a point person for that community, the first of many such hirings to come this fall as staffers are brought on from each of the target groups.

Small Donors Are Slow to Return to the Obama Fold

About a quarter of Mr. Obama’s record haul during the 2008 cycle came from donors giving $200 or less, supporters who could be tapped again and again without hitting federal contribution limits.

Through June 30, the close of the most recent campaign reporting period, more than 552,000 people had contributed to Mr. Obama’s re-election effort, according to campaign officials. Half of them were new donors, and nearly all of them gave contributions of less than $250.

But those figures obscured another statistic: a vast majority of Mr. Obama’s past donors, who number close to four million, have not yet given him any money at all.

In feisty CBC speech, Obama tells blacks to ‘stop cryin’ and ‘put on your marching shoes

“Take off your bedroom slippers. Put on your marching shoes,” he said, his voice rising as applause and cheers mounted. “Shake it off. Stop complainin’. Stop grumblin’. Stop cryin’. We are going to press on. We have work to do.”

Obama administration must make risky healthcare decision

Obama administration lawyers face a decision by Monday that carries a high political risk and will probably determine whether the Supreme Court decides on the constitutionality of the healthcare law before next year's presidential election.

The Justice Department could ask the full U.S. 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta to reconsider a 2-1 decision in August that declared the law's mandate that all Americans must have health insurance unconstitutional. But seeking the full court review could take weeks, or even months, and probably push back a Supreme Court ruling until 2013.

Or government lawyers could opt to skip the full review in the lower court and appeal directly to the Supreme Court this fall. That in turn will probably lead to a constitutional ruling on President Obama's healthcare law by next summer.

Left vs. White House over mortgage deal


Republican Ryan Sees Supercommittee Falling Short of Deficit-Cutting Goals

House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan predicted a congressional supercommittee will fall short of its goal of finding $1.5 trillion in savings, while saying it should be able to find roughly half that without raising taxes.

Finding $600 billion in budget cuts ought to be “pretty easy,” said Ryan.

Help Wanted: Leadership

Has our leadership lost its mind? Do these people go home on weekends to some offshore island, where everyone’s retirement fund is doing fine, everyone’s kids have jobs and no one’s mortgage is under water? Where is the urgency? This is code red. We are facing a possible global financial contagion triggered by European banks choking with sovereign debt spreading their woes to an already weakened U.S. financial system.


Cain upsets Perry as winner of Florida straw poll

Gingrich name-checks Sen. Rubio for VP

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) evoked the name of Florida's conservative darling Saturday, telling the crowd at the Florida Presidency 5 Forum that Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) would make a formidable vice-presidential candidate.

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