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SOTU Scoop
May 28th, 2014
02:31 PM ET

SOTU Scoop

By CNN's Tracey Webb

Get your daily scoop of what State of the Union is watching today, May 28, 2014

1. Obama's foreign policy.  President Obama pushed back against critics of his record and outlined his vision for how the U.S. should deal with global challenges.   In a commencement speech at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, the President said America will be the "one indispensable nation for the century to come," and should never shy away from military action when necessary.  But he also told those attending the graduation ceremony that "U.S. military action cannot be the only – or even primary – component of our leadership in every instance."  Obama urged Congress to support new fund that would focus U.S. efforts on counter-terrorism efforts in the Middle East and Africa.

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SOTU Scoop
May 23rd, 2014
04:44 PM ET

SOTU Scoop

By CNN's Tracey Webb

Your daily scoop of what State of the Union is watching today, May 23, 2014.

1. A VA cloud over Memorial Day. America prepares to honor its war dead as a scandal engulfs the federal agency charged with providing care for the country's military veterans. There are more calls for VA Secretary Eric Shinseki to step down. The latest is West Virginia's Democratic senate candidate Natalie Tennant. "It's clear Gen. Shinseki has become a distraction from the mission of the VA. New leadership is needed to earn back the trust and confidence of veterans and military families that the VA can deliver answers and find solutions to fix the broken system," Tennant said. Twenty-six VA facilities are under investigation for delayed medical appointments that some claim resulted in the deaths of some veterans, and fraudulent bookkeeping. The chairmen of the Senate and House committees on Veterans Affairs, Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT), and Rep. Jeff Miller (R-FL), join State of the Union on Sunday.

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SOTU Scoop
May 22nd, 2014
05:07 PM ET

SOTU Scoop

By CNN's Tracey Webb

Your daily scoop of what State of the Union is watching today, May 22, 2014.

1. VA scandal. The chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee says delayed medical appointments and fraudulent bookkeeping at VA facilities are "just the tip of the iceberg" of troubles plaguing the Veterans department. "We've received some information and some tips that will make what has already come look like kindergarten stuff," Rep. Jeff Miller (R-FL), told CNN. Miller's committee invited three top VA officials to appear before the panel Thursday but they told Miller they were unable to make it. Meanwhile pressure is growing on the White House to take dramatic action. "So many Americans now turn on the evening news just to be sickened by the steady drip, drip from the Obama administration's growing Veterans' scandal," said Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell.

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SOTU Scoop
May 21st, 2014
05:19 PM ET

SOTU Scoop

By CNN's Tracey Webb

Your daily scoop of what State of the Union is watching today, May 21, 2014.

1. Obama sticks with Shenseki... for now. President Obama made his first public comments about medical appointment delays and alleged fraudulent record-keeping at VA facilities across the country. The most disturbing and striking problems emerged in Arizona, with sources revealing to CNN details of a secret waiting list. According to the sources, at least 40 American veterans died in Phoenix while waiting for care at the Phoenix VA. "If these allegations prove to be true, it is dishonorable, it is disgraceful, and I will not tolerate it, period," said Obama. But Veterans Affairs Secretary Erick Shenseki, who’s firing or resignation some members of Congress and at least one veterans group have called for, is staying on the job. "He cares deeply about veterans and he cares deeply about the mission and I know that Rick's attitude is if he doesn't think he can do a good job on this and if he thinks he's let our veterans down then I'm sure that he is not going to be interested in continuing to serve," Obama said.  He also said he expects to receive the first results from a review of the VA's system next week.

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SOTU Scoop
May 16th, 2014
06:51 PM ET

SOTU Scoop

By Susan Garraty

Your daily scoop of what State of the Union is watching today, May 16, 2014 and over the weekend.

General Motors fined the max by NHTS. It’s the largest fine the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration can impose on a car-maker that is slow to disclose a significant safety problem. General Motors is going to pay a 35 million dollar civil penalty for producing faulty ignition switches. Despite the settlement, the FBI is still investigating the auto giant and GM could face additional fines, a senior law-enforcement official tells CNN. Earlier this year, Toyota agreed to nearly $1 billion in fines with the Justice Dept. That deal came about four years after Toyota recalled millions of cars in 2009-10.

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SOTU Scoop
May 15th, 2014
06:47 PM ET

SOTU Scoop

By Susan Garraty

Your daily scoop of What State of the Union is watching today, May 15, 2014.

1. September 11th Memorial Museum Opens. It was an attack that killed thousands and opened a gaping wound in the hearts of Americans and many others world. Presidents Obama and Clinton joined New York Mayors Bill de Blasio, Michael Bloomberg and Rudy Giuliani to officially dedicate the September 11th Memorial Museum. In a moving ceremony including victims’ families, survivors, first responders and other invited guests, the dimly lit underground memorial located at bedrock offered a somber reminder of the depth of feelings many still hold of the worst foreign strike ever conducted on US soil.

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SOTU Scoop
May 9th, 2014
04:37 PM ET

SOTU Scoop

By Tracey Webb

Your daily scoop of what State of the Union is watching today, May 9, 2014.

1. Democrats and the Benghazi select committee. House Democrats are divided and undecided about whether to join a select committee formed by Republicans to investigate the Benghazi terrorist attack. Some Democrats want to boycott the panel, but participating as a minority bloc as proposed by the Republicans is still under consideration. "The fact is this is a stunt. This is a political stunt," House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said Friday. We'll talk about the politics of Benghazi with DNC Chairwoman and Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Rep. Michele Bachmann Sunday on State of the Union.

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SOTU Scoop
May 8th, 2014
03:38 PM ET

SOTU Scoop

By Tracey Webb

Your daily scoop of what State of the Union is watching today, May 8, 2014.

1. Shinseki under fire. Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki has long faced criticism about the backlog of VA health care cases, but he is now on the hot seat over claims that veterans died while on a secret waiting list at a Phoenix VA hospital. The House Committee on Veterans' Affairs has subpoenaed Shenseki for information related to the alleged incident, and the retired general-turned-cabinet secretary will testify next week before the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs.  Although some House Republicans and at least one veterans group want Shinseki to resign or be fired, House Speaker John Boehner says not so fast. "I am not ready to join the chorus of people calling for him to step down," Boehner said. "The problems at the V.A. are systemic... and I don't believe that just changing someone at the top is going to actually get to the solutions that many of us are looking for." Arizona's two senators are also in a wait-and-see mode about whether Shinseki should step down. "Let's wait and see the I.G. investigation first," said Sen. Jeff Flake, while Sen. John McCain said "I think he should be allowed to come forward and explain."

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SOTU Scoop
May 7th, 2014
04:32 PM ET

SOTU Scoop

By CNN's Tracey Webb

Your daily scoop of what State of the Union is watching today, May 7, 2014.

1.Kidnapped Nigerian girls. The U.S. is sending a team of experts to Nigeria to help try to find more than 200 girls abducted last month by the terrorist group Boko Haram. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki says the American team will provide the Nigerian government with law enforcement assistance and military intelligence. All 20 women serving in the Senate signed a letter urging the Obama administration to take action on behalf of the missing girls, and four female members of the House visited the Nigerian embassy Wednesday to demand action. Meanwhile Nigerian authorities say at least 150 people have been killed in an attack launched Monday by Boko Haram.

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SOTU Scoop
May 2nd, 2014
05:36 PM ET

SOTU Scoop

By Tracey's Webb

Your scoop of what we're watching today, May 2, 2014.

1. The Benghazi investigation. House Speaker John Boehner is forming a select committee to investigate the September 2012 attack in Libya that killed four Americans, including the U.S. ambassador to that country. The move comes after newly released White House e-mails that Republicans say indicates a cover-up by the Obama administration about the cause of the incident. "The administration's withholding of documents - emails showing greater White House involvement in misleading the American people - is a flagrant violation of trust and undermines the basic principles of oversight upon which our system of government is built," Boehner said in a statement. In addition, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa has subpoenaed Secretary of State John Kerry to testify about the previously unreleased e-mails later this month. We'll discuss whether the new development could make Benghazi an issue in the midterms with our all-star political panel Sunday on State of the Union.

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