A SURPRISE VIDEO MESSAGE
Obama Addresses Climate Summit
Barack Obama surprised -- and thrilled -- environmentalists Tuesday morning by delivering a video message to the bipartisan Governors Global Climate Summit in Los Angeles in which he emphasized his commitment to addressing global warming.
"Few challenges facing America, and the world, are more urgent than combating climate change," the president-elect said in the video. "My presidency will mark a new chapter in America's leadership on climate change that will strengthen our security and create millions of new jobs in the process."
Referring to those who will attend next month's U.N. climate negotiations in Poland, he told them, "Your work is vital to the planet."
"And once I take office," Obama added, "you can be sure that the United States will once again engage vigorously in these negotiations, and help lead the world toward a new era of global cooperation on climate change."
-- Juliet Eilperin
ONE WISH GRANTED ON RETURN TO SENATE
Clinton Gets Role on Health-Care Reform
Hillary Clinton returned from the presidential campaign trail as a relatively junior member of a chamber that prides itself on tradition, seniority and rules. So when the senator from New York put out feelers about leapfrogging more veteran lawmakers to gain a more prominent role, the idea was quickly nixed.
So, too, was her hope of taking the lead on health-care reform. Two Senate giants -- Max Baucus (D-Mont.), chairman of the Finance Committee, and Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.), chairman of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee -- had already staked their claims to that turf.