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Week In The News: Newt Still On Top, Blago To Prison, Obama Channels Teddy

Gingrich still leading. Obama channels Teddy Roosevelt. Blagojevich gets 14 years. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

In this Dec. 1, 2011, file photo, Republican presidential candidate, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich speaks during a meeting with employees at Nationwide Insurance in Des Moines, Iowa. If there’s any one reason that might explain Gingrich’s sharp rise in the polls in Iowa, it’s this: Republicans in the state are aching for an attack dog to go after President Barack Obama. (AP)

In this Dec. 1, 2011, file photo, Republican presidential candidate, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich speaks during a meeting with employees at Nationwide Insurance in Des Moines, Iowa. If there’s any one reason that might explain Gingrich’s sharp rise in the polls in Iowa, it’s this: Republicans in the state are aching for an attack dog to go after President Barack Obama. (AP)

U.S. presidents come about as often as Haley’s Comet in Osawatomie, Kansas. Teddy Roosevelt a century ago. Barack Obama this week. Both talking about a square deal for regular Americans. Now Obama’s nailed his re-election campaign to the theme.

In the GOP, another hot week of Gingrich surge. Mitt Romney charges appeasement. We’ve got a teenage no on the morning after pill. A stealth drone down in Iran. A missing billion in Jon Corzine’s accounts. Fourteen years for Blagojevich of Illinois.

This hour On Point: our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Major Garrett, congressional correspondent National Journal.

Laura Washington, columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times. She is also a political analyst for ABC 7-Chicago and contributing editor for In These Times.

Jack Beatty, On Point news analyst.

From Tom’s Reading List

New York Times “For the first time ever, the Health and Human Services secretary publicly overruled the Food and Drug Administration, refusing Wednesday to allow emergency contraceptives to be sold over the counter, including to young teenagers. The decision avoided what could have been a bruising political battle over parental control and contraception during a presidential election season. ”

Los Angeles Times “Investor anticipation is building ahead of meetings in Europe on Thursday and Friday that are being billed as a possible turning point for the continent’s bruising economic crisis.”

Foreign Policy “But just because Assad isn’t telling the truth doesn’t mean he didn’t provide insights into his regime. In fact, the interview told viewers quite a bit about how he views Syria’s political dynamics, and his strategy for overcoming the current unrest. Here’s what we learned: “

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ONPOINT
TODAY
Dec 22, 2014
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during his annual news conference in Moscow, Russia, Thursday, Dec. 18, 2014. The Russian economy will rebound and the ruble will stabilize, Russian President Vladimir Putin said. (AP)

A weak ruble and a turbulent economy. We look at Putin’s Russia and what its economic free fall means.

Dec 22, 2014
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Alan Gross, waves as he and his wife Judy leave following his statement at his lawyer's office in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. Gross was released from Cuba after 5 years in a Cuban prison. (AP)

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On Point Blog
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