The First Draft: Friday, Jan. 9

January 9, 2009


Who gets the billions?

The incoming Obama administration is preparing a major overhaul of the $700 billion financial bailout amid rising complaints in Congress that the payouts are not going to the right people.

The Washington Post reports that Treasury Secretary nominee Timothy Geithner and top Obama economic adviser Larry Summers have been looking at ways to broaden the bailout to include more help for homeowners facing foreclosure as well as to generate loans for municipalities, small businesses and consumers — and not just the financial giants that helped to create the mess.

Obama, meanwhile, is expected to formally announce his picks for top intelligence posts at a news conference around 10:45 a.m. EST. Obama’s choice to head the CIA, former chief of staff in the Clinton White House Leon Panetta, has drawn fire from some security insiders who complain that he lacks experience on intelligence matters.

Obama’s choice for labor secretary, California Rep. Hilda Solis, begins her confirmation hearing in the Senate, which may give clues on how unions — which largely backed Obama in the Nov. 4 election — will fare in the new administration.

For more Reuters political news, click here.

Photo credit: Reuters/Mark Blinch (crumpled dollar bill)

No comments so far

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see