Obama to Say Economy Not Looking So Good: In an 11 a.m. address, President-elect Barack Obama will deliver a speech in which he will warn that without bipartisan support for his economic stimulus plan the country could see unemployment rise above 10 percent, Politico reports. Coming 12 days before his inauguration, the speech is designed to put pressure on Congress to act within weeks on complex legislation that normally would take months of debate and hearings.
Carter's Two Cents: Former President Jimmy Carter writes in a Washington Post op-ed that the the invasion of Gaza by Israel could easily have been avoided. Carter writes that had the two sides reached an agreement on how humanitarian efforts could proceed in Gaza it would have provided a foundation upon which broader peace agreements could have been built.
Pleading the Not-Guilty Two Step: U.S. District Judge Samuel Kent of the Southern District of Texas pleaded not guilty Wednesday morning to three additional charges just hours after they were lodged against him in a superseding indictment, Texas Lawyer reports via Law.com. On Tuesday, a federal grand jury issued a superseding indictment that added one count of aggravated sexual abuse, one count of abusive sexual contact and one count of obstruction of justice against Kent. In September 2008, Kent pleaded not guilty to the original three charges, which are two counts of abusive sexual contact and one count of attempted aggravated sexual abuse.
About Your Car... If you plan to drive into the District from North Virginia on Inauguration Day, don't. The U.S. Secret Service and regional transportation officials announced yesterday a plan that would ban all personal vehicles from Potomac River bridge crossings and from interstates 395 and 66 inside the Capital Beltway on Inauguration Day, The Washington Post reports. The bottom line is to keep the Mall, the Capitol, and the parade route clear of traffic. Walking, biking and mass transit -- which is expected to be remarkably crowded -- will provide the only access.