• Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), both on the Senate Intelligence Committee, suggested yesterday that the Bush administration broke the law by ordering that a CIA counterterrorism program be concealed from Congress. They are pushing for twin investigations into Bush-era torture policies.
holder• Attorney General Eric Holder is leaning toward appointing a prosecutor to investigate the Bush administration’s interrogation practices. “Newsweek” is also reporting that Holder has asked his staff for a list of 10 candidates who might serve as that prosecutor if one is named.
• After weeks of meeting senators and preparing for tough questions, Sonia Sotomayor today begins the formal hearings on her nomination to become the nation’s first Hispanic Supreme Court justice. Sotomayor, 55, received a good-luck phone call yesterday from President Obama.
• Dems on the House Ways and Means Committee on Friday proposed a graduated tax on wealthy Americans to pay for health care reform. The new tax would apply to individuals who make more than $280,000 a year and married couples who make more than $350,000 a year.
• North Korean leader Kim Jong Il has life-threatening pancreatic cancer, a news report in South Korea said today, days after new images of him looking gaunt spurred speculation that his health might be worsening following a reported stroke last year.