US Congress(WASHINGTON) — When he’s not getting feisty on the House floor, Congressman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., is sitting pretty with an estimated net worth of $357.25 million. Former CEO Rep. John Delaney, D-Md., has raked in nearly $112 million, and Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas, has amassed more than $117 million, thanks, in part, to his wife’s considerable fortune.

But not everyone on Capitol Hill is rolling in dough. Reps. David Valadao, R-Calif., Alcee Hastings, D-Fla., and Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., all have a negative net worth, some with debt running up into the multi-millions.

Roll Call, the Capitol Hill publication, on Monday released its annual list of the 50 richest — and 10 poorest — members of Congress. The top 50 list is relatively homogenous — all white, with 41 men and just nine women.

All of the net worth figures below are courtesy of Roll Call:

RICHEST:

1. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.)

Net Worth: $357.25 Million

The California Republican, chairman of the House Oversight Committee, has once again topped Roll Call’s list. In 1982, Issa founded Directed Electronics, one of the largest vehicle security companies in North America. After making millions on car alarms, he has since branched out into the bond market and real estate.

2. Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas)

Net Worth: $117.54 Million

McCaul’s wife, Linda Mays McCaul, is the daughter of Lowry Mays, the founder of Clear Channel Communications, a billion-dollar media and advertising company. The family money, according to Roll Call, is tied up in stocks and government bonds.

3. Rep. John Delaney (D-Md.)

Net Worth: $111.92 Million

Delaney, the wealthiest Democrat in Congress, was chief executive of two companies, including HealthCare Financial Partners, which he sold for half a billion dollars in 1999, and commercial lender CapitalSource. His stake in CapitalSource grew to over $50 million during his first year at the Capitol.

4. Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.)

Net Worth: $108.05 Million

Rockefeller, heir to oil mogul John D. Rockefeller, has money in three blind trusts, including at least $50 million at JPMorgan and Wells Fargo, and at least $5 million at United National Bank in Charleston, West Virginia. His assets could be much higher than the minimum amount he had to disclose. His wife Sharon owns more than $1 million in PepsiCo corporate securities stock, and recently sold a home in Washington, D.C. for at least $1 million.

5. Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.)

Net Worth: $95.13 Million

The junior Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee hit it big as a telecommunications venture capitalist and invested in Nextel in the 1980s before it was bought by Sprint. Warner has no liabilities and his assets are in blind trusts for members of his family.

POOREST:

1. Rep. David Valadao (R-Calif.)

Net Worth: -$3.7 Million

Valadao was born in Hanford, California, center of the agriculturally rich 21st Congressional District, but that hasn’t translated to his net worth. Valadao, who owns two dairy farms, has made this list before, but because congressional financial disclosure requirements are imprecise, his exact net worth is unknown.

2. Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.)

Net Worth: -$2.23 Million

Nearly 30 years later, Hastings is still suffering from his impeachment as a federal judge. He was charged in 1981 with conspiracy and obstruction of justice for soliciting a bribe, and though a jury acquitted him, he was impeached and removed from his post by the Senate in 1989. The debt represents his stil- unpaid legal bills. The 78-year-old’s only asset is his single bank account with more than $1,000.

3. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.)

Net Worth: -$972,000

Democratic National Committee Chair Wasserman Schultz serves on an Appropriations subcommittee that determines the funding level for Congress. She and her husband have two mortgages, a home equity line of credit over $250,000 and credit card debt over $15,000.

4. Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon (R-Calif.)

Net Worth: -$943,000

This retiring Armed Services chairman, who calls himself a champion of “returning fiscal discipline to the federal government,” needs to take care of a personal loan exceeding $10,000 that’s been with him for more than a decade. He also has two hefty mortgages, both exceeding $500,000.

5. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.)

Net Worth: -$924,000

Rohrabacher’s biggest liability was a $500,000 mortgage, which was paid off in 2013 but still needed to be reported. His largest asset is an investment in a biotech firm called ISI Life Sciences Inc.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather Read More →

US Congress(WASHINGTON) — When he’s not getting feisty on the House floor, Congressman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., is sitting pretty with an estimated net worth of $357.25 million. Former CEO Rep. John Delaney, D-Md., has raked in nearly $112 million, and Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas, has amassed more than $117 million, thanks, in part, to his wife’s considerable fortune.

But not everyone on Capitol Hill is rolling in dough. Reps. David Valadao, R-Calif., Alcee Hastings, D-Fla., and Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., all have a negative net worth, some with debt running up into the multi-millions.

Roll Call, the Capitol Hill publication, on Monday released its annual list of the 50 richest — and 10 poorest — members of Congress. The top 50 list is relatively homogenous — all white, with 41 men and just nine women.

All of the net worth figures below are courtesy of Roll Call:

RICHEST:

1. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.)

Net Worth: $357.25 Million

The California Republican, chairman of the House Oversight Committee, has once again topped Roll Call’s list. In 1982, Issa founded Directed Electronics, one of the largest vehicle security companies in North America. After making millions on car alarms, he has since branched out into the bond market and real estate.

2. Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas)

Net Worth: $117.54 Million

McCaul’s wife, Linda Mays McCaul, is the daughter of Lowry Mays, the founder of Clear Channel Communications, a billion-dollar media and advertising company. The family money, according to Roll Call, is tied up in stocks and government bonds.

3. Rep. John Delaney (D-Md.)

Net Worth: $111.92 Million

Delaney, the wealthiest Democrat in Congress, was chief executive of two companies, including HealthCare Financial Partners, which he sold for half a billion dollars in 1999, and commercial lender CapitalSource. His stake in CapitalSource grew to over $50 million during his first year at the Capitol.

4. Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.)

Net Worth: $108.05 Million

Rockefeller, heir to oil mogul John D. Rockefeller, has money in three blind trusts, including at least $50 million at JPMorgan and Wells Fargo, and at least $5 million at United National Bank in Charleston, West Virginia. His assets could be much higher than the minimum amount he had to disclose. His wife Sharon owns more than $1 million in PepsiCo corporate securities stock, and recently sold a home in Washington, D.C. for at least $1 million.

5. Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.)

Net Worth: $95.13 Million

The junior Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee hit it big as a telecommunications venture capitalist and invested in Nextel in the 1980s before it was bought by Sprint. Warner has no liabilities and his assets are in blind trusts for members of his family.

POOREST:

1. Rep. David Valadao (R-Calif.)

Net Worth: -$3.7 Million

Valadao was born in Hanford, California, center of the agriculturally rich 21st Congressional District, but that hasn’t translated to his net worth. Valadao, who owns two dairy farms, has made this list before, but because congressional financial disclosure requirements are imprecise, his exact net worth is unknown.

2. Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.)

Net Worth: -$2.23 Million

Nearly 30 years later, Hastings is still suffering from his impeachment as a federal judge. He was charged in 1981 with conspiracy and obstruction of justice for soliciting a bribe, and though a jury acquitted him, he was impeached and removed from his post by the Senate in 1989. The debt represents his stil- unpaid legal bills. The 78-year-old’s only asset is his single bank account with more than $1,000.

3. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.)

Net Worth: -$972,000

Democratic National Committee Chair Wasserman Schultz serves on an Appropriations subcommittee that determines the funding level for Congress. She and her husband have two mortgages, a home equity line of credit over $250,000 and credit card debt over $15,000.

4. Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon (R-Calif.)

Net Worth: -$943,000

This retiring Armed Services chairman, who calls himself a champion of “returning fiscal discipline to the federal government,” needs to take care of a personal loan exceeding $10,000 that’s been with him for more than a decade. He also has two hefty mortgages, both exceeding $500,000.

5. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.)

Net Worth: -$924,000

Rohrabacher’s biggest liability was a $500,000 mortgage, which was paid off in 2013 but still needed to be reported. His largest asset is an investment in a biotech firm called ISI Life Sciences Inc.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather Read More →

The White House(WASHINGTON) — President Obama in recent weeks has offered mixed messages about the threat from Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria and his plan to confront it. Now, he plans to set the record straight and provide greater clarity about his strategy in a speech to the nation on Wednesday.

Details are tightly held, but Obama says the overarching goal is to “systematically degrade” ISIS, also known as ISIL or the Islamic State, and ultimately “defeat them,” an objective that officials tell ABC News will take “years.”

The newly-defined policy shifts from a primarily defensive posture in Iraq — protecting American installations and personnel and avoiding humanitarian catastrophe — to a more offensive one, coming almost three years since the end of the Iraq war.

Here’s what we know so far about how the policy has evolved:

EXPANDED U.S. AIRSTRIKES: JETS AND DRONES

A broadening of ISIS targets by American warplanes and drones is already under way, with a new charge of rolling back militants’ territorial gains in northern Iraq. ISIS has control over a third of the country by some estimates, with strongholds extending into Syria. U.S. airstrikes began Aug. 8 as a limited operation to protect U.S. personnel and installations in Erbil and help avert a humanitarian disaster on Mt. Sinjar. Now, they have helped to push militants from the critical Mosul and Haditha dams and beyond. U.S. forces have conducted nearly 150 airstrikes since Aug. 8.

“This is similar to the kinds of counter-terrorism campaigns that we’ve been engaging in consistently over the last five, six, seven years,” Obama said Sunday in an interview with NBC News.

The president has signaled a counter-terrorism air campaign not unlike U.S. operations in Yemen and Somalia, where forces rely heavily on intelligence to strike key targets and eventually degrade their capacity and leadership. Obama has not yet made a decision about launching airstrikes against targets inside Syria, White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Monday.

TARGETING SYRIA SAFE HAVENS

The White House acknowledges that ISIS cannot be defeated without rooting out its strongholds inside Syria, and that doing so will involve military force. But who exactly will execute that military campaign and when it will happen remains unclear. Unlike Iraq, which has directly requested U.S. help, Syria has warned against U.S. intervention.

“We continue to develop options for countering ISIL in both Iraq and in Syria. Military options are always more effective in the context of a whole-of-government strategy and in this case, in the context of a regional coalition,” Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey said during a Facebook Town Hall last week.

“In Syria, the boots on the ground have to be Syrian,” Obama said Sunday. The comments suggest greater effort to arm and train the moderate Syrian opposition forces — the Free Syrian Army — that’s fighting both Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and the ISIS militants.

NO US TROOPS IN COMBAT

There are already about 1,000 U.S. troops in Iraq to protect the American embassy in Baghdad and the consulate in Erbil and to provide advice and assessment to Iraqi and Kurdish security forces. But Obama says there will be no American troops directly involved in ground combat — period.

“We need to attack [ISIS] in ways that prevent them from taking over territory, that bolster the Iraqi security forces, others in the region who are prepared to take them on, without committing troops of our own,” Secretary of State John Kerry explained last week. “I think that’s a red line for everybody here, no boots on the ground.”

The White House says an effort to train and equip Iraqi forces to fight ISIS will intensify once a new Iraqi government is formed. Several hundred U.S. personnel are working with the Iraqis at a Joint Operations Center to develop a strategy and identify targets.

Officials have not ruled out covert strikes involving U.S. special operations forces or CIA operatives on the ground.

“Is it possible that there might be some clandestine efforts that are also under way here?” Earnest said. “I’m sure that that’s the case, and I’m sure that’s something that, you know, I won’t be in a position to talk about if they do occur.”

INTERNATIONAL COALITION

Obama has demonstrated that any military campaign will be led by the U.S. but involve a host of allies that bring different resources to the table. Who will be involved in this coalition of the willing?

The U.S. convened an anti-ISIS coalition of western powers on the sidelines of the NATO summit in Wales last week. It included Australia, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Turkey and the United Kingdom.

“We are going to be as part of an international coalition, carrying out airstrikes in support of work on the ground by Iraqi troops, Kurdish troops,” Obama explained Sunday.

“There’s going to be an economic element to this. There’s going to be a political element to it. There’s going to be a military element to it,” the president said.

Kerry will head Tuesday to Jordan and Saudi Arabia to coordinate efforts against ISIS, the State Department announced.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather Read More →

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — A major campaign finance debate begins Monday as the Senate holds its first test vote on a constitutional amendment that would effectively overturn the Citizens United ruling.

In the landmark 2010 decision, the Supreme Court ruled that corporations can make unlimited independent expenditures using general treasury funds to support or oppose candidates.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell called the amendment an “assault on free speech” in a Politico op-ed Sunday night, and disparaged Democrats’ desire to devote legislative time to the issue for the two weeks the Senate is back in session.

“Their goal is to shut down the voices of their critics at a moment when they fear the loss of their fragile Senate majority. And to achieve it, they’re willing to devote roughly half of the remaining legislative days before November to this quixotic anti-speech gambit,” McConnell, R-Ky., wrote.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather Read More →

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Former Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton may not agree on much, but the two have developed a post-presidential friendship.

Onstage together at the Newseum Monday, they bonded over something they’ll soon have in common: being grandfathers.

About 20 minutes into the event promoting the Presidential Leadership Scholars program, Clinton’s phone rang.

“Only two people have this number and they’re both related to me,” Clinton quipped. “I hope I’m not being told I’m about to become a premature grandfather!”

“That’d make national news,” Bush responded, as the audience laughed.

Clinton’s only daughter, Chelsea Clinton, recently announced she and husband Marc Mezvinsky are expecting their first baby this fall. Bush’s grandchild, Mila Bush-Hager, was born in April 2013.

Bush offered some advice for Bill Clinton as a grandfather, once he becomes one.

“Be prepared to fall completely in love again,” Bush said. “It’s going to be an awesome period.”

He also joked, “Get ready to be, like, the lowest person in the pecking order.”

The two engaged in a non-stop lovefest onstage, with Bush jokingly describing his predecessor as a “beautiful man,” when asked to comment on him.

At the end, as the two made their way to the exit, working the crowd and shaking hands, former first lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (who was in attendance) greeted her husband and Bush.

“I actually learned a lot by watching him over the years,” Bill Clinton said of Bush onstage.

“You always want to be underestimated by your adversaries. He consistently benefited from being underestimated, and so did I, for comets my different reasons,” Clinton joked.

Bush called Clinton his “pal” and praised him as an “awesome communicator.”

Clinton also revealed that the two spoke over the phone periodically during Bush’s second term.

“He used to call me twice a year on his second term, just to talk,” Clinton said. “We talked about everything in the wide world.”

Bush would ask Clinton’s opinion, and often they’d disagree, Clinton said.

Bush and Clinton were onstage together at the Newseum to talk about presidential leadership, launching a new joint scholarship program on that topic, which will be run through the Clinton Foundation, Bush’s presidential library, and the presidential libraries of George H.W. Bush and Lyndon B. Johnson. The program will bring in experts and past administration officials to help participants study presidential leadership and decision-making.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather Read More →

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — After more than a month away from Washington, members of the House and Senate finally return to town Monday — even if there are just a few days of legislative business on the calendar before lawmakers go back into campaign mode ahead of Election Day.

While the House could consider a continuing resolution later this week to fund the government into the Lame Duck session, on Monday, lawmakers will ease back into it as they consider a dozen measures to rename post offices, among other non-controversial business.

Congressional leaders don’t meet with President Obama until Tuesday about his ISIS strategy, but on Monday evening, the House Intelligence Committee will receive a classified update from CIA and other agencies.

Obama is expected to give a speech this week outlining his strategy for taking on the threat posed by ISIS. He will use the speech to outline the nature of the threat — serious, but not an imminent threat to the homeland — and the strategy for confronting it.

It is not expected that the president will make any major new announcements.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather Read More →

Erich Schlegel/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Texas gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis has made headlines for revealing in a new memoir that she had two abortions, but the Democrat, who rose to national prominence for her 13-hour filibuster of a bill that would have restricted women’s access to abortion, denied that her revelations were designed to gain her a political advantage ahead of the elections.

Speaking in an interview with ABC’s Good Morning America co-anchor Robin Roberts that aired Monday on the show, Davis said the book, Forgetting to Be Afraid, was intended to give people insight into her.

“You’re running for governor. And people are going to question the timing. …Are you trying to pull at the heartstrings, people are going to say, of the voters that you’re trying to win votes with sympathy?” Roberts asked.

Davis replied: “I wanted to share a book about my life, how I came to be who I am. I wanted people to feel like they’re not alone…The struggle of being a single mom. The struggle, after my parents divorced, and that I came through it. I came through it, through my faith in God. I came through it because of my education.

“I wanted to be very honest in my story, and not leave pieces aside,” she added. “I wanted people to understand.”

In the memoir, Davis reveals that after her parents divorced, her mother became so depressed that she almost killed herself and her three children, Davis included.

At the time, Davis’ mother was in her 20s with three children aged 5 and under.

She became depressed after Davis’ birth and, after the separation, her husband remarried. Davis’ mother was all alone.

“She almost took her life and ours,” Davis told Roberts.

Her mother put her children in the trunk of the car because “she couldn’t imagine leaving the world and leaving us behind…she had intended to start the car in the garage,” Davis said. “And an angel came into our lives that day. A neighbor who had never come to our home before rang the bell. And he sat in the living room. He held my mother’s hand. He talked to her for quite a long time. And by the time he left, she was through it. And she came and collected us from the car and put one foot in front of the other and pushed on for all of us, and did a beautiful job of it.”

Davis, 51, credits her mother’s life experiences for giving her the strength to persevere in the face of her own challenges of being a single working mother.

Davis, a graduate of Harvard Law School, is running for governor against Republican Attorney General Greg Abbott.

The mother of two daughters talked with Roberts about her headline-making filibuster last year. Dressed in a pair of pink sneakers, Davis went on for nearly 13 hours against a bill in the legislature. Although her filibuster succeeded in delaying the restrictions, they were eventually implemented.

“For me, it was very important to give voice to the women and men that I stood for that day. …And of course I couldn’t help but reflect upon my own journey,” she said.

In the memoir, Davis disclosed for the first time that she terminated two pregnancies in the 1990s. One was terminated after tests showed the fetus was developing outside the uterus and therefore not viable.

Two years later, Davis was pregnant again with a daughter she and her then-husband, Jeff Davis, had already named, but a routine exam detected a serious problem.

“Our baby had a severe brain abnormality — one that was such an extreme abnormality that we were told she would likely not survive to term,” Davis told Roberts. “If she did survive to term, she likely would not survive delivery. And if she did survive delivery, she likely would be in a vegetative state.”

Davis and her husband decided that “the most loving thing that we could do for our daughter was to say goodbye,” she said, adding that the decision was difficult and made with love.

“Her name was Tate Elise Davis,” Davis said. “And we loved her as we love our living daughters, Dru and Amber. And she forms, of course, a very important part of my life.”

Asked by Roberts whether she could understand that some people would say they would have handled the matter differently, Davis replied: “This was how my family confronted this tragic experience. I respect so much that people make their own decisions, and that that decision is the one that is right for them.”

Forgetting to Be Afraid goes on sale Tuesday.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather Read More →

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — After more than a month away from Washington, members of the House and Senate finally return to town Monday — even if there are just a few days of legislative business on the calendar before lawmakers go back into campaign mode ahead of Election Day.

While the House could consider a continuing resolution later this week to fund the government into the Lame Duck session, on Monday, lawmakers will ease back into it as they consider a dozen measures to rename post offices, among other non-controversial business.

Congressional leaders don’t meet with President Obama until Tuesday about his ISIS strategy, but on Monday evening, the House Intelligence Committee will receive a classified update from CIA and other agencies.

Obama is expected to give a speech this week outlining his strategy for taking on the threat posed by ISIS. He will use the speech to outline the nature of the threat — serious, but not an imminent threat to the homeland — and the strategy for confronting it.

It is not expected that the president will make any major new announcements.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather Read More →

Erich Schlegel/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Texas gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis has made headlines for revealing in a new memoir that she had two abortions, but the Democrat, who rose to national prominence for her 13-hour filibuster of a bill that would have restricted women’s access to abortion, denied that her revelations were designed to gain her a political advantage ahead of the elections.

Speaking in an interview with ABC’s Good Morning America co-anchor Robin Roberts that aired Monday on the show, Davis said the book, Forgetting to Be Afraid, was intended to give people insight into her.

“You’re running for governor. And people are going to question the timing. …Are you trying to pull at the heartstrings, people are going to say, of the voters that you’re trying to win votes with sympathy?” Roberts asked.

Davis replied: “I wanted to share a book about my life, how I came to be who I am. I wanted people to feel like they’re not alone…The struggle of being a single mom. The struggle, after my parents divorced, and that I came through it. I came through it, through my faith in God. I came through it because of my education.

“I wanted to be very honest in my story, and not leave pieces aside,” she added. “I wanted people to understand.”

In the memoir, Davis reveals that after her parents divorced, her mother became so depressed that she almost killed herself and her three children, Davis included.

At the time, Davis’ mother was in her 20s with three children aged 5 and under.

She became depressed after Davis’ birth and, after the separation, her husband remarried. Davis’ mother was all alone.

“She almost took her life and ours,” Davis told Roberts.

Her mother put her children in the trunk of the car because “she couldn’t imagine leaving the world and leaving us behind…she had intended to start the car in the garage,” Davis said. “And an angel came into our lives that day. A neighbor who had never come to our home before rang the bell. And he sat in the living room. He held my mother’s hand. He talked to her for quite a long time. And by the time he left, she was through it. And she came and collected us from the car and put one foot in front of the other and pushed on for all of us, and did a beautiful job of it.”

Davis, 51, credits her mother’s life experiences for giving her the strength to persevere in the face of her own challenges of being a single working mother.

Davis, a graduate of Harvard Law School, is running for governor against Republican Attorney General Greg Abbott.

The mother of two daughters talked with Roberts about her headline-making filibuster last year. Dressed in a pair of pink sneakers, Davis went on for nearly 13 hours against a bill in the legislature. Although her filibuster succeeded in delaying the restrictions, they were eventually implemented.

“For me, it was very important to give voice to the women and men that I stood for that day. …And of course I couldn’t help but reflect upon my own journey,” she said.

In the memoir, Davis disclosed for the first time that she terminated two pregnancies in the 1990s. One was terminated after tests showed the fetus was developing outside the uterus and therefore not viable.

Two years later, Davis was pregnant again with a daughter she and her then-husband, Jeff Davis, had already named, but a routine exam detected a serious problem.

“Our baby had a severe brain abnormality — one that was such an extreme abnormality that we were told she would likely not survive to term,” Davis told Roberts. “If she did survive to term, she likely would not survive delivery. And if she did survive delivery, she likely would be in a vegetative state.”

Davis and her husband decided that “the most loving thing that we could do for our daughter was to say goodbye,” she said, adding that the decision was difficult and made with love.

“Her name was Tate Elise Davis,” Davis said. “And we loved her as we love our living daughters, Dru and Amber. And she forms, of course, a very important part of my life.”

Asked by Roberts whether she could understand that some people would say they would have handled the matter differently, Davis replied: “This was how my family confronted this tragic experience. I respect so much that people make their own decisions, and that that decision is the one that is right for them.”

Forgetting to Be Afraid goes on sale Tuesday.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather Read More →

Craig Herndon/The Washington Post/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Sen. Bob Smith is fighting to return to the Senate, trying to regain his former title as U.S. Senator from New Hampshire, but he has to first beat another former U.S. Senator, one from Massachusetts who is heavily favored in Tuesday’s primary, Scott Brown.

Yes, two formers, one battle for the Senate, a fight against incumbent Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen that could determine if Democrats retain control. Brown and Shaheen have essentially been fighting a general election battle for months, facing off head to head and ignoring Brown’s GOP opponents.

That hasn’t deterred Smith, who has a 30-year political resume — with several non-traditional moments — but admits Tuesday is his last political campaign, no matter what happens.

“I doubt very much I would be a candidate again,” Smith told ABC News. “Some people I might help probably, but not as an elected official.”

He’s confident, saying he still very much thinks he will be the nominee and doesn’t like to think about the possibility of losing, but acknowledges that if he doesn’t win, he will stay busy writing a book he is about one-fifth of the way done with. He says this race will be the book’s “final chapter.”

Smith was first elected to New Hampshire’s 1st District House seat in 1984. In 1990, he ran for Senate and won, going on to serve two terms before losing in 2002 to then U.S. Rep. John Sununu.

His second Senate term was not without its share of headlines. In 1999, after a short primary bid for the GOP presidential nomination, he left the Republican Party and launched a long-shot White House campaign as a candidate for the U.S. Taxpayers Party. He had a subsequent presidential bid as an independent, which also was brief. That hurt him in his 2002 bid and he moved to Florida soon after his loss and mounted two bids for the GOP Senate nomination from the Sunshine State in 2004 and 2010, both unsuccessfully.

Now that he’s back in New Hampshire, Smith is running as the “true conservative” in the race, but it’s not only the fact that he left the GOP that has undermined his claim to that title: In 2004, just before Election Day, he endorsed John Kerry over George W. Bush.

Smith admitted that the endorsement was a “mistake made in anger” when Bush did not endorse him in his 2002 election, something he said Bush promised him.

Smith said most of the reaction he gets on the campaign trail, something he calls the “Dunkin Donuts poll” is positive, but said “I would be lying” if he said people didn’t bring up these parts of his record. He says he tells them, “If you can’t get past that I understand it fully,” and counsels them to vote for another candidate.

He said the one thing people never are upset about is the fact he changed parties briefly, saying conservatives he meets now are “so angry at the establishment and this national party and some in the state party who have all endorsed Brown…it’s not the way it’s supposed to be, primaries are supposed to be left to the voters.”

He said he left the party in 1999 to make a statement that the GOP “can’t desert our principles,” which he thinks some in the party, notably Brown, have done. The former Massachusetts senator is more moderate than Smith and the Republican Party on issues including abortion and gun control.

Smith says his early stance against what he calls the “catastrophe” with the national debt shows that he was “tea party before the tea party was cool.”

Smith may be 73, but he says he’s been hitting the campaign trail hard. On Friday, he did 11 appearances, including two radio interviews, a stop at a gun manufacturer, two gun shops, and a block party.

“I did it the old fashioned way,” Smith said. “As if I had never run before, I re-introduced myself and I think it has worked.”

In their final GOP primary debate on Thursday, Smith was the only one of the three candidates who declined to commit to endorsing Tuesday’s victor, saying “I’ll make that decision when the primary election is over.”

Smith said he did that because he doesn’t “like to pre-judge…I like to think I’m going to be the nominee. That’s always the way I think, but I also said that I would support every Republican that supports the Republican platform.” Another clear non-committal about whether he would endorse Brown or the other challenger, former New Hampshire state Senator Jim Rubens.

He said he isn’t wistful as he looks at his final campaign, and he has “no bitterness for the past.”

“I think if you are bitter you aren’t healing yourself, you have to forgive and move on,” he said.

Looking back, he said that during his time in the Senate, Capitol Hill was less divided than it is now, noting, “Ted Kennedy and I were bitter political enemies, but we were friends. I liked him a lot and I think he liked me…that’s respect.”

Watchers of Smith’s bid say his irregular path, despite the years, could still be having an impact.

“Some voters are not forgetting,” Director of the New Hampshire Institute of Politics at Saint Anselm College Neil Levesque said.

“Leaving the party, endorsing Kerry, then running for the U.S. Senate in Florida. That’s three pretty big things that could be central to voters’ minds,” Levesque said. “He’s certainly been a longtime candidate, but he hasn’t been necessarily here for a while. He’s been in Florida. It was kind of a surprise then when he came back.”

Smith’s final message to voters is something he says he hasn’t held back from telling Brown on the campaign trail.

“I think Scott Brown is more like Shaheen than he’s like me,” he said, before recalling Ronald Reagan’s famous phrase. “If he’s the nominee there are so many issues he agrees with Shaheen on, I don’t see him winning, but with me bold colors, not pale pastels…there is a sharp contrast between Shaheen and myself.”

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather Read More →