Robert Byrd dies - West Virginia Sen. Robert Byrd, the self-educated son of a coal miner who became the longest-serving member of Congress, died early Monday at age 92, the senator's office said. Byrd, a nine-term Democrat, was known as a master of the chamber's often-arcane rules and as the self-proclaimed "champion of the Constitution," a jealous guardian of congressional power.
As news of Byrd's passing echoes through Washington, and as his family plans his funeral, colleagues are remembering Byrd for his humble nature, fighting spirit and determination.
Elena Kagan Supreme Court hearings - Leading senators on the Judiciary Committee signaled a contentious hearing starting Monday on Elena Kagan's Supreme Court nomination, with some Republicans saying a GOP filibuster was possible. Democrats countered that no nominee from President Obama would have satisfied Republicans.
A look into Kagan's past shows the U.S. solicitor general is no stranger to defending herself - and is willing to work with her ideological opposites. Although she has never been a judge, Kagan is seeking a lifetime job on the nation's highest court. To get there, she herself must first be judged - by 17 senators on the Judiciary Committee, who will decide whether she deserves a final floor vote. As that process begins, we take a look at the five big issues that could affect her confirmation.
Gulf oil and a possible hurricane - Tropical Storm Alex could strengthen into a hurricane Monday but is heading away from the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the National Hurricane Center said. The storm could become a major hurricane and could make landfall anywhere from Port Lavaca, Texas, to Tampico, Mexico, the center said.
"We will know much more as this storm continues to intensify today and tomorrow," the center said in a statement.
Forecasting models suggest that it could make landfall in northeastern Mexico, probably Thursday.