From NBC's Ken Strickland
Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell today announced that Senator Judd Gregg will be their membership's sole negotiator in talks to reach a deal on a financial rescue package. Yesterday, Treasury Secretary Paulson recommended that each of the four congressional caucuses send just one representative to meetings.
(Earlier today, House Republicans appointed Roy Blunt as their point man. House Democrats have been sending over House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank. And while Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said he reserves the right to send as many representatives as he wants, Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd has been the most visible Senate Democrat involved.)
At a brief news conference earlier today, Gregg said "the progress that has been made so far has been significant." He attributed some of that progress to yesterday's visit to Washington by McCain and Obama. "First, it got us focused," Gregg said. "And secondly, but more importantly, it got the American people focused on the seriousness of the issue."