Here's the New York Times' take on the release of the Bill Clinton donor list: "Lifting a longstanding cloak of secrecy, Mr. Clinton on Thursday released a complete list of more than 200,000 donors to his foundation as part of an agreement to douse concerns about potential conflicts if Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton is confirmed as secretary of state in the Obama administration."
"The donor list offers a glimpse into the high-powered, big-dollar world in which Mr. Clinton has traveled since leaving the White House as he jetted around the globe making money for himself and raising vast sums for his ambitious philanthropic programs fighting disease, poverty and climate change. Some of the world's richest people and most famous celebrities handed over large checks to finance his presidential library and charitable activities."
It appears the release didn't surprise many about who would be on the list, and that's the best news so far for Clinton's prospects. But could this be Clinton's most embarrassing donor? "Embattled defense contractor Blackwater Worldwide contributed a pile of cash to Bill Clinton's foundation, newly released records show -- the first potential conflict for his wife, Secretary of State-designate Hillary Rodham Clinton, who may ultimately decide if the contractor stays in Iraq. Blackwater, the largest security contractor in Iraq, donated between $10,000 and $25,000 to the former president's foundation, records show.
Meanwhile, Obama's economic team hopes to have its stimulus plan ready by next week so Congress can begin taking up the legislation before Obama's sworn in. "'The goal for completing action on this important legislation should be as close to Jan. 20 as possible,' said an e-mail message from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's office to senior Senate Democratic staff members. Some Obama advisers have sought to tamp down expectations that Mr. Obama could sign a package immediately after he is inaugurated. The opposition of some Senate Republicans and House and Senate negotiations on a final compromise could force delays into February."
More: "The Obama plan has five main parts, according to Democrats in Congress and the Obama transition office. Besides the health care financing, it would propose billions of dollars for energy-saving programs, public works projects, school construction and renovation, and expanded jobless aid and food stamps for 'the most vulnerable,' as well as tax cuts." Amazingly, "The Obama plan could end up at about 15 pages, an adviser said, leaving precise legislative language and some details to Congress. The House and Senate will be working simultaneously to draft separate but similar measures."
Regarding stimulus' price tag, the Washington Post reports that Obama and congressional Democrats "have entered discussions over an economic stimulus package that could grow to include $850 billion in new spending and tax cuts over the next two years, a gigantic sum that some Democrats say could prove difficult to push rapidly through Congress."
The Boston Globe's Scott Helman: "As Obama's aides, lawmakers, industry associations, and interest groups furiously debate how to divide up an expected $50 billion in new road, mass transit, and rail spending, the president-elect is facing competing pressures. On one hand, the goal of the stimulus bill is to kick-start the economy with a wave of short-term public spending projects across the country, and the quickest way to do that is to follow existing priorities. But it also offers a rare opportunity to shift American transportation in the long term toward a greener, more sustainable system that promotes mass transit and so-called smart growth over sprawl and patronage projects."