ObamaCare Latest; Crackdown on Wall Street; Goodbye "Gov't Motors"

President Obama speaking as I write this to a huge crowd of South Africans and world dignitaries in Johannesburg, South Africa.. in a memorial honoring the memory of Nelson Mandela who died last week at the age of 95. Pres Obama called Mandela the last great liberator of the 21st century.

Congress is rushing to finish a budget.. The first without drama since 2011. The two year deal is expected to be approved later this week before Senators and Congressmen rush off for Christmas break.

The Senate is expected to approve the nomination of Patricia Millett to be a U.S. Circuit Judge. She was one of the folks caught up in the drama of the so-called nuclear option.

Washington Post reports today on a new wrinkle in Obamacare plans. Some folks with chronic illnesses are having to pay more out of pocket for some life sustaining drugs.

Federal regulators are close to approving the Volcker rule.. part of the financial overhaul of 2010 that is meant to stop risky speculation by investment bankers. It's meant to help head off any future banking crisis.

The Treasury Department sold off the last of its stake in General Motors. The U.S. government took a $10 billion hit on the bailout of the nation's largest car maker which collapsed in the financial crisis. Still the U.S. got some $38 billion back.

Winter storm warning in effect right now for much of the Eastern seaboard as a big snow storm arrives just in time for the morning commute. Some DC offices will close for the day.

A family of six is missing in the mountains of Nevada. Temperatures have reached minus 16 degrees and officials are worried. The family went missing Sunday on a snow trip.

Russian President Vladimir Putin is ordering an expansion of Russian military bases in the Arctic as part of a massive military modernization. Something to watch carefully.

Just yesterday, Putin shut down a Russian news agency. It's yet another sign of authoritarianism from the former KGB head.

Violent clashes continue in Ukraine.. where pro-Russia government forces are in the midst of a huge crackdown on pro-Europe protesters.

- Clint P Henderson

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Clint Henderson is the Executive Producer for “Happening Now” and an avid traveler. Follow his adventures on Twitter, ClintPHenderson, and Instagram, clintpage1.