Sunday shows: Reg reform and 2010

Financial regulatory reform and the 2010 midterm elections will dominate this Sunday's talk shows.

The interviews will cap off a week of intense debate over Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd's (D-Conn.) proposed overhaul of the nation's financial system -- a series of fights at times dominated by aggressive politicking typical to any midterm election year.

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A handful of Senate Republicans have recently carped that Dodd's bill lacks a bipartisan foundation, while other Republicans have already signaled they intend to block the bill's appearance from the chamber floor. Dodd, however, has repeatedly blasted Republicans for the recent obstruction, noting he has worked extensively with committee Ranking Member Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) and Sen. John Corker (R-Tenn.), among others, to ensure his legislation has broad appeal.

That brewing disagreement will be most evident this weekend on CNN's "State of the Union," which will host Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) and Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.).

McConnell earlier in the week hammered Dodd's bill for its proposed "resolution authority," which he said "not only allows" taxpayer bailouts of troubled financial firms, but "institutionalizes" those federal rescue efforts.

Warner, however, as one of the bill's original authors, slammed McConnell for that characterization a day later, telling The Washington Post that the GOP leader "either doesn't understand or chooses not to understand" the bill. The senator's harsh rebuke echoed the thrashing Dodd gave McConnell during a speech on the Senate floor this Thursday.

The White House will later offer its own view in that ongoing debate, when Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner joins NBC's "Meet the Press." The Obama administration has worked closely with Dodd and other Democrats to shepherd the financial regulatory reform bill and ensure its prompt passage, and it will likely play a larger role once the bill reaches the Senate floor.

Also on NBC, Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell (D) and Tennessee Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) will square off with top political pundits over the nature of Democrats' financial regulatory reforms, assessing what the legislative trench fight means ahead of the 2010 elections.
The group will also discuss President Barack Obama's work during this week's Nuclear Security Summit, which the White House has since described as a key victory in its nuclear non-proliferation efforts.

Meanwhile, Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.) will join CBS's "Face the Nation" for his first Sunday show appearance since beating Democrat Attorney General Martha Coakley earlier this year.

Brown has long touted his own campaign in the Massachusetts special election as evidence that Republicans could out-perform Democrats in 2010. He is likely to repeat those predictions during his interview on Sunday, noting the similarities between the GOP's takeover of the House in 1994 with the political landscape in 2010.

But perhaps the true authority on the 1994 shakedown, former President Bill Clinton, will address the Democratic Party's chances in 2010 on ABC's "This Week."

The former president will also touch upon his relief work in Haiti, months after a devastating earthquake rocked the Caribbean's poorest state and produced an immense humanitarian crisis.

"Fox News Sunday" this weekend will host Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), who will discuss his staunch opposition to the value-added tax (VAT). The senator is so opposed to the proposed tax system that he even offered a "sense of the Senate" resolution this week that condemned the VAT, which some lawmakers have explored as an alternative to the federal income tax.

Appearing after McCain will be Gen. Ray Odierno to offer a progress report on U.S. efforts in Iraq.

Iraq's parliamentary elections in March have triggered an aggressive few weeks of politicking, as Sunni and Shiite politicians are still trying to cobble together enough votes to establish themselves as a parliamentary majority and elect a new prime minister. However, the early negotiations have grown so intense that some of Iraq's neighbors fear the country is growing unstable, calling into question what may happen once the majority of U.S. troops depart Iraq in the coming months.