Let Me Start: Shakeup in White House foreign policy team

Evan Vucci

National Security Advisor Tom Donilon is resigning and will be replaced by U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice. President Obama will make the announcement this afternoon. By moving Rice to his inner circle on foreign policy, the president is making a defiant gesture towards Republicans who have been deeply critical of Rice and her role during the aftermath of the Benghazi attacks.

New Jersey governor Chris Christie is being criticized for his decision to hold a special election for Senate three week before the November general election, in which he’s up for re-election. And the loudest criticism is coming from his own party, who wanted to see a Republican appointed with no special election. The additional election will cost the state roughly $12 million, but by moving it away from his re-election, he can run up the score against his Democratic opponent. This way Christie avoids sharing the ballot with a high profile Democratic candidate for Senate – like Newark mayor Cory Booker – who could drive votes to the governor’s Democratic opponent.

First Lady Michelle Obama confronted a heckler head-on at a fundraiser last night.

Critics of the health care reform law are outspending its supporters on ads.

The controversies facing the Obama White House have led to new doubts about the administration’s honesty, according to our new NBC News - Wall Street Journal poll. But a majority doesn’t think the president is personally responsible.

President Obama is heading to Massachusetts next week to campaign for Rep. Ed Markey in the special election for Senate.