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The journey begins

by Lester Holt, NBC News anchor

On the very day Barack Obama and his family make their move to Washington, the president-elect is experiencing the first public derailment of his transition. NBC's Andrea Mitchell broke the news this afternoon that New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson has withdrawn his name as Commerce secretary nominee.

Richardson is the subject of a grand jury "pay to play" investigation involving a state contractor and says it would likely force "an untenable delay in the confirmation process." Andrea continues to work the story and will join me on Nightly News tonight to talk about the timing of this story, and how Obama plans to handle it.

NBC's Richard Engel will lead our coverage of the ground war in Gaza. After a weeklong air assault, Israeli troops and tanks began advancing into Gaza last night. We'll also hear from our veteran Middle East correspondent Martin Fletcher, who talks to Israelis living under periodic rocket attacks from Gaza.

Thanks for checking out the blog. I'll look for you this evening on NBC Nightly News.