May 23, 2013
Warren Crusades Against Big Banks, NYC Soda Ban Struck Down, and More
Posted on Mar 11, 2013
Pathway Pact: A bipartisan group of eight senators has privately reached an agreement that would offer legal status to the nearly 11 million undocumented immigrants in this country, the Los Angeles Times reports. The pathway to citizenship would include registering with the Department of Homeland Security, paying income tax for time spent in the U.S. and an undetermined fine. The bill would also exclude the immigrants from receiving federal benefits such as food stamps and Medicaid. Among the parts of the legislation not decided: how long undocumented immigrants would have to wait before they apply for a green card, though one aide estimated the time at 10 years or longer. (Read more)
Soda Ban Flattened: A plan to bar large sugary beverages from being sold in New York City won’t go into effect Tuesday as scheduled after a court stepped in and blocked the restrictions. The law would have prohibited some vendors from selling sugary drinks in cups bigger than 16 ounces, but would have allowed for some exceptions. “The court finds that the regulation ... is laden with exceptions based on economic and political concerns,” Justice Milton Tingling of the state’s Supreme Court wrote, adding “The effect would be a person is unable to buy a drink larger than 16 ounces at one establishment but may be able to buy it at another establishment that may be located right next door.” Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s office says the city plans to appeal the decision. (Read more)
Bank Check: Freshman Sen. Elizabeth Warren has been on a one-woman crusade against the major financial institutions. In the two months since she was sworn in, Warren has gone after regulators for not prosecuting big banks and clashed with Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke over the idea that these corporations are “too big to fail.” Her latest target is HSBC. During a Banking Committee hearing Thursday, Warren wanted to know why the multinational bank got off with only a fine for money laundering when some drug offenders get sent to prison for life. After Treasury officials repeatedly dodged her questions, Warren went off on them. “Evidently, if you launder nearly a billion dollars for drug cartels and violate international sanctions, your company pays a fine and you go home and sleep in your own bed at night—every single individual associated with this. I think that’s fundamentally wrong,” she said. (Read more)
Trump Tours: On Friday, Newt Gingrich suggested over Twitter that Donald Trump foot the bills for the White House tours that were canceled as a result of the sequester. The idea apparently didn’t seem so bad to the Donald. In fact, he responded positively to it during an appearance Monday morning on “Fox & Friends,” telling the hosts, “I think it’s so nice of Newt to suggest that; I don’t know anything about it. ... I like Newt a lot.” He continued, “I didn’t hear this, but it sounds reasonable to me. Why not?” Trump, for the record, believes the White House canceled the tours for political reasons. (Read more)
Video of the Day: Here’s something you don’t see every day: a current member of Congress getting in the ring to fight a kickboxing champion. But that’s exactly what New York Rep. Peter King did, squaring off against “Irish” John Foley in a celebrity boxing match over the weekend. The 68-year-old King participated in the event to raise money for a local boxing gym.
—Posted by Tracy Bloom.
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