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Tag: Congress

Saxby Chambliss
Flickr / Savannah Grandfather

Saxby Succeeds in Georgia

Saxby “Big Daddy” Chambliss has successfully defended his U.S. Senate seat against rival and fraternity brother Jim Martin. After a close contest in the general election, the two were forced into a runoff Tuesday, which Chambliss won handily.

Posted on Dec 2, 2008 READ MORE


Ford logo
cartype.com

Ford Asks Gov’t for $9 Billion

After a dismal November, Ford Motor Co. is hanging by a thread, but the automaker told Congress on Tuesday that it is in better shape than Chrysler and General Motors and could make it through its current economic crisis with a little help—to the tune of $9 billion in standby loans.

Posted on Dec 2, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / SteelCityHobbies

Class Bigotry Mars Auto Debate

The auto industry bailout would have no chance of passing without the muscle of the Big Three’s unionized work force. Yet you can’t turn around without hearing someone trash autoworkers for the terrible crime of trying to earn a decent living.

Posted on Dec 1, 2008 READ MORE


Al Franken
USAF / Staff Sgt. Maria L. Taylor

Franken to Take Senate Fight to ... the Senate

Still locked in a bitter recount battle for the right to represent Minnesota in the upper house, Al Franken’s lawyer says he might take the matter directly to the U.S. Senate, which the Constitution allows to be the “Judge of the Elections, Returns and Qualifications of its own Members.”

Posted on Dec 1, 2008 READ MORE


mushroom cloud
Wikimedia Commons / Fastfission (altered)

Report: WMD Terror Attack Likely

A month too late for Halloween, a congressionally mandated independent panel has come to this terrifying conclusion: “Unless the world community acts decisively and with great urgency, it is more likely than not that a weapon of mass destruction will be used in a terrorist attack somewhere in the world by the end of 2013.” Boo!

Posted on Nov 30, 2008 READ MORE


Our Dear Leader

Judging by the proliferation of capital letters in the e-mail correspondence I receive, many seem worried that Barack Obama may not deliver the promised “change we can believe in.”

Posted on Nov 28, 2008 READ MORE


The Peril and Promise of Interesting Times

If things get much more “interesting,” we might have a collective nervous breakdown. But along with the anxiety, there’s also a sense of rare opportunity—a chance to emerge better than we were economically, politically and socially.

Posted on Nov 26, 2008 READ MORE


The Smoke Is Clearing

This week marks a decade since a consortium of state attorneys general negotiated the landmark settlement of lawsuits against tobacco companies. The results are in: Cigarette consumption has declined by 28 percent in the past 10 years.

Posted on Nov 24, 2008 READ MORE



White House / Paul Morse (altered)

No One In Charge

Having two presidents is starting to feel like having no president, and that’s the situation we’ll face until Inauguration Day. Heaven help us.

Posted on Nov 24, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Kiichiro Sato, file

Starving for Change

The swelling numbers waiting outside homeless shelters and food pantries around the country have grown by at least 30 percent since the summer. If Barack Obama continues to turn to the elites who created the mess, if he does not radically redirect the nation’s resources to assist the working class and the poor, we will become a third-world country.

Posted on Nov 24, 2008 READ MORE


Why Obama Can Keep Gates

If the prospect of appointing Hillary Clinton as secretary of state irritates the Obama base, what will they make of keeping the man who has executed President Bush’s policies at the Pentagon?

Posted on Nov 20, 2008 READ MORE


Tuning Out the Braindead Megaphone

If you’re having trouble remembering what the recent election was all about, rest easy: You’re probably not going senile – you’re likely experiencing the momentary effects of brainwashing.

Posted on Nov 20, 2008 READ MORE


Sooner or Later, They’ll Bail Out Detroit

The Big Three left Capitol Hill empty-handed, but they’re bound to get some kind of federal help, however grudging. In the end, I don’t think either George W. Bush or Barack Obama wants to be remembered as the president who lost the auto industry.

Posted on Nov 20, 2008 READ MORE


Stevens

Ted Stevens Bows Out of Senate

After 40 years in the U.S. Senate, the Alaska Republican bid his Capitol Hill colleagues goodbye on Thursday and was given a standing ovation as he finished his speech.

Posted on Nov 20, 2008 READ MORE


Not a Scratch on That Glass Ceiling

It is time to stop kidding ourselves. This wasn’t a breakthrough year for American women in politics. It was a brutal one.

Posted on Nov 19, 2008 READ MORE



senate.gov

It’s All Over for Stevens

Ted Stevens will not be returning to work in the Senate after surviving there longer than any Republican ever. The convicted felon lost his re-election battle with Democrat Mark Begich by a few thousand votes after leading on election night. The news came on Stevens’ 85th birthday.

Posted on Nov 18, 2008 READ MORE


Paulson

Paulson and Bernanke Grilled on the Bailout

On Tuesday, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke faced a lineup of vexed, perplexed and otherwise agitated members of Congress, including Reps. Barney Frank, Ron Paul and Nydia Velazquez, all eager to ask some serious questions about the infamous bailout.

Posted on Nov 18, 2008 READ MORE


Joe Lieberman
newsweek.com

Lieberman to Keep Homeland Security Post

After weeks of deliberation about former Democrat-turned-independent Sen. Joe Lieberman, congressional leaders from his former party came to some conclusions Tuesday about his political future.

Posted on Nov 18, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / SteelCityHobbies

Detroit Bailout Looks Unlikely

The chief executives of the Big Three American car companies head to Washington Tuesday along with the head of the United Auto Workers to beg Congress for a bailout that seems less and less probable.

Posted on Nov 18, 2008 READ MORE


Conservative Identity Crisis

There is a second transition under way over which President-elect Barack Obama has no control—the transition of conservatives to minority status. How they do this will have a powerful impact on the new presidency.

Posted on Nov 18, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / Brave New Films

A Wal-Mart Christmas for a Wal-Mart Country

The giant discounter is the only store where hard-squeezed consumers can afford to buy anything, and so it has kept posting sales gains amid the retail bloodbath.

Posted on Nov 18, 2008 READ MORE


Knowing When to Walk Away

Bush reportedly suggested to Obama he might support an economic stimulus package and aid to struggling automakers if Democrats drop their opposition to a free-trade agreement with Colombia. Strange behavior? Yes and no.

Posted on Nov 14, 2008 READ MORE



One More Dem in the Senate?

As Alaska election officials continue to count ballots, Democrat Mark Begich has gone from roughly 3,000 votes down to a lead of about 800. His rival, convicted felon and “series of tubes” prophet Sen. Ted Stevens, will likely be expelled from the U.S. Senate if he somehow wins.

Posted on Nov 13, 2008 READ MORE



Collage: Meutia Chaerani / Indradi Soemardjan and Shealah Craighead / White House

Paulson Revises Bailout Strategy

“I will never apologize for changing a strategy or an approach if the facts change,” explained Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, who has retreated from his original plan of buying up near-worthless mortgage securities with taxpayer funds. Instead, Paulson will continue to pump money into troubled banks in exchange for equity, a scheme that has proved more expeditious and popular.

Posted on Nov 12, 2008 READ MORE



speaker.gov

‘Whatever Nancy Wants, Nancy Gets’

Nancy Pelosi isn’t as showy as some of her predecessors, but according to a profile in the Politico, the most powerful woman in American political history is firmly in control of her domain. Tom “the Hammer” DeLay says she is “the most powerful speaker in a generation—she will be able to do anything she wants.” As one anonymous lawmaker put it, “Whatever Nancy wants, Nancy gets.”

Posted on Nov 12, 2008 READ MORE


The Danger in Timidity

If Reagan had the voters’ permission to move away from strategies associated with liberalism, Obama has sanction to move away from conservative policies. And Reagan offers another lesson: His first moves were bold, and Obama should not fear following his example.

Posted on Nov 11, 2008 READ MORE


Paulson in negotiations
AP photo / Lauren Victoria Burke

Surprise! Paulson Sneaked $150B Bank ‘Windfall’ Into Bailout

Perhaps we should be more surprised than we are by the news that Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and his DOT crew managed to sneak a handful of sentences into the approved bailout bill that amounted to a $150-billion “quiet windfall” for American banks, as The Washington Post put it.

Posted on Nov 10, 2008 READ MORE



U.S. Navy / Petty Officer 3rd Class Josue L. Escobosa

Military Spending ‘Not Sustainable’

The Defense Business Board, an official oversight body appointed by the secretary of defense, has warned the president-elect that the Pentagon’s bloated budget ($512 billion this year, not including war costs) is “not sustainable.” An unprecedented spending spree since 9/11 has run head-on into a financial meltdown, and Barack Obama is now stuck in the middle.

Posted on Nov 10, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / Lieberman 2006

Joe Klein on the ‘Flagrantly Dreadful’ Joe Lieberman

Time’s political sage offers the thorniest of olive branches to the Connecticut senator, who, he writes, “has been a flagrantly dreadful public figure these past two years.”

Posted on Nov 7, 2008 READ MORE


Only One Good Path for the Democrats: Go Big

Obama and the rest of the party should retire the Innocent Bystander Fable—the myth about being powerless onlookers.

Posted on Nov 6, 2008 READ MORE


The Ghost in Obama’s White House

Republicans will try to tie memories of Jimmy Carter to the new Democratic president by conjuring up disturbing visions of policy failure and “malaise.”

Posted on Nov 6, 2008 READ MORE


A New Era of Hope

With Obama’s victory, it’s time to hope that the era of racial backlash and wedge politics is over. Time to imagine that the patriotism of dissenters will no longer be questioned and that the world will no longer be divided between “values voters” and those without a moral compass.

Posted on Nov 4, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Al Grillo

Homeland Security Pays Dividends for Alaska

When Sarah Palin brags about the self-reliance of her state, she doesn’t mention the mobile command communications vehicle, bought with federal dollars to help keep her home town of 7,028 safe from terrorism. Thanks in part to an anti-terrorism bonanza, Alaska is one of the greatest per-capita beneficiaries of federal funding among the 50 states.

Posted on Oct 31, 2008 READ MORE


Stevens’ Corruption Was About the Little Things

For a steel sculpture of migrating salmon, amongst other goodies, Ted Stevens—one of the lions of the Senate—was willing to forfeit the kingdom.

Posted on Oct 30, 2008 READ MORE


Election Protection

Election Day approaches, and with it a test of our election system’s integrity. Who will be allowed to vote; who will be barred?

Posted on Oct 29, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / Svadilfari

Dems Tap Credit for Congressional Campaigns

Not everyone is feeling the credit crunch: The DNC is borrowing $10 million to spend on Senate and House races. Encouraged by polls, the party wants to win as many seats as possible before the public stops hating on the GOP.

Posted on Oct 28, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Madalyn Ruggiero

‘Joe the Plumber’ in 2010?

Life took an unexpected turn for Joe Wurzelbacher, or “Joe the Plumber,” when he became a kind of human talking point for John McCain and Barack Obama during their last debate, and now Wurzelbacher has apparently taken a shine to politics.

Posted on Oct 25, 2008 READ MORE


Bachmann

Rep. Michelle Bachmann’s Apology Fail

Minnesota Rep. Michelle Bachmann apparently understood that she needed to do a little spin control following her jaw-dropping flirtation with McCarthyism on “Hardball” last week, but she apparently didn’t feel the need to apologize to anyone, judging by her latest campaign spot.

Posted on Oct 25, 2008 READ MORE


McCain’s Socialist Delusion

Wherever John McCain appears on the stump in these waning days of the presidential campaign, he is always accompanied by his imaginary friend “Joe the Plumber,” but it is the specter of Karl Marx that lurks just offstage.

Posted on Oct 22, 2008 READ MORE



msnbc.com

Rep.‘s ‘Anti-American’ Comments Could Cost Her Re-Election

Rep. Michelle Bachmann was cakewalking to re-election in her Republican-leaning Minnesota district until she told Chris Matthews the media should investigate anti-Americanism in Congress. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee calls that a “$1 million mistake.”

Posted on Oct 21, 2008 READ MORE


How to Win Votes and Influence People

Conservatives fear a “period of unchecked left-wing ascendancy” should Barack Obama and the Democrats sweep in November, but the voters care more about competent government than ideology.

Posted on Oct 20, 2008 READ MORE



Federal Reserve

Fed Chief Wants More Stimulation

Ben Bernanke doesn’t really care if you call it a recession or, in his words, “a very serious slowdown in the economy.” Whatever it is, the chairman of the Federal Reserve thinks a new stimulus package is needed to get those terrified Americans dipping into their mattresses and buying things again.

Posted on Oct 20, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Henny Ray Abrams

The Idiots Who Rule America

Our oligarchic class is incompetent at governing, managing the economy, coping with natural disasters, educating our young, handling foreign affairs, providing basic services like health care and safeguarding individual rights. They have no concept, thanks to the educations they have received, of the common good.

Posted on Oct 20, 2008 READ MORE


The GOP Identity Crisis

Can any Republican candidate claim with a straight face to represent the party of small government? For that matter, can any Republican candidate plausibly explain what the party is supposed to stand for these days?

Posted on Oct 13, 2008 READ MORE


It’s Henry Paulson’s Move

Is Henry Paulson a crony communist or a businessman? The answer could be the difference between economic disaster and recovery.

Posted on Oct 10, 2008 READ MORE



Citizens Against Government Waste, and for McCain

During the first presidential debate, John McCain gave a high-profile shout-out: “I suggest that people go up on the Web site of Citizens Against Government Waste, and they’ll look at those projects.” The group quickly returned the favor—its political action committee is calling McCain a “taxpayer hero” in TV ads airing over the next two weeks in Virginia, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida.

Posted on Oct 9, 2008 READ MORE



White House / Shealah Craighead

Is Paulson Going Bank Shopping?

Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, with much prodding from Democratic Sen. Charles Schumer, is thinking about using some of that $700 billion to buy ownership stakes in shaky banks. The scheme would ostensibly give taxpayers a share in the fortunes of the bailed-out institutions.

Posted on Oct 9, 2008 READ MORE



starwoodhotels.com

AIG Execs Enjoy Sun and Fun on Your Dime

What’s $85 billion if you don’t get to spend it? Just days after taxpayers saved AIG from ruin, executives of the insurance giant spent $440,000 pampering themselves at the exclusive St. Regis resort in Monarch Beach, Calif.

Posted on Oct 8, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Susan Walsh

Dennis Kucinich on the Democrats’ Bailout Betrayal

The passing of the $850-billion bailout pulled the plug on the New Deal. The Great Society is now gasping for air, mortally wounded, coughing up blood. It will not recover. It was murdered by the Democratic Party.

Posted on Oct 5, 2008 READ MORE


Pelosi Happy, With Pen
The New York Times / Doug Mills

The Bailout: Take Two

On Friday the House approved, after initially rejecting, the $700-billion bailout package for the financial industry in what is likely to be the most expensive government intervention in the nation’s history. This, of course, only slightly surpasses another notable “government intervention”—the nearly $600 billion spent in the war in Iraq.

Posted on Oct 3, 2008 READ MORE


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