Political spin clouds economic realities

Political spin clouds economic realities

Midterm politics are distorting economic decision-making as leaders of both parties spin rival views of the road ahead, offering visions based on questionable economics. The resulting political angst is leaving a mark on major legislation. A far-reaching financial overhaul bill signed by President Barack Obama on Wednesday reflects voter anger over bankers, bailouts and bonuses. […]

House to vote on unemployment benefits extension

House to vote on unemployment benefits extension

A House vote Thursday is expected to send President Barack Obama a long-sought measure to resume unemployment payments to millions of people whose benefits have lapsed. Obama is set to sign the bill as soon as Congress can ship it to him. The Senate broke through months of stalemate in passing the measure Wednesday by […]

Senate finally passes unemployment benefits extension

Senate finally passes unemployment benefits extension

With a GOP filibuster safely broken, the Senate is poised to pass legislation restoring jobless benefits for millions of people unable to find work in the frail economic recovery. Wednesday’s vote is a formality after the Democratic-controlled Senate voted 60-40 Tuesday to move ahead on the bill. The measure would then go to the House […]

On second thought…

On second thought…

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said Wednesday he will reconsider the department’s decision to oust a black employee over racially tinged remarks after learning more about what she said. Vilsack issued a short statement early Wednesday morning after Shirley Sherrod, who until Tuesday was the Agriculture Department’s director of rural development in Georgia, said she was […]

For Obama, it’s personal

For Obama, it’s personal

Ever in search of the right face to humanize his agenda, President Barack Obama sure isn’t shy about using his own. Never mind the limousine, the butlers and the presidential jet Obama has now. Or the Ivy League degrees and the millions of dollars in book sales. The leader who lives in an executive mansion […]

Dems will try again on unemployment benefits

Dems will try again on unemployment benefits

Millions of people stuck on the jobless rolls would receive an extension of unemployment benefits averaging $309 a week under a Senate bill that appears set to break free of a Republican filibuster. Democrats have stripped the unemployment insurance measure down to the bare essentials for Tuesday’s vote, which is a do-over of a tally […]

Politics of poopy diapers

Politics of poopy diapers

The dirt — specifically dirty diapers — is flying in Florida’s race for governor. In one television commercial, newcomer Rick Scott suggests his GOP primary opponent, the state attorney general and a former congressman, should be thrown out like a baby’s dirty diaper. “Bill McCollum‘s record stinks,” a female narrator says over an image of […]

Tea Party excess in Idaho

Tea Party excess in Idaho

Three times since 2000, Republican Rod Beck failed in his bid to rejoin the state Senate, defeated by primary election rivals he insists didn’t support party ideals. So Beck opted to change Idaho’s GOP from within. At the state Republican convention last month, he got his big chance. Joined by tea party members, Ron Paul […]

Democrats can’t win without independent voters

Democrats can’t win without independent voters

Democrat Joe Sestak — a son of the Philadelphia suburbs — needs the independent voters in his backyard as he campaigns for a Senate seat in a swing state that may tilt Republican this year. Independents have been turning away from President Barack Obama and the Democratic Party, frustrated with the economic downturn and administration […]

Anti-abortion forces win one in health care fight

Anti-abortion forces win one in health care fight

Abortion foes have scored a victory and traditional allies of the Obama administration are grumbling about a decision to ban most abortion coverage in insurance pools for those unable to purchase health care on their own. The Catholic bishops “welcome this new policy,” said Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, although he added the organization remains concerned that […]