Archives for Capitol Hillbillies

White House wants standards for mortgages

The Obama administration favors creating a national standard for mortgage servicers such as Bank of America Corp (BAC.N) and JPMorgan Chase & Co (JPM.N) that have been accused of botching home foreclosure procedures. In unveiling its plan to overhaul the housing finance system, the White House said on Friday it supports reforms to correct problems in the mortgage servicing and foreclosure process. These include adopting national standards for mortgage servicing and requiring that mortgage documents disclose the presence of second liens, such as a second mortgage or a home equity loan. Influential banking regulators have already called for one standard
Read More

Can Palin deliver with her different approach?

She says what she wants, does what she wants and makes no apologies. And love her or hate her, you can’t really argue with this: Politics as usual has never been Sarah Palin’s style. “I wasn’t wired to play that game,” the former Alaska governor says in “Going Rogue,” the memoir whose title reflects her affinity for going her own way. As she weighs whether to seek the presidency, it’s hard not to wonder: Do the old tenets of White House campaigns apply to someone who has broken virtually every rule in modern-day American politicking? Can she bypass conventional politics
Read More

Can John Ensign restore his reputation?

His conservative reputation wounded by the true-life soap opera of an extramarital affair and a betrayed best friend, Nevada Sen. John Ensign is trying to revive his political career and emerge victorious in a contest few think he can win. Ensign, who faces ethics charges stemming from an affair with a former employee married to his longtime friend, has been touring Nevada asking constituents for their forgiveness and campaign contributions as he prepares to run for a third term. Once elected with a comfortable 55 percent of the vote, Ensign would typically face no real partisan opposition if not for
Read More

Palin hires chief of staff for PAC

Sarah Palin has hired longtime political strategist Michael Glassner as chief of staff of her political action committee. The hire, confirmed to The Associated Press on Saturday morning by Palin aide Rebecca Mansour and SarahPAC Treasurer Tim Crawford, is certain to fuel fresh speculation about Palin’s possible intent to run for president in 2012. Palin has only said she’s considering a run. Glassner managed Republican vice presidential operations in 2008, when Palin was John McCain‘s running mate. Glassner also served as the longtime senior adviser to former U.S. Sen. Bob Dole. “The fact this is someone who’s had a career
Read More

Rowdy conservatives heckle Hatch at CPAC

Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah was heckled for his support of the Wall Street bailout during his Friday appearance at a conservative gathering, another sign the Republican could face trouble earning his party’s nomination for re-election in 2012. During an appearance at the Conservative Political Action Conference, Hatch was asked why conservatives should believe him when he discusses federal spending, given his vote in favor of the bailout. That vote has become a litmus test for conservatives and anathema for Republicans running for re-election. “All I can say is, there aren’t many people who will say I’m sorry. I’m one
Read More

Webb decides one Senate term is enough

Freshman Democratic Sen. Jim Webb of Virginia announced Wednesday he will retire when his term ends next year, deepening the challenge to his party as it struggles to maintain a Senate majority in the 2012 elections. In an e-mail announcement, the 65-year-old former Navy secretary said that after much thought, he had decided to return to the private sector. He offered no additional details about his plans but said he has “every intention of remaining involved” in national issues. The announcement leaves Democrats scrambling to field a strong candidate in a Southern state that has alternated between Democratic and Republican
Read More

Another abortion war brewing

House Republican leaders have made new restrictions on abortion one of their top priorities, pushing a divisive issue to the forefront of the congressional agenda. Democrats say legislation imposing those restrictions would send women back to the days of back-alley abortionists, while Republicans say the main goal is to make a hodgepodge of existing temporary curbs into a single permanent one. The story isn’t as simple as either side makes it out to be. While abortion would remain a legal medical procedure, the main GOP bill puts the squeeze on from a new angle. It would attach curbs on abortion
Read More

No shirt, no job

A married New York congressman accused of sending a shirtless photo of himself to a woman abruptly resigned his seat Wednesday, saying he was quitting because he regretted actions that had hurt his family and others. The gossip website Gawker reported Wednesday that Rep. Christopher Lee, a two-term Republican, had e-mailed the photo to a woman he met on the Craigslist classified-ads website. Lee said in an e-mailed statement that his resignation was effective immediately. The statement offered no confirmation or details of a Craigslist posting. “I regret the harm that my actions have caused my family, my staff and
Read More

Jane Harman expected to resign from Congress

Rep. Jane Harman, a leading congressional voice on national security and ranking Democrat on a key House intelligence panel, told constituents on Monday she would resign her seat if named to head a Washington think tank. Harman, serving her ninth term representing California’s 36th district, including an area of west Los Angeles, said she was in discussions to succeed former Congressman Lee Hamilton as president and CEO of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. Harman, 65, said in an email to constituents that she has filed paperwork informing the U.S. House of Representatives and a “decision is imminent.” “This
Read More

Obama: If you don’t like me, you don’t know me

President Barack Obama says he doesn’t take it personally when people say they hate him. And the thing he dislikes most about being president is the constant, intense scrutiny. “The people who dislike you don’t know you. The folks who hate you, they don’t know you,” Obama said Sunday in an interview broadcast during Fox’s pre-game coverage of the Super Bowl. “What they hate is whatever funhouse mirror image of you that’s out there. They don’t know you.” Asked by Fox News Channel host Bill O’Reilly whether his critics annoyed him, Obama said: “By the time you get here, you
Read More