Archives for FUBAR

Cantor walks out on budget talks

Efforts to find a bipartisan agreement blending huge budget cuts with a must-pass measure to increase how much the government can borrow have entered a new phase after Republican negotiators pulled out of talks led by Vice President Joe Biden. The exit of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor from the talks on Thursday means the most difficult decisions have been kicked upstairs to GOP House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio and President Barack Obama. The Biden-led group had made solid progress in weeks of negotiations but was at an impasse over taxes. Cantor, R-Va., said that the Republican-dominated House simply
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Bin Laden wanted to improve al-Qaida’s image

As Osama bin Laden watched his terrorist organization get picked apart, he lamented in his final writings that al-Qaida was suffering from a marketing problem. His group was killing too many Muslims and that was bad for business. The West was winning the public relations fight. All his old comrades were dead and he barely knew their replacements. Faced with these challenges, bin Laden, who hated the United States and decried capitalism, considered a most American of business strategies. Like Blackwater, ValuJet and Philip Morris, perhaps what al-Qaida really needed was a fresh start under a new name. The problem
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Democrat’s nightmare: ‘Let’s make a deal’ Obama

As negotiations on raising the debt limit go down to the wire, House Democrats claim their real problem isn’t hardline Republicans or even the gaggle of tea party freshman. Their real problem lives at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue: President Barack Obama and his willingness to make a deal with the GOP leadership. Liberal House Democrats grumble that Obama is too willing to cut deals that destroys the goal of the party. “What I’m concerned about — it’s not that I don’t trust them — is they [the White House] figure ‘Let’s get this thing the hell out of the way, and
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Democrats push spending, tax cuts

In a sharp role reversal, Democratic leaders in Congress Wednesday called for both spending and tax cuts as a way to jump start the sagging economy but their conversion to spending less comes when a new report claims the nation faces more of a debt crisis unless taxes are raised. The Congressional Budget Office report warns America faces a “European-style” debt crisis unless taxes are raised along with sharp spending cuts and adds more pressure on Congressional negotiators who are trying to work out a deal to raise the debt limit before the government runs out of money. Which creates
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Obama plans withdrawal of 33,000 troops from Afghanistan by next year

President Barack Obama, facing growing public and political opposition to an Afghan war that has become his Vietnam, announced Wednesday night that he will withdraw 33,000 U.S. troops from the war-torn country by September 2012 — with 10,000 scheduled to come home by the end of this year.   While the number appears significant, it will still leave 68,000 Americans on combat duty in Afghanistan. In a short, but highly-anticipated speech to the nation, Obama went against the advice of military leaders who want a more gradual withdrawal of troops but the President faces dwindling support in polls that show
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Palin, facing jury duty, puts bus tour on hold

Sarah Palin has suspended her highly-touted bus tour but claims it will resume “when the time comes.” Disputing online reports that the bus trip to historic American sites was canceled because of disappointing crowds and bad press, Palin claims the “One Nation” tour is simply on hold because of a tight schedule and a call for jury duty. Palin, the failed 2008 vice presidential candidate who resigned as Alaska governor before her term was up to cash in on her new-found popularity, continues to play it coy on her plans for the 2012 GOP Presidential nomination.
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Are Republicans at war with women?

An early skirmish for women’s votes in 2012 has broken out in the House — among women. A prominent Democrat fired the first shot by claiming that majority Republicans are waging a “war on women.” And now, Republican women are returning fire by raising their profiles, making clear what they stand for and, implicitly, who they are not: Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann. Neither of the GOP’s most visible women rated a mention by a series of House Republican women who on Tuesday defended their party against Democrats. Bachmann, a three-term congresswoman, presidential candidate and chairwoman of the Tea Party
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Bachmann announces presidential run Monday

Conservative Republican Michele Bachmann will officially launch her presidential bid in Iowa on Monday, a source close to her campaign said on Tuesday. The representative from Minnesota, who announced her intention to run at a Republican debate in New Hampshire last week, will hold a kick-off event Monday in Waterloo, Iowa, where she was born, the source told Reuters. Bachmann, 55, is founder and head of the House Tea Party Caucus. She was one of the first elected officials to court the movement that helped fuel Republican gains in the 2010 midterm elections with calls for spending cuts and reduced
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Home sales hit six-month low

Sales of previously owned U.S. homes hit a six-month low in May and supply rose, pointing to a housing market still struggling to regain its footing. The National Association of Realtors said on Tuesday that sales slipped 3.8 percent month over month to an annual rate of 4.81 million units, the lowest since November. It was the second straight month of declines. The drop was smaller than economists had expected, but the April sales figure was revised lower, leaving a report that was largely in line with expectations in financial markets. While the fall in sales last month was partly
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Oops! Obamacare provides Medicaid for the middle class

President Barack Obama’s health care law would let several million middle-class people get nearly free insurance meant for the poor, a twist government number crunchers say they discovered only after the complex bill was signed. The change would affect early retirees: A married couple could have an annual income of about $64,000 and still get Medicaid, said officials who make long-range cost estimates for the Health and Human Services department. After initially downplaying any concern, the Obama administration said late Tuesday it would look for a fix. Up to 3 million more people could qualify for Medicaid in 2014 as
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