Archives for FUBAR

Boehner snubs tea party, shows willingness to compromise

  Despite fresh pressure from tea party conservatives, House Speaker John Boehner said Thursday that Republicans “can’t impose our will” on the White House and Senate Democrats on legislation to cut tens of billions of dollars in federal spending. At a news conference, Boehner, R-Ohio, denied Democratic suggestions that he has already agreed to jettison nearly half of the $61 billion in cuts passed by the House a month ago. But as was the case with Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., earlier in the week, he did not say the demand to reduce spending by the full $61 billion was
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Tea party faithful rally but does anyone care?

Jenny Beth Martin looked out on the rain-dampened crowd along Constitution Avenue and pointed over her shoulder at the Capitol. “They heard us, but they’re not listening!” Martin, a tea party leader, told members of the movement that helped put Republicans in charge of the House last November. The crowd booed. Four months after the historic election, the populist force that helped drive Republicans to power is finding that its clout on Capitol Hill isn’t automatic. Sensitive talks over how many billions of dollars to cut from this year’s federal budget have strayed far below the Republicans’ campaign promise to
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Turn out the lights, the tea party is over

Polls show growing American dissatisfaction with the tea party as voter remorse sets in. A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey out Wednesday shows a 21 percent increase in unfavorable views of the tea party with nearly half of all Americans no longer seeing the fake grassroots in a favorable light. This puts the tea party in the same unfavorable range as both the Democratic and Republican Party — hardly a good sign for a so-called “movement” that is supposed to offer an alternative to the traditional party system. “This is the first time a CNN polls has shown the tea party’s
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Republicans want to abuse tax code to curb abortions

House Republicans want to use the tax code as a back-door way to limit abortions. In the House Ways & Means Committee — the tax code writing body for the House — Republicans who control the committee are pushing tax code modifications that would prevent taxpayers from deducting the cost of abortions as well as stop small business and taxpayers form using tax credits in the new health care law to provide or pay for insurance policies covering the procedure. Current law already prohibits the use of federal funding for abortions. An emotional debate over abortion almost sank the health
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Obama authorizes on-the-ground operatives in Libya

President Barack Obama has signed a secret order authorizing covert U.S. government support for rebel forces seeking to oust Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, government officials told Reuters on Wednesday. Obama signed the order, known as a presidential “finding”, within the last two or three weeks, according to government sources familiar with the matter. Such findings are a principal form of presidential directive used to authorize secret operations by the Central Intelligence Agency. This is a necessary legal step before such action can take place but does not mean that it will. “As is common practice for this and all administrations,
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CIA operatives reported on the ground in Libya

The CIA has sent small teams of operatives into Libya after the agency’s station in the capital was forced to close, and officers assisted in rescuing one of the two crew members of an F-15E Strike Eagle that crashed, an American official and a former U.S. intelligence officer told The Associated Press on Wednesday. The agency’s precise role in Libya is unclear. Intelligence experts said the CIA would have sent officials to make contact with the opposition and assess the strength and needs of the rebel forces battling Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi in the event President Barack Obama decided to
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House Republicans demand IRS audit of AARP

AARP lobbied for the new health care law and now it stands to profit, Republican lawmakers charged Wednesday as they called for the IRS to investigate whether the powerful interest group representing older Americans should be stripped of its federal tax exemption. Three veteran GOP representatives released a report that estimates the seniors lobby could make an additional $1 billion over 10 years on health insurance plans whose sales are expected to pick up under the new law. They also questioned seven-figure compensation for some AARP executives. “Based on the available evidence, substantial questions remain about whether AARP should maintain
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Congress still looking for answers on Obama’s Libyan war

President Barack Obama is under pressure from Congress to spell out an exit strategy for the U.S. military in Libya and provide a clear plan to end Col. Moammar Gadhafi’s 42-year rule as the American public remains fiercely divided over the war. Obama delivered a full-throated defense of his decision to deploy military forces to prevent a slaughter of Libyan civilians in his speech Monday and in the shadow of the United Nations on Tuesday. The president said the nation’s conscience and its common interests “compel us to act” to protect civilian lives in Libya. “We’ve learned from bitter experience
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Another day, another union-busting bill in another state

An Ohio bill that would limit collective bargaining rights for 350,000 public workers was poised for a vote before the Republican-controlled House on Wednesday, one of its final hurdles before the measure goes to the governor. The vote comes a day after a legislative committee approved changes to make the bill even tougher for unions. Met with chants of “Shame on you!” from nearby protesters, the GOP-backed revisions greased the measure for what was expected to be smooth passage in the House. The Senate, also controlled by Republicans, narrowly passed the bill on a 17-16 vote this month. It would
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Ending Saturday mail delivery could save billions

The Postal service could save a substantial amount of money by reducing mail delivery to five days, the Government Accountability Office said Tuesday. The post office, which lost $8.5 billion last year, has proposed eliminating Saturday delivery as one of several moves aimed at reducing costs. Postal officials have estimated the change would save $3.1 billion annually, and a new GAO study agreed that savings would be large, depending on how efficiently the cutback is handled. In its analysis, GAO looked back at postal operations in 2009 and calculated that if there had been no Saturday delivery that year the
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