Archives for News

Budget battle puts Social Security in play

In the midst of the budget crisis, an old debate has broken out with new force: Should Social Security be seen as part of the deficit that Washington needs to rein in? The White House is balking at calls to tackle Social Security’s financial problems now, before baby boomers swamp the system. But the massive retirement program, like the rest of the government, is running a deficit and has become part of the argument on Capitol Hill. The elderly and disabled don’t need to worry about losing their benefits or seeing them cut anytime soon. The Obama administration is correct
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Wisconsin Senate strips state workers of union rights

The nearly month-long standoff in the Wisconsin Legislature over explosive union rights legislation rocketed toward a dramatic finish Thursday after Senate Republicans outmaneuvered their missing Democratic counterparts and pushed through the bill. The dramatic turn of events late Wednesday set up a perfunctory vote Thursday morning in the Assembly on the measure that would strip nearly all collective bargaining rights from most public workers. Once the bill passes the Assembly, it heads to Republican Gov. Scott Walker for his signature. Within hours after the Senate passed the bill, a crowd of hundreds of protesters grew to about 7,000 in the
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Libya a touchy subject for candidates

What to do about Libya and Moammar Gadhafi? It’s not only a national security question for President Barack Obama. Twenty months before the next election, it’s a difficult political question, too, for the Republicans who hope to take his place as commander in chief. There are plenty of strong opinions coming from Capitol Hill. Lawmakers of both parties are sounding off, including some calling for immediate military action. But others are urging moderation. Obama met Wednesday with his top security advisers to discuss a variety of humanitarian and military options. The White House emphasized that key decisions have yet to
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Tight security for hearings on Muslim community

Extra security will accompany a New York congressman as he chairs a hearing focused on the U.S. Muslim community and its willingness to help prevent radical Islamic terrorism. Rep. Peter King told The Associated Press that he has had a larger security details for the past few months because of an overseas threat relayed in December. Since then, round-the-clock security has been provided by the New York Police Department and the Nassau County, N.Y., police. On Thursday, however, at King’s request, the Capitol Police will be securing the congressional hearing room and surrounding areas, as well as his office, as
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Former Bush aide faces jail time

A judge is telling the former government whistle-blower protector that he can’t protect himself from serving at least a month in jail. U.S. Magistrate Judge Deborah Robinson ruled late Wednesday that President George W. Bush‘s former special counsel, Scott Bloch, cannot withdraw his guilty plea to withholding information from Congress. Bloch argued that he and prosecutors thought he could serve just probation after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor 10 months ago. After the judge said the law required imprisonment for the crime, prosecutors said they were willing to negotiate another deal to avoid Bloch’s incarceration. But Robinson noted that Bloch
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