Archives for Politics

Crackdown on political activity by tax-exempt groups

The Obama administration Tuesday launched a bid to rein in the use of tax-exempt groups for political campaigning. The effort is an attempt to reduce the role of loosely regulated big-money political outfits like GOP political guru Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS and the pro-Obama Priorities USA. The Internal Revenue Service and the Treasury Department said they want to prohibit such groups from using “candidate-related political activity” like running ads, registering voters or distributing campaign literature as activities that qualify them to be tax-exempt “social welfare” organizations. The agencies say there will be a lengthy comment period before any regulations will
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Immigration: A political challenge for Republicans

For most Republicans in the U.S. Congress, a large gathering of Hispanic voters to discuss immigration would be politically perilous – an invitation to complaints about the party’s longtime resistance to measures aimed at helping undocumented immigrants. But when Republican Rep. Jeff Denham walked into a meeting with hundreds of his Hispanic constituents at a church in California’s Central Valley this month, he was met with applause, praise and a hand-lettered “Thank You” sign. Denham, 46, is a rarity in the U.S. House of Representatives: one of only three Republicans in the chamber’s 231-member majority who support a Democrat-sponsored bill
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A Dreamworks backdrop for Obama’s economic pitch

President Barack Obama is wrapping up a three-day West Coast tour by making an economic pitch at the studio of movie producer Jeffrey Katzenberg, one of his top fundraisers and political supporters. Obama will push his economic agenda at DreamWorks Animation in Glendale, Calif., on Tuesday. Before delivering his remarks, Obama planned to meet with film industry executives and tour the studio that created “Shrek,” ”Madagascar” and “Kung Fu Panda.” He will also attend his last Democratic Party fundraiser of the trip at the home of Marta Kauffman, co-creator of the sitcom “Friends.” The Seattle-to-San Francisco-to-Los Angeles trip featured seven
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Business PACs continue to back tea party candidates

Business groups waged a fierce lobbying campaign last month to convince Republicans to re-open the government and raise the debt ceiling, but many of the most influential U.S. corporations have not cut off support to lawmakers who did not heed their appeal. Eight of the most active business PACs wrote checks totaling $84,750 to 56 Republicans in the Senate and the House of Representatives after they voted against an October 16 deal to re-open the government that had been shut down since October 1 and avert an imminent debt default, according to a Reuters analysis. They also gave $246,190 to
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Several ambitious governors in Republican ranks

For an ambitious group of Republican governors, next year’s elections could be a springboard to bigger things in 2016. Just don’t talk about the White House — yet. The annual Republican Governors Association meeting this week included a bullish outlook for a party that will defend 22 seats in 2014. Bashing Washington dysfunction at every turn, the governors offered up their can-do records — and themselves — as a model for a party looking to return to power. As if to emphasize the point, George W. Bush swooped in for a surprise lunch, sharing stories from his time as Texas
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White House to Dems: ‘Focus on economy, not healthcare’

Eager to draw contrasts with Republicans, the White House is pushing its economic agenda as it attempts to give Democrats something to talk about other than the troubled health care rollout. The White House is deploying Vice President Joe Biden and Cabinet members across the country, drawing attention to improvements in the still sluggish economic recovery and detailing the costs of last month’s partial government shutdown. On Tuesday, Obama will address the economy during a visit to the DreamWorks film studios in Glendale, Calif., and next month he plans to host a summit of college presidents and business leaders to
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GOP gorvernors work to restore credibility of their party

Tired of being cast as members of the “party of no,” Republican governors facing re-election next year are emphasizing their work to steer their states through tough economic times and trying to avoid the stigma of Washington gridlock. To that end, the 2014 elections could serve as a test case for the public’s appetite for tax cuts championed by GOP governors, the curbing of benefits for public-sector unions and restrictions on women’s access to health care. Many of the biggest fights for Republican incumbents will come in places like Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin — states all carried by President
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Crossroads time for embattled insurgents of tea party

After a string of setbacks and losses, the insurgent Tea Party movement is at a crossroads, between learning to live within the Republican Party or pursuing its fight against those it sees as not conservative enough. The choice is an easy one for Tea Party activists, who vow to keep up their campaign to vote out of office those Republican politicians they say have betrayed the tenets of the conservative cause – smaller government and less federal spending and taxes. Voters nationally blame October’s partial government shutdown on Republicans, and particularly the Tea Party, which lost elections earlier this month
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Democratic establishment set to back Hillary for President

As Hillary Rodham Clinton privately weighs a second White House run, pieces of the Democratic establishment are beginning to fall into place publicly to help her possible candidacy. Several super political action committees are collectively acting as an early de facto campaign organization to ensure Clinton is ready to compete vigorously if she decides to try again to become the first female president. They’re building a network without her direct consent. But she’s not objecting either, and some Democrats are interpreting that as encouragement to push forward in anticipation of a campaign. “There’s a lot of energy out there and
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Cheney sisters in public fight over gay marriage

Former Vice President Dick Cheney and his wife stepped into a sibling squabble Monday after their daughters became involved in a public feud over gay marriage that began on “Fox News Sunday” and soon spread to social media. Discussing her U.S. Senate campaign on the talk show, Liz Cheney restated her support for the “traditional definition” of marriage. She added that states should be free to decide for themselves whether to allow or prohibit same-sex unions. Her sister, Mary Cheney, who is married to a woman, shot back on Facebook: “You’re just wrong.” Things got testy enough that their parents
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