Wednesday, March 04, 2009

CQ Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com

Midday Update for Wednesday, March 04, 2009 – 2:00 P.M.

In This Issue

  • Democratic Senators' Opposition Could Stall Omnibus Spending Bill
  • Earmark Critics Propose New Version of Line-Item Veto
  • Senate Finance Chairman Questions Limits on Tax Deductions
  • Kennedy to be Knighted by Queen Elizabeth II
  • Brown Asks Congress to Help With 'Global New Deal'
  • Political Trivia for Wednesday, March 04, 2009
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Today in Washington

The House votes on several non-controversial resolutions under suspension of the rules.

The Senate continues to consider amendments to a fiscal 2009 omnibus appropriations bill.

The President speaks on reforming government contracting and procurement; receives daily briefings on economics, national security; with first lady, hosts dinner with congressional committee chairmen.

In Washington, World Bank Chief Economist Justin Lin speaks at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies on China's response to the global financial crisis. 5:15 p.m., Kenney Auditorium, 1740 Massachusetts Ave. N.W.

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Top Stories

Democratic Senators' Opposition Could Stall Omnibus Spending Bill

At least two Democratic senators said Wednesday they will vote against the $410 billion omnibus spending package, raising the possibility that others could join them and imperil quick passage of the bill. [Read More]

Earmark Critics Propose New Version of Line-Item Veto

Sens. Russ Feingold , D-Wis., and John McCain , R-Ariz., with Rep. Paul D. Ryan , R-Wis., said the legislation they planned to introduce Wednesday would allow the president to propose rescinding specific spending items in appropriations bills he has signed into law. [Read More]

Senate Finance Chairman Questions Limits on Tax Deductions

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus , D-Mont., on Wednesday questioned the "viability" of a cap on tax deductions for the wealthiest Americans proposed by President Obama to help pay for an overhaul of the health care system. [Read More]

Kennedy to be Knighted by Queen Elizabeth II

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced Tuesday that Queen Elizabeth II would award Sen. Edward M. Kennedy an honorary knighthood. [Read More]

Brown Asks Congress to Help With 'Global New Deal'

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown called Wednesday for the United States to play a lead role in forging a "global New Deal" to reverse the worldwide recession. [Read More]

Political Trivia for Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Who is the only Republican who succeeded a Republican governor of Oklahoma? [Read More]

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Today on Governing.com

State and local government news from CQ’s sister publication
THE NATION: States' Job Losses Show Breadth of Recession
PUERTO RICO: Puerto Rico May Lay Off 30,000 Employees
NEW JERSEY: Troopers Sue to Overturn Age-55 Retirement Mandate
The PHILADELPHIA Region: Transit Stimulus Projects to Create 5,590 Jobs
The DETROIT Region: Bargain-Hunters Spark Surge in Home Sales
THE NATION: Three Cities Tops in Energy-Efficient Buildings
CHATSWORTH, Calif.: Commuter-Train Engineer Let Teen Take Controls

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Political Clippings

The Tampa Tribune reports that "a competitive race with well-known candidates and possible primaries on both sides is developing for the U.S. House seat being vacated by U.S. Rep. Adam Putnam." The 12th District has long been a GOP stronghold, but Democrats say they think they can win there. "They got some encouragement Tuesday when Lori Edwards..., the county elections supervisor, announced she'll run," the newspaper reports. Other names in play: Republican former state House member Dennis Ross; Democrat Doug Tudor, who ran against Putnam in 2008; and GOP State Sen. Paula Dockery, who will decide after the state legislative session ends May 1.

From Taegan Goddard: A new Fairleigh Dickinson poll in New Jersey shows leading GOP challenger Chris Christie, R, defeating Gov. Jon Corzine, D, 41% to 32%, in a likely fall gubernatorial match up. Key finding: Just 40% of voters approve of the job Corzine is doing while 46% disapprove -- a reversal from January when 46% approved and 40% disapproved.

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Join CQ Politics' Live Online Discussion on Health Policy with Alex Wayne

What kind of reception can President Obama expect in Congress for his budget and health care reform proposals? President Obama has proposed raising taxes on higher-income families and cutting payments for health insurers, hospitals, drug companies, medical imaging services, home health care agencies and others under Medicare and Medicaid, all to raise $634 billion for a huge expansion of health insurance coverage. His plan has drawn strong criticism from Republicans and from some health care industry sectors, leaving its future in Congress uncertain. Submit your questions and comments before and during the chat on Friday at 2 p.m..
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