Friday, October 09, 2009

CQ Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com

Midday Update for Friday, October 09, 2009 – 2:15 P.M.

In This Issue

  • Panel Cites Shortcomings in Foreclosure-Fighting Plan
  • RNC Chairman's Remarks Aside, Washington Congratulates Obama
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Today in Washington

Because of Columbus Day, CQ Midday Update will resume publication Oct. 13.

The House is not in session.

The Senate convenes for a pro forma session.

The President won the Nobel Peace Prize.

In Washington, Actor Richard Gere will lead an Emory University Panel on "The Convergence of Science and Spirituality." 6:30 p.m., Renaissance Mayflower Hotel, 1127 Connecticut Avenue, N.W.

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Top Stories

Panel Cites Shortcomings in Foreclosure-Fighting Plan

A congressionally created financial watchdog warned on Friday that an Obama administration plan to stem foreclosures will be insufficient to keep millions of Americans from losing their homes. [Read More]

RNC Chairman's Remarks Aside, Washington Congratulates Obama

Some of the reaction to President Obama's Nobel Peace Prize reflected the political polarization in Washington, but there were also congratulations from the right. [Read More]
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Political Clippings

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that retired advertising executive and former news reporter Charles Schollenberger has become the first Democrat to enter the 2010 race for the Senate in Kansas. "Schollenberger, 57, said he made the final decision after devoting six months to traveling throughout the state to meet with members of the Democratic Party," according to the newspaper. Reps. Jerry Moran and Todd Tiahrt are the primary Republicans in the race, which is for the seat Republican Sam Brownback is leaving open to run for governor. Schollenberger said his campaign would be about "change for better schools, change for universal health coverage, change that protects our retirement funds, change that creates good jobs, clean industry, clean energy and change that looks to the future."

Taegan Goddard's Political Wire relays that Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., is comfortably ahead of her Republican opponents in her re-election bid next year, according to a new Field Poll, leading Carly Fiorina by 49 percent to 35 percent and topping state Assemblyman Chuck DeVore by 50 percent to 33 percent.

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The Buttonwood Gathering: Exclusive Offer to CQ readers

On October 15th and 16th, the brightest minds in finance will gather to discuss the issues shaping global financial policy. Don't miss your opportunity to join them at The Buttonwood Gathering. Speakers include Timothy Geithner, Larry Summers, Elizabeth Warren and more. Save $300 on registration when you mention code CQ300. E-mail buttonwoodevent@economist.com or register online.
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Thursday, October 08, 2009

CQ Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com

Midday Update for Thursday, October 08, 2009 – 2:25 P.M.

In This Issue

  • Pelosi Weighing Options to Boost Economy
  • House Extends Homebuyer's Tax Credit for Deployed Troops
  • House Leaders Eyeing Windfall Profits Tax on Health Insurers
  • Senate Panel Votes to Extend Parts of Patriot Act
  • House Chairman Asks Tough Questions About Afghanistan Policy
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Today in Washington

The House votes on final version of the fiscal 2010 defense authorization bill, and on bills to extend the first-time homebuyers credit for military personnel deployed abroad and to provide advance budgeting for certain veterans' health programs.

The Senate considers amendments to the fiscal 2010 Commerce-Justice-Science spending bill.

The President lunches with business leaders; drops by White House basketball court to visit game featuring the National Naval Medical Center Marine Wounded Warriors basketball team; with Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., meets with Treasury Secretary Timothy H. Geithner; also with Biden, meets with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton; plays basketball at White House with Cabinet secretaries and members of Congress.

In Washington, Susan Rice, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, gives a lecture, "America and the UN in a New Era of Engagement." 4 p.m., Howard University School of Law, 2900 Van Ness St. N.W.

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Top Stories

Pelosi Weighing Options to Boost Economy

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday that she is considering a long menu of options for stimulating an economy dogged by high unemployment and a slowly easing recession. [Read More]

House Extends Homebuyer's Tax Credit for Deployed Troops

Legislation that would extend the first-time homebuyers' tax credit by one year for military and key civilian personnel deployed abroad this year sailed through the House on Thursday. [Read More]

House Leaders Eyeing Windfall Profits Tax on Health Insurers

House Democratic leaders have told members they are considering a so-called windfall profits tax on health insurance companies to help pay for expanding insurance coverage, several lawmakers said Thursday. [Read More]

Senate Panel Votes to Extend Parts of Patriot Act

Expiring provisions of the 2001 anti-terrorism law known as the Patriot Act would be renewed, with some modification, in legislation approved Thursday by the Senate Judiciary Committee. [Read More]

House Chairman Asks Tough Questions About Afghanistan Policy

The veteran chairman of the House Appropriations Committee posed a series of tough questions Thursday to his colleagues and the Obama administration about the wisdom of further U.S. engagement in that war-torn country. [Read More]

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Political Clippings

The Boston Globe reports that state Attorney General Martha Coakley and Rep. Michael E. Capuano, D-Mass., "are racing furiously to lock up endorsements from labor unions" in their battle for the Democratic nomination to succeed the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy. "Coakley's spate of early union endorsements was a factor in the decision of US Representative Stephen F. Lynch, a former ironworkers union leader, not to enter the race. Capuano, meanwhile, has responded with a string of labor endorsements of his own, and they represent more workers than the unions behind Coakley." Union backing is highly valued in special elections, labor leaders note.

The Sacramento Bee reports that California Attorney General Jerry Brown "has built a commanding lead over San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom in the race for the Democratic nomination for governor, according to the latest Field Poll results released today." Former eBay CEO Meg Whitman and former Rep. Tom Campbell are locked "in a virtual tie" for the GOP nomination, with state Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner a distant third. "While the GOP race remains static, Brown has improved upon his March showing among Democratic primary voters, although he hasn't formally announced his candidacy." The poll found Brown would easily beat any of the three Republicans; Newsome would win by a narrower margin.

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The Buttonwood Gathering: Exclusive Offer to CQ readers

On October 15th and 16th, the brightest minds in finance will gather to discuss the issues shaping global financial policy. Don't miss your opportunity to join them at The Buttonwood Gathering. Speakers include Timothy Geithner, Larry Summers, Elizabeth Warren and more. Save $300 on registration when you mention code CQ300. E-mail buttonwoodevent@economist.com or register online.
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Wednesday, October 07, 2009

CQ Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com

Midday Update for Wednesday, October 07, 2009 2:25 p.m.

In This Issue

  • House Labor Allies Balk at Tax on Health Plans
  • House Democrats Consider Medicaid Twist
  • Democrats Derail GOP Bid to Push Rangel Aside
  • Frank Vows to Address SEC Concerns on Derivatives Regulation
  • Florida Senate: Ex-Miami Mayor In The Mix
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Today in Washington

The House considers the conference report for the fiscal 2010 Agriculture spending bill, along with a number of other measures, including a bill to extend the first-time homebuyers' tax credit for military service members deployed abroad in 2009 who purchase homes before Dec. 1, 2010.

The Senate considers the fiscal 2010 Commerce-Justice-Science spending bill.

The President meets with Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack; awards National Medal of Science and the National Medal of Technology and Innovation to recipient; meets with full national security team on Afghanistan and Pakistan; hosts a star-gazing event for local middle school students.

In Washington, the 2009 United Service Organizations (USO) Gala features celebrities such as Master of Ceremonies Lewis Black, Guest Trace Adkins and CSI: NY's Gary Sinise, 6-10 p.m., Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, 2660 Woodley Road, N.W.

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Top Stories

House Labor Allies Balk at Tax on Health Plans

Democratic allies of organized labor in the House weighed in strongly Wednesday against a Senate Finance Committee plan to tax so-called Cadillac health insurance plans to finance a health care overhaul. [Read More]

House Democrats Consider Medicaid Twist

House Democratic leaders, desperate to cut the cost of a health care overhaul, are considering steps as drastic as increasing the size of the legislation's proposed expansion of Medicaid, lawmakers said Wednesday. [Read More]

Democrats Derail GOP Bid to Push Rangel Aside

House Democrats quashed a Republican bid Wednesday to oust Ways and Means Chairman Charles B. Rangel as the top tax writer, despite defections by a handful of Democratic dissidents. [Read More]

Frank Vows to Address SEC Concerns on Derivatives Regulation

House Financial Services Chairman Barney Frank, D-Mass., opened the door Wednesday to revising his draft legislation, which aims to regulate the massive derivatives market, to address concerns that some of the complex products could fall through the cracks. [Read More]

Florida Senate: Ex-Miami Mayor In The Mix

Former Miami Mayor Maurice Ferre added his name Wednesday to the growing list of Florida Democrats seeking the party's Senate nomination in 2010. [Read More]

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Taegan Goddard's Political Wire

The Concord Monitor reports that Republican Jennifer Horn, defeated last year in a race against Rep. Paul W. Hodes, D-N.H., today "is expected to announce her candidacy" to run for the seat again next year. Hodes is running for the Senate seat being vacated by retiring GOP Sen. Judd Gregg. Horn, 45, a former radio talk show host and newspaper columnist, will have competition for the GOP nomination. "Last week, former U.S. representative Charlie Bass filed as a Republican candidate and Republican State Rep. Bob Giuda has also been mentioned as possibly running. On the Democratic side, Ann McLane Kuster, Katrina Swett and John DeJoie are all possible candidates."

According to the Denver Post, "the campaign for U.S. Senate candidate-come-lately Andrew Romanoff said Tuesday that it had raised more than $200,000 in the 21 days he was eligible to collect donations in the third quarter." He will have a long way to go to catch Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., who "has taken in $2.5 million and counting since his appointment in January .... Bennet's $1.37 million raised in the first three months of 2009 set a record for Senate fundraising in an off-year cycle. He followed in the second quarter with a $1.2 million haul."

The St. Petersburg Times reports that Florida Gov. Charlie Crist "has a real race on his hands" for the GOP nomination for the Senate next year. "Former state House Speaker Marco Rubio says that in the last three months he raised nearly $1 million for his underdog campaign for the U.S. Senate. That's a huge improvement over Rubio's previous fundraising and puts a big crack in the aura of inevitability surrounding" Christ's campaign. Rubio's candidacy "has been generating growing excitement among grass-roots activists and conservative national media figures skeptical of Crist's sunny populism," the paper said. "Meanwhile, county Republican parties across the state have been holding 'straw polls' with activists overwhelmingly supporting Rubio over Crist."

---------------------------------

The Buttonwood Gathering: Exclusive Offer to CQ readers

On October 15th and 16th, the brightest minds in finance will gather to discuss the issues shaping global financial policy. Don't miss your opportunity to join them at The Buttonwood Gathering. Speakers include Timothy Geithner, Larry Summers, Elizabeth Warren and more. Save $300 on registration when you mention code CQ300. E-mail buttonwoodevent@economist.com or register online.
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Tuesday, October 06, 2009

CQ Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com

Midday Update for Tuesday, October 06, 2009 2:10 p.m.

In This Issue

  • Defense Conferees Defy Obama on Warplane Engines
  • Democrats Move To Counter High Court on Age Discrimination
  • Castle's Delaware Senate Bid Sets Up Key Race
  • Hoyer Vows To Block GOP Bid To Ask Rangel To Step Aside
  • Nominee for Civil Rights Post Is Confirmed in Senate
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Today in Washington

The House returns from a long weekend to vote on a number of commemorative resolutions.

The Senate considers and votes on amendments to the fiscal 2010 Defense appropriations bill.

The President meets with officials at theNational Counterterrorism Center; with Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., meets with bipartisan congressional leadership about Pakistan and Afghanistan.

In Washington, Friends of the World Food Program hosts annual awards ceremony honoring Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., chairwoman of the House Appropriations Agriculture Subcommittee, and the WFP Committee of San Francisco for their commitment in the fight against global hunger. 5:30 p.m., Cannon Caucus Room, Cannon Office Building.

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Top Stories

Defense Conferees Defy Obama on Warplane Engines

In a snub of President Obama, negotiators on the defense authorization bill plan to back continued development of a second engine for the F-35 warplane, according to aides familiar with the deliberations. [Read More]

Democrats Move To Counter High Court on Age Discrimination

A trio of top Democrats from both chambers plan legislation aimed at rolling back a Supreme Court ruling they say makes it harder for plaintiffs to win age discrimination suits. [Read More]

Castle's Delaware Senate Bid Sets Up Key Race

Delaware Rep. Michael N. Castle , a prominent Republican centrist, announced Tuesday that he is running in the 2010 race for the Senate seat formerly held by Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. [Read More]

Hoyer Vows To Block GOP Bid To Ask Rangel To Step Aside

House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer said Tuesday that he will move to block any Republican attempt this week to push Ways and Means Chairman Charles B. Rangel to step aside until an ethics probe is complete. [Read More]

Nominee for Civil Rights Post Is Confirmed in Senate

Thomas E. Perez, whose nomination to the nation's top civil rights post was held up for more than six months by Republican opposition, won Senate confirmation Tuesday. [Read More]

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Taegan Goddard's Political Wire

The Denver Post reports that Republican gubernatorial candidate Scott McInnis on Monday assailed Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter, a Democrat, "for policies he says are killing jobs in Colorado." McInnis, a former congressman, "took shots at the state's increase in vehicle registration fees and Ritter's proposal to parole non-violent offenders early in an effort to close the state budget gap. McInnis said he is the only candidate with the experience needed to lead the state out of economic trouble," comments aimed not just at Ritter but at McInnis' GOP primary challengers, state Sen. Josh Penry and Evergreen businessman Dan Maes. A Ritter spokesman noted Colorado's jobless rate is 2.5 percentage points below the national average.

According to the Charleston Post, "Rep. Mike Pence of Indiana, the House's third-ranking Republican, will be in Charleston on Oct. 12 for a fundraiser for S.C. gubernatorial hopeful and 3rd District Rep. Gresham Barrett. Pence, whose name is being bandied about as a possible 2012 presidential contender, will attend a private fundraiser for Barrett in Charleston. Afterward, he will attend the Charleston County Republican Party's executive committee meeting in North Charleston City Hall."

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Monday, October 05, 2009

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com

Midday Update for Monday, October 05, 2009 –

In This Issue

  • Compromise Version of Defense Measure Expected Soon
  • Lobbyists Stew After Being Bounced From Boards
  • Daugaard Kicks Off South Dakota Governor Campaign
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Today in Washington

The House is not in session.

The Senate considers the fiscal 2010 Commerce-Justice-Science spending bill (HR 2847).

The President spoke at a Rose Garden event with doctors; meeting this afternoon with Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates.

In Washington, George Washington University holds a roundtable with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates on the reach and limitations of American power. 7 p.m., Lisner Auditorium, 720 21st St. N.W.

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Top Stories

Compromise Version of Defense Measure Expected Soon

The House plans to name its conferees for the fiscal 2010 defense authorization bill Tuesday, perhaps setting the stage for final action on the legislation by the end of the week. [Read More]

Lobbyists Stew After Being Bounced From Boards

A tide of anger and dismay is rippling down K Street as the Obama administration implements a new policy limiting the roles of lobbyists on federal advisory committees. [Read More]

Daugaard Kicks Off South Dakota Governor Campaign

South Dakota Lt. Gov. Dennis Daugaard, a presumed candidate for months, kicked off a two-day campaign swing around the state Monday to officially launch his governor's bid, with seven public events across South Dakota through Tuesday. [Read More]
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Political Clippings

The Baton Rouge Advocate reports that with Rep. Charlie Melancon, D-La., running for the Senate, "the political scrum among possible candidates for his House seat has attracted national attention." According to the newspaper, Melancon's 3rd District seat "is expected to attract up to a dozen candidates who will zero in on capturing the only Democratic seat in the state's House congressional delegation." The most-watched candidate "is state Department of Natural Resources Secretary Scott Angelle," who has held elected office as a Democrat in the past, according to the Advocate. "Angelle isn't saying whether he intends to run but, if he does, the question will be which party he will represent." Melancon, who has won three terms in a district that favored Republican John McCain in the 2008 presidential election, is challenging incumbent Republican Sen. David Vitter.

According to the Des Moines Register, Iowa Democrats are planning on fielding a tough challenger to Sen. Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa, in 2010. "State Democratic Party Chairman Michael Kiernan is keeping under wraps the name of the candidate he promises can give Grassley the 'race of his life,' but he says the announcement will be 'very soon,'" the newspaper reports. Republicans are aware of the potential for a stiff challenge, according to the Register. "The Democrats will mount the most serious campaign [Grassley] has faced since 1980," Des Moines lawyer Bud Hockenberg, a longtime Grassley supporter and adviser, told the newspaper.

CORRECTION: The Political Clippings in the Oct. 2 edition of the CQ Midday Update incorrectly reported the plans of Sen. George Lemieux, R-Fla. He is not planning on running for the Senate in 2010.

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