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They're Back

September 8, 2008 - by Donny Shaw

After more than a month of campaigning and conventioning, U.S. senators and representatives return to work today to begin the final homestretch of this session of Congress.

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8 Controversial Bills That Congress Still May Pass

September 5, 2008 - by Donny Shaw

When Congress returns from recess on Monday, they'll enter the homestretch of this session. Several extremely controversial bills have made significant progress in the legislative process, but haven't quite been completed and passed to President Bush to be signed into law. Will Congress find time before they adjourn to push them through?

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Ultra-Bailout

September 5, 2008 - by Donny Shaw

"Senior officials from the Bush administration and the Federal Reserve on Friday called in top executives of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the mortgage finance giants, and told them that the government was preparing to place the two companies under federal control, officials and company executives briefed on the discussions said."

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Unemployment at 5-Year High

September 5, 2008 - by Donny Shaw

Some bad news related to the two most-viewed bills on OpenCongress - H.R.5749 and S.2544, via the AP: >The nation's unemployment rate bolted above the psychologically important 6 percent level last month for the first time in five years — and it's likely to go even higher in the months ahead, possibly throwing the economy into a tailspin as Americans pick a new president. > >A blizzard of pink slips propelled the jobless rate from 5.7 percent in July to 6.1 percent in August, the Labor Depar...

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via an email from Senate Democrats... >We hope this message finds you enjoying the last days of the August recess. When the Senate goes back into session next week, we begin a busy work period with much legislative business to complete before the November elections. Below is a summary of what Sen. Reid plans to work on during this period; as always, this summary is subject to change. > >Defense Authorization: On Monday there will be a cloture vote on the motion to proceed to the defense auth...

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2008 House Forecasts

September 4, 2008 - by Donny Shaw

First edition from Open Left's Chris Bowers, the man with the best forecast of Democratic pickups in the nation in 2006. >"The current projection shows a Democratic gain of 12-18 seats, which would result in a majority of somewhere between D 248-187 R to D 254-181 R." Download the three-page pdf to view district-by-district details....

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What are Lobbists Pushing at the Conventions?

September 4, 2008 - by Donny Shaw

To be certain, a lot of things. But one of the most substantial and controversial of them is a $50 billion government bailout of the Big Three American automakers.

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Senate Gang of 16 Will Get a Vote

September 4, 2008 - by Donny Shaw

(Cross-posted from Senatus). The bipartisan “Gang of Sixteen” energy group, which is made up of 8 members from each party, will reportedly get their shot at debating and possibly passing a compromise energy bill which includes a balance of limited offshore drilling and an investment in renewable energy alternatives. The Associated Press reports: >Democratic leaders in the Senate plan to push a bipartisan energy proposal that would allow for some expansion of offshore drilling when Congre...

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Senator Lieberman at the RNC

September 2, 2008 - by Donny Shaw

Congress Links

September 2, 2008 - by Donny Shaw

Crossing the Aisle >Republican congressman Wayne T. Gilchrest broke ranks with his party yesterday and endorsed Democrat Frank Kratovil as the candidate he thinks should replace him in Congress in the 1st District. The endorsement came about seven months after Gilchrest lost a bitter Republican primary to State Sen. Andy Harris in the Eastern Shore district that also includes part of Anne Arundel County. Link A Real Go-Getter >Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin employed a lobbying firm to secu...

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Party on!

September 1, 2008 - by Donny Shaw

Despite calls from John McCain to suspend all activities besides those that are absolutely necessary, Republican lawmakers and lobbyists still got together to party this weekend at the RNC: Party Time's Nancy Watzman is in Minneapolis this week, so watch her blog for more reports on the Republican party scene. ...

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Happy Labor Day

September 1, 2008 - by Donny Shaw

Some background from the U.S. Department of Labor: >Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country. > >The first Labor Day holiday was celebrated on Tuesday, September 5, 1882, in New York City, in accordance with the plans of the Central Labo...

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