Majority Leader Reid Pushes Back On President Obama’s Push For TPP And TTIP

By: Thursday January 30, 2014 10:57 am

Majority Leader Harry Reid threw cold water on fast tracking the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) despite a call to do so in President Obama’s State of the Union speech. Numerous Democrats in Congress have publicly objected to fast tracking TPP given the many controversial aspects contained in the bill including removing decision making authority from sovereign [...]

President Obama Uses State Of The Union To Promote TPP, Ducks NSA Reform

By: Wednesday January 29, 2014 5:42 am

Last night President Barack Obama gave his State of the Union speech. In the speech Obama addressed growing concerns in the country about lack of opportunities and yawning wealth inequality. Poverty, lack of labor participation, and wealth inequality have gone to record levels under his administration. As the problem has gotten progressively worse the rhetoric [...]

Rich Paying Smaller Share Of Taxes Under Obama

By: Tuesday January 28, 2014 10:42 am

Tonight, during the State of the Union address, President Obama will likely drone on about how he thinks wealth inequality is an important issue. And the polls show Americans agree, the economy is polling as the number one issue while an increasingly number of Americans no longer identify as middle class. These concerns come amidst [...]

Politicians Love a Complex Tax Code

By: Thursday January 26, 2012 12:19 pm

I have to agree with Howard Gleckman of the Tax Policy Center on this one. And I’ve noticed this tension among politicians for a while. On the one hand they want to say that they favor a “simpler” tax code, and they like to talk about how many thousands of pages the tax code is [...]

With Obama Endorsement, Insider Trading Ban for Congress Likely

By: Thursday January 26, 2012 8:55 am

One part of the State of the Union I forgot to mention is that the President formally backed legislation that wold ban insider trading among members of Congress. If the Administration has been serious about anything related to financial fraud, it has been insider trading, where they have engaged in multiple criminal prosecutions. And the [...]

Other Bits and Pieces on the State of the Union

By: Wednesday January 25, 2012 1:16 pm

Let’s briefly go through a few of the other proposals in last night’s State of the Union Address, none of which will come to pass this year if they include an act of Congress, but which offer some insights regardless: • The broader mortgage refi plan: HARP 2 is already operative, and Fannie and Freddie [...]

The Schneiderman Gambit: Financial Fraud Unit Appears Designed to Fail, and Grease Skids for Foreclosure Fraud Settlement

By: Wednesday January 25, 2012 6:15 am

I’ll pepper in my thoughts on the State of the Union Address throughout the day, but I would be remiss if I didn’t start with the announcement of a Unit on Mortgage Origination and Securitization Abuses (UMOSA) to investigate bank practices during the financial crisis. The unit will be co-chaired by Eric Schneiderman, the New [...]

Live Blog: President Delivers State of the Union Address

By: Tuesday January 24, 2012 5:00 pm

Tonight at 9pm ET, the President will deliver the State of the Union Address at the beginning of his run for re-election. Unlike Obama’s other addresses to joint sessions of Congress I wouldn’t expect this one to produce much in the way of a legislative blueprint. It’s an election year and most of the major [...]

State of the Union Preview: Tax Fairness, Energy, Housing Among Topics

By: Tuesday January 24, 2012 1:20 pm

Small hints have been dribbled out to journalists ahead of tonight’s State of the Union Address, which in an election year invariably signals an attempt by an incumbent running for re-election to set the terms of the debate, to state what they will campaign on throughout the year. And this year is no different. For [...]

The Next Payroll Tax Fight: A Preview

By: Friday December 23, 2011 8:55 am

With the two-month stopgap put to bed, all eyes turn to the next round on the fight to extend a payroll tax cut and unemployment insurance. Once this law is signed, lawmakers will have until the end of February to reach agreement on what they claim to want, a year-long extension on the above two [...]

The New American Caste System

By: Wednesday January 26, 2011 2:27 pm

I think Michael Grunwald basically gets this right. The White House is generally pretty pleased with what they’ve done, they don’t think they’re likely to get anything additional from Congress – which they’re right about, but that assumes that the executive branch has no authority of its own – and they’re going to just engage [...]

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