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Posts Tagged ‘Senate’

Today’s Flickr photo

Oil platform off Newport Beach, Ca. Flickr photo by KrisFricke.

 

If you read one thing today . . .

The midterm elections might over but the GOP battle for the Senate is still going on strong. Remember Senator-elect Joe Manchin’s campaign commercial — the one where he’s shooting holes into Obama’s cap-and-trade legislation? Well, the GOP figures a guy who can handle a gun like that is on the wrong side of the aisle. According to a Fox News report, Republican leadership is offering Manchin, a West Virginia Democrat, a choice committee position and support of a coal-to-diesel project in his home state.

Republicans believe Manchin is particularly susceptible to the overture because he is up for reelection in 2012 and will have to be on the ticket with President Obama, who is direly unpopular in West Virginia. Democrat Ben Nelson of Nebraska and Independent Joe Lieberman are the other two prime targets of Republican advances.

If Manchin, Nelson and Lieberman switched, it would leave the Senate in a 50-50 deadlock.

But Team Manchin, so far, is sticking with the campaign line that the two-term conservative governor is heading to Washington to change the way his party operates and to look for chances to work on bipartisan projects.

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In light of Tuesday’s decision by the Senate Republicans to block the DISCLOSE Act, last week’s Netroots Nation panel discussion about overturning the  Citizens United ruling becomes even more important. The panelists, who included Public Citizen President Robert Weissman and U.S. Reps. Donna Edwards and Alan Grayson, said that the Citizens United ruling, which opened the way for corporations to spend an unlimited amount of money to influence elections, has emboldened corporations and their lobbyists. Grayson said a corporate lobbyist “can walk into your and office, say ‘I have $5 million, and I can spend it for you or against you.’…this really is a threat to our democracy.”

The DISCLOSE Act, which was passed by the House, would have mitigated the damage from Citizens United by shining a light on the money behind campaign ads.  The act  would have required the front groups that pay for campaign ads to identify their major donors of $1,000 or more.

By not allowing the Senate to vote on the DISCLOSE Act, the GOP has set the stage for a corporate free-for-all in this fall’s midterm elections.

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