December 2011

Dec 28, 2011

Iowa Cacuses a Week Away

With John Harwood, CNBC

CNBC's John Harwood shares the latest update of the Iowa Cacuses. Also, Paul Equale, Equale and Assosciates president and Chris Krueger, Guggenheim Partners senior policy analyst weigh in.


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Washington’s Year of Drama Leaves Little Done Regarding Debt

By Lori Montgomery, Washington Post

Reid Ribble, a Wisconsin roofing contractor-turned-Republican lawmaker, has helped change the way Washington talks about the national debt. That’s not to say he has done much about the debt itself. Nearly a year ago, Ribble and other newly elected House Republicans came to Capitol Hill on a single-minded mission to shove the federal debt to the top of the congressional agenda. They succeeded.
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Republican Rivals Unleash Broadside on Paul in Iowa

By Jeff Zeleny and Michael D. Shear, New York Times

The Republican presidential candidates sharpened their criticism of Representative Ron Paul on Tuesday in an effort to keep his support from growing among voters who are frustrated with government and may be inclined to send a message to the Washington establishment by supporting him in the Iowa caucuses. Newt Gingrich said Mr. Paul, of Texas, was a “protest” candidate, and that he could not vote for the congressman if he won the party’s nomination. In a television interview, Mr. Gingrich, the former House speaker, declared that Mr. Paul’s “views are totally outside the mainstream of virtually every decent American.”
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Nebraska Sen. Ben Nelson to Retire

By Susan Davis, USA TODAY

Democratic Sen. Ben Nelson of Nebraska has told supporters he will not seek re-election. His decision was first reported by Politico. In his statement, Nelson said: "Simply put: It is time to move on." Nelson, 70, was facing a tough fight for a third term. His retirement improves the GOP's chances of picking up the Nebraska Senate seat the Democrat has held since 2000, and it enhances the odds of a Republican takeover of the Senate in 2012.
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Gingrich Fights Back, Aiming at Romney as Iowa Caucuses Heat Up

By Dan Balz and Amy Gardner, Washington Post

The Republican presidential candidates opened an intensive week of campaigning in wide-open Iowa on Tuesday with the embattled Newt Gingrich casting rival Mitt Romney as an establishment defender of big government and accusing Romney’s supporters of lying about his record.
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GOP Candidate Newt Gingrich addresses reporters at a recent campaign stop. (CNN)

Iran Threatens to Block Oil Shipments, as U.S. Prepares Sanctions

By David E. Sanger and Annie Lowrey, New York Times

A senior Iranian official on Tuesday delivered a sharp threat in response to economic sanctions being readied by the United States, saying his country would retaliate against any crackdown by blocking all oil shipments through the Strait of Hormuz, a vital artery for transporting about one-fifth of the world’s oil supply.
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Obama to Name Two Fed Board Nominees

WIth David Wessel, Wall Street Journal

President Obama plans to nominate a Harvard University finance professor and a former private-equity executive to fill the two vacancies on the seven-member Federal Reserve Board.

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Romney Targets Obama in Iowa Stretch

By Sam Youngman, Reuters

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney kicked off the last week before the Iowa caucuses warning that November’s presidential contest will be “an election to save the soul of America.” Romney, back in Iowa, assumed a frontrunner posture as his main rivals were mired in their own controversies.
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Dec 27, 2011

G.O.P. Race Still Unsettled in Sprint to Iowa Caucus

By Jeff Zeleny, New York Times

Mitt Romney and his allies are making an assertive final push this week to increase his chances of a strong finish in the Iowa caucuses, the outcome of which could help determine the length of the Republican presidential nominating battle.
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GOP campaign showcases role of federal judiciary

By Joan Biskupic, USA Today

Newt Gingrich's recent attack against federal judges has prompted an ample backlash, even from fellow conservatives. Yet they offer a reminder of how often candidates attack the courts and showcase the stakes for the judiciary in who wins the White House next November.

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Whatever Happened to Sarah Palin?

By Beth Reinhard, National Journal

Sarah Palin always had a knack for making a splash just when she was teetering on the edge of irrelevance. Which means as the Iowa caucus looms, she's bound to make an appearance sometime soon.

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Change in Saudi Arabia

By Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times

Women in Saudi Arabia won a small but promising victory this year. No, they aren't being allowed to drive; that's still forbidden. Most of the time, they still can't work, travel or even open bank accounts without the approval of a male guardian. But they do have this: Saudi women can now buy lingerie in stores from female salesclerks, instead of the sometimes leering men who used to staff the counters. If this modest wave of liberalization continues, they may even get fitting rooms.

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