National Journal Online

EU Closely Examining Antitrust Allegations In Search Services

The European Commission's top antitrust official said Wednesday that he is closely examining allegations of anticompetitive behavior related to Internet search services. In a speech at an e-commerce antitrust conference in London, Joaquin Almunia, the commission's vice president for competition policy, did not specifically name Google, but the Internet search and advertising firm was the subject of antitrust complaints filed in February by three Internet competitors.

Posted: Wednesday, July 7, 2010 - 4:17pm

Hotline Whip Count: The Kagan Nomination

The confirmation hearings are over, and senators have begun to make up their minds about Solicitor General Elena Kagan. We're keeping a whip count of Kagan backers and her opponents in advance of this month's floor debate.

A note on methodology: We assume a vast majority -- if not all -- of the Dem caucus will vote to confirm Kagan. But we're not going to count anyone until they've made a formal statement in support or said publicly they will vote for her.

Posted: Wednesday, July 7, 2010 - 3:50pm

Public Safety Group Disputes FCC's Claim On Spectrum

A coalition of public safety officials from around the country struck back Wednesday against the FCC's claims that its proposal included in the national broadband plan for building a interoperable public safety network will adequately serve the needs of emergency first responders. The Public Safety Alliance, which includes groups representing police chiefs, fire chiefs, and others, issued its own white paper in response to one released last month by the FCC that argued that the commission's public safety proposals are adequate to meet public safety's needs.

Posted: Wednesday, July 7, 2010 - 3:18pm

Hayworth's Wife Headlines First TV Ad

Responding to a series of negative ads from Sen. John McCain (R), ex-Rep. J.D. Hayworth (R) has released the first TV ad of his own in the race, in which the former congressman's wife defends his credentials and takes McCain to task for negative campaigning.

The 30-second ad, which was produced by The Strategy Group for Media, features Hayworth's wife, Mary Hayworth. "Tired of John McCain's negative ads? So am I," says Mary Hayworth in the ad. She assails McCain for "character assassination," and says McCain "should be ashamed."

Posted: Wednesday, July 7, 2010 - 3:12pm

McConnell Promises Boozman Ag Seat

Senate Min. Leader Mitch McConnell will appoint Rep. John Boozman (R-AR) to the Senate Agriculture Committee if Boozman is elected, the Senate GOP leader said during a campaign stop in Little Rock.

In promising Boozman the seat, McConnell could blunt one of Sen. Blanche Lincoln's (D) main arguments for re-election -- that her position as chair of the committee gives her the power to deliver for her state.

Posted: Wednesday, July 7, 2010 - 1:28pm

Survey: Majority Of Americans Access Net Wirelessly

A new survey released Wednesday finds that nearly 60 percent of Americans now access the Internet using wireless devices such as a mobile phone or a laptop computer with a Wi-Fi connection. The latest survey from the Pew Research Center's Internet and American Life Project found an 8 point jump, 51 percent to 59 percent, in the use of mobile phones or wireless laptops from an April 2009 survey. The survey found 47 percent of adults use a laptop with a Wi-Fi connection to get online, up from 39 percent in April 2009, while 40 percent, up from 32 percent

Posted: Wednesday, July 7, 2010 - 1:01pm

Fincher Poll Shows GOP Primary Lead

Farmer and gospel singer Stephen Fincher (R) leads a competitive GOP primary even after being vastly outspent on TV, according to a new survey conducted for Fincher's campaign.

The survey, conducted by The Tarrance Group, shows Fincher leading with 32% of the vote. That proportion bests physician Ron Kirkland (R), who clocks in at 23%, and Shelby Co. Commis. George Flinn (R), who earns 21%. Still, 22% of voters remain undecided.

Posted: Wednesday, July 7, 2010 - 12:44pm

Manchin Wants Interpretation, Earlier Election

WV Gov. Joe Manchin (D) will not appoint a replacement for the late Sen. Robert Byrd (D) until the state's attorney general issues a legal opinion that could force a special election as soon as this year.

In a press conference today, Manchin again ruled out appointing himself to Byrd's unexpired term. What's more, he said, he does not believe it is appropriate to appoint a caretaker senator for 2 1/2 years, and that WV voters deserve the chance to pick their elected representative before the '12 elections.

Posted: Wednesday, July 7, 2010 - 11:48am

Time Winds Down For Congressional Dems

Hotline editor Amy Walter writes:

Posted: Wednesday, July 7, 2010 - 10:18am

Audit: IRS Contractor Policy Puts Taxpayer Data At Risk

The Internal Revenue Service risked disclosing taxpayer information when it failed to identify contractors that had access to financial records and to fix known security weaknesses at facilities where files are stored, Nextgov.com reported. According to an audit released Tuesday by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, the IRS did not identify all the vendors that store and process taxpayer data, making it impossible to complete annual security reviews.

Posted: Wednesday, July 7, 2010 - 10:09am