National Journal Online

Wednesday's Starting Lineup

Good Wednesday morning. One of yesterday's obituaries for the late Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV) reminded us of a favorite quote he loved to use on the campaign trail: "West Virginia has always had four friends: God Almighty, Sears Roebuck, Carter's Liver Pills and Robert C. Byrd."

Here's today's Starting Lineup, previewing the people who will make a difference in politics before the July 4 recess:

Posted: Wednesday, June 30, 2010 - 6:57am

Fiorina Finds Silver Lining

Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, the Republican nominee in this fall's Senate race in California, found a silver lining in the latest poll showing her trailing Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif. The poll of 600 registered voters released Tuesday by Reuters showed Boxer leading Fiorina 45 percent to 41 percent. But Fiorina was undeterred, saying in a news release that the poll "confirms California's junior senator is still unable to reach the 50 percent threshold of support expected of most incumbents.

Posted: Tuesday, June 29, 2010 - 6:01pm

Limited Praise For Government Web 2.0 Policies

Civil liberties advocates are pleased some of their recommendations were included in new privacy policies that allow agencies to use Web site-tracking tools and third-party applications, but they are disappointed the guidelines omit more important safeguards that could better protect the public, Nextgov.com reported. On Friday, the Office of Management and Budget ended a 10-year ban on cookies, which monitor what a user does on a Web site, and updated privacy notice requirements for sites such as Facebook and YouTube that incorporate nongovernment social networking tools.

Posted: Tuesday, June 29, 2010 - 5:42pm

Rossi Sees Opportunity In Third Bid

Ex-state Sen. Dino Rossi (R) has run in statewide races twice before, but sees his third try -- his first in a non-presidential year -- as a markedly different opportunity.

This time around, Rossi won't be running against a political headwind in the blue state where most voters did not support George W. Bush and Sen. John McCain (R). And despite those hurdles, he polled remarkably well; Rossi out-polled Bush by 3 points in '04 and McCain by more than 6 points in '08.

Posted: Tuesday, June 29, 2010 - 5:30pm

Pessimism Starting To Take Hold

The cement is hardening.

The latest Society for Human Resource Management/National Journal Congressional Connection Poll underscores how difficult it will be for members of Congress to dislodge deeply entrenched pessimism about the country's direction and Washington's performance as they face voters in Nov.

Posted: Tuesday, June 29, 2010 - 4:32pm

Clinton Bucks WH, Endorses Romaoff

Bill Clinton has been a huge political asset to Dems this year, but his latest endorsement stands in notable contrast to the establishment's wishes.

Clinton said today he will support ex-CO House Speaker Andrew Romanoff (D), the insurgent challenger running against Sen. Michael Bennet (D).

Posted: Tuesday, June 29, 2010 - 4:01pm

EU Report: Roaming Rates Have Fallen, But Not Far Enough

A new report released Tuesday from the European Commission said that while price caps imposed by the European Union have led to a drop in the cost of roaming calls and sending text messages in Europe, more competition is needed to help push prices even lower. The report said since the price caps were imposed in July 2009, the cost of roaming voice calls fell from .46 euros (56 cents) to .43 euros (52 cents) per minute and will go down to .39 euros (47 cents) as of Thursday. The commission said the cost of a text message also has

Posted: Tuesday, June 29, 2010 - 3:44pm

Independents Souring On Obama

A series of focus groups of voters in 5 states conducted for the conservative non-profit group Resurgent Republic found that while independent voters have soured on Obama, they haven't abandoned him completely. However, independents who identified themselves as part of the Tea Party movement, have "turned the page" on the president said GOP pollster Glen Bolger.

Posted: Tuesday, June 29, 2010 - 3:27pm

FCC Seeking Better Data

The FCC launched a new initiative Tuesday aimed at improving how it "collects, uses and disseminates" data, an effort that will be led by the agency's first chief data officer. Greg Elin, associate managing director of new media at the FCC, has been appointed to this new role and will lead a new "data team" charged with leading the initiative and made up of officials from the FCC's Wireline, Wireless and Media bureaus. The bureaus issued public notices Tuesday seeking comment on what current data collections should be eliminated, whether the FCC should seek new types of data to collect

Posted: Tuesday, June 29, 2010 - 3:09pm

Biden Accuses GOPers Of Forcing "No" Votes

VP Joe Biden on Monday accused Senate GOPers of holding their top members' votes hostage in exchange for ranking committee posts, assailing the GOP as sitting "on the sidelines" while the economy nearly collapsed.

"I know at least 7 [GOP] senators, who I will not name, but were made to make a commitment under threat of losing their chairmanships, if they did not support the leadership on every procedural vote," Biden said at a fundraiser Monday night.

Posted: Tuesday, June 29, 2010 - 2:51pm