New enforcement focus in Obama's immigration plan

Washington Times Politics - Thu, 2014-11-20 11:49

WASHINGTON (AP) - Homeland Security Secretary Jeh (jay) Johnson says President Barack Obama's immigration plan will focus enforcement efforts on immigrants who are serious criminals - and those who crossed into the U.S. illegally or were ordered from the country in the last year.

Johnson is detailing the ...

House GOP leader pushes for U.S. arms to go directly to Iraqi Kurds fighting ISIS

Washington Times Politics - Thu, 2014-11-20 11:42

A key House Republican is pushing the Obama administration to expand U.S. military support to Kurdish peshmerga fighters in the battle against the Islamic State, calling for Washington to begin channeling heavy weaponry directly Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdistan Regional Government.

Rep. Ed Royce of California, chairman of the House Committee on ...

American Conservative Union: Obama's amnesty plans like 'a single-finger salute of contempt'

Washington Times Politics - Thu, 2014-11-20 11:41

Add the American Conservative Union to the list of organizations condemning White House plans for illegal immigrants.

"President Obama's executive order is like a royal decree giving legal status to millions of people who came here and reside here illegally. The president is showing utter contempt for the American voter, ...

Food and face-lift scandals rock Lebanon

Washington Times Politics - Thu, 2014-11-20 11:04

BEIRUT (AP) - It is often said that Lebanon has only two things going for it, food and plastic surgery.

This week, both industries took a hit as Lebanon's health minister revealed that dozens of restaurants and supermarkets across the country were selling food contaminated with sewage and ...

Audit the Fed! The Federal Reserve Transparency Act will be reintroduced in the next Congress

Freedom Works - Thu, 2014-11-20 10:54

With a new Congress just weeks away from being seated, support is already beginning to build on Capitol Hill to audit the Federal Reserve.

The House of Representatives has twice passed the Federal Reserve Transparency Act, in July 2012 and September 2014, by overwhelming, bipartisan margins. In the Senate, however, Harry Reid (D-NV) refused to allow a vote on the measure.

Politico reports this morning that Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) will introduce the Federal Reserve Transparency Act, more commonly known as Audit the Fed, in the opening days of the new Congress. Rep. Paul Broun (R-GA), who introduced and ushered the measure through last year, didn't seek reelection. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) also plans to reintroduce the measure in the upper chamber, which will be under Republican control.

Now that the dynamics of Congress have changed and the biggest roadblock to the passage is out of the way, there's optimism that Audit the Fed will be presented to president. A spokesman for incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) told Politico that his boss "supports the bill" and is "a co-sponsor."

Still, though, obstacles remain. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, like her predecessor, Ben Bernanke, strongly opposes any move by Congress to increase transparency at the central bank. "I don’t believe that the Federal Reserve is in any way corrupt," she said, according to Politico, "and I believe that the confidence of markets in the Federal Reserve and in our monetary policy making would not be enhanced by that type of audit."

Though Yellen is trying to inject monetary policy into the discussion, the Federal Reserve Transparency Act simply requires the central bank to provide certain information to the Government Accountability Office (GAO) currently excluded from audits in 31 USC 714(b), including discussions between the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department and transactions with foreign banks.

Audit the Fed shines some much needed light about the Federal Reserve's activities. Given the influence the central bank weilds over the United States and world economies, there's no reason to continue to keep Americans in the dark.

The American Legion gives thumbs down to Obama's immigration plans

Washington Times Politics - Thu, 2014-11-20 10:12

The nation's largest veterans service organization now questions the wisdom of the White House "putting politics above national security" via President Obama's plans to bypass Congress and grant amnesty to 5 million illegal immigrants.

"At a time when ISIS, al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations are killing innocent Americans, it ...

Bill Cassidy up 15 over Mary Landrieu in Louisiana Senate runoff: poll

Washington Times Politics - Thu, 2014-11-20 09:49

A new poll has GOP Rep. Bill Cassidy up by 15 points over Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu ahead of their Dec. 6 runoff for U.S. Senate in Louisiana.

Among likely voters, Mr. Cassidy leads 56 percent to 41 percent over Ms. Landrieu in the runoff contest after neither candidate was ...

Dental plans included in Obamacare tallies: Report

Washington Times Politics - Thu, 2014-11-20 09:45

The Obama administration included up to 400,000 dental plans in the 7.1-million enrollment figure it touted before Obamacare's second round — an unusual move that appears aimed at hitting congressional budget estimates for the contentious law.

Bloomberg reports that Republican investigators on the House oversight committee calculated the health enrollment ...

Elizabeth Warren favored almost 2-to-1 to Hillary Clinton by progressives: poll

Washington Times Politics - Thu, 2014-11-20 09:30

Sen. Elizabeth Warren is by far the most popular would-be presidential candidate among progressives in the Democratic party, boasting a nearly two-to-one advantage over presumed frontrunner Hillary Rodham Clinton, a new poll shows.

The liberal PAC Democracy for America surveyed its members and asked them to rank their top three ...

Obamacare premiums for most popular plans will spike 10 percent: study

Washington Times Politics - Thu, 2014-11-20 09:18

Premiums on the most popular Obamacare exchange plans will increase by an average of 10 percent in 2015, according to an analysis released Thursday that underscores the importance of shopping around in the law's second year.

Avalere Health, a Washington-based consultancy, said 28 percent of all exchange enrollees selected the ...

California jury convicts maritime smuggler

Washington Times Politics - Thu, 2014-11-20 08:52

SAN DIEGO (AP) - A jury has convicted a 27-year-old woman who helped smuggle immigrants into San Diego County using small boats and personal watercraft.

The U.S. attorney's office says Sofia Martinez, a U.S. citizen who lived in Tijuana, was found guilty Tuesday following a two-week trial in ...

AP Exclusive: Some in NSA warned of a backlash

Washington Times Politics - Thu, 2014-11-20 08:26

WASHINGTON (AP) — Dissenters within the National Security Agency, led by a senior agency executive, warned in 2009 that the program to secretly collect American phone records wasn't providing enough intelligence to justify the backlash it would cause if revealed, current and former intelligence officials say.

The NSA took the ...

Democrats turn on Obama: Get 'in the mix' and fix our party

Washington Times Politics - Thu, 2014-11-20 08:20

Key Democrats frustrated by Election Day losses say President Obama better get in gear and get the party back in shape — that the base needs his leadership.

"The base craves his leadership," said Democratic National Committee vice chairwoman Donna Brazile, recounting to Politico the gist of a ...

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