Politics

9:47am

Tue April 2, 2013
The Two-Way

Fannie Mae Posts Record Profit; Paid Taxpayers $11.6 Billion In 2012

Fannie Mae's headquarters in Washington, DC.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

The government-controlled mortgage giant Fannie Mae, which needed a $116 billion federal bailout after the housing bubble burst in 2007, said Tuesday that it earned a record $7.6 billion in fourth-quarter 2012 and $17.2 billion for the year.

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3:25am

Tue April 2, 2013
It's All Politics

Judicial Vacancies Languish On Key Federal Appeals Court

Originally published on Tue April 2, 2013 7:42 am

President Obama last month withdrew the nomination of Caitlin J. Halligan to the federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., after her nomination was blocked by Senate Republicans.
Jim McKnight AP

The federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., is sometimes called the second most important court in the country, regularly delivering the final word on major environmental, labor and national security cases.

But the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has a whopping four vacancies, the most in the nation, including one opening that dates all the way back to 2005, when John Roberts moved to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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5:17pm

Mon April 1, 2013
Politics

Bipartisan Group Of Senators Could Have Immigration Bill Drafted By Next Week

Senators negotiating an overhaul of immigration laws turned to labor and business leaders to devise a new plan for guest workers, but not all of them are ready to commit to the plan those leaders have worked out.

5:11pm

Mon April 1, 2013
Economy

Stockton Bankruptcy Case Defers Decision On Pensions

Originally published on Mon April 1, 2013 8:41 pm

An aging sign at City Hall in Stockton, Calif. A judge has ruled that the city is eligible for federal bankruptcy protection.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Christopher Klein ruled Monday on the most important question facing Stockton, Calif. — whether it could enter into federal bankruptcy protection.

Klein agreed that the city is, in fact, broke.

But he didn't decide the question of whether the city must renegotiate its pension obligations, as some of its creditors had hoped.

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4:29pm

Mon April 1, 2013
It's All Politics

Immigration Overhaul Inches Forward, But Big Hurdles Remain

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., says talk of a bipartisan agreement among eight key senators working on immigration law is "premature."
Susan Walsh AP

It's still far too early to know whether Congress will actually be able to achieve a comprehensive overhaul to the nation's immigration laws. All that's certain at this stage is that lawmakers on both sides of the partisan divide, and in both chambers, continue to act as though they think they can.

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3:42pm

Mon April 1, 2013
It's All Politics

Opposition Research Boot Camp: Learning To Dig For Political Dirt

Originally published on Mon April 22, 2013 8:29 pm

Opposition research is becoming a given in politics, sometimes even at the local level.
iStockphoto.com

Opposition research exists mostly in the political shadows. So perhaps it's fitting that this boot camp is in an generic conference room in a generic airport hotel outside of Washington, D.C.

It's run by private investigator Larry Zilliox, who specializes in opposition research. He allowed me to attend a session, but not to take pictures.

Zilliox is cagey about his clients: "As a general rule, it suits me best not to comment on who I've worked for. Everybody is better off that way."

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3:00pm

Mon April 1, 2013
The Two-Way

Expert: Recent Attacks On Justice Community 'Really Unprecedented'

Originally published on Mon April 1, 2013 3:32 pm

The home of Kaufman County District Attorney Mike McLelland is surrounded by police tape in Forney, Texas, on Monday. Authorities launched a massive investigation into the weekend killings of McLelland and his wife.
Tim Sharp Reuters /Landov

Two county prosecutors fatally shot in Texas. Colorado's top prison official gunned down. And a dozen more members of the U.S. justice community — ranging from police to judges — victims of targeted killings since the beginning of the decade.

What's going on?

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2:38pm

Mon April 1, 2013
It's All Politics

A State Apart And, Politically, A World Away

Originally published on Mon April 1, 2013 3:13 pm

There's a reason President Obama chose Colorado to hold a rally this Wednesday in favor of gun control.

Among the states this year, Democratic-controlled Colorado has passed the toughest new restrictions on gun rights, requiring universal background checks and banning magazines that hold more than 15 rounds of ammunition.

But if certain liberal wishes have come true in Colorado — recall that it was one of two states last fall that voted to legalize marijuana — things look very different next door in Kansas.

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2:27pm

Mon April 1, 2013
Politics

The Politics Of The Guest-Worker Program

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the AFL-CIO agreed on a plan for a new system to import temporary workers. NPR senior Washington editor Ron Elving discusses the politics of the business-labor immigration deal. Rusty Barr, owner of Barr Evergreens, shares how he uses the guest-worker program.

2:13pm

Mon April 1, 2013
The Two-Way

Once Again, Polls Show Attitudes Toward Guns Returning To Pre-shooting Levels

Guns on display at a show in Chantilly, Va., in July 2012.
Jim Lo Scalzo EPA /Landov

The day after last December's mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School we wrote that:

"The tragedy in Newtown, Conn., will surely spur pollsters to ask Americans again about guns, gun ownership, gun laws and the Second Amendment.

"If recent experience is a good guide, public opinion may not shift too much."

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