Here are a few news bites to nibble on today:

Deutch Wins FL Seat Easily In First Post-Health Care Special Election

“Republican backlash over President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul had little effect in the nation’s first U.S. House race of 2010,” the AP writes. “Florida Democratic state Sen. Ted Deutch handily won Tuesday’s special election to replace retiring Democratic U.S. Rep. Robert Wexler after his underdog GOP opponent attempted to make the contest a referendum on the massive health care bill.”

Retail Sales Climb in March Despite Debt and Job Woes

Published: April 14, 2010

In another sign that American consumers are gaining confidence, retail sales rose more than expected in March, the Commerce Department said Wednesday.

Sales climbed 1.6 percent last month compared with February, the department said, largely because of strong car sales. Analysts had expected a 1.2 percent increase. March sales were 7.6 percent higher than the same month a year ago.

The report provided the latest piece of evidence that consumers were beginning to spend again, despite weak job prospects and large debt burdens. Last week, major American retailers reported their strongest monthly gains in a decade, with collective sales climbing 9.1 percent.

Climate bill would curb EPA

4/14/10 5:16 AM EDT

Efforts to limit the authority of the Environmental Protection Agency to regulate greenhouse gases has emerged as a major battleground in the climate debate, as three key senators move toward releasing the first draft of their revamped climate bill.

Recent drafts of the legislation would hobble the EPA by limiting the agency’s regulatory powers under the Clean Air Act, according to lawmakers and lobbyists familiar with the bill.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), who’s crafting the climate bill with Sens. John Kerry (D-Mass.) and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), says the provision is necessary to win business backing for the bill.

McCain: Time to ‘pull the trigger’ with Iran

BY ANNE GEARAN, AP National Security Writer

WASHINGTON – Senator John McCain says the United States has been backing away from a brewing fight with Iran, while that country moves ever closer to having nuclear weapons.

McCain opened a Senate hearing Wednesday by saying that Iran will get the bomb unless the United States acts more boldly.

Speaking figuratively, the Arizona Republican says the U.S. keeps pointing a loaded gun at Iran but failing to “pull the trigger.”

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KalimaKQµårk 死神KhiradnellieChernynkaya Recent comment authors
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A message for Gramps (I won’t cooperate on anything) McPain and his sidekick Silly Sarah. I hope for the sake of Arizona and the U.S. that you are retired by then and your sidekick has her own “non-reality” show.

“Bomb, bomb Iran McCain.”

“Iran atomic bomb possible ‘within six years’


I don’t want to get started on the McCain thing.

By the way, in D.C. every other ad is this:

They are literally carpet bombing the airwaves with it.

I’m not even kidding, maybe at least every third commercial break, sometimes back-to-back.


AdLib, thanks for the news–they don’t bite at all!

One other tidbit I learned yesterday, when Elizabeth Warren was on Maddow: The TARP statute states that in addition to the “Troubled Assets” of banks, the law was specifically targeted to help homeowners. While TARP has been successful for the banks, it has failed to help more than a handful of homeowners. And I didn’t even realize that it was designed to do just that.

When the banks said Monday that they would not restructure mortgages, Warren was stunned. She lays the blame for not doing more to make them on Treasury–i.e., Geithner.

This was important news to me.

Here’s the segment form Maddow. Warren lays out why this is so important:

KQµårk 死神

I don’t know if you caught it earlier but Bank of America and Citibank have decided to participate in the new foreclosure plan that will not only lower interest rates but principle. I think Maddow was referring to another bank that did want to participate and is holding borrowers to the principle on their promissory notes. I think treasury should be doing more but I also think foreclosures is one of the toughest parts of the recovery since the price of the real estate have fallen so much and because you have to rely on greedy banks to work with their customers.


Hey Pepe – ain’t it the truth? If a Reep had won, it would have been trumpeted to the skies as a repudiation of Obama. Now that a Dem has won BIG time, ho-hum, barely worth noting.

This is HUGE since it shows that even in “Keep the Government Out of My Medicare” Florida has many more sensible people than the media and the Reeps believed.

I am wondering just how WRONG most of the pollsters and punsters are about the “big” midterm losses. As the months go on, I hope the Prez plays up the successes of health care and consumer rights (should we actually pass that) and the recovery of the economy, which, while slow, is steadily gaining. I realize Sue is right about the coming commercial property crash, but with any luck, we will have new regs in place before that happens to prevent the bottom falling out once again.

I worry however, that we still need to make headway with the stupid so-called “progessives”. I just took myself off a list wherein the woman who sends stuff (she is independent, not a formal listserve) to those of us who worked against torture. She has decided, without a shred of evidence, that Obama sanctions and uses torture, and she has not a single fact to back that up. She also has decided that Obama leaves his appointees “twisting in the wind” – when it’s the Republicans who hold up appointments. This kind of cynical disenchantment speaks once more to the people who thought Obama would be a miracle worker who would do it all, and we’d have to do nothing but gloat.

They may be the undoing of America.

Pepe Lepew

Boy, that Deutch race sure was under the media radar. I wonder why? Hmmmm.


I have the same question–why hasn’t this been big news??


Well, it would still appears to be the 19th district.

Nevertheless, it should be played up anyway as a na-na-na-na-na-na.


Really sad to see Wexler leave the House. He’s one of the good ones.


A couple of thoughts:

The new name for the EPA would be: “The Environmental We-Are-Unable-To-Do-Anything-Remotely-Like-Protection Agency”?


Thank God Mr. “Bomb-bomb-bomb-bomb-bomb Iran” is not currently sitting in the Oval Office. We dodged a bullet when Mr. Bellicose picked Ms. Parah Sailin’ for a running mate and pulled the trigger on his own campaign.

KQµårk 死神

The EPA is always subject to the law of the land which in this case would be new federal statutes in the the climate and energy bill. The title is a little misleading because it makes it sound like EPA makes new law when they only make policy based on laws. It’s like complaining that HHS has to change their policies completely now because of the new HCR bill. Well duh. Now if they water down Clean Air Act or other legal precedent that’s a different thing.