Politics

George Miller, Leading House Democrat, On Why He Voted To End HAMP

Posted on Monday, April 04, 2011

WASHINGTON -- Eighteen Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives sided with Republicans in a symbolic vote to terminate the Obama administration's signature anti-foreclosure program. Among those Democrats was California Rep. George Miller, a member of House Democratic leadership and a key ally ...

The War on Warren

Posted on Monday, April 04, 2011

Last week, at a House hearing on financial institutions and consumer credit, Republicans lined up to grill and attack Elizabeth Warren, the law professor and bankruptcy expert who is in charge of setting up the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Ostensibly, they believed that Ms. Warren had o...

Why Republicans Hate Warren's CFPB But Love Another Bank Regulator

Posted on Monday, April 04, 2011

Stepping up their attacks on Elizabeth Warren and the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau this week, House Republicans painted a picture of an all-powerful agency -- Financial Services Chairman Spencer Bachus called it "the most powerful agency that's ever been created in Washington"-- whose di...

Bill Daley is recusing himself from picking a head of consumer financial protection

Posted on Monday, April 04, 2011

Bill Daley is recusing himself from picking a head of consumer financial protection, report Brady Dennis and Zachary Goldfarb: "President Obama’s new chief of staff, former banker William M. Daley, has recused himself from the search for a nominee to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a ...

House Republicans Amplify Attacks On Elizabeth Warren, Consumer Protection

Posted on Sunday, March 20, 2011

WASHINGTON -- In a hearing marked by openly hostile questioning from House Republicans, consumer advocate Elizabeth Warren made her highly anticipated first appearance before Congress as a member of the Obama administration, emphasizing the need for stronger oversight of big banks and small mortgage...

Who’s Afraid of Elizabeth Warren?

Posted on Sunday, March 20, 2011

I. The next big political battle in Washington -– whenever the budget debate is declared over –- is likely to feature the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and whether Elizabeth Warren will become its first official head. Harry Hamburg/Associated Press Elizabeth Warren, head of Consumer Financia...

Top Republican: 'Senate May Approve' Elizabeth Warren For CFPB

Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2011

WASHINGTON -- A top Republican broke with what he called "conventional wisdom" Tuesday morning, saying that consumer watchdog Elizabeth Warren is "very persuasive" and may be confirmed by the Senate to head the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. In an interview with CNBC, House Financial Ser...

Congressional Republicans Set Sights On Homeowners, Elizabeth Warren As Split Emerges with State GOP

Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2011

WASHINGTON -- As state and federal officials near an agreement with the nation's largest financial firms to settle allegations of abusive foreclosure practices, top Republicans in Congress are aggressively disputing their authority, decrying the possibility of expensive penalties against banks and q...

Bank Lobby Splinters On CFPB Ahead Of Director Confirmation Deadline

Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2011

WASHINGTON -- A rift is emerging among bank lobbyists over the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau as the deadline approaches for President Barack Obama to nominate a permanent director for the nascent agency. A Tuesday letter urging greater deliberation and care in adopting new regulations th...

Did Obama Break His Pledge to Force Banks to Help Homeowners?

Posted on Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Has Obama broken his pledge to help struggling homeowners facing the threat of foreclosure? ProPublica has a lengthy article out examining the ways that the Obama administration has failed to come through when it came to changing bankruptcy laws and forcing banks to modify mortgages. On the ca...

B.E. Exclusive: Interview with Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner

Posted on Monday, February 07, 2011

When President Obama delivered his second State of the Union [2] address to the American people last week, he boldly proclaimed his plan to “win the future” by making investments in industrial innovation, education and infrastructure. As he charged the nation to “out-innovate, out-educate and out-b...

2011 STATE OF THE INDUSTRY MEETING

Posted on Friday, February 04, 2011

U.S. Real Estate, Congressional Leaders Gather in Washington to Discuss Key Policy Challenges — and Prospects for Bipartisan Solutions; Accelerated Job Creation, Reduced Regulatory and Accounting Burdens are Key to Broader, Sustained Recovery in Real Estate Markets Coming on the heels of the Pre...

UNEMPLOYMENT - Job Creation Tops Obama’s State of the Union

Posted on Friday, February 04, 2011

In his State of the Union address Tuesday night, President Barack Obama made scant reference to housing and no mention of the mortgage interest deduction. That was probably a wise move on his part — not only because most Americans favor the deduction and there’s speculation (but no evidence that I...

A Look Back At Failed Presidential Promises On The Economy

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

When it comes to job growth, has President Barack Obama kept all the promises he's made to the American people? Will he be able to keep the promises he will surely make Tuesday evening, in his latest State of the Union speech? If he hasn't, he's at least in good company. A review of presidential pr...

SOTU Address: The Real Story of Obama and Corporate America

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

The president isn’t caving to business. He’s co-opting it. I’ll admit it: I was worried when the president named Bill Daley as his second chief of staff. True, Daley was a loyal Democrat long before he was a bank executive. But I couldn’t shake the feeling that the White House was giving in to mo...

In the GOP's budget, a surplus of spite

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

POLITICS – Despite what you might have heard, the coming battle on Capitol Hill is not really about "government spending" in the abstract. It's about two radically different visions of how money should be spent. Republicans who feign attacks of the vapors and fainting spells over the big, scary ...

State of the Union 2011: 'Win the future,' Obama says

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

FEDERAL GOVERNMENT - President Obama sought to rouse the nation from complacency in his State of the Union address Tuesday, urging innovation and budget reforms that he said are vital to keep the United States a leader in an increasingly competitive world. "Sustaining the American dream has neve...

At the State of the Union, a spirit of camaraderie, at least for a while

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

POLITICS - As bright lights illuminated the House chamber Tuesday for the annual rite of Washington officialdom, the trauma surgeon and the congressional intern who saved the life of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords 17 days earlier joined the first lady in the gallery. Down below, a single seat in a sea of b...

State of the Union 'response' often a mixed-blessing for the responder

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

POLITICS - Two House Republicans offered back-to-back responses to the State of the Union address Tuesday night - both bashing President Obama for ballooning government budgets but offering few specifics for solving the problem. The first came from Rep. Paul Ryan (Wis.), who offered the GOP's of...

POLITICS - Reactions to Obama's speech

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

Reactions from across the political spectrum "Parts of his speech were contradictory in that he seemed to be calling for a lot of new spending and at the same time calling for a freeze." - Sen. Susan M. Collins (R-Maine) "Tonight's speech should have been called a State of the Stimulus, and...

Obama's State of the Union feels comfortably traditional in the age of info overload

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

POLITICS - As a function of the times we live in, Tuesday night's State of the Union address and the traditional theatrics that accompany it (Purple necktie? Lavender? "Or am I colorblind, Candy Crowley?" Wolf Blitzer pleaded to his CNN colleague upon first glimpsing President Obama's tie) are now t...

State of the Union

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

POLITICS - PRESIDENT OBAMA entered office promising to be a different kind of politician - one who would speak honestly with the American people about the hard choices they face and who would help make those hard calls. Tuesday night's State of the Union Address would have been the moment to make go...

The Fact Checker: Obama's 2011 State of the Union address

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

POLITICS - "I'm willing to look at other ideas to bring down [health-care] costs, including one that Republicans suggested last year: medical malpractice reform to rein in frivolous lawsuits." Since his time in the Senate, President Obama has favored certain ways of trying to lower costs related t...

Michele Bachmann delivers tea-party response to State of the Union

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

POLITICS - Minnesota Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann delivered her own rebuttal of President Obama's State of the Union address following the Republican Party's official response, which was delivered by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.). In her brief remarks, which were streamed online and also aired by...

State of the Union 2011: Grousing from oil, enviro lobbyists suggests Obama found center

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

POLITICS - If President Obama was looking for the political (or policy) center in his State of the Union address, there was an early sign that he may have succeeded - with rumblings of dissatisfaction coming quickly Tuesday night from environmentalists and oil lobbyists alike. On one side, oil al...

State of the Union 2011: reactions

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

POLITICS - We're gathering reactions to President Obama's State of the Union address from across the political spectrum. Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Tx.) on MSNBC's "Morning Joe": Obama's speech, while patriotic, "was combined with some very small, old, recycled ideas." Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md...

First thoughts on President Obama's State of the Union Speech

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

POLITICS - President Obama's second State of the Union address is in the books. Let the analysis begin! Our first -- but surely not last -- thoughts on the speech are below. What did you think? Make sure to take our user poll at the end of this post! * America the Exceptional: While the buzzword...

Lots of vision, but few policy specifics

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

POLITICS - At more than 6,000 words, there was a lot in tonight's State of the Union. The bulk of it was a vision of what American economic policy should be pointed towards in the years to come: A country that has a better educated workforce, a more sophisticated infrastructure, and a more innovat...

The Economic State of the Nation Is Not Good

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

POLITICS - The economic state of the nation is not good. The President will surely address this fact in his State of the Union address. Unfortunately he faces three big impediments which limit the actions he can take: political opposition, the budget, and the limited tools available to any President...

MEMORANDUM FOR NEW MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

Stanford, California Sunday, January 16, 2011 1 I work as a Research Fellow at the Hoover Institution and a Lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. I served President George W. Bush as Director and Deputy Director of the National Economic Council. I write about American econom...

In the GOP's budget, a surplus of spite

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Despite what you might have heard, the coming battle on Capitol Hill is not really about "government spending" in the abstract. It's about two radically different visions of how money should be spent. Republicans who feign attacks of the vapors and fainting spells over the big, scary deficit would...

At the State of the Union, a spirit of camaraderie, at least for a while

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

As bright lights illuminated the House chamber Tuesday for the annual rite of Washington officialdom, the trauma surgeon and the congressional intern who saved the life of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords 17 days earlier joined the first lady in the gallery. Down below, a single seat in a sea of brown leathe...

State of the Union 'response' often a mixed-blessing for the responder

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Two House Republicans offered back-to-back responses to the State of the Union address Tuesday night - both bashing President Obama for ballooning government budgets but offering few specifics for solving the problem. The first came from Rep. Paul Ryan (Wis.), who offered the GOP's official respon...

Reactions to Obama's speech

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Reactions from across the political spectrum "Parts of his speech were contradictory in that he seemed to be calling for a lot of new spending and at the same time calling for a freeze." - Sen. Susan M. Collins (R-Maine) "Tonight's speech should have been called a State of the Stimulus, and the...

Obama's State of the Union feels comfortably traditional in the age of info overload

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

As a function of the times we live in, Tuesday night's State of the Union address and the traditional theatrics that accompany it (Purple necktie? Lavender? "Or am I colorblind, Candy Crowley?" Wolf Blitzer pleaded to his CNN colleague upon first glimpsing President Obama's tie) are now tweeted, dis...

State of the Union: John Boehner adviser David Winston reacts

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

David Winston, Republican strategist and adviser to Speaker of the House John Boehner, will be online Wednesday, Jan. 26, at 1 p.m. ET to discuss reaction to President Obama's State of the Union address. I. The Discussion David Winston here - a Republican Strategist - to take your questions about...

State of the Union: Democratic strategist Jamal Simmons reacts

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Discussion Jamal Simmons is a Democratic strategist and principal at the Raben Group, a legal and public policy consulting firm. XVI. JAMAL SIMMONS : Thank you to the Washington Post for having me here. Surprise! I thought the President did a great job last night. I've been saying for months ...

State of the Union

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

PRESIDENT OBAMA entered office promising to be a different kind of politician - one who would speak honestly with the American people about the hard choices they face and who would help make those hard calls. Tuesday night's State of the Union Address would have been the moment to make good on that ...

The Fact Checker: Obama's 2011 State of the Union address

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

"I'm willing to look at other ideas to bring down [health-care] costs, including one that Republicans suggested last year: medical malpractice reform to rein in frivolous lawsuits." Since his time in the Senate, President Obama has favored certain ways of trying to lower costs related to malpracti...

Michele Bachmann delivers tea-party response to State of the Union

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Minnesota Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann delivered her own rebuttal of President Obama's State of the Union address following the Republican Party's official response, which was delivered by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.). In her brief remarks, which were streamed online and also aired by CNN, Bachmann ...

State of the Union 2011: Grousing from oil, enviro lobbyists suggests Obama found center

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

If President Obama was looking for the political (or policy) center in his State of the Union address, there was an early sign that he may have succeeded - with rumblings of dissatisfaction coming quickly Tuesday night from environmentalists and oil lobbyists alike. On one side, oil allies were mif...

State of the Union 2011: reactions

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

We're gathering reactions to President Obama's State of the Union address from across the political spectrum. Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Tx.) on MSNBC's "Morning Joe": Obama's speech, while patriotic, "was combined with some very small, old, recycled ideas." Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) on MSNBC's "...

First thoughts on President Obama's State of the Union Speech

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

President Obama's second State of the Union address is in the books. Let the analysis begin! Our first -- but surely not last -- thoughts on the speech are below. What did you think? Make sure to take our user poll at the end of this post! * America the Exceptional: While the buzzwords of Obama's ...

Lots of vision, but few policy specifics

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

At more than 6,000 words, there was a lot in tonight's State of the Union. The bulk of it was a vision of what American economic policy should be pointed towards in the years to come: A country that has a better educated workforce, a more sophisticated infrastructure, and a more innovative economy t...

The Economic State of the Nation Is Not Good

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The economic state of the nation is not good. The President will surely address this fact in his State of the Union address. Unfortunately he faces three big impediments which limit the actions he can take: political opposition, the budget, and the limited tools available to any President. He faces ...

State of the Union 2011: Addressing a Divided Congress

Posted on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

President Obama delivered his State of the Union address to a divided Congress on January 25, turning the constructive agreements reached during the lame duck session last month, and appeals for civil discourse in the aftermath of the Tucson shootings, into broader policy overtures for the year ahea...

Obama's Bogus Explanation For Troubles: Too Much Regulation

Posted on Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Two years after inheriting the worst economic disaster since the Great Depression, President Barack Obama has settled on an unhelpful new explanation for his failure to restore jobs: A surplus of suffocating regulations. In an op-ed published in Tuesday's Wall Street Journal, the president decries ...

The Return to Fiscal Sanity Began in 2010—Or Did It?

Posted on Thursday, January 13, 2011

DECEMBER 28, 2010 — Historians of our era may describe 2010 as the year Americans finally woke up to the fact that their federal budget was on a dangerous course, hurtling toward a debt crisis that threatens American prosperity and international leadership. They may, but we won’t know until we see...

Gene Sperling, Leading NEC Director Candidate, Made Millions On Wall Street As Economy Tanked

Posted on Thursday, December 23, 2010

Gene Sperling, a leading contender for a top economic post in the White House, made millions on Wall Street even as the economy faltered. The adviser to Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner is near the top of President Barack Obama's list of candidates to replace Larry Summers as director of the Nationa...

Dood Frank is Great But Wheres the Money

Posted on Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Senate Republicans last week successfully defeated an omnibus spending bill that would have funded the government through the end of the current fiscal year (October 2011). To avoid a government shutdown, the new plan is to pass a continuing resolution that funds the government at the current level ...

Wall Street Whitewash

Posted on Monday, December 20, 2010

When the financial crisis struck, many people — myself included — considered it a teachable moment. Above all, we expected the crisis to remind everyone why banks need to be effectively regulated. How naïve we were. We should have realized that the modern Republican Party is utterly dedicated to t...

When it comes to politics, Obama's ego keeps getting in the way

Posted on Monday, December 20, 2010

The tax deal is reasonable policy, supported by majorities of Republicans, Democrats and independents - an easy sell by presidential standards. And still President Obama managed to blow the politics of the thing. Rather than explaining the economic benefits of the bill and taking quiet credit for ...

Republican Split, Democratic Opportunity

Posted on Friday, December 17, 2010

Simon Johnson, the former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund, is the co-author of “13 Bankers.” An informative and potentially productive political debate has broken out over fiscal policy. But it is not between Democrats and Republicans — the leadership on both sides of the aisle...

Financial Crisis Panel In Turmoil As Republicans Defect; Plan To Blame Government For Crisis

Posted on Friday, December 17, 2010

The four Republicans appointed to the commission investigating the root causes of the financial crisis plan to bypass the bipartisan panel and release their own report Wednesday, according to people familiar with the commission's work. The Republicans, led by the commission's vice chairman, former ...

G.O.P. Panelists Dissent on Cause of Crisis

Posted on Friday, December 17, 2010

WASHINGTON — The Republican members of the commission appointed by Congress to investigate the causes of the financial crisis plan to release on Wednesday a document that assigns government housing policies substantial blame for the origins of the 2008 financial crisis. The release of the 13-pag...

Housing agencies clash over mortgage-relief program

Posted on Friday, December 10, 2010

The top federal agencies responsible for setting housing policy are clashing over a new program designed to help borrowers whose homes are worth less than they owe on their mortgages, according to industry and government sources. The Federal Housing Administration says the program could avert fore...

U.S. Senate Hearing Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship: "Small Business Access to Capi

Posted on Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Introduction Chairwomen Landrieu, Ranking Member Snowe, and members of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, thank you for inviting me to testify today. My name is Dan Sight, and I have been a REALTOR® for 25 years. I am Vice President and Broker for Reece Commercial in K...

National Fiscal Hypocrisy Week

Posted on Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Welcome to National Fiscal Hypocrisy Week. Today (Monday), Congress takes up a measure delaying by one month a scheduled 23 percent cut in federal reimbursements to doctors. The cut will automatically go into effect unless Congress acts. But of course Congress will act. Doctors threaten to drop Med...

The Economics and Politics of Elizabeth Warren

Posted on Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Congressional Republicans are apparently intent on a big showdown with Elizabeth Warren, who is currently building up the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). This is very good news for the White House, if they use this opportunity wisely. Some Republicans seem to think that Ms. Warren...

Foreclosure Hearings Show Homeowners Who in Washington Cares

Posted on Wednesday, December 01, 2010

I know that even as I write this, no amount of proof or testimony from experts will stop seemingly sanctimonious, self-righteous ignoramuses from making comments about deadbeat homeowners who caused the entire economic meltdown because they simply didn't want to pay their bills. I recently wrote a ...

Deadlines loom, but a gridlocked government may not be able to act

Posted on Thursday, November 11, 2010

WALL STREET wisdom holds that political gridlock is good for the economy. When Democrats and Republicans are busy quarrelling, the theory goes, they have less time to tie up business in red tape or to bust the budget. That wisdom is about to be tested. On October 29th the government reported that ...

Republicans map out their agenda of less

Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010

Republicans are mapping an agenda for the new Congress that calls for a radical reduction in government spending, a hard-line stance against new taxes and a "sustained" battle against federal regulators - all aimed at easing the concerns of voters desperate for jobs and anxious about the soaring nat...

The Republican Recipe for an Anemic Economy Through Election Day 2012

Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010

The real message from voters was "Fix this stinking economy." But Republicans have no intention of doing so. With Republicans in control of the House, forget spending increases or tax cuts to stimulate the economy. Republicans don't believe in stimulating economies. They think markets eventually c...

How The Midterm Election Could Affect Business

Posted on Thursday, November 04, 2010

Depending on whom you ask, tonight's election will or will not affect the stock market. And depending on whom you ask, it will or will not help business. The consensus seems to be that it will dampen, rather than boost, markets. But some think that even if markets don't perform well, the anticipate...

Financial Leaders Expect Shift of Power After Elections

Posted on Tuesday, November 02, 2010

The most powerful executives in the banking industry didn’t go to the government. The government came to them. Ben S. Bernanke, the chairman of the Federal Reserve; Timothy F. Geithner, the Treasury secretary; and regulators like Mary L. Schapiro of the Securities and Exchange Commission and Gar...

GOP Pledge

Posted on Monday, November 01, 2010

A PLEDGE TO AMERICA We as Republicans offer the following: A PLAN TO CREATE JOBS, END ECONOMIC UNCERTAINTY & MAKE AMERICA MORE COMPETITIVE • We will end the uncertainty and create incentives for job growth with a plan to: o Permanently stop all job-killing tax hikes o Give small businesses a...

Election Looms Large for Real Estate Industry

Posted on Friday, October 29, 2010

COSTA MESA, CA-Like the national midterm elections that GlobeSt.com reported on recently for their potential impact on the commercial real estate industry, California’s statewide election Nov. 2 could have far-reaching effects on the industry. From the governor’s race to ballot propositions, the ele...

Federal Auditor Says Obama's Anti-Foreclosure Effort Risks 'Generating Public Anger And Mistrust'

Posted on Friday, October 29, 2010

The Obama administration's signature anti-foreclosure effort, unveiled in 2009 with the promise of helping three to four million homeowners modify their mortgages, is such a failure that it now risks "generating public anger and mistrust," according to a federal audit released Monday. Far from help...

Lobbying

Posted on Friday, October 22, 2010

The 10 biggest banks in the U.S. spent almost $11 million lobbying the government on financial reform legislation and other issues during the third quarter of 2010, according to the latest disclosure reports. And though the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill was signed into law by President Obama on ...

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