Poll: Voters Doubt Presidential Power Over Economy

Jun 25, 2012, 1:53 pm EST

As the presidential race ramps up to full campaign frenzy, both President Barack Obama and presumptive GOP standard bearer Mitt Romney are touting their plans to jump-start the stalled U.S. economy — while denouncing each other at the same time.

According to a new poll, they needn’t bother. At least half of Americans don’t think the president – any president – can fix the economy.

A telephone survey of 1,007 adults conducted by GfK Roper Public Affairs and Corporate Communications for the Associated Press found that about 50% of respondents think the president has little or no control over the economy. Read 

Obamacare Taxes Will Wreck the Economy and Your Portfolio

Jun 25, 2012, 1:29 pm EST
Obamacare Taxes Will Wreck the Economy and Your Portfolio

This article isn’t about whether Obamacare is good or bad for the nation’s health care crisis. It’s about the heavy load of taxes that will hit Americans if the Affordable Care Act doesn’t get repealed or overturned. The bottom line is that these taxes are going to be really, really bad for the economy and for your portfolio. Here’s a look at how just a few of them will cause pain.

The first tax is a surtax on investment income. Beginning next year, long-term capital gains would be taxed at 23.8% instead of 15%. Dividends would be taxed at 43.4% instead of 15%, as would short-term capital gains. These tax hike apply to households making more than $250,000 and individuals making more than $200,000.

The hike in the dividend rate is especially troubling. Many investors put funds into stocks that pay dividends because these companies are generally large global brand names that are considered relatively safe. The dividends provide an extra measure of safety, particularly against inflation. Many older Americans rely on dividend and other income investing as a way to make up for the losses inflicted by inflation. Read 

Massachusetts Super PAC Misspells State’s Name

Jun 25, 2012, 11:32 am EST
Massachusetts Super PAC Misspells State’s Name

A super PAC aimed at supporting Republican congressional challengers in Massachusetts had to file an amended Federal Election Commission report earlier this month to fix a spelling error — they misspelled the state in the group’s name.

Massachusetts Forward, Inc., originally created in May, first spelled Massachusetts with one “T” and five “S’s”. The amended report to fix the typo was filed on June 12.

With the agreement between Republican Senator Scott Brown and Democratic challenger Elizabeth Warren not to accept outside spending on the race, Massachusetts Forward, Inc. is likely targeting the most competitive congressional race in Massachusetts this year, between Democratic Rep. John Tierney and GOP opponent Richard Tisei. Read 

Running for Senate Will Cost You $6.4M

Jun 24, 2012, 5:40 pm EST
Running for Senate Will Cost You $6.4M

Running for Senate takes charisma, moxie, and a good campaign staff. It also requires good fundraising skills – or multimillionaire status.

An infographic from Good magazine, drawing on data from Maplight, found that the average senator raised $6.4 million in the two years prior to taking office. This works out to about $8,700 a day.

Running for a seat in the House will also set you back seven figures. The average House member raised $1.2 million in the two years prior to being elected, or $1,700 a day. Read 

Commerce Secretary Resigns After Hit-and-Run Accidents

Jun 21, 2012, 5:34 pm EST
Commerce Secretary Resigns After Hit-and-Run Accidents

Twelve days after being involved in a series of hit-and-run accidents and found in his car unconscious, Commerce Secretary John Bryson has resigned.

The announcement was made today by Bryson in a message sent to department employees. It read, in part:

“The work that you do to help America’s entrepreneurs and businesses build our economy and create jobs is more important now than ever, and I have come to the conclusion that I need to step down to prevent distractions from this critical mission.” Read 

Romney Emphatic About Rubio Having a Spot on VP Short List

Jun 20, 2012, 1:30 pm EST
Romney Emphatic About Rubio Having a Spot on VP Short List

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney Tuesday called reports from unnamed advisers that he is not considering Florida Senator Marco Rubio as a potential running mate “entirely false.”

“I can’t imagine who such people are, but I can tell you this: They know nothing about the vice presidential selection or evaluation process,” Romney told reporters Tuesday evening. “The story was entirely false. Marco Rubio is being thoroughly vetted as part of our process.”

Romney told Fox News that only he and long-time adviser Beth Myers know who is being seriously considered for the VP role. He said that not even his wife Ann Romney has been involved in the latest discussions concerning his potential No.2 pick. Read 

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