Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents arrested 286 illegal immigrants with criminal records during a three-day operation in California. It was the largest crackdown of this kind ever carried out by federal authorities.
Just as it seemed that recalcitrant receiver Senator Joe Lieberman caught President Barack Obama’s last minute healthcare Hail Mary pass, Howard Dean may have rushed in at the last moment and broken up the play. Replay officials will now have to decide whether Lieberman bobbled the ball or whether Howard Dean’s hit was too little too late and the healthcare legislation will score after all.
The IRS has announced that it will be forming a new unit to focus on the very wealthy, particularly the wealthy who have complex business organizations and international operations. This new unit will focus on trusts, real estate, privately held businesses and other business entities controlled by the rich.
Computer experts have reportedly found 22 million White House e-mails from the years President George W. Bush was in office, while the Obama administration is still searching for more of the Bush administration’s “lost” e-mail.
In what has been described as a last-ditch effort to save the healthcare overhaul that is first on his Christmas wish list, President Barack Obama has summoned all 60 members of the Senate’s Democratic caucus to the White House on Tuesday for an 11th-hour pep talk in anticipation of an impending vote on the Senate’s version of a bill that would alter the healthcare industry by changing Medicare, offering long-term care to retirees and the disabled, and creating a government-subsidized and administered panoply of health insurance policies.
The Obama administration announced plans on December 15 to acquire the Thomson Correctional Center in Thomson, Illinois, to house terrorism suspects currently being held at the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, which now houses about 200 inmates. Officials explained that President Obama ordered the federal government to acquire the correctional center — located about 150 miles northwest of Chicago — as part of efforts to close Guantanamo.
Despite dedicating five minutes of his recent 20-minute presentation at the Media Access Project forum to decrying the “right-wing smear campaign” he claims to be the target of, FCC Chief Diversity Office and Associate Counsel at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Mark Lloyd assured attendees that he was not carrying out “a secret plot funded by George Soros” to eliminate conservative talk-show voices such as Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck.
Former House Majority Leader Dick Armey, one of the architects of the Republican victory in 1994, has urged his fellow Republicans to pay closer attention to the Constitution. In an interview with CBS News, Armey said that Republicans did not need to worry as much as ideology as they did to be dutiful. Congressman Armey noted that every member of Congress takes an oath to uphold the Constitution. Duty, Armey reiterated, is different from ideology or philosophy of government. He did not leave out free spending by Republican controlled congresses from his scolding.
“The Bush administration constructed a legal framework for torture, but the Obama administration is constructing a legal framework for impunity,” the American Civil Liberties Union said in a post originally published on the leftist DailyKos blogsite.
The Senate on December 13 passed a mammoth omnibus spending bill variously described as costing $447 billion or $1.1 trillion, depending on whether "mandatory" spending for programs such as Medicare and Social Security were included in the tabulation. The Senate vote completed congressional action, sending the legislation to the President for his signature. Dozens of federal agencies received average budget increases of 10 percent.