Military Members Were Among the Worst Victims of Fraudulent Practices of Wall Street Banks – In 2010, more than 20,000 active-duty veterans and reservists with government-sponsored mortgages lost their homes, a 32-percent increase from 2008 and the largest loss since 2003. The number could have been worse were it not for Veterans Administration programs that helped 66,000 military families avoid foreclosure in 2010. Even worse, military members are often victims of foreclosure fraud. In November, federal regulators released data showing that more than 5,000 military members may have been illegally foreclosed upon by the nation’s 10 largest banks, and veterans continue to battle banks to stay in their homes on a daily basis.
President Obama outlined a plan to assist struggling homeowners and address improper foreclosures at a press briefing on March 10th, where he called it “unconscionable” that military members were among the worst victims of the foreclosure crisis and the fraudulent practices from Wall Street banks that have occurred during it. The plan, which requires no Congressional action, will reduce refinancing fees for homeowners with government-backed loans, but the plan’s major focus was on helping military veterans who were the victims of foreclosure fraud, predatory mortgage practices, and other improper foreclosures.
Right Wingers Attack Innovative $50 Light Bulb Because They Can’t Do Basic Math – One of the strangest phenomena of modern-day politics is the right-wing antagonism toward American clean-energy manufacturing, a consequence of the fossil-fuel industry’s stranglehold on our nation’s conservatives. The right wing misinformation machine, including the Drudge Report, Machelle Malkin, and others, attacked the LED light bulb as something ” people either can’t afford or won’t want.” The bulbs are assembled in Wisconsin with computer chips made in California, with high-efficiency natural-color light. The lifetime cost of one bulb, including electricity, is $80, whereas the cost of traditional bulbs over the same period of time is $210. Rising electricity costs would make the LED bulb even more advantageous.
Republicans Vote Against American Labor, American Manufacturing, and Energy for the U.S. – Democrat Ed Markey offered an amendment to to the Transportation bill, to “ensure that if the Keystone XL pipeline is built, the oil that it transports to the Gulf of Mexico and the fuels made from that oil remain in this country to benefit Americans.” The amendment also would require the pipeline to be built by American labor using American iron and steel. 230 Republicans voted against this amendment, defeating it.
Kansas Considers Bill to Allow Doctors to Lie to Women About Unborn Baby’s Condition – The “let doctors lie” provision of a new Kansas anti-abortion bill would give legal protection to a doctor who discovers that a baby will be born with a devastating condition and deliberately withholds that information from his patient.
At Least 48 Million Could Become Uninsured Under Republican Paul Ryan’s Budget – Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) new budget eliminates $1.5 trillion from the Affordable Care Act, cuts $770 billion from Medicaid and reduces Medicare spending by $200 billion, which could result in at least 48 million Americans losing their health insurance.
Republican House of Representatives Scandals: – (One for Every Month)
- Jan 2011 – Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick and Rep. Pete Sessions skipped their oath of office to improperly host a fundraiser in the U.S. Capitol.
- Feb 2011 – Congressional investigators allege Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon received a preferential loan not available to ordinary borrowers.
- Mar 2011 – Rep. Scott Tipton may have violated House Ethics rules three times as a freshman Member of Congress.
- Apr 2011 – Reports indicate that the FBI may be investigating Rep. Gary Miller for tax evasion.
- May 2011 – Rep. Frank Guinta “forgot” to disclose a “mystery” bank account worth as much as $500,000.
- June 2011 – Rep. Charlie Bass may have improperly used his office to promote a tax rebate program that would have benefited a family member’s company.
- July 2011 – Rep. Stephen Fincher violated campaign finance law.
- Aug 2011 – The New York Times took Rep. Darrell Issa to task for using his public office for personal gain.
- Sep 2011 – Rep. Joe Walsh may owe more than $100,000 in child support payments to his ex-wife and three children.
- Oct 2011 – Rep. David Rivera is under simultaneous state and federal investigations for his involvement promoting slot machines and a contract awarded to a company controlled by his mother.
- Nov 2011 – Karl Rove’s protégé, Rep. Tim Griffin, led an effort to suppress African American voter turnout and was intimately involved in the firings of nonpartisan U.S. attorneys for nefarious political reasons.
- Dec 2011 – Rep. Pete Sessions may be under a House Ethics Committee investigation for receiving a preferential loan not available to ordinary borrowers.
- Jan 2012 – House Republican fundraising chief, Rep. Vern Buchanan, is under multiple ethics investigations for what has been termed an “extensive and ongoing scheme” to reimburse his employees for contributing to Buchanan’s congressional campaign.
- Feb 2012 – The FBI is potentially investigating Rep. Michael Grimm for extorting as much as $500,000 worth of campaign contributions from a rabbi and his followers.
- Mar 2012 – Rep. Mary Bono Mack and her husband are being investigated for potentially cheating on their taxes.