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Before it's too late, stop the TTA's misguided commuter rail project
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Press Release

Before it's too late, stop the TTA's misguided commuter rail project

This letter to the editor appeared in the Raleigh News & Observer on January, 17, 2003

01/17/2003
Pelosi brings pedigree to new post as Congress' most powerful woman
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Pelosi brings pedigree to new post as Congress' most powerful woman

BY JUSTIN PRITCHARD

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Nancy Pelosi loves old maps - graphic testimony to the spirit of exploration, faded images of what was known and unknown. "Maps are about the places and the geography and the Earth, but they're also about how people saw the world and the courage it took for them to go places," she says. "What we want to do in politics is blaze trails and not just follow paths."

01/16/2003
U.S., Singapore Wrap Up Free-Trade Deal
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U.S., Singapore Wrap Up Free-Trade Deal

The Bush administration announced Wednesday it had cleared away the last hurdle to a free-trade agreement with Singapore, wrapping up the deal a month after a similar one with Chile, the Associated Press reported. Administration officials said a final round of telephone negotiations between Treasury Undersecretary John Taylor and Koh Yong Guan, managing director of Singapore's monetary authority, resolved the lone sticking point: treatment of capital flows during periods of financial crises. Under the deal, Singapore may impose capital controls if it deems them necessary, but U.S. investors may file claims to recoup any investments trapped in Singapore. The administration hopes to use agreements with Chile, Singapore and other countries to give momentum to the negotiations on even bigger prizes: a deal covering all countries except Cuba in the Western Hemisphere, and new global trade talks covering the 144 nations in the World Trade Organization. The deal with Singapore would wipe out tariffs and other trade barriers on about $33 billion in merchandise trade between the two nations. It also would give U.S. banks and service companies more access to one of Asia's main financial centers. Meanwhile, President Bush, who has tried to lure organized labor into the Republicans' political camp, Wednesday named Teamsters' President James Hoffa to an administration advisory panel on trade. Bush also named Paul Beckner, president of Citizens for a Sound Economy, a group that advocates lower taxes and less government, to a two-year term on the Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations.

01/16/2003
Capital Comment for January 16, 2003
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Capital Comment for January 16, 2003

BY United Press International

Capital Comment -- Daily news notes, political rumors, and important events that shape politics and public policy in Washington and the world from United Press International. Hitting the ground running... The presidential campaign of Massachusetts Sen. John F. Kerry is off to a fast start. Moments before President George W. Bush was due to make an official statement of administration policy on the University of Michigan affirmative action case, Kerry's campaign released a strongly worded statement critical of Bush. "In their first significant opportunity to show a more inclusive side of the Republican Party, the Bush administration has decided to intervene and try to undermine Michigan's efforts. The Bush administration continues a disturbing pattern of using the rhetoric of diversity as a substitute for real progress on a civil rights agenda," Kerry's statement read. Bush announced that his administration would be filing a brief in support of the plaintiffs' contention that the University of Michigan unfairly considers the race of applicants in making decisions as to who will be admitted.

01/16/2003
CSE to Gov. Wise: ‘Canadian-Style Health Care Isn’t the Answer’
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Press Release

CSE to Gov. Wise: ‘Canadian-Style Health Care Isn’t the Answer’

Faced with a Medicaid-driven budget crisis, Governor Bob Wise is demanding “Canadian prices” on pharmaceuticals sold in West Virginia. Yet, if Governor Wise looked further at the Canadian system, he’d realize that Canadian-style health care is a prescription for disaster. That’s why Citizens for a Sound Economy (CSE) on Friday is kicking off a statewide education campaign to stop Gov. Wise’s plans. As part of its campaign, CSE is launching a series of radio ads across the state and sending “Canadian Healthcare First Aid Kits” to state legislators and the Governor.

01/16/2003
U.S., Singapore Wrap Up Free-Trade Deal
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U.S., Singapore Wrap Up Free-Trade Deal

The Bush administration announced Wednesday it had cleared away the last hurdle to a free-trade agreement with Singapore, wrapping up the deal a month after a similar one with Chile, the Associated Press reported. Administration officials said a final round of telephone negotiations between Treasury Undersecretary John Taylor and Koh Yong Guan, managing director of Singapore's monetary authority, resolved the lone sticking point: treatment of capital flows during periods of financial crises. Under the deal, Singapore may impose capital controls if it deems them necessary, but U.S. investors may file claims to recoup any investments trapped in Singapore. The administration hopes to use agreements with Chile, Singapore and other countries to give momentum to the negotiations on even bigger prizes: a deal covering all countries except Cuba in the Western Hemisphere, and new global trade talks covering the 144 nations in the World Trade Organization. The deal with Singapore would wipe out tariffs and other trade barriers on about $33 billion in merchandise trade between the two nations. It also would give U.S. banks and service companies more access to one of Asia's main financial centers. Meanwhile, President Bush, who has tried to lure organized labor into the Republicans' political camp, Wednesday named Teamsters' President James Hoffa to an administration advisory panel on trade. Bush also named Paul Beckner, president of Citizens for a Sound Economy, a group that advocates lower taxes and less government, to a two-year term on the Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations.

01/16/2003
UPI's Capital Comment
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UPI's Capital Comment

Capital Comment -- Daily news notes, political rumors, and important events that shape politics and public policy in Washington and the world from United Press International. Hitting the ground running... The presidential campaign of Massachusetts Sen. John F. Kerry is off to a fast start. Moments before President George W. Bush was due to make an official statement of administration policy on the University of Michigan affirmative action case, Kerry's campaign released a strongly worded statement critical of Bush. "In their first significant opportunity to show a more inclusive side of the Republican Party, the Bush administration has decided to intervene and try to undermine Michigan's efforts. The Bush administration continues a disturbing pattern of using the rhetoric of diversity as a substitute for real progress on a civil rights agenda," Kerry's statement read. Bush announced that his administration would be filing a brief in support of the plaintiffs' contention that the University of Michigan unfairly considers the race of applicants in making decisions as to who will be admitted.

01/16/2003
Bush Names Teamster Leader to Trade Panel
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Bush Names Teamster Leader to Trade Panel

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Bush, who has tried to woo organized labor into the Republicans' political camp, on Wednesday named Teamsters President James P. Hoffa to an administration advisory panel on trade. Bush also named Paul Beckner, president of the conservative Citizens for a Sound Economy, a group that advocates lower taxes and less government, to a two-year term on the Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations.

01/15/2003
Bush names Teamsters leaders to advisory panel on trade
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Bush names Teamsters leaders to advisory panel on trade

President Bush, who has tried to woo organized labor into the Republicans' political camp, on Wednesday named Teamsters President James P. Hoffa to an administration advisory panel on trade. Bush also named Paul Beckner, president of the conservative Citizens for a Sound Economy, a group that advocates lower taxes and less government, to a two-year term on the Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations. The large panel is made up of industry and labor leaders who give advice to U.S. negotiators as they pursue new trade agreements with other nations. The White House has made reaching out to organized labor, traditionally allied with Democrats, a priority. The Teamsters and the United Brotherhood of Carpenters are among a handful of conservative-leaning unions that Bush and his advisers have targeted since taking office almost two years ago. Hoffa, for instance, was a guest of honor at Bush's State of the Union speech last year and worked with the White House on efforts in Congress to open an Alaskan wildlife refuge to oil drilling.

01/15/2003
State of the State: Taxpayer protest targets demonstrating teachers
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State of the State: Taxpayer protest targets demonstrating teachers

BY DON JENKINS

OLYMPIA -- Thousands of rallying teachers provided the backdrop and a foil Monday for speakers at a taxpayer protest that drew a couple of hundred. "It's a shame you can't have a crowd like that for a taxpayer-appreciation day. The thing about taxpayers is they're busy making a living," needled David Boze, a conservative talk-show host on a Seattle radio station. The Evergreen Freedom Foundation and Citizens for a Sound Economy organized the no-tax-increase rally, which not coincidentally occurred at the same time as the Washington Education Association's "Day of Action." The two demonstrations, separated by a four-lane street, created a festive atmosphere on the Legislature's second day in session. The regional director of Citizens for a Sound Economy, Russell Walker, told tax protesters that they were taking part in an "American tradition ... of engaging in the process to change public policy." He characterized the teacher rally as a "circus." Other speakers at the taxpayer rally complained that government has made Washington a bad place for businesses. They also ripped the teachers' union. "Their union leadership is all about power," said EFF President Bob Williams, a former state legislator from Longview and the WEA's arch critic. Five legislators spoke at the taxpayer rally, including 17th District Rep. Marc Boldt, R-Hockinson. Later, Boldt said the teachers' protest won't influence lawmakers. "To tell you the truth, most of the teachers were misled by the union that something was going to get accomplished," he said. The teachers should have waited for legislators to settle into a routine, he said. "None of the freshmen know where the bathrooms are. They're trying to get their offices and committees in order," he said. "I think if (teachers) had waited a week or two, it probably would have changed, but today, I don't see any good." Marvin Karlsen, 75, of Brush Prairie, said he came to protest against taxes and as a counterdemonstration to the teachers. "I resent the fact that in the climate we're in now, they have the audacity to want more money," Karlsen said. Woodland Truck Lines owner Darlene Johnson said she came because of what she described as business-unfriendly policies by the state. "All manufacturing is going down in this state. Well, we haul for manufacturing," she said. "I didn't even know (the teachers) were coming, but our education system needs to be revamped. We pay more and more and we get less," Johnson said. "They want more taxes so they can fund education -- give me a break." Several speakers alluded to teachers taking the day off to rally instead of teach. "I really hate to see teachers strike; it drives me crazy," said Rep. John Ahern, R-Spokane.

01/15/2003

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