Who do you think is most to blame for the fiscal impasse?

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    40 %
    411 votes
    41 %
    423 votes
    4 %
    37 votes
    15 %
    All of them!
    156 votes

Total Responses: 1,027
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While most commentators have pointed to candidate’s position on contraception during the primaries, underlying demographic and economic trends suggest the problem may persist into the general election.

By The Fiscal Times Apr 4, 2012 3:56PM
By Merrill GooznerThe Fiscal Times

Recent polls show severe slippage for former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney among women voters in the wake of a divisive battle about providing contraception that dominated the Republican primaries for the past two months.

But is that all it is? The so-called “gender gap” has been a feature of American politics for most of the past two decades. And the chasm between male and female voters has only grown wider in recent years. 

But the Federal Reserve chairman won't help the president either.

By TheStreet Staff Apr 4, 2012 11:40AM

By Joe Deaux


Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke won't likely help or hurt President Barack Obama's re-election chances in November.


U.S. equities closed slightly lower Tuesday after the Fed downplayed the prospects for more quantitative easing during an election year, which leaves a voter to wonder if QE3's dimmed prospects would batter stocks and thus hurt Obama's re-election chances.


Our government agencies continue to do everything in their considerable power to keep hidden information that belongs in the public realm.

By MSN Money Partner Apr 3, 2012 4:17PM

By William D. Cohan


Getting what should be public information about major Wall Street firms can be maddeningly difficult.


Bloomberg News discovered this in its ultimately successful effort to get information on the $1.2 trillion in "secret loans" the Fed doled out during the financial crisis. And I've had no small experience of it myself.


Mitt Romney is sharpening his attack on Obama’s handling of energy and environmental policy. But he is finding it’s not so easy to capitalize on skyrocketing gasoline prices as Obama claims credit for increased domestic oil production.

By The Fiscal Times Apr 3, 2012 2:59PM
By The Fiscal TimesEric Pianin

Former Gov. Mitt Romney says President Obama should fire three of his cabinet members over skyrocketing fuel prices.  He berates Obama for showering government subsidies on politically well-connected alternative energy companies. And he blasts the president for failing to open up more public land and offshore areas to oil and gas drilling to boost domestic production.

 “In thrall to the environmentalist lobby and its dogmas, the President and the regulatory bodies under his control have taken measures to limit energy exploration and restrict development in ways that sap economic performance, curtail growth, and kill jobs,” Romney said in a policy statement. 

The former Massachusetts governor may have the Republican nomination sewn up, but speculators in markets set up by Intrade and the Iowa Electronic Markets don't see much change in his chances of winning.

By Charley Blaine Apr 2, 2012 3:16PM
Charley BlaineThe good news for Mitt Romney is that nobody expects him to lose the Republican nomination for president.

The bad news for Mitt Romney is that the near certainty of his nomination isn't helping how investors in futures based on the election view his chances. They think he's got a big selling job ahead.

Trading on the election on Intrade.com, the Irish trading site that lets you take positions for or against just about everything, gives Romney only a 37% chance of winning the election. That's down slightly from the last time we looked at Intrade's trading trends.

President Obama has a 60.3% change of winning re-election. That probability has changed little in the last six weeks.  

Gingrich’s biggest benefactor, billionaire casino owner Sheldon Adelson, says Gingrich is “at the end of his line.”

By The Fiscal Times Mar 30, 2012 3:08PM
By The Fiscal TimesEric Pianin

Maybe now we know why Newt Gingrich started charging supporters who want a picture of the former House speaker.

Gingrich revealed earlier this week that he was all but abandoning traditional campaigning around the country. Instead, he will use social media and phone calls to uncommitted GOP national delegates to try to stay in the game until the August GOP convention in Tampa. Oh, and by the way, the few supporters still eager to pose with him for a photo now must pay $50 per pose. His campaign is $1.6 million in debt. 

Representatives say they gave money in 2010 to pay for advocacy of their industry in Washington, not for political purposes.

By MSN Money Partner Mar 30, 2012 10:31AM

By Jonathan D. Salant


Some secret donors who gave money to groups that paid for millions of dollars in attack ads during the 2010 midterm elections are becoming public.


Chevron (CVX), an oil and gas company; Merck (MRK), a drug maker; and the American Petroleum Institute are among the entities that have disclosed through corporate filings or Internal Revenue Service reports their donations to politically active groups that are growing in influence.


The impact on the bottom line would be minimal and the oil companies might even earn some good will from policymakers and the public.

By MSN Money Partner Mar 30, 2012 9:59AM

By Rick Newman


There's some kind of help you don't really want.


The big oil companies have some stalwart protectors on Capitol Hill who make sure their longstanding tax breaks aren't threatened. Just recently, they helped kill a vote to eliminate subsidies that add up to a little more than $2 billion per year for five big oil companies. Given rising gas prices and the growing need to tackle the national debt, that's a powerful display of legislative muscle.



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[BRIEFING.COM] The stock market finished an upbeat week on a mixed note. The S&P 500 shed less than a point, ending the week higher by 1.3%, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average (+0.1%) cemented a 1.7% advance for the week. High-beta names underperformed, which weighed on the Nasdaq Composite (-0.3%) and the Russell 2000 (-1.3%).

Equity indices displayed strength in the early going with the S&P 500 tagging the 2,019 level during the opening 30 minutes of the action. However, ... More


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