By: Justine Rellosa- Talk Radio News Service
After the Senate failed to pass legislation on Tuesday that would raise the liability cap for those responsible for the oil spill, Senators Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) and Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) held a briefing to stress the importance of lifting the liability limit for oil giants from $75 million to $10 billion.
“I don’t think BP’s words are anything to rely upon,” said Menendez. Added the New Jersey Democrat, “By lifting the cap unlimitedly, whoever is determined to be beyond BP, the responsible party, will also be [held] responsible.
Lautenberg noted that BP does have the available funds to meet additional costs posed by a higher cap.
“BP had a $5 billion dollar profit quarter…they can afford to pay for their mistakes,” Lautenberg said.
By: Justine Rellosa- Talk Radio News Service
U.S. Department of the Interior Secretary Ken Salazar testifies on Wednesday before the House Committee on Natural Resources. (1:00)
U.S. Department of the Interior Secretary Ken Salazar testifies on Wednesday before the House Committee on Natural Resources. (:40)
U.S. Department of the Interior Secretary Ken Salazar testifies on Wednesday before the House Committee on Natural Resources. (:25)
U.S. Department of the Interior Secretary Ken Salazar testifies on Wednesday before the House Committee on Natural Resources. (:32)
By Miles Wolf Tamboli-Talk Radio News Service
Republican leaders in the House of Representatives have developed a new website to enhance American input in Washington policy-making.
“The number one thing that I hear over, and over, and over again everywhere I go is, ‘why isn’t Washington listening to us?’,” said Rep. Candice Miller (R-Mich.) during a media event marking the launch of the website.
Entitled AmericaSpeakingOut.com, Republicans hope that the public will use the site to engage in dialogue and debate with each other, and present fresh ideas.
“America Speaking Out is about trying to enlist the voices and help of the American people, so we can begin by listening and turning around the equation … to produce an economy and an America that meets with the approval of the American people,” said House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.).
“Out of this, the … Republican members hope to build a governing agenda,” said House Republican Conference Chairman Mike Pence (R-In.).
Some have criticized the Republican Party recently with assertions that leaders are out of ideas and that the party is surviving off of arraigning the Democratic Party, a notion Pence was quick to respond to.
“This is not a political party in search of a keel or in search of principles. It’s not a listening tour. House Republicans know what we believe, and at AmericaSpeakingOut.com, we state those openly on the first page.”
House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) continued; “We know what our principles are. What we’re asking the American people to do is to participate with us in terms of how … we apply those principles.”
Others have surmised that the effort is a political move, giving the Republicans a positive image before November’s midterm primary elections. Boehner stated that the future of the website depends on the next Congress, implying that the website may not remain active after the elections are over.
Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger endorsed the New START Treaty Tuesday and warned that failing to ratify the arms reduction agreement between Russia and the U.S. would have an “unsettling impact” on the international environment.
“This committee’s decision will affect the prospects for peace for a decade or more,” Kissinger said in a statement submitted to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Kissinger, who served as Secretary of State under the Nixon and Ford administrations, authored the book “Nuclear Weapons and Foreign Policy” in 1957.
The START Treaty was signed by U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev in April. The treaty calls for both countries to limit their nuclear arsenal to 1,500 warheads. It is currently pending Senate ratification.
By: Justine Rellosa
Talk Radio News Service
U.S. Associate Attorney General Thomas Perrelli made clear on Tuesday that there should not be an arbitrary cap for oil spill accidents, like the one that occurred at the Deepwater Horizon in the Gulf of Mexico site over one month ago.
“With respect to activities that might have the risk in resulting in a similar or major oil spill, such as we are seeing currently, we don’t think there should be an arbitrary cap on corporate responsibility,” said Perrelli during a hearing held by the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
Current law caps how liable companies are for economic damages caused by spills at $75 million, although a group of Democratic Senators, led by Robert Menendez (D-N.J), is looking to the cap to $10 billion dollars.
Perrelli added that if Congress voted to raise the cap and apply it retroactively, the government would likely win any legal challenges put forth by members of the oil industry.
U.S. Department of the Interior Deputy Secretary David Hayes reassured the Committee that his department is doing all it can to make sure the regulatory system is “state of the art.”
“We are committed to doing a thorough investigation and a top to bottom evaluation of whether we have the right regulatory system…and whether there is enough oversight of industry.”
By Alexa Gitler-Talk Radio News Service
“We will have enough votes,” said House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) on Tuesday in response to the House’s plans to vote this week on $190 billion in new spending.
Dubbed the American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act by Sander Levin (D-Mich.), the bill includes $1 billion for summer jobs for teens, whose current jobless rate is 25.4%, and $47 billion to extend unemployment insurance to nearly two full years.
“It is our job to promote job growth in the current economy, and we have had significant success digging out of a deep hole,” Hoyer said. “Extending unemployment insurance is necessary coming out of a presidency which resulted in a loss of 8 million jobs.”
Hoyer is hopeful that Republicans will join and give their support for the spending, however many Republicans have been very critical of the amount of spending done by the Obama administration since he was elected into office.
By Alexa Gitler
Talk Radio News Service
The Reduce Unnecessary Spending Act of 2010, legislation that will give the White House broad authority to help reduce wasteful federal spending and block earmarks, will have GOP support according to a leading House Republican.
“Republicans will stand alongside President Obama for reduced spending,” Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.), who chairs the House Republican Conference, told reporters Monday.
Republicans have been critical of the amount of spending done by the Obama administration since he was elected into office. with Pence claiming an 84 percent spike since Obama took office.
However with regards to the new piece of legislation, Pence stated that “[Republican] welcome strengthening the hand of this or any other President to reduce spending and we [as a party] have called for enhanced precision of exactly how this is going to be done.”
The Reduce Unnecessary Spending Act will allow the President to submit suggested spending cuts, or rescissions, to spending bills within 45 congressional working days of their passage. The House and Senate would then be required to submit the package to an up or down vote and would not be allowed to add amendments.