Sunrise (3/21/11)



Salon: “In 2007, then-candidate Barack Obama sat down for an interview with the editorial board of the Keene Sentinel, a newspaper in a New Hampshire town 15 miles away from a controversial nuclear power plant across the border in Vermont. Asked about his views on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the federal agency in charge of overseeing nuclear power plants, Obama responded by calling the NRC a “moribund” agency. “It’s become captive of the industries that it regulates, and I think that’s a problem,” he said. … Despite those stark comments, there’s no evidence that President Obama has fundamentally changed the workings of the NRC — which has for years been criticized as too close to industry. Earlier this year, for example, three states sued the NRC after it extended from 30 to 60 years the amount of time that nuclear waste can be stored on-site at power plants.”


Washington Post: “When Mike Pompeo needed funding for a Wichita aerospace company, one of the places he and his partners went for help was Koch Industries, a hometown firm that is among the world’s largest privately held corporations. … Last year, Pompeo turned to Koch for help again — this time to support his successful campaign for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Pompeo received $80,000 in donations from Koch and its employees, making him the top recipient of Koch-related money in the 2010 elections. … The contributions have put the House freshman in the middle of a broad partisan battle over the role of corporate money in U.S. politics, which has gained urgency in the aftermath of last year’s Supreme Court ruling allowing unfettered spending on elections. President Obama and other Democrats have repeatedly criticized the decision as giving unfair advantage to business interests, a claim that Republicans dispute.”


Bloomberg: “A group of Silicon Valley corporate leaders ventured to Capitol Hill this week with a message for U.S. lawmakers: If you don’t lower our taxes, plenty of other countries will. … The 18 CEOs and other executives met with dozens of legislators March 16 and yesterday with the aim of also protecting government spending on scientific studies and tax deductions for corporate research and development while pushing for changes they say will make their companies more competitive.”


Bloomberg: “Michael Oxley, the former congressman who co-wrote the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, has registered as a lobbyist for the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority to promote self-regulation of investment advisers. … Oxley, a partner at Baker Hostetler LLP in Washington, registered this week as a Finra lobbyist, saying he would work on securities regulation and the “harmonization of regulation of broker-dealers and investment advisers,” according to his registration form. Finra oversees about 4,560 brokerage firms and is interested in expanding to investment advisers.”