Sunrise (5/5/11)

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GOLDMAN LOBBYING ON VOLCKER RULE

Reuters: “Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS.N) has just a few more months to put its stamp on the Volcker rule, and it is not wasting any time. … The rule, designed to limit banks from speculating with their own money, will cost Goldman at least $3.7 billion in annual revenue, by one estimate. And billions more could be at stake if regulations now being drawn up are extra-tough. … The Volcker rule was one of the main topics on the agenda when Chief Executive Lloyd Blankfein met recently with U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Mary Schapiro. … “They’re totally freaked out about Volcker,” said a Goldman lobbyist who declined to speak on the record for fear of losing the contract. “People are working on that a lot, with agency staff, with lawmakers, you name it.”

SILICON VALLEY INFLUENCE SURGES

CNNMoney: “Silicon Valley has become a force to be reckoned with on Capitol Hill, spending more than $100 million on lobbying and tens of millions on campaign contributions. … Internet and computer companies spent $30 million on lobbying in the first three months of 2011, according to an analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics. And that’s on top of a whopping $121 million in 2010, putting that sector among the biggest spenders. … Additionally, computer and Internet political action committees spent $5.8 million in campaign contributions during the 2010 congressional elections.”

LOBBYING POKER FACE

WaPo: “Online poker fans are calling it “Black Friday”: On April 15, the Justice Department charged the owners of three of the world’s largest Internet gaming companies with bank fraud and gambling offenses, shutting down their Web sites and freezing bank accounts around the world. … Now, poker advocates in Washington are attempting to turn the bust to their advantage by renewing a push to legalize online poker in the United States. … The Poker Players Alliance, a lobbying group backed in part by overseas gaming interests, has unleashed a blizzard of telephone calls and e-mails to lawmakers in the past two weeks arguing that the criminal case against PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker and Absolute Poker shows the need for a legalized system.”

CROSSROADS MAY PLAY IN NY SPECIAL ELECTION

Roll Call: “The Tea Party Express, the National Republican Congressional Committee and the state GOP have joined the fight to protect the western New York seat previously held by former Rep. Chris Lee (R). And with the May 24 election less than three weeks away, the powerful conservative group American Crossroads is actively considering whether to pour resources into the race as well. … Crossroads spokesman Jonathan Collegio would confirm only that the independent group is currently polling in the district. He declined to say what Crossroads would do if it determines the seat could slip into Democratic hands, a possibility given the dynamic of the three-way race.”

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