Sunrise (5/19/11)



Bloomberg: “Three Democratic political groups will team up with a new organization founded by former White House aides to try to keep President Barack Obama in office and win House and Senate seats in 2012, parroting a strategy deployed successfully by Republicans last year. … The organizations, operating independently of individual campaigns and the Democratic National Committee, will copy the tactics used by Republican strategist Karl Rove last year when his party won control of the House of Representatives and gained six seats in the Senate. The Democratic groups will meet regularly to share information and resources and to target their political advertising at races where it would be the most effective. … Three of the organizations, like their Republican counterparts, won’t have to disclose all of their donors. … “There will be a lot of coordination among the Democratic groups,” said Alixandria Lapp, executive director of House Majority PAC. “We’re trying to figure out how we can share resources and spend our collective donors’ money efficiently.” … House Majority PAC will focus on House races, Majority PAC will concentrate on the Senate, and Priorities USA will work to re-elect Obama. They will be supported by American Bridge 21st Century, which will raise money to dig up information on Republican candidates that the other groups can use in the campaigns.”


WaPo: “UBS AG hasn’t exactly been a model company lately — the Swiss investment bank has paid more than $1 billion in fines for financial crimes in recent years. … But that doesn’t seem to have scared away many lawmakers or President Obama. To the contrary, the bank is quite well placed in official Washington, with campaign contributions and personal ties connecting it to both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue. … This month, UBS settled with the Justice Department for $160 million over charges that it rigged bidding for municipal bond sales. The bank “admits, acknowledges and accepts responsibility for” the charges that it manipulated bond auctions to aid its bottom line at the expense of local taxpayers, the department announced in a release. … The company’s political action committee was cutting checks to lawmakers on both sides of the aisle as that deal was reached, according to Federal Election Commission records. In March, it sent $15,000 to both the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and the National Republican Congressional Committee.”


The Hill: “A new law designed to prevent offshore tax evasion has set off a surge of lobbying, with several foreign financiers and trade associations turning to K Street for the first time. … At issue is the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), which requires foreign financial institutions to report their accounts held by American citizens to the U.S. government. Firms that fail to provide that information would face a 30 percent withholding tax on their U.S. revenue. … The IRS is crafting regulations to implement the law, which was passed in March of 2010 in an attempt to crack down on offshore havens that are often used to dodge tax payments.”