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Jun 12, 2013

Across U.S., nearly half say government spying OK within limits: Poll

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Nearly half of all Americans say the U.S. government’s broad surveillance tactics are acceptable within limits, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll on Tuesday that also found widespread concern about the methods that were revealed last week.

The poll, conducted from Friday to Tuesday, found that few were completely untroubled by the news that the National Security Agency has been secretly monitoring telephone and Internet activity of millions of Americans.

Jun 12, 2013

Across U.S., nearly half say government spying OK within limits: Reuters Poll

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Nearly half of all Americans say the U.S. government’s broad surveillance tactics are acceptable within limits, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll on Tuesday that also found widespread concern about the methods that were revealed last week.

The poll, conducted from Friday to Tuesday, found that few were completely untroubled by the news that the National Security Agency has been secretly monitoring telephone and Internet activity of millions of Americans.

May 30, 2013

Insight: How U.S. Treasury’s tax loophole mistake saves companies billions each year

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – As the U.S. economy crumbled in early 2009, President Barack Obama offered a plan that he said would save American jobs: a crackdown on corporate tax loopholes that encourage companies to send profits abroad to avoid paying billions of dollars in U.S. taxes each year.

Tax lobbyist Ken Kies was not worried. A decade earlier, he had led a fight to preserve a key loophole – known in Treasury Department shorthand as the “check the box” rule – when another Democratic president, Bill Clinton, had tried to kill it.

May 30, 2013

How U.S. Treasury’s tax loophole mistake saves companies billions each year

WASHINGTON, May 30 (Reuters) – As the U.S. economy crumbled
in early 2009, President Barack Obama offered a plan that he
said would save American jobs: a crackdown on corporate tax
loopholes that encourage companies to send profits abroad to
avoid paying billions of dollars in U.S. taxes each year.

Tax lobbyist Ken Kies was not worried. A decade earlier, he
had led a fight to preserve a key loophole – known in Treasury
Department shorthand as the “check the box” rule – when another
Democratic president, Bill Clinton, had tried to kill it.

May 22, 2013

Apple,former Washington wallflower, now at center of tax fight

WASHINGTON, May 22 (Reuters) – For years, Apple Inc
kept a low profile in Washington as it grew into one of the most
valuable companies in the world. Now the iPad maker has taken
the lead, perhaps inadvertently, on a top priority for U.S.
business: simplifying America’s tax code.

Chief Executive Tim Cook, who was called before the Senate
Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations on Tuesday to answer
questions about Apple’s alleged tax avoidance, used his
appearance to plead for an overhaul of corporate taxes. That
marked a sharp turnabout for a company that until now has been
content to let rivals like Google and Microsoft fight Washington
policy battles.

May 18, 2013

IRS chief declines to identify employees involved in scandal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The outgoing head of the U.S. Internal Revenue Service angered Republican lawmakers on Friday by resisting their demands that he identify who at the tax-collection agency had inappropriately targeted conservative groups for extra scrutiny.

But during the first hearing into a growing IRS scandal that could preoccupy Washington for months, Republicans did learn that a top official in President Barack Obama’s administration knew that the IRS was looking into targeting by the tax agency nearly a year ago.

May 17, 2013

Lawmakers accuse IRS officials of lying in tax scandal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Lawmakers accused leaders of the Internal Revenue Service of lying on Friday as they opened the first in a series of investigative hearings about the tax collection agency’s targeting of conservative groups.

Republicans and Democrats said senior IRS officials should have alerted Congress last year when they found out that their examiners were singling out Tea Party groups for intense scrutiny when the groups applied for tax-exempt status.

May 14, 2013

Emails show lobbyists, not insiders, underpinned U.S. market-moving report

WASHINGTON, May 13 (Reuters) – The researcher whose report
prompted a spike in health stocks last month appears to have
relied on lobbyists rather than U.S. government insiders who had
direct knowledge of a pending healthcare decision, according to
emails reviewed by Reuters.

The messages could help bolster Height Securities LLC’s
claim that its analyst was essentially doing what reporters,
lobbyists and others in Washington do every day: trying to
figure out what the government is going to do next.

May 8, 2013

Republican senator’s bill to target ‘political intelligence’ firms

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Law firms, brokerages and other companies that analyze the U.S. government for investors could be forced to disclose client lists and other sensitive information under legislation that a top Republican lawmaker hopes to soon resurrect.

Iowa Republican Senator Charles Grassley, who is investigating whether one such “political intelligence” firm engaged in insider trading last month, will introduce a bill shortly that would shed light on the industry, a spokeswoman for Grassley said.

May 6, 2013

Amid budget cutbacks, U.S. shipping sector seeks more federal funds

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – As Congress imposes deep spending cuts on everything from national defense to child care, shipping industry executives are urging lawmakers to spend hundreds of millions of dollars more on a river network that accounts for a declining share of the nation’s domestic freight.

During a lobbying blitz in the past month, roughly 130 tugboat and barge operators fanned across Capitol Hill, meeting with lawmakers and congressional staffers.

    • About Andy

      "I've covered presidential elections, hurricanes, corruption scandals and computer hackers since joining Reuters in 2000. In my free time I'm a musician -- my song "The Internet Is Changing Everything" has been played on NPR and CNBC. I'm currently working on a rock opera about Jack Abramoff."
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