Antonin Scalia’s death challenges U.S. leadership

February 14, 2016

The conservative justice leaves behind a Supreme Court vacancy amid a nasty presidential election campaign. There’s already Republican talk of blocking any Obama nominee to replace Scalia. A governance stalemate threatens to rattle already shaky global investors and economies.

Congress punts gas tax hike in favor of bank raid

December 3, 2015

A $305 bln transport spending plan may soon be law. Rather than raise the absurdly low U.S. fuel levy, though, lawmakers are plugging a $70 bln shortfall by swiping the Fed’s rainy-day funds and dividends it pays lenders. Creative, perhaps – but it’s no long-term solution.

Congress’ insider traders finally out of excuses

November 16, 2015

A U.S. judge has ordered lawmakers to cough up evidence about a dodgy tip, ending more than a year of stonewalling and bogus claims of immunity. With Capitol Hill contemplating an even stronger ban on improper Wall Street trades, the least it can do is play by its own rules.

Ushering Eric Cantor to revolving door

By Rob Cox
August 7, 2014

The summer parlor game from Wall Street to K Street to Meadow Lane in the Hamptons is guessing where the former U.S. House majority leader will work after decamping from Congress. It’s easy to imagine how a recruiter might try to put his experience to good – and lucrative – use.

Timing of S&P U.S. downgrade couldn’t be better

August 7, 2011

The Standard & Poor's downgrade of the United States couldn't have come at a much better time.

Insider trading another reason to Occupy Congress

November 14, 2011

Forget Wall Street for a bit. Politicians, especially those keen on light regulation, did much to create the financial crisis. Fresh news of U.S. lawmakers trading on inside information is further reason for mistrust. Public ire could usefully target this big problem.

U.S. energy bill beneficiary redefines going green

December 13, 2011

Oil billionaire T. Boone Pickens and U.S. Representative Nancy Pelosi are oddly aligned. A fuel subsidy proposal, if passed, would make them both richer because of their stakes in a “green” firm that would benefit. Congressional trading rules need an overhaul now more than ever.

D.C. holds $23 bln fix for cash-strapped states

April 4, 2012

That’s how much they could raise from taxing online retailers. A pre-Internet ruling currently forbids such tariffs, forcing states like Georgia to resort to contorted ways around it. A federal solution is needed. Luckily, Congress may have hit on one that even Amazon supports.

Facebook tax witch hunt looks in wrong place

May 17, 2012

Two U.S. senators object to co-founder Eduardo Saverin’s tax “duck” on his stake in the social network now that he has given up U.S. citizenship. But becoming a non-American is expensive and complicated. Lawmakers might ask what they’re doing wrong for expats even to consider it.

Looming US debt clash a safety check for investors

June 15, 2012

Washington looks set to repeat last year’s battle over the nation’s borrowing limit. That was almost a debacle. But the messy spectacle serves to put reducing deficits in the spotlight, forcing Congress to ensure that borrowing remains manageable. That should be welcomed.