News May 11

Senator Sanders

Education Town Meeting Sen. Bernie Sanders held a town meeting Monday night -- via video conference from Washington -- to get feedback from teachers, principals and state education officials on the country's education system, WPTZ and Fox 44 reported. VIDEO and VIDEO


Financial Reform Lawmakers today are likely to vote on an amendment by Sen. Bernard Sanders to expand oversight of the Federal Reserve. The amendment to the Senate's financial regulation bill would give the Government Accountability Office the power to audit the Fed and compel the central bank to disclose what firms received emergency aid during the financial crisis, The Washington Post reported. LINK

Sanders Amendment Sanders' proposal was "likely to prevail," Sen. Richard Durbin predicted, according to Reuters. Sanders was "cautiously optimistic," The Hill reported. The Huffington Post said the outcome was uncertain because "picking up the backing of Obama cut both ways: Republicans looking to score political have less incentive to vote for it." The Times Argus LINK, LINK and LINK

Secrets of the Fed "Large financial institutions received trillions of dollars in zero or near-zero interest loans. Who received those loans and under what terms? It s time we had transparency at the Fed so that the American people know what our central bank is doing," Sanders wrote in a column published by Roll Call. LINK

Supreme Court Reacting to the nomination of Solicitor General Elena Kagan for the Supreme Court, The Burlington Free Press. Quoted Sen. Sanders saying she "would bring a great deal of knowledge and real-world experience" and that he "look[s] forward to meeting her and learning more about her record and views." LINK

Kagan's Qualifications Bernie Sanders isn't worried that she has never served as a judge, the Vermont Press Bureau and Huffington Post reported. "If the Citizens United ruling, which allowed corporate cash to dominate American elections, is what results from a court made up of people who wore robes most of their lives, then Elena Kagan's experience outside courtrooms should not be held against her." LINK and LINK

Gulf Oil Spill "If we are serious about wanting to break our dependence on foreign oil and move to energy independence; if we want to lower the cost of energy; if we want to combat climate change and cut greenhouse gas emissions; if we want to create millions of new jobs -- then more offshore drilling is not the way to go," Sanders wrote in a column published by the Bennington Banner. LINK


Nurses Rally Up to 1,000 registered nurses from Massachusetts to California will gather in Washington, D.C. for National Nurses Week today to press the case for improving the quality of care in U.S. hospitals and other healthcare settings. The two day event, hosted by the nation's largest nurses' union will feature a march and rally. Sanders is schedule to speak at Wednesday's rally.


School Funding Sens. Pat Leahy and Bernie Sanders strongly endorsed a bill designed to fund the country's teachers "at the expense of our great, great grandchildren," The Caledonian-Record editorialized. LINK


Europe Bailout Lifts Gloom
Global financial markets roared back in response to the European Union's nearly $1 trillion plan to avert a public-debt crisis that has threatened to derail the world-wide economic recovery, The Wall Street Journal reported. LINK


Brown to Resign Britain's quest for a new government took a sudden turn on Monday when Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced that he would resign within months as Labour Party leader, The New York Times reported. LINK


Wall Street Reform Two key amendments to the Senate's far-reaching Wall Street reform bill are expected to be voted on Tuesday, with a measure that would allow limited oversight of the Federal Reserve expected to pass, according to Reuters. LINK


Bernanke Briefing The Federal Reserve sought to pre-empt criticism of its decision to funnel U.S. dollars to the European Central Bank and other central banks overseas. Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke plans to brief lawmakers Tuesday, The Wall Street Journal reported. LINK


Gulf Oil Spill The blame game is in full throttle as Congress begins hearings on the massive oil spill threatening sensitive marshes and marine life along the Gulf Coast, The Associated Press reported. LINK

Tax Bills Lowest Since '50 Amid complaints about high taxes and calls for a smaller government, Americans paid their lowest level of taxes last year since Harry Truman's presidency, a USA Today analysis of federal data found. LINK


Gulf Oil Spill Rep. Peter Welch says the devastating oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico should be a wake-up call for the U.S. to adopt a new national energy policy - one that's based on alternative fuels and efficiency measures. Welch joined a bi partisan congressional delegation to take a first-hand look at the environmental and economic damage caused by the oil spill, Vermont Public Radio reported. LINK

Vermont Country Store Matriarch Dies The Vermont Country Store mail order company co-founder Mildred Ellen Orton has died at age 99. Lyman Orton says his mother died Thursday at her home in Weston, The Associated Press reported. LINK

Activists Killed in Crash A well-known Vermont activist known for her work helping low income Vermonters was killed in a crash in Castleton Monday afternoon. Police say 77-year-old Edna Fairbanks Williams did not stop at a stop sign and collided with another driver, WCAX reported. LINK