News January 24

Senator Sanders

State of the Union Jennifer Sikorski says unemployment may be the country's biggest problem. The Winooski High School senior won this year's essay contest sponsored by Sen. Bernie Sanders, the Burlington Free Press reported. LINK

Big Oil Protest Environmentalists will focus today to Big Oil's power over the U.S. Congress. Sen. Sanders, Greenpeace Executive Director Phil Radford, and 350.org founder Bill McKibben are all scheduled to attend a demonstration, International Business Times reported. LINK

Sanders Makes His Mark After 16 years as a self-described "outsider in the House," Sanders used his newfound clout as a senator to make his mark on the health care overhaul and financial services regulation, according to an updated Congressional Quarterly profile LINK

Solar Power Lyndon State College erected new twin-array solar panels in a project made possible, in part, thanks to a U.S. Department of Energy grant secured by Sen. Sanders, The Caledonian Record reported. LINK

Circuit Social Security Robert Kaufman wrote in a letter to the editor of the Ventura County (Calif.) Star that Sen. Bernie Sanders' book, "The Speech," changed his mind about payroll tax cuts that he now realizes are an attack on Social Security. LINK

GOP Rules Talk Shows The odds of seeing a Republican member of Congress in the guest chair on Sunday talk shows last year were twice as good as seeing a Democrat, according to a Roll Call database of members' television appearances. (The article erroneously said Sanders appeared once on CNN.) LINK

Sen. Kirk Sen. Mark Kirk faces a difficult recovery from a stroke. The Wall Street Journal said a single senator's absence is unlikely to matter since it usually takes 60 votes to pass Senate bills and Democrats only have a 53-vote majority including independents Sanders and Lieberman. LINK

World

Not Made in Japan The Japanese government is expected to announce Wednesday that the country recorded its first annual trade deficit since 1980, The Wall Street Journal reported. LINK

National

Justices Rein In Police The Supreme Court ruled Monday that police violated the Constitution when they attached a Global Positioning System tracker to a suspect's vehicle without a valid search warrant, voting unanimously in one of the first major cases to test privacy rights in the digital era, The Wall Street Journal reported. LINK

Obama Budget The White House plans to release its 2013 federal budget proposal on Feb. 13, the Office of Management and Budget said Monday. The release date is later than in past administrations, according to The Washington Post. LINK

U.S. Faulted Over Pay at Rescued Firms Federal auditors said that the government failed to rein in executive compensation at the biggest companies it bailed out during the financial crisis because its main concern was simply getting its money back. Kenneth Feinberg, the special master appointed to oversee the pay, was pressured by both the companies and the Treasury to get around the caps, The New York Times reported. LINK

Airport Security Stops Senator Sen. Rand Paul was stopped by security at the Nashville airport on Monday when a scanner set off an alarm and he declined to allow a security officer to subsequently pat him down. The White House said airport security acted appropriately, The New York Times reported. LINK

Vermont

Burlington Airport The number of passengers boarding outgoing flights at Vermont's main commercial airport was down slightly in 2011 from a year earlier, and down sharply from three years earlier, AP reported. LINK