Jerome Powell Confirmed for Second Term as Federal Reserve Chair

The Senate voted 80-19 on Thursday to confirm Jerome Powell to a second term as Federal Reserve chair, even as inflation has hit record highs under his watch.

The 19 “Nay” votes came from 13 Republicans and 5 Democrats and included a range of Senators from Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) to Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).

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Senate Confirms Biden’s ‘Radical’ FTC Pick Criticized for Anti-ICE Stance

The Senate voted Wednesday to confirm President Joe Biden’s nominee Alvaro Bedoya to the empty fifth seat on the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

The 50-50 Senate vote was broken with a tie breaking vote by Vice President Kamala Harris, and gives Democrats a 3-2 advantage at the FTC. Bedoya, who is professor at Georgetown Law, was previously criticized by Senate Republicans for his past comments on social media and in other outlets opposing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after President Joe Biden announced his nomination.

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Commentary: McConnell’s ‘Exhilarating’ Insurrection

A dirty little secret about January 6—one of many—is that Democrats and establishment Republicans, not Trump supporters, wanted to shut down the official proceedings of that day.

Just as the first wave of protesters breached the building shortly after 2 p.m., congressional Republicans were poised to present evidence of rampant voting fraud in the 2020 presidential election. Ten incumbent and four newly-elected Republican senators planned to work with their House colleagues to demand the formation of an audit commission to investigate election “irregularities” in the 2020 election. Absent an audit, the group of senators, including Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) pledged to reject the Electoral College results from the disputed states.

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At Least Nine Republican Senators Demand Answers from DHS on Afghan Refugee Vetting

Ron Johnson, Josh Hawley and Rick Scott

At least nine Republican U.S. senators are continuing to pressure the Department of Homeland Security for answers over its vetting process of Afghan evacuees entering the U.S.

Three Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee members sent a letter last week to DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas and to Secretary of State Antony Blinken requesting information about Afghan evacuees. This week, six additional senators sent a letter to DHS asking for an overdue report they were supposed to have received Nov. 30.

Their letters followed news reports that the State Department didn’t have reliable data on everyone who evacuated Afghanistan and what types of visas they qualified for, and after a convicted rapist on an evacuation flight reached Washington-Dulles Airport. The letters also were sent after assaults and arrests were reported at military bases in New Mexico and Wisconsin where evacuees were being housed, and after several of the senators expressed concerns at a senate committee hearing in September.

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Commentary: The Madness of Anthony Fauci

It’s nearly impossible to select the most maniacal comment made by Dr. Anthony Fauci in his nearly 70-minute interview with “Face the Nation” host Margaret Brennan that aired over the weekend. Joe Biden’s chief coronavirus advisor and miniature global menace spent more than an hour denying responsibility for his documented mistakes, bragging about his self-appointed role as the world’s doctor, hogging credit for the vaccines, and attacking anyone who has challenged his unrivaled ego and track record of failure.

Portraying himself as a victim rather than the cruel, megalomaniacal tyrant he is, Fauci took aim at Donald Trump, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, Senators Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas), and Congressional co-sponsors of the “Fire Fauci Act,” which would zero-out the salary of the federal government’s highest-paid bureaucrat and audit Fauci’s correspondence and financial transactions during the pandemic.

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Texas Sen. Cruz Introduces Bill Prohibiting Vaccine Mandate for Minors

Ted Cruz

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, introduced legislation that would prohibit the federal government and any entity at the federal, state and local level that receives federal funding, including school districts, from requiring COVID-19 vaccines for minors.

“Parents should have the right to decide what is best for their children in consultation with their family doctor,” he said. “My view on the COVID-19 vaccine has remained clear: no mandates of any kind.

“President [Joe] Biden and his administration have repeatedly ignored medical privacy rights and personal liberty by pushing unlawful and burdensome vaccine mandates on American businesses, and now they are preparing to push a mandate on kids by pressuring parents – all without taking into account relative risk or the benefits of natural immunity.”

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Attorney General Garland Grilled by GOP Senators over Department of Justice Memo Targeting Parents at School Meetings

Attorney General Merrick Garland on Wednesday faced a litany of hard-edged Senate questions about agreeing to allow federal law enforcement to investigate alleged incidents of outspoken parents at school board meetings.

Garland, in a memo, agreed to responded to a Sept. 29 letter from the National School Board Association to President Biden asking that the FBI, Justice Department and other federal agencies to investigate potential acts of domestic terrorism at the meetings. Parents across the nation have been voicing their concerns about the curricula being taught to their children, in addition to instances like the one currently playing out in northern Virginia, in which there was an apparent coverup of the sexual assault of a female student in a bathroom.

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House Lawmakers Set to Square off with White House, Treasury Department over ‘Stifling’ Crypto Tax Plan

House lawmakers are set to return from recess Monday and will likely take up the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill the Senate passed last week — and with it, a controversial and last-minute cryptocurrency tax provision.

The bill contains a tax reporting mandate forcing cryptocurrency “brokers” to disclose gains and transactions to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) as part of a scheme designed to help cover part of the infrastructure bill’s cost. However, the bill’s definition of “broker” has been criticized by the cryptocurrency community and pro-crypto lawmakers as vague, expansive and potentially unworkable, with many fearing it could stifle the industry and force crypto companies to collect personal information on their customers.

The provision defines a broker as “any person who is responsible for regularly providing any service effectuating transfers of digital assets on behalf of another person,” and forces brokers to report transactions to the IRS in a form similar to a 1099. This means brokers have to collect and report customer information such as names, addresses, and taxpayer identification numbers.

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