Now that Congress has passed the payroll tax cut bill maybe it will move quickly to close the online sales tax loophole.
Sen. Lamar Alexander on Thursday urged the Senate to do just that. Conservative support for Marketplace Fairness Act is building and now is the time to pass the bill, the Tennessee Republican said.
In a speech on the Senate floor, Alexander listed a number of notable conservatives who support closing the loophole that will cost state and local governments $23 billion this year alone. About the only name he didn’t drop was Grover Norquist.
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke today called on Congress and the President to take the lead in boosting the economy.
The chairman’s much anticipated message to Washington was clear: set aside short-term political interests and do something helpful for a change.
In a fit of optimisim, investors responded favorably. The Dow, Nasdaq and S&P 500 were all up in afternoon trading.
The $4 trillion question is whether the pols will take Ben’s message to heart. Given the current tone of the presidential primary campaign, that seems unlikely. I hope I’m wrong and the pols can agree on a plan to light a fire under the economy.
Photo:Federal Reserve chairman Paul Bernanke, right, and Jean-Claude Trichet, of France, president of the European Central Bank, take a morning stroll on the veranda of the Jackson Lake Lodge, before the morning session of the Economic Policy Symposium at Jackson Hole in Moran, Wyo., Friday, Aug. 26, 2011. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)
FedEx CEO Fred Smith has an interesting opinion piece in Fortune today calling on Congress to quit stalling and pass a bill promoting electric vehicles.
“I am not someone who tends to advocate increased government involvement in the private sector. But there is no free market for oil. This is not a market issue — it is a national security issue,” Smith writes.
With oil pushing $100 a barrel and gasoline prices up substantially from a year ago, now would be a good time for Congress to take this issue seriously.
There’s always hope, but I won’t hold my breath. Congress isn’t exactly known for being reasonable.
Kelly King got the Knoxville Economics Forum off to a rousing start on Friday, even if some of his assertions were a bit of a stretch. The loquacious chairman of BB&T Corp. brought the right mix of commentary, controversy and insight to the first of what I hope will be a long series of talks by distinguished speakers.
Come spring the economy will be much improved, but only if next month’s midterm elections produce a change in Congress, BB&T Corp. Chairman and CEO Kelly King said today.
Speaking at the inaugural Knoxville Economics Forum breakfast, King said he doesn’t care if voters choose Republicans or Democrats but the “fundamentally socialist” attitude that now controls Congress must be changed.