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Mile-High Headlines for Monday, September 29
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Don’t Call It a Bailout
It seems President George W. Bush and congressional leaders have reached an agreement on a 110-page bill outlining a $700 billion bailout that aims to rescue the nation’s ailing financial institutions. But don’t call it a bailout, warns House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who is calling it a “buy-in” for taxpayers. The Washington Post writes that the plan grants “the government vast new powers over Wall Street and offer[s] fresh help to homeowners at risk of foreclosure.” Financial experts in Colorado aren’t thrilled about the plan and are split over support, according to The Denver Post. Representative Diana DeGette, a Democrat, has taken “the clearest stand in support of the proposal,” according to the Rocky Mountain News, while Representative Marilyn Musgrave, a Republican, is firmly opposed, according to the Fort Collins Coloradoan. In the strange-bedfellows category, assorted union representatives, Green Party members, and Denver socialists are of the same mindset as Musgrave, notes CBS4. And the bailout, or buy-in if you prefer, “may not be the last one,” according to The New York Times.
UPDATE: Congress passed on the bailout plan after Panorama’s deadline this morning. Stay tuned to tomorrow’s edition for more.
Grrr! Udall and Schaffer Fight on National TV
Bob Schaffer and Mark Udall clashed on “Meet the Press” Sunday, ripping each other in a debate over who is better suited to be the next U.S. senator for Colorado. Udall, a Democratic congressman, attacked Schaffer, a Republican and former congressman, over the policies of the Bush administration, including economic deregulation (via the Rocky Mountain News). Udall, who was recently criticized by Schaffer for failing to return thousands of dollars in contributions from Representative Charles Rangel, a New York Democrat who is under investigation for ethical lapses, also said Rangel should step down from a committee he chairs, notes the New York Daily News. Meanwhile PolitickerCO reports that Patriot Majority, a left-leaning political group, has released a new television ad entitled, “Sweatshop,” in which Schaffer is criticized for his opposition to labor laws and even accused of turning a blind eye to forced abortions in the U.S. garment industry. Still hungry for Senate-race news? The Loveland Daily Reporter-Herald has features on Udall and Schaffer.
Watch What You Say About Our Precious Coal, Obama
The battleground dance continues this week, with Senator Barack Obama visiting Denver today and Governor Sarah Palin in Centennial on Saturday. By the time you recieve Panorama today, Obama will be at Mountain Range High School. (Sorry, Obama fans, the tickets were gone shortly after they became available yesterday, according to The Denver Post.) Obama’s campaign is being slammed by two Colorado Republicans–former Governor Bill Owens and former Congressman Scott McInnis–who became upset after vice presidential nominee Joe Biden said the campaign opposes “clean coal” technology, according to this Denver Post story. Turns out 73 percent of Colorado’s energy is met by coal, an incensed McInnis noted, as the Obama campaign backpedaled a bit over the remark. Meanwhile, first lady wanna-be Michelle Obama has also announced that she will host a rally among students in Boulder on Wednesday, according to the Daily Camera. Details have yet to be announced.
Cost Confusion Over Amendment 58
Carl Miller and Polly Page, two former Public Utilities commissioners, joined forces to write an editorial in the Rocky Mountain News, fearing the ecologically minded Sonoran Institute is spreading “misinformation” about the potential impact of Amendment 58, which would increase oil-and-gas severance taxes by about $300 million per year. The question: Will consumers pay higher rates if the tax is increased? After providing all sorts of bureaucratic insight, the two ex-PUCsters say Colorado voters shouldn’t pass the amendment “with the impression that these higher taxes on Colorado energy will be paid by someone else. Natural gas bills will go up.” But wait just another minute here. The nonprofit Bell Policy Center has recently completed research debunking a $10 million oil-and-gas industry campaign that argues the amendment will increase energy costs. The Colorado Independent, which notes the amendment could funnel more cash into schools, transportation, and environmental projects, writes that the amendment will not drive the industry out of the state either, as sky-is-falling critics argue.
Ozone Plan Chided
After years of trying to address the problem of that nasty, lung-harming ozone along the Front Range, Colorado isn’t doing so well. That’s according to The Denver Post, which quotes experts and environmentalists critical of a new state ozone proposal that will be debated later this year. Jeremy Nichols, climate and energy program director for WildEarth Guardians, says the proposal “falls miserably short. It’s like washing the dishes without soap.” Kevin Lynch, an attorney for the Environmental Defense Fund, says the problem lies in the delays on controlling the pollutants that spew out of smokestacks at power plants and cement kilns. Indeed, most of the regulations would apply to motor vehicles and the oil-and-gas industry, and should, according to computer analysis, be good enough to keep the Front Range just below the 85 parts per billion. However, in March the Environmental Protection Agency tightened the standard to 75 parts per billion–although that won’t apply to the Denver area until 2015.
Blame the Broncos’ 33-19 loss on Kansas City running back Larry Johnson’s skills. Better yet, blame the loss on the Broncos’ defense, which allowed Johnson to run 198 yards and score the game-clinching touchdown, according to the Rocky Mountain News. Kansas City, now 1-3, averaged just 10.7 points prior to the game. The Broncos fall to 3-1.
Rapids Lead Scorefest
The Colorado Rapids and the New York Red Bulls embarked on a scorefest this weekend, racking up nine goals between them and almost tying Major League Soccer’s record of 10 goals in a single game, according to Yahoo! Sports. Rapids’ striker Conor Casey netted three of the goals, including the last-minute game winner, as the team edged the Red Bulls 5-4, according to ESPNsoccernet.
Audiodose: One theory is that Target and Wal-Mart moms will be the ones to decide how Colorado votes for president. But don’t discount Colorado’s Latino communities, where campaigns have focused registration drives, according to KUNC radio.
Cheapest Gallon of Gas â€˜Round Here: $3.32, Costco, 18414 Cottonwood Drive (via www.gasbuddy.com).