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  • May 23, 2012
    By David Scharfenberg

    Senator Sheldon Whitehouse in an interview with lefty advocacy group ThinkProgress:

    Unfortunately you had the five right-wing judges, none of whom have ever run for any office ever and have zero political experience between the five of them, offering opinions about what money can do in elections . . . . So clearly the finding of fact in Citizens United that unlimited corporate spending cannot either increase the risk of corruption or increase the appearance to the public that there’s corruption is ludicrous.

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  • April 25, 2012
    By David Scharfenberg

    Senator Sheldon Whitehouse got all kinds of attention for his "Buffett Rule" push, calling on the wealthy to "pay their fair share." Meanwhile, on Smith Hill, the General Assembly seems all but certain to kill legislation that would raise taxes on the rich.

    Indeed, the body just got through lowering them last session.

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  • April 16, 2012
    By David Scharfenberg

    Senator Sheldon Whitehouse's Buffett Rule legislation takes center stage in American politics today, with the Senate expected to vote on the measure tonight.

    But it's not the only tax measure Congress will take up with Tax Day approaching. The GOP-controlled House will consider a measure, sponsored by Majority Leader Eric Cantor, that would hand a 20 percent tax deduction to businesses employing fewer than 500 people.

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  • April 12, 2012
    By David Scharfenberg

    Republican Senate candidate Barry Hinckley has released his latest video attacking Senator Sheldon Whitehouse. It uses some footage from a recent WPRI-TV interview, in which he decries the influence of Super PACs and special interests on American politics. Whitehouse, the video suggests, is being a hypocrite, given that he has taken donations from PACs and special interests.

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  • March 29, 2012
    By David Scharfenberg

    As I just tweeted (follow me! @d_scharfenberg), the Washington Post has an interesting chat with Senator Whitehouse about the other big, underreported part of health care reform - overhauling the business model. Here's an excerp, with "SK" standing for reporter Sarah Kliff and "SW" for the senator:

    SK: How quickly do you see our health care system moving from one that pays for volume, to one that pays for value? And what role will the Affordable Care Act play in that transition?

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  • March 01, 2012
    By David Scharfenberg

    Republican Senate candidate Barry Hinckley is struggling to get traction in the polls in his race against Democratic Senator Sheldon Whitehouse. But he's cranking out some amusing web videos. Here's the latest:

  • February 23, 2012
    By David Scharfenberg

    Occupy Providence, alongside activists from AIDS advocacy group ACT UP and the Student Global AIDS Campaign plan to march today on the Biltmore Hotel, where Vice President Joe Biden will be appearing at a fundraiser for Senator Sheldon Whitehouse.

    The march will begin at Burnside Park, former site of Occupy Providence's 24-hour-a-day protest, and land in front of the Biltmore where activists will call on the Obama Administration to support a Wall Street transaction tax that would bring in an estimated $350 billion over the next nine years.

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  • February 17, 2012
    By David Scharfenberg

    The "Buffett Rule," advanced in legislation by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse and favored, in broad terms, in President Obama's budget has drawn its share of critique. This from a piece in the New York Times:

    It seems like an appealingly simple way to ensure that the rich do not pay a smaller proportion of their earnings than many members of the middle class.

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  • February 16, 2012
    By David Scharfenberg

    That's right. My cover story this week is on the Nads, the Rhode Island School of Design's club hockey team, and their mascot Scrotie - a giant, randy, foam-and-nylon penis.

    This one, I must say, practically wrote itself: tales of Scrotie's tortured relationship with Clammy, the giant, vulva-like mascot of the rival Clams hockey team; stories of former Providence Mayor Buddy Cianci coaching for a night - brandy snifter in one hand and cigar in the other; I won't give away anymore.

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  • February 10, 2012
    By David Scharfenberg

    Senator Sheldon Whitehouse has received plenty of ink - including a New York Times editorial page endorsement - for his "Buffett Rule" bill, named after the mega-rich investor Warren Buffett.

    Buffett has argued that wealthy investors like him, who face a 15-percent tax under current law, should pay at the same rate as middle-class folk - roughly 30 percent.

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  • January 27, 2012
    By David Scharfenberg

    From Greg Sargent at the Washington Post (I've fixed a coupla typos):

    Picture this scenario. The Senate holds a high-profile vote on a proposal focused directly on implementing the Buffett Rule, one that would bring the current tax rate for millionaires paying lower rates on investments up to 30 percent. This, at at exactly the moment when the GOP is picking a nominee who is worth $250 million and is personally benefitting to an enormous degree from the current rate — one that’s lower than many middle class taxpayers pay.

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  • December 05, 2011
    By David Scharfenberg

    The US Senate last week, in a vote that scrambled the usual partisan calculus, approved a controversial detainee policy - with Rhode Island Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse on a different side than you might expect.

    The policy, which both senators voted for along with 15 of their Democratic colleagues and nearly every Republican in the chamber, would require the government to place suspected Al Qaeda figures, or members of allied groups, in military detention - even if arrested on American soil.

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  • September 07, 2011
    By David Scharfenberg

    The Obama Administration dealt environmentalists a major blow last week when it announced it was blocking an important new air pollution rule that had come under fire from Republicans and business interests.

    The administration said the nation couldn't afford the rule, which would lead to significant new costs for business, in tough economic times.

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  • July 12, 2011
    By David Scharfenberg

    Senator Sheldon Whitehouse's campaign reports that he raised $780,000 in the second quarter of the year, leaving him with $2.2 million in cash on hand. It's a good figure for the incumbent, who is trying mightily to build an air of invincibility.

    “It’s an incredible honor to represent Rhode Islanders in the Senate and I’m humbled by the support I’ve received from every corner of our Ocean State,” said Whitehouse, in a statement.

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  • July 08, 2011
    By David Scharfenberg

    The high-stakes budget showdown in Washington, which has the Obama Administration and Congressional leaders working to cut a major deficit-reduction deal before the federal government hits the debt ceiling, has put Rhode Island Senator Sheldon Whitehouse in the spotlight. And it could have real implications for Rhode Island Congressman David Cicilline's long-term political prospects.

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