The rising trend of state government officials hiring private law firms to sue companies on a contingency fee basis has been a troubling development in recent years. There are a number of problems with the increasing use of this disturbing practice, which a New York Times report earlier this year referred to as “a flourishing industry that pairs plaintiffs’ lawyers with state attorneys general to sue companies.”
Patrick Gleason | All Articles
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Patrick Gleason is Director of State Affairs for Americans for Tax Reform (ATR). ATR is a coalition of taxpayer groups, individuals, and businesses opposed to higher taxes at the federal, state, and local levels. ATR organizes the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, which asks all candidates for federal and state office to commit themselves in writing to oppose all tax increases.
Gleason handles state tax, budget, and energy issues for ATR. Prior to joining ATR, Gleason was head of state government affairs for an international trade association based in Washington, DC. Gleason's writing and commentary have been published in the Boston Globe, Philadelphia Inquirer, Washington Times, Arizona Republic, Chicago Daily Herald, and the OC Register, among others.
It was announced this week that former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm will be writing a regular column for Politico. Those familiar with Granholm’s track record as governor are likely scratching their heads as to what expertise the former governor could offer that warrants a bi-weekly column. Her time as governor was marked by the imposition higher taxes, unsustainable spending and excessive regulations that resulted in a lost decade for the Great Lakes State.
The post-mortem analyses of the recently concluded U.N. climate summit in Durban, South Africa continue to be churned out by pundits and reporters alike. The results have been spun both positively and negatively, yet some of the reporting has fallen short of even being factual.
Chris Matthews, the host of MSNBC’s “Hardball,” has a new book out, Elusive Hero, which offers an in-depth and well-researched look at the life and presidency of John F. Kennedy. In light of today’s focus on tax reform and the dealings of the congressional supercommittee, Matthews’s new book provides a timely reminder of the stark contrast between the policies of the man who brought us Camelot and the policies of the current resident of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
President Obama, in keeping with his recent habit of only visiting states that are important to his electoral prospects, is back in North Carolina this week. During previous presidential visits to the Land of the Pines, Americans for Tax Reform has highlighted the damaging economic effects that Obama’s fiscal policies have had --- or will have --- on the Tar Heel State. During Obama’s June visit to Durham, N.C., I noted in The Daily Caller the adverse impact that the president’s FY 2012 budget proposal would have on the small businesses that drive North Carolina’s economy.
Eugene Robinson had a much-discussed column in Friday’s Washington Post arguing that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is not fit for the Oval Office because he is, well, not fit. Robinson suggests Christie’s girth is a hindrance on his ability to lead, chiding:
On Monday, President Barack Obama went to Durham, North Carolina-based Cree, Inc., to do what he does best -- give a speech. The president began his remarks, which focused on the importance of job creation and economic growth, by touting the fact that his host was a “small business that a group of N.C. State engineering students founded almost 25 years ago” and “is now a global company.”
There are only six governors who think it would be prudent to raise taxes at this time. Unfortunately for Connecticut taxpayers, despite being home to the costliest state government and third-highest state and local income tax burdens in the country, first-term Gov. Dannel Malloy (D) is one of those six.
While not so much a vote of confidence for the GOP as it was an overwhelming public rebuke of Democrats’ misguided economic policies, it is clear that a Republican tide swept the nation in this year’s midterm elections. And perhaps nowhere was the result more consequential than in the Tar Heel State, where Republicans took control of the North Carolina legislature for the first time in over 100 years.
Fed up Americans recently united in telling the government not to touch their collective junk and the message appears to be getting through, at least somewhat, as the Transportation Security Administration is reportedly reevaluating the new enhanced pat-down procedure in response to public outcry. But the TSA’s taxpayer-funded grope-a-thon is not the only unpopular policy that received public rebuke last month.
A Wall Street Journal profile of Meg Whitman concluded a year ago that the “danger for her is if the primary or general election turns into a referendum on inexperienced celebrity governors who failed to deliver—in other words, on Arnold.”
Last week, the good folks at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) released new polling data intended to show “how a yes vote on Waxman-Markey is affecting the reelection efforts of 23 House lawmakers,” according to Politico.
The world has been abuzz with joy, inspiration, and goodwill since the first Chilean miner emerged from underground. The Chilean embassy in Washington, D.C., marked the event with a good old-fashion celebraciòn and broadcast the rescue live on an outdoor big-screen TV. The celebration is not without good reason. As Daniel Henninger pointed out in Thursday’s WSJ:
Republican candidates for federal and state office across the country are espousing low taxes, limited government and free-market principles as they seek to recapture the U.S. House of Representatives, flip more than a dozen state legislative chambers, and gain control of the majority of the nation’s governors’ mansions. Yet in the Pennsylvania Senate, the only state legislative chamber controlled by the GOP in the northeast, the Republican majority is busy mucking up the message that their partisan counterparts across the country are trying to send to voters heading into the home stretch of this crucial campaign season.
Much of the current focus on the EPA these days surrounds its move to be the largest regulator of the nation’s economy by treating carbon as a pollutant under the Clean Air Act. As controversial and arduous a task as that may be, it hasn’t precluded the agency from finding time to go after the most prosperous state in the nation. After years of threatening to do so, the EPA recently announced plans to take over Texas’ air quality permitting system.