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ALASKA

Parnell restores calm after Palin’s exit

JUNEAU | Perhaps Sean Parnell’s greatest accomplishment so far as governor of Alaska is that he is not Sarah Palin.

In the year since inheriting the job when Mrs. Palin resigned, Mr. Parnell has quietly gone about restoring a sense of calm that many Alaskans craved after the storm-that-was-Sarah. Barring any major missteps, that alone may be enough to help him carry next month’s GOP primary and win the office he wasn’t expecting to hold.

Mr. Parnell is not considered particularly vulnerable, according to the nonpartisan, Washington-based Rothenberg Political Report, despite challenges from Republicans Ralph Samuels and Bill Walker and a Democratic contender this fall.

“I don’t think anyone outside of Alaska knows who Sean Parnell is, and that’s a good thing for him,” said the Report’s political editor, Nathan Gonzales.

HOUSE

GOP promises fight against tax increase

Rep. Mike Pence, Indiana Republican, is promising a fight against a tax increase he says is coming next year.

Tax cuts enacted during George W. Bush’s presidency are scheduled to expire in January and in his weekly Republican radio and Internet address, Mr. Pence promised GOP opposition to the expiration “with everything we’ve got.” He said if the cuts expire, it would mean the largest tax increase in U.S. history.

Partly out of voter concern over the rising federal budget deficit, Democrats are undecided over whether to extend the cuts, as Republicans advocate.

Mr. Pence said Obama administration economic policies have failed and accused Democrats of “pushing more spending, more regulation, and right around the corner, more taxes.”

Mr. Pence said Americans “know we can’t tax and spend and bail our way back to a growing economy.”

GOP

Gingrich to decide on bid after fall vote

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