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By Tammy Bruce
Team Obama's bizarre behavior helps Gitmo terrorists foil justice
Topic - John Thune
Wood-burning stoves have ignited a debate between the Obama administration and South Dakota lawmakers who oppose new regulations that would require more efficiency from an iconic feature of many rural homes.
Sen. John Thune and Rep. Kristi Noem are two of the federal health overhaul's most consistent critics. But the South Dakota Republicans take a more measured approach to a key provision of the law in their own state.
Sen. John Thune said Wednesday there is "low-hanging fruit" to stimulate job growth — the Keystone XL oil pipeline project for one — that would help Americans climb out of tough economic times without accepting a Democrat-led bid to increase the minimum wage.
South Dakota's congressional delegation pressed the U.S. agriculture secretary Wednesday to expedite a provision in the new farm bill that helps ranchers in the Dakotas and Nebraska recover from an October blizzard.
As a deadline nears for comments, South Dakota's congressional delegation is pushing the Obama administration to reverse course on proposed changes that would significantly reduce the amount of ethanol in the country's fuel supply.
Sen. John Thune introduced a bill Monday that would thwart the White House from softening the impact of the new health care law on unions, a traditional set of White House allies who are rethinking their support for the controversial reforms.
A week into the immigration debate, the Senate has finally set up showdowns Tuesday afternoon on some of the biggest questions, including whether to build the full 700-mile fence Congress approved seven years ago, but never followed through on.
Senators on Tuesday rejected building the 700 miles of double-tier border fencing Congress authorized just seven years ago, with a majority of the Senate saying they didn't want to delay granting illegal immigrants legal status while the fence was being built.
Each job created with federal stimulus cash through the Obama administration's advanced battery manufacturing program cost more than $158,000 and many of them likely were temporary, according to an analysis released Wednesday by two senior Republicans.
Battery maker A123 Systems vowed thousands of new jobs when it received a nearly quarter-billion-dollar stimulus grant in late 2009, but federal job-tracking figures show only a few hundred positions were created before the company joined a growing list of federally backed energy businesses that ended in bankruptcy.
Two senior Republican senators called on the Department of Energy to explain whether the bankruptcy filing Tuesday by an electric car battery maker, A123 Systems Inc., which was awarded nearly $250 million in government stimulus grants, will result in any taxpayers losses.
Two senior Republican senators have questions about the Obama administration's approval of more than a half-billion dollars in taxpayer funds to help a California automaker build hybrid subcompact cars in Finland that will cost buyers more than $100,000 each.
Sen. John Thune said Tuesday that he will not join what's expected to be a crowded GOP field of presidential hopefuls next year, concluding he would have a difficult time raising money and that President Obama would be tough to beat.
This month's early, under-the-radar campaigning by potential Republican challengers to President Obama is a reminder of something too easily forgotten: Running for president is harder than it looks, and Mr. Obama ultimately will stand against a flesh-and-blood nominee certain to make mistakes along the way.
Though bruised and battered in the public, more than a year into its existence the stimulus bill remains essentially intact - but lawmakers on both sides of the aisle this week are launching bids to rewrite major parts of the $862 billion law.
"South Dakota and many other states are continuing to deal with a propane shortage, which has resulted in record-high propane prices," Thune wrote. "Many families turn to secondary sources of heat, such as wood stoves, when propane and heating fuel prices increase."
Last week, Thune wrote EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy asking her to abandon the proposed changes and work with Congress to find a more balanced approach.