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Eye Opener: March 12, 2010

By Ed O'Keefe

Eye Opener

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More Obama Nominees Announced: On Thursday the president tapped W. James McNerney, Jr. to serve as chair of the President’s Export Council and Ursula M. Burns to serve as vice chair. Track all Obama nominees with The Post's Head Count.

Cabinet and Staff News: Outgoing White House Social Secretary Desiree Rogers ran into sharp elbows. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice and National Security Adviser James Jones among those joining President Obama for an Afghanistan strategy review meeting today. Republicans take issue with Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr.'s decision to sign a terrorism-related legal brief in 2004. Ex-Brooklyn prosecutor tapped to lead Justice Dept.'s public integrity unit. House votes to impeach federal judge from Louisiana. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg says she would forbid state judicial elections.

CENSUS BUREAU:
Census jobs tough to fill: The U.S. Census Bureau is scouring Texas for an oddly elusive worker: the Spanish-speaking American who qualifies for the job.

DEFENSE DEPARTMENT:
GAO analyst says cost overruns, delays continue to plague F-35 program: Auditors told the Senate Armed Services Committee in a hearing that the cost of the program has increased substantially and that development is 2 1/2 years behind schedule.

EDUCATION DEPARTMENT:
Democrats move toward grouping health reform with student-aid bill: Both proposals, stuck in Congress for nearly a year, are gaining new momentum as Democrats contemplate facing voters in November without having delivered on any of Obama's major policy objectives.

Education Department buying 27 shotguns: The guns are to replace old firearms used by Education’s Office of Inspector General, which is the law enforcement arm of the department.

EPA:
Natural-gas group opposes EPA greenhouse gas rules: Providers are lining up against planned agency rules to curb greenhouse-gas emissions, citing concerns that the regulations could make it harder to obtain permits needed to boost supplies.

FCC:
FCC ponders action on cable fee disputes: It's considering changes to ensure that cable television customers do not lose access to broadcast stations because of fee disputes between broadcasters and cable companies.

FHA:
FHA challenged on projected risk to taxpayers: The agency, which insures lenders against defaults, has nearly depleted the cash it must set aside to deal with unexpected losses. But a recent audit of FHA's finances concluded that the agency will not need taxpayer money except in two catastrophic scenarios.

GOVERNMENT WORK/LIFE/OPERATIONS:
Gov't workers feel no economic pain: The recession and the ongoing jobless recovery devastated much of the private-sector work force last year, sending unemployment soaring, but government workers emerged essentially unscathed.

Obama's White House favors dumping more information on corporate servers: Companies like Google, Microsoft and Amazon already have huge numbers of servers dedicated to their products and storing user data. Perhaps the government could use some of those services, said White House Chief Information Officer Vivek Kundra.

IRS:
IRS investigates flurry of threats against its workers and facilities: Agency watchdogs are investigating more than 70 reported instances of inappropriate comments made to agency workers by taxpayers, according to union officials.

NIH:
NIH panel: Women need chance to avoid repeat C-section: Too many pregnant women who want to avoid a repeat cesarean delivery are being denied the chance, concludes a government panel that urged doctors to rethink litigation-spurred policies.

TRANSPORTATION DEPARTMENT:
Agency weighs the need for a ‘black box’ in cars: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said it was considering the step in the wake of recalls of millions of Toyota vehicles.

TREASURY DEPARTMENT:
AIG, federal czar reach deal on rest of bonus pay to be returned: The company had been scheduled this month to pay out another round of retention bonuses, worth nearly $200 million. Government officials and company executives had been eager to avoid another spectacle like the one that occurred after similar payments last year.

By Ed O'Keefe  | March 12, 2010; 6:05 AM ET
Categories:  Eye Opener  
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Comments

Ms. Rogers committed the cardinal sin, in politics, business, entertainment, whatever; she looked to become bigger than her boss. And all the talk about how many events she did and all that went rights, etc., is irrelevant. Her operation effed up and she had to take the fall, it's command accountability. Besides, like the man said, "if you want a friend in this town, get a dog!"

Posted by: ronjaboy | March 12, 2010 6:38 AM | Report abuse

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