News in Brief: John Edwards Faces Indictment, and More

John Edwards Faces Indictment

According to The Associated Press, federal prosecutors have finished a comprehensive investigation into John Edwards' political operation and could indict the former presidential candidate within a few days, though Edwards could strike a plea deal to avoid it. The investigators have been looking into Edwards' ethical behavior during his time in the US Senate and whether he used campaign donations to support mistress Rielle Hunter. Edwards' attorneys have said they are confident the former senator, who represented North Carolina, did not violate campaign finance laws.

Cantor Blocks FEMA Funds Until Other Government Services Cut

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Virginia) today blocked emergency relief funds for victims of the Joplin tornado, saying other government services would have to be cut to offset the amount spent in disaster aid, ThinkProgress reports. The House Appropriations Committee yesterday passed an amendment by Rep. Robert Aderholt (R-Alabama) to add $1 billion to the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) disaster relief fund, which they offset by cutting $1.5 billion from the Department of Energy's clean cars program. “When you talk about cutting clean energy programs versus cutting subsidies for big oil, let's have that debate here in Washington,” Cantor said. “But not on the backs of the people of Joplin.”

Snowe to Vote Against Ryan Budget Proposal

Sen. Olympia Snow (R-Maine) said Tuesday that she plans to vote against Rep. Paul Ryan's (R-Wisconsin) budget proposal when it comes up for a vote in the Senate, according to The Hill. The moderate Snowe, who is up for re-election in 2012, gave Ryan credit for creating a proposal, but said she disagrees with its stance on Medicare. “I am going to vote 'no' on the budget because I have deep and abiding concerns about the approach on Medicare, which is essentially to privatize it,” Snowe said. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nevada) is expected to hold a vote on the plan soon, possibly later this week. Snowe joins fellow centrist Republican colleagues Sen. Susan Collins of Maine and Sen. Scott Brown of Massachusetts in opposition of the budget plan.