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News in Brief: Obama Seeks Partial Extension of Bush-Era Tax Cuts, and More

Obama Seeks Partial Extension of Bush-Era Tax Cuts

Obama Seeks Partial Extension of Bush-Era Tax Cuts

The Obama administration has said it is “open” to compromises on the Bush-era tax cuts set to expire soon; White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said that while the administration rejects a permanent extension of tax cuts for the rich, it hopes to come up “with a plan that works for both sides.” This could include a one- to two-year extension of the tax cuts for families earning more than $250,000 – however, Republicans have signaled their intention to stand firm on continuing full tax cuts for the wealthy, reported Reuters.

UN Troops May Have Carried Cholera Strain to Haiti

The cholera epidemic that has killed at least 442 people in Haiti may have originated with UN peacekeepers, public health officials told The AP. An investigation by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that the strain of the disease currently wreaking havoc in Haiti is commonly found in Southeast Asia, suggesting that it may have been brought over by Nepalese UN troops. Nepal suffered a wave of cholera infections shortly before the peacekeepers traveled to Haiti.

Multiple Twitter Accounts Uncovered Show Bogus Grassroots Politics Online

Researchers at Indiana University have found that political campaigns and special-interest groups are using fake Twitter accounts to create the impression of far-reaching grassroots political involvement, the Technology Review discovered. Using data-mining and network-analysis techniques, the team uncovered, for example, two since-closed Twitter accounts that sent out 20,000 similar tweets linking to or promoting the House minority leader John Boehner’s web site. The tactic is known as fake grassroots, or “Astroturf.”

New Questions Being Raised About Filings in Foreclosure Cases as JPMorgan Chase Resumes Foreclosures

The expanding investigation into foreclosure fraud in Florida has turned up a new problem: individuals hired by law firms to notify homeowners when their foreclosures are to be heard in court may have filed false or faulty documents. Law firms that may have employed “robo-signers” to rapidly process claims are under scrutiny for violating the rules of process serving, such as the personal delivery of legal papers, reported the Sun Sentinel.

Meanwhile, JPMorgan Chase says it plans to resume foreclosures that were halted in 40 states over a month ago, following the disclosure that many had been fraudulently approved, Democracy Now! reported.

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