Saturday, March 26, 2005

A Golden Era For Big Business

MBNA Corp., the credit card behemoth and fifth-largest contributor to Bush's two presidential campaigns, is among those on the verge of prevailing in an eight-year fight to curtail personal bankruptcies. Exxon Mobil Corp. and others are close to winning the right to drill for oil in Alaska's wildlife refuge, which they have tried to pass for better than a decade. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., another big contributor to Bush and the GOP, and other big companies recently won long-sought protections from class-action lawsuits...

...With 232 House seats, Republicans have their largest majority since 1949. This is the first time since the Calvin Coolidge administration in 1929 that the GOP has simultaneously held 55 or more Senate seats and the presidency. Senate Republicans are only five votes shy of the 60 needed to break the most powerful tool the minority holds in Congress -- the filibuster.

Over the next four years, the GOP hopes to use this enhanced power to approve the president's judicial nominees, some of whom Democrats lambaste as too conservative, and restructure Social Security and the tax code. But in the early days of the 109th Congress, it is corporations, which largely bankrolled the GOP's resurgence that began a decade ago with the Republican takeover of the House, that are profiting.


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