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House Republicans Vote to Keep Bush Tax Cuts for the Richest 2%

In a reverse of last week’s Senate action, the U.S. House of Representatives today approved (256-171) a bill (H.R. 8) to extend the Bush tax cuts for the nation’s wealthiest 2%— about $160,000 a year for the average millionaire. The House defeated (257-170) a Democratic alternative amendment to maintain the cuts for the middle class but end the tax breaks for the rich.

Republican theft of pension funds led to current crisis

Pensions work better than a 401(k) when they are funded properly. But what happens when a state or city underfunds their pension system?

Growing U.S. Income Inequality Eating Away at Our Nation

Growing U.S. Income Inequality Eating Away at Our NationTimothy Noah, author of The Great Divergence: America’s Growing Income Inequality Crisis and What We Can Do About It, spoke here at the AFL-CIO today, part of our summer book series on jobs, inequality and the financial crisis. In researching the book, based on a 10-part series he wrote in 2010 for Slate, Noah says he surprised even himself when he realized that economic mobility was far more robust than it turned out to be.

Romney’s Tax Plan Is a Giveaway for the Wealthy at the Expense of the Middle Class

Romney’s Tax Plan Is a Giveaway for the Wealthy at the Expense of the Middle ClassWashington Post’s Ezra Klein pointed out yesterday that the difference between Mitt Romney and President Obama’s tax plans is pretty stark.

Klein writes: Romney’s plan is a large tax cut for the top 60 percent, a huge tax cut for the top few percent, and a significant tax increase for the bottom few percent, as he permits a few temporary tax breaks that benefit low-income folks to expire. Obama’s plan keeps the current tax rates for almost everyone but the top few percent, who face a very large tax increase.

Profile of Minimum Wage Workers Isn’t What You Think

Opponents of increasing the nation’s minimum wage always fall back on the argument that it doesn’t need to be raised because it’s mostly teenagers working part-time for extra pocket money who are getting that hourly figure (which right now is $7.25).

Study shows poor outcomes for students in virtual schools

A new study should raise serious questions for anyone who believes that virtual schools are a viable solution to improving student achievement. The report by the National Education Policy Center (NEPC) at the University of Colorado shows that students at K12 Inc., the nation's largest virtual school company, are falling further behind in reading and math scores than students in brick-and-mortar schools.

Make sure your BBQ is union made

This summer, make sure to stock your barbeque with union-made products. From Vienna Beef hot dogs to Frito Lay snacks and Weber grills, show your support for union men and women by picking the right products to serve your friends and family.

Senate deal averts student loan rate hike

Just days before the interest rate on new federally subsidized student loans was set to double, the Senate came to a bipartisan agreement that freezes the rate at 3.4 percent for another year, and Congress passed it June 29 as an amendment to a transportation bill.

Supreme Court upholds Affordable Care Act

By upholding the Affordable Care Act, the U.S. Supreme Court has sided with the American people to make quality, affordable health care a reality.

Report looks at what makes high-poverty schools effective

IB ImageA new Education Trust report validates what every teacher knows is necessary to strengthen public schools and the teaching profession, says AFT president Randi Weingarten. "Building a culture of collaboration and shared responsibility among teachers, principals and administrators; focusing on continuous professional development for teachers; and ensuring teachers have the time, tools and trust they need to improve teaching and learning are essential ingredients to building strong public schools and a quality teaching force," she says.

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