Igor Bobic

Igor Bobic is the assistant editor of Talking Points Memo, helping oversee the site's coverage of politics and policy in Washington. While originally from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Igor feels best at home on the beaches of Southern California. He can be reached at igor@talkingpointsmemo.com.

Articles by Igor

President Obama's plan for a "Buffett rule" tax on the wealthy would rake in just $31 billion over the next 11 years, reports the Associated Press:

That figure would be a drop in the bucket of the over $7 trillion in federal budget deficits projected during that period. It is also miniscule compared to the many hundreds of billions it would cost to repeal the alternative minimum tax, which Obama's budget last month said he would replace with the Buffett rule tax.

A strong 7.6 magnitude earthquake has shaken buildings and downed cell phone lines in Oaxaca, Mexico, Reuters reports:

The quake was felt in Mexico City where buildings shook and office employees fled into the street, according to a Reuters witnesses. Cellphone lines were down and traffic snarled in the capital moments after the quake.

No damage was reported in Oaxaca, near where the quake hit, according to local television.

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Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) told Fox Business Network’s Don Imus in a phone interview on Tuesday that while he was confident Mitt Romney would win the GOP nomination, "he has not done as well as we had hoped," reports the Washington Post's Felicia Sonmez:

“Well, look – MSNBC,” McCain said. “Some of the pundits I was watching this morning – ‘Well, he may not be able to get there if he doesn’t do well in Wisconsin, blah, blah, blah.’ I think he has got a solid lead. I think he has not done as well as we had hoped. None of us ever do."

White House communications director Dan Pfeiffer released the following statement on Rep. Paul Ryan's budget unveiled in Washington on Tuesday morning:

The House budget once again fails the test of balance, fairness, and shared responsibility.  It would shower the wealthiest few Americans with an average tax cut of at least $150,000, while preserving taxpayer giveaways to oil companies and breaks for Wall Street hedge fund managers.  What’s worse is that all of these tax breaks would be paid for by undermining Medicare and the very things we need to grow our economy and the middle class – things like education, basic research, and new sources of energy. And instead of strengthening Medicare, the House budget would end Medicare as we know it, turning the guarantee of retirement security into a voucher that will shift higher and higher costs to seniors over time. 

The House economic plan draws on the same wrong-headed theory that led to the worst recession of our lifetimes and contributed to the erosion of middle-class security over the last decade.  And the President believes we cannot return to a failed theory that didn’t lead to the growth of jobs, incomes, or the economy.  That’s why he put forward a balanced approach that reduces the deficit by over $4 trillion.  It’s an approach that asks the wealthiest to pay their fair share, makes tough cuts to programs we can’t afford, and strengthens Medicare with reforms that would reduce overpayments to drug companies, improve the quality of care, and protect Medicare’s commitment to America’s seniors. 

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Kristina Schake, Communications Director to the First Lady, confirms in an email to Politico's Dylan Byers that the White House pressed various media outlets, including the AFP and the Huffington Post, to pull a story about Malia Obama's spring break vacation: 

From the beginning of the administration, the White House has asked news outlets not to report on or photograph the Obama children when they are not with their parents and there is no vital news interest. We have reminded outlets of this request in order to protect the privacy and security of these girls.

While U.S. soldier Staff Sgt. Robert Bales stands accused of a shooting rampage in southern Afghanistan's Kandahar province, Al Jazeera is out with the first report listing the names of the 16 Afghan civilians who died, including three women and three children:

The dead:
Mohamed Dawood son of  Abdullah
Khudaydad son of Mohamed Juma
Nazar Mohamed 
Shatarina daughter of Sultan Mohamed
Zahra daughter of Abdul Hamid
Nazia daughter of Dost Mohamed
Masooma daughter of Mohamed Wazir 
Farida daughter of Mohamed Wazir
Palwasha daughter of Mohamed Wazir
Nabia daughter of Mohamed Wazir
Esmatullah daughter of Mohamed Wazir
Faizullah son of Mohamed Wazir
Essa Mohamed son of Mohamed Hussain
Akhtar Mohamed son of Murrad Ali 
The wounded:
Haji Mohamed Naim son of Haji Sakhawat
Mohamed Sediq son of Mohamed Naim


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President Obama's campaign has pulled in $45 million for his re-election bid in February, his campaign announced in a web video on Monday.

The average donation was $59.04. 97.7% of donations were $250 or less, the campaign said. Watch the video below:

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Apple has announced that it will put its massive cash store to work by introducing a quarterly dividend of $2.65 per share, and starting a $10 billion share buyback program, reports the AP:

Apple says the dividend will start in its fiscal fourth quarter, which begins July 1. The buybacks will begin in its next fiscal year, which starts Sept. 30.

Apple is sitting on $97.6 billion in cash and securities. For years, it has resisted calls to reward shareholders with some of that money. Since the death of CEO Steve Jobs, management has signaled that it's been considering options for the money.

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