Dem Backs Off Support for Amendment Saving Military Pensions

Update: Levin says he cannot support closing loophole ending welfare for illegal immigrants
Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin

Sen. Levin now says he does not support Sen. Ayotte’s bill due to its closing of the loophole that allows illegal immigrants to receive tax credits. Levin’s office said he supports eliminating pension cuts to military retirees, but was unaware of how Ayotte’s legislation offset the cuts.

His spokesman told the Hill: “Sen. Levin would support legislation to repeal the military pension cuts if such an amendment didn’t endanger underlying legislation and if he supported the offset. He doesn’t support the offset in Sen. Ayotte’s legislation, so he couldn’t offer support for her legislation.”

Democratic Leaks Aim to Scuttle New Iran Sanctions

Error-ridden article about bill causes embarrassment
Hassan Rowhani / AP

The Obama administration and its allies attempted to scuttle a new Iran sanctions measure late Wednesday night with a coordinated mix of leaks and statements just hours before the bill was to be filed by a bipartisan team of senators.

Democratic sources opposed to the new sanctions measure leaked the text of the resolution to a controversial freelance writer and former Center for American Progress (CAP) blogger who is known for his sympathetic views on Iran and hostility to pro-Israel organizations.

Gen. Martin Dempsey Warns U.S. Intervention in Syria Will Trigger Wider War

Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff: Intervening on behalf of rebels risks widening conflict
Gen. Martin Dempsey / AP

U.S. military intervention in Syria on behalf of Syria rebels fighting the Bashar al-Assad regime risks embroiling the United States and states in the region in a wider conflict, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a letter to Congress.

Carl Levin Calls for Supporting Syrian Rebels in Syrian Civil War

Levin: ‘Doing nothing, for me, is not an acceptable option in these circumstances’
Carl Levin / AP

Arming the opposition to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime remains the only option for achieving a negotiated settlement in the war-torn country despite fears that the weapons could fall into the hands of terrorist groups, one senator argued Wednesday after his recent trip to the region.

US Must Step Up Sanctions on Chinese Cyber Attacks

Experts, lawmakers call for tougher action
AP

Lawmakers and cybersecurity experts urged Congress and President Barak Obama Tuesday to enact tougher sanctions against the Chinese government for its widespread theft of intellectual property and defense technology as well as its abuse of human rights activists.

Under Pressure

Democratic senator pressured IRS to investigate nonprofits
Carl Levin / AP

Sen. Carl Levin (D., Mich.) repeatedly pressed the Internal Revenue Service to investigate the tax-exempt status of specific conservative nonprofit organizations in letters to then-IRS commissioner Doug Shulman and director Lois Lerner in 2012.

Levin and McCain Release Statement on IRS

Will Investigate IRS Targeting of Conservative Groups
Sens. Levin, McCain / AP

Sens. Carl Levin (D., Mich.) and John McCain (R., Ariz.) released a joint statement today announcing a congressional investigation into the IRS targeting conservative nonprofits during the election.