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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

House holds stacked hearing to attack retirement savings rule proposal | Ed Mierzwinski

The House Financial Services Committee is holding a typically stacked hearing -- one consumer-side witness against four Wall Street-backed lobbyists  -- to attack the important retirement savings rule proposed by the Department of Labor. The rule simply requires retirement advisors to put the customer's needs  -- not their own compensation -- first.

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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

Court Reinstates Case Against Bank That Aided Senior Citizen Fraud | Ed Mierzwinski

This week, the 3rd Circuit, U.S. Court of Appeals overturned a lower court decision that had denied class action status to victims of a scheme targeting senior citizens who were suing Zions Bank and its payment processor affiliates for aiding the fraudsters. U.S. regulators led by the Department of Justice have been fighting this and similar schemes, yet powerful special interests have managed to create a false narrative in Washington, DC that has been picked up by opponents of consumer protection laws. They falsely claim that the government's target is "legitimate" payday lenders and gun dealers. Wrong, the target is financial crimes against consumers, many consumers.

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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

IRS Admits Data Breach Worse Than Thought, Will Congress Do Wrong Thing Anyway? | Ed Mierzwinski

This week, the IRS has admitted that thieves accessed the personal information -- enough to allow them to take your tax refund -- of an additional 220,000 taxpayers, on top of the 114,000 reported in May. Meanwhile, we remain  concerned that Congress will use continued publicity about the Target breach and other breaches as an excuse to pass dangerous data security legislation. Dangerous? Yes, because it would only protect against limited financial identity theft harms, but eliminate stronger state protections against the harms posed by the IRS breach, the health insurance breaches and the OPM breach.

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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

House To Vote On Godzilla-Sized Rule Blocker, As Financial Committee Considers Smaller Rollbacks | Ed Mierzwinski

UPDATED: REINS Approved, near party line vote. Today, the House Financial Services Committee takes up a package of smaller rollback bills, many of which are opposed by Americans for Financial Reform and the PIRGs. Meanwhile, the House will bring up the Godzilla of all anti-health and safety bills, the REINS Act. Fortunately, the President has promised a veto.

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Media Hit | Tax

A TAXING PROBLEM

The average Pennsylvania family makes $50,702 a year and pays roughly $1,556 in state income taxes. Corporations that make millions of dollars in Pennsylvania often face a far lower state income tax bill. In fact, 71 percent pay nothing at all.

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Media Hit | Budget, Tax

Make them pay

Grumble as we may, we all know we have to pay our taxes each year.

But while we pay our fair share to sustain schools, parks, libraries and police departments, most companies that do business in Pennsylvania don't pay any state income tax.

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Media Hit | Tax

In Pa., paying taxes is for the little people Businesses enjoy a huge loophole

A mind-boggling 71 percent of corporations that do business in Pennsylvania don't pay state income tax at all, according to the state Department of Revenue. Can you imagine what would happen if that many residents failed to pay their taxes?

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News Release | PennPIRG | Democracy

Citizens United Supreme Court Opinion Widens Corporate “Personhood” Rights

WASHINGTON, Jan. 21 - Today’s U.S. Supreme Court decision in Citizen’s United vs. Federal Election Commission will significantly expand the role that the most powerful corporations play in election financing.

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News Release | Health Care

As Passage of Health Bill Nears, New Estimates of Pennsylvania Job Gains From Lower Premiums

WASHINGTON, DC – As Congress and the White House are locked in the final negotiations over the health care reform bill, a new analysis from the consumer group Pennsylvania Public Interest Research Group finds that the legislation will mean between 11,400 and 18,300 more jobs in Pennsylvania.  With job losses now the central economic issue confronting America, the analysis shows that the health care cost savings the bill will achieve will help businesses add new employees.

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Defend the CFPB

Tell your senators to oppose the “Financial CHOICE Act,” which would gut Wall Street reforms and destroy the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau as we know it.

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