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    WASHINGTON -- Not long after 228 House members doomed the $700 bailout plan that political and business leaders said is needed to stave off economic disaster, investors gave lawmakers 778 reasons to reconsider their vote.    That's the number of points the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost in wake of the bailout plan's defeat. That's 778 points, gi…

   The Independence Party pulled a major but not unexpected switcheroo this week when it substituted Republican Christopher J. Lee for its previous candidate for the 26th Congressional District.   The political maneuvering included moving Anthony L. Fumerelle, a Kenmore attorney who was the party's previous candidate, to a slot for State Supreme Court i…

WASHINGTON - Despite all the noise on the networks about President Bush's bailout, the people who will pay the bill for it, the taxpayers, will not get details until weeks from now, if ever.However, a few scraps of information have fallen from the negotiating table. First, the tab isn't limited to $700 billion. The legislation really doesn't impose a ceiling on the price t…

       WASHINGTON - The Republican presidential campaign of Sen. John McCain of Arizona said it was working with his Democratic rival to delay Friday's debate in order to concentrate on the nation's economic crisis.     At the same time however, McCain's political director Mike DuHaime deflected questions on why the candidate, former chairman…

   WASHINGTON - In March, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson warned that if the government didn't step in to save Bear Stearns in New York the old investment firm would fail and prompt a financial catastrophe spreading through the nation's banks. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York stepped in with a 28-day bridge loan, but Bear Stearns collapsed anyway, and its r…

    WASHINGTON -- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., told reporters this week that she "sees no reason" why Rep. Charles B. Rangel, left, D-Manhattan, should step away from his job as chairman of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee until the air over his many issues is cleared.      Apparently Rangel's Democratic colleagues f…

WASHINGTON - Republican presidential nominee John McCain and his Democratic rival Barack Obama are promising to crack down on Wall Street greed if they are elected. But can either nominee or Congress be trusted to discipline the finance and insurance industries that have been so generous to federal candidates? The nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics says that dono…

   For what it's worth, Democrat Alice Kryzan and Republican Christopher Lee are vowing to play nice in their race for Congress in the 26th district.    And it's no wonder they would, given what playing dirty did to Jon Powers and Jack Davis.    The air (and mail) war between Powers and Davis was surely one of the most intense in local histo…

   It will go down as one of the most tantalizing and unpredictable Primary Nights in memory.    People who were supposed to win -- Dale Volker for State Senate or Frank Sedita for Erie County district attorney -- did, in fact, win.    People who really weren't supposed to win -- Alice Kryzan for Congress -- won anyway.    And peo…

Join us in our live blog. After the last blog entry, feel free to continue commenting on Tuesday's primary results.

   I've been covering Washington politics for 19 now, and I have many dear friends, which means that if my life were to be interpreted by a political consultant, it would probably sound something like this:    "Jerry Zremski has been a Washington insider for 19 years now, and he counts among his best friends lobbyists for big oil and one of the n…

   MINNEAPOLIS -- New York politics is still finding a way to play itself out in the Twin Cities. Former Majority Leader Joseph L. Bruno, who recently resigned after a long career as powerful head of the Republican State Senate, drew comparisons between Democratic nominee Barack Obama and disgraced former Gov. Eliot L. Spitzer in a talk before the New York delega…

   ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Sarah Palin was a hit in this building Wednesday night.    Now she and John McCain must take their campaign beyond the Republican National Convention.    The Alaska governor, speaking before a packed Xcel Energy Center, faced the tough job of being tough enough to counter her critics, yet likable enough to win over an u…

   GENESEO -- This time there was no empty chair for Jack Davis, who no doubt was dozens of miles away in Akron rather than onstage debating his opponents for the Democratic nomination in the 26th congressional district.    But that doesn't mean Davis was out of the news on this day when Alice Kryzan got tough with Jon Powers during their second debate…

   MINNEAPOLIS -- Former Gov. George E. Pataki is in town for the Republican National Convention, and he's been seen just about evreywhere.   Except with the New York delegation.   The former three-term governor and New York Republican Chairman Joseph N. Mondello have fought and scrapped over the years after Pataki ousted him from the Republican Nat…